Alex Salmond trial 'to begin next year'

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The trial of Alex Salmond on multiple charges of attempted rape and sexual assault will not begin until late January next year, it has been reported.

The former First Minister of Scotland was charged with a total of 14 offences on 24 January this year, including two charges of attempted rape and nine of sexual assault.

Mr Salmond vehemently denies all of the allegations against him.

BBC Scotland reported that the indictment in the case is not expected to be served until October, with an initial hearing in the case currently due on 18 November.

The trial would then be scheduled to start before a jury at the High Court towards the end of January.

From Linlithgow, West Lothian, Mr Salmond was Scotland’s first minister from 2007 to 2014.

Former First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond. Picture: TSPL

Former First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond. Picture: TSPL

He resigned his membership of the SNP in August 2018.

Mr Salmond guided the party to a narrow Scottish election win in 2007 and then led a minority government as he became Scotland’s first SNP First Minister.

In the 2011 election, he led the party to an unprecedented victory with a majority win, meaning the SNP’s manifesto pledge to hold an independence referendum could be delivered.

But the result of the 2014 referendum - a 55% to 45% vote to stay in the UK - led to him stepping down as first minister and SNP leader.