Man, 61, denies child sex offences

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: ARCHANT

Ipswich Crown Court. Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: ARCHANT

A Suffolk man took advantage of a shy and unhappy schoolboy and groomed him for sex, it has been alleged.

Robin Croft shared a number of interests with the teenager and allegedly gave him alcohol to manipulate him, Ipswich Crown Court was told.

"He took advantage of him and groomed him for sex," said Emma Nash, prosecuting.

Croft, 61, of Marigold Drive, Red Lodge, has denied seven offences of sexual activity with child and six offences of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.

The offences date back more than a decade.

The alleged victim contacted the police in January 2017 and Croft was arrested two months later.

During police interviews Croft claimed the schoolboy had been "besotted" with him and had made sexual advances to him which he had rejected.

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"He said the allegations were absolutely untrue and nothing but lies," said Miss Nash.

She said Croft claimed the alleged victim had made up the allegations to get him into trouble after they fell out.

The trial, which is expected to last around seven days, continues.