Michael Le Vell tells court he is 'fighting for my life'
Coronation Street actor Michael Le Vell has told a court the girl he has been accused of raping is "vindictive" and that he was "fighting for my life".
Mr Le Vell, 48, who is on trial under his real name Michael Turner, denies 12 offences, including five of rape.
Asked about the girl's claims, he said: "Never in a million years would I do anything like that."
Prosecution barrister at Manchester Crown Court, Eleanor Laws QC, accused him of "clutching at straws".
The girl, who cannot be named, alleges she was abused from the age of six until she was 14.
The actor, from Hale in Greater Manchester, also faces three counts of indecent assault, two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity and two of sexual activity with a child.
'I'm a bloke'
Answering questions from Ms Laws, Mr Le Vell was asked how he felt at being accused of the allegations.
"I'm devastated, I'm lost. I don't understand where it's come from. It's left such a big hole in life.
"I'm like a lost soul and I still want to get to the bottom of why this has happened to me and why I'm being accused of this because I know none of this happened.
"I have been walking around for the last two years just not knowing."
"Never in a million years would I do anything like that."
Ms Laws said it had "never been more important" for him to be "persuasive", comparing that need in court to his acting.
He said he was "just here to tell the truth" and that in acting, "you never get put in a position like this".
"They never teach you to be here and face what I have been faced with for the last two years. No-one can teach you that.
"I'm fighting for my life."
Asked if he was a man with "demons", he replied: "It depends what you mean, if you mean demon drink, yes."
"It's a working class mentality. I'm a bloke, that's the way I've been brought up," he said.
Ms Laws said: "You're nothing like your screen character."
"I don't pretend to be," he replied.
The trial continues.