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'Dark secrets are one-night stands'
Coronation Street star Michael Le Vell has told a jury that his "little dark secrets" are a string of one-night stands and not the sexual abuse of a young girl.
The soap actor's private life has been laid bare in court as he admitted being an alcoholic, having one-night stands and an affair - as his wife underwent chemotherapy for breast cancer.
But the 48-year-old, who has played garage mechanic Kevin Webster in the ITV1 soap for 30 years, denies he is a child rapist as he defends himself against 12 charges of sexual abuse.
Continuing his cross-examination at Manchester Crown Court by Eleanor Laws QC, prosecuting, Le Vell told the jury of a conversation he had with someone last year about "secrets". He told the person: "I have had a few one-night stands."
Le Vell agreed also telling the same person that what he had done was "something unforgiveable". But he denied ever saying that they would not believe "what things are inside my head".
Miss Laws said: "I am going to suggest to you that what you were referring to was the abuse that was going on?" He replied: "No, not at all. There was no abuse going on."
The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, claims Le Vell repeatedly sexually assaulted and raped her, once while she was clutching a teddy bear.
Le Vell, whose real name is Michael Turner, denies five counts of rape, three of indecent assault, two counts of sexual activity with a child and two of causing a child to engage in sexual activity.
At the conclusion of the cross-examination, Alisdair Williamson, defending Le Vell, reminded the jury that his client was a man of good character who had never been arrested or interviewed by police prior to these allegations surfacing. He went on to ask him: "Have you ever got so drunk that you decided to rape (alleged victim)?" The actor replied: "No."
Following the completion of his evidence, Judge Michael Henshell told the jury of eight women and four men that his intention was for the two barristers to deliver their closing speeches on Monday. He said he would also sum up the trial on the same day and then send the jurors out to consider their verdicts.