Leeds & West Yorkshire

Rugby league star Graham Holroyd cleared of sexual offences

Graham Holroyd arriving at court
Image caption Graham Holroyd was found not guilty on five charges of indecent assault and one of rape

A former rugby league player has been cleared of sexual offence charges dating back more than 20 years.

Graham Holroyd, 38, the former Leeds, Halifax and Huddersfield player, was found not guilty on five allegations of indecent assault and one of rape.

The offences were alleged to have taken place between 1986 and 1991, Bradford Crown Court heard.

Following the verdicts Judge Roger Thomas QC told Mr Holroyd he could leave the dock.

The allegations emerged when one of the complainants told a counsellor he had been abused as a child, the court had heard.

'A wind-up'

The offences were alleged to have taken place when Mr Holroyd was aged between 11 and 15.

He had told the jury how he felt ''total shock'' when police officers arrived at his home to quiz him about the sex abuse allegations.

He said he thought it might have been ''a wind-up'' because he had absolutely no idea about the claims being made against him.

A woman, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, had claimed that Mr Holroyd had raped her from the age of seven.

The male complainant, who also cannot be identified, contacted the police after he had disclosed the allegations of abuse during a counselling session.

Mr Holroyd played two Wembley Challenge Cup finals for Leeds, in 1994 and 1995.

He featured in games for Leeds, Halifax and for several other clubs, including Huddersfield and Salford.

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