Adam Johnson trial: 'He's a bit of a paedophile' says under-age girl's friend

A friend of the teen at the centre of the Adam Johnson sex charges trial has called him "a bit of a paedophile" for meeting up with a 15-year-old girl.

Thursday, 18th February 2016, 11:52 am
Updated Thursday, 18th February 2016, 11:55 am
Adam Johnson arrives at Bradford Crown Court for day five of his trial.

You can follow our Live Blog on Day 5 of Adam Johnson's trial here.The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons but will be referred to as Friend 2, gave evidence at Bradford Crown Court today.

Formed Sunderland footballer Johnson, 28, denies two charges of sexual activity with a child.

Last week, he admitted meeting a child following sexual grooming and one count of sexual activity with a child. His contract with Sunderland was terminated as a result of his guilty pleas.

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Friend 2, who appeared via live video link, told jurors she had been shown WhatsApp messages between the girl and Johnson - and agreed with his barrister, Orlando Pownall QC, that the two had been engaging in "wholly inappropriate and illegal" flirting.

She also said that the girl was "excited and happy" following her two meetings with the footballer, which took place in his Range Rover.

Friend 2 said: "She was quite happy that it had happened."

A third meeting was planned between the girl and Johnson, the friend said, which didn't go ahead.

The girl told Friend 2 that she and Johnson would "have sex" at this meeting.

Friend 2 also said in evidence that the girl told her parents about the activity between her and Johnson after people started to talk about it.

Rumours about the two of them were "the talk of the school year" and everyone was gossiping about it, she added.

Friend 2 also told the court that the girl spoke to her about going to the police - and admitted that she had not told officers about her allegedly performing a sex act on Johnson.

"She said it was hard enough telling her mam and dad that they have met up and done one thing, and she thought that other thing was worse, so she didn't want to tell her mam."

Earlier in the week, the girl at the centre of the allegations told jurors that she hadn't told police about the alleged act to "protect" Johnson.

She didn't want the player, who she said she idolised, to lose his career.

The friend continued: "She didn't want him to have to get in any more trouble than he was going to have to.

"[The girl] said that she didn't think anyone would believe her."

When asked why by Mr Pownall, she continued: "Because she's 15 and he's however old he is, and it's a bit weird.

"She thought she could prove she met him because of the texts, but she didn't have proof that other things had happened."

When Friend 2 first learned of the meetings between the two, she "didn't believe it" herself, she said.

She told Kate Blackwell QC, prosecuting: "At first I thought it's definitely not Adam Johnson because he's however old he is, and he's a bit of a paedophile if he's going for 15-year-old kids."

The case continues.