‘Leading Premier League figure’ accused of raping two teenage girls

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According to The Athletic, a prominent individual in Premier League football, who remains unidentified, is currently under investigation for multiple rape allegations.

The latest accusation involves the rape of a 15-year-old girl, while another police force is also looking into an alleged rape and potential child-sex offense that occurred in the 1990s.

The Athletic has knowledge of the suspect’s identity but is unable to disclose it due to privacy regulations in the UK that protect the anonymity of suspects during the early stages of a police investigation. A second alleged victim, referred to as Woman B, reported the incident to the police in 2021. Her complaint was forwarded to a specialized unit that investigates sexual offenses against individuals under the age of 16. She claims that the rape occurred at the suspect’s residence.

However, Woman B was informed that she had waited too long to report the incident due to a loophole in the 1956 Sexual Offences Act. According to this legislation, if the alleged offense occurred between 1956 and 2004 and the victim was a girl aged 13 to 15, a complaint had to be made within a year. 

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Although this time limit was abolished with the implementation of the 2003 Sexual Offences Act in May 2004, it still applied to cases that took place within the previous 48 years. This limitation does not apply to boys and has been criticized by the NSPCC as “devastating” and “heartbreaking” for potential victims. 

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) determined that no further action could be taken in Woman B’s case. The suspect was not arrested, and the case remains on record.

The investigation by The Athletic also uncovers that the case involving Woman A and the Metropolitan Police is still ongoing, while the separate investigation involving the 15-year-old in a different location has been inactive since the decision not to pursue charges. 

The individual in question, who is still involved in football and holds a prominent position in the Premier League, remains under suspicion. The Football Association (FA) released a statement stating that they have strong protective measures in place and handle all reports according to their established policies and procedures.

“We investigate and assess all allegations and concerns about individuals who may pose a risk of harm to children and adults in football and, where applicable, can impose proportionate safeguarding measures in accordance with FA safeguarding regulations. We do not comment on individual cases.”

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