Sex accusation vicar in court

A MOB of people booed and hurled abused at a vicar who appeared in court today.

James Hore

A MOB of people booed and hurled abused at a vicar who appeared in court today accused of a string of sex offences against a young girl.

The Rev Trevor Diaper has been charged with seven counts of indecent assault during a four-and-a-half year period between May 1999 and December 2003 against a girl aged between eight and 13.

Diaper was given a police escort when he arrived at Chelmsford Magistrates' Court this morning and was allowed to enter through a side entrance to the building.

Diaper covered his face as he arrived and police made a cordon to prevent photographers from getting close to the 57-year-old.

The vicar, who has been suspended from his duties at St Peter's Church, Bocking, Braintree, was led up from the cells for the short hearing.

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He spoke just to confirm his name, age and address, which he gave as Alton Abbey, Alton in Hampshire.

No pleas were entered during the short hearing and the case will be committed to crown court later this year.

His solicitor Stuart Cowan, told the court Diaper wanted to be remanded in custody because he feared for his own safety and the application was accepted by the court.

Speaking afterwards the Rev Chris Newlands, spokesman for the Chelmsford diocese, said the church would be supporting Diaper and his family.

“We will be doing everything we can to put things in place so they have as much support as they need,” he said.

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