Johnson guilty of one child sex charge

Former Sunderland winger Adam Johnson has been found guilty of one charge of sexual activity with a child by a jury at Bradford Crown Court, and not guilty on a second charge.

Johnson, 28, had already pleaded guilty to grooming a 15-year-old girl and one charge of sexual activity with the teenager, but had denied two more serious counts of sexual activity with a child.

Judge Jonathan Rose said that, having previously insisted on a unanimous verdict from the jury of eight women and four men, he would accept a majority decision.

After the jury returned a guilty verdict, Judge Rose told the midfielder that a custodial sentence is an “almost inevitable outcome.”

He said his preliminary view was that the case falls into the category of a five-year prison sentence, with a range of between four and 10 years.

The judge told Johnson he would be released on bail so he could get his “affairs in order” and added: “You can say goodbye to your daughter. A prison sentence will mean you will not see her for some time.”

Sunderland terminated Johnson’s contract on Feb. 11, shortly after his guilty plea on two charges was entered. After the verdict was returned, they issued a statement denying they had known that he would change his plea from not guilty.

The case related to an incident in Johnson’s Range Rover on Jan. 30 last year after he met up with the girl in County Durham.

The player, who has won 12 England caps, admitted that he kissed the teenager but he told the jury the encounter went no further.

Johnson was bailed for sentencing which will occur in a few weeks’ time.

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