Paedophile Radio DJ pleads guilty to sex offences

Chris Denning is due to be sentenced on 9 December. Picture: PA

Chris Denning is due to be sentenced on 9 December. Picture: PA

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FORMER Radio 1 DJ Chris Denning has admitted 41 sex charges against young boys in crimes spanning 20 years.

Denning, 73, of Essex, pleaded guilty to ten charges of indecent assault on a male, a charge of gross indecency and another of indecency with a child when he appeared in custody at Southwark Crown Court in London.

He has previously admitted 29 charges – including 26 counts of indecent assault on a male and three of indecency with a child – at a hearing at Southwark Crown Court in August.

One of his victims was just nine years old.

Denning is set to be sentenced on 41 charges when he next appears in custody at the same court on 9 December.

Scotland Yard said the offences involve 26 male victims who were assaulted between 1967 and 1987.

Yesterday, Denning also denied one count of indecent assault on a male person.

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He was one of the original Radio 1 line-up when the BBC station was launched in 1967.

Denning was also the first announcer heard on BBC2 when the television channel took to the air in 1964.

He was first arrested by detectives from sex-crime inquiry Operation Yewtree in June last year.

After the hearing, Detective Chief Inspector Michael Orchard, from the sexual offences, exploitation and child abuse command, said: “Christopher Denning is a dangerous serial offender who committed ­numerous offences over a 20-year period against a large number of young boys.

“Denning’s only redeeming quality is that he has not made his victims go through the trial process.

“I would like to thank the victims for their bravery and courage in coming forward.

“I hope Denning’s admittance of guilt is the first step in helping them move on with their lives.”

The former DJ had previously been jailed for four and a half years in the Czech Republic in 2000 for having sexual contact with underage teenage boys.

He was jailed again in 2006 for four years after pleading guilty to child abuse during the 1970s and 80s.

Baljit Ubhey, chief crown prosecutor for the Crown Prosecution Service in London, said: “The scale of Chris Denning’s child sexual abuse is truly shocking. His offending spanned 20 years and his youngest victim was aged just nine at the time of the attack.

“The compelling evidence in this case left Chris Denning with little option but to plead guilty. I am pleased that the guilty pleas mean a potentially lengthy trial has been avoided and the victims will not be required to give evidence.”

Operation Yewtree is the Met’s investigation into allegations that have arisen since presenter Jimmy Savile was accused of abuse. The operation has three strands. One is looking at the actions of Savile, the second concerns allegations against “Savile and others”. The third relates to alleged complaints against other people unconnected to the Savile investigations.

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