Bill Roache charged with indecent assault

Bill Roache is due to appear at Preston Magistrates' Court today (07.06.13) charged with five counts of indecent assault involving four girls aged between 12 and 16 in the 1960s

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Bill Roache

Bill Roache

Bill Roache has been charged with five counts of indecent assault involving four girls aged between 12 and 16 in the 1960s.

The 'Coronation Street' actor - who has portrayed Ken Barlow since the ITV soap began in December 1960 - will appear at Preston Magistrates' Court today (07.06.13) after being arrested yesterday (06.06.13) after attending a police station in Lancashire.

Lancashire Constabulary said in a statement: "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."

The 81-year-old star - who already faces two counts of rape involving a 15-year-old girl, in 1967 - was released on police bail yesterday.

Nazir Afzal, Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS North West, said: "We have carefully considered all the evidence gathered by Lancashire Police in relation to recent allegations from four complainants that William Roache indecently assaulted them in the 1960s.

"Having completed our review, we have concluded that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest for Mr. Roache to be charged ..."

The actor has previously said he "strenuously denies" the allegations of rape but is yet to make a formal plea.

An ITV spokesman has said Bill will not appear in 'Coronation Street' until legal proceedings are over.

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