Corrie's Roache charged with sex abuse

Corrie's Roache charged with sex abuse

Coronation Street's longest serving actor William Roache, best known for his role as Ken Barlow, has been charged with five counts of indecently assaulting young girls in the 1960s.

The 81-year-old, from Wilmslow in Cheshire, was arrested by appointment on Thursday morning.

"The offences are alleged to have been committed in the Manchester area between 1965 and 1968 and to involve four girls, aged between 12 and 16 years at the time," Lancashire Constabulary said.

Roache, who denies two previous counts of rape, has been released on police bail and is due to before a court on Friday.

The Crown Prosecution Service confirmed that the evidence in the case has been reviewed and a decision taken that there is sufficient grounds to charge the veteran actor.

"We have been reviewing evidence and providing early investigative advice to Lancashire Police regarding these allegations, which were made to police after Mr Roache was charged with two offences of rape on 1 May, 2013," Nazir Afzal, Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West, said.

"This decision was taken in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors and our guidance for prosecutors on sexual offences.

"Mr Roache has a right to a fair trial and it is therefore very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial.

"For these reasons, it would be inappropriate for me to comment further."

Roache holds the world record for being the longest-serving soap star, having been with Coronation Street since 1960.

He will not be appearing on screen while legal proceedings are ongoing.

© UTV

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