|Former Priest Denies Sexual Contact
October 18, 2010
A former Roman Catholic priest from the West Midlands accused of a string of sex offences against young boys has denied having any sexual contact with any of his alleged victims.
James Robinson told a jury that he could not even recall meeting one of the six men who have accused him of abusing them between 1959 and 1983.
Giving evidence in the third week of his trial, Robinson, 73, also said that he was "unaware" of any complaint being made to the police when he moved to America in 1985.
The former priest told Birmingham Crown Court he had known five of the six complainants when they were boys, but had never touched any of the youngsters in a sexual way.
Robinson, who is originally from Aldridge, West Midlands, denies 21 charges, including 12 counts of indecent assault which are alleged to have taken place before and during his time as a priest.
After giving the court his full name - Richard John James Robinson - the former clergyman told the jury he had worked as a blacksmith at Walsall Wood Colliery after leaving school aged 15.
He later worked as a driver for a butcher's shop and fought as both an amateur and professional boxer, winning 30 fights, before giving up boxing aged 24.
During his evidence, Robinson denied taking one of the alleged victims to his mother's home and rejected suggestions he had given a gift to another boy in return for sexual favours.
During Robinson's testimony, defence QC Rachel Brand asked him: "You have heard six men give evidence that when they were boys you touched them sexually in a whole variety of ways. Did you do that?"
Robinson, who worked in parishes in Staffordshire, Birmingham and Coventry after being ordained in 1971, replied: "No." The trial was adjourned until Tuesday.
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