Home UK World Politics US Ocean Rescue Science & Tech Business Ents & Arts Offbeat Analysis Opinion Sky Views Videos Weather Watch Live Manchester City abuse compensation payouts could reach six figures The club establishes an unprecedented scheme which gives victims an alternative course of action to going through the courts. By Martha Kelner, sports correspondent
image/svg+xml Why you can trust Sky News Manchester Citys “survivors scheme” – offering compensation – is almost certainly unprecedented in British sport.
Manchester City launch child sexual abuse compensation scheme for victims of evil Milton Keynes paedophile football coach Barry Bennell
It is a way for the boys – now men – who were abused by Barry Bennell or John Broome to claim compensation.
It offers an alternative course of action to making claims through the courts, which can be a time consuming and emotionally damaging process.
As one of many, many victims of convicted sexual abuser Barry Bennell, Gary Cliffe has had to be patient in his fight for justice. But he fears numerous others will never find the same from a criminal justice system that cannot cope.
It is, in effect, an admission from Manchester City of the responsibility the club has to bear for abuse that occurred while Bennell, one of the most prolific paedophiles in British history, worked with junior players at the club.
The former scout and coach was not paid a salary by City but had three stints at the clubs old Maine Road campus between 1976 and 1984.
Broome, who died in 2010, was a talent spotter and junior coach, and was involved at City from 1964-71. Some of his victims are also expected to claim through the fund.
It is understood that the legal firm representing the largest number of Bennells victims has indicated it will recommend claiming through this method, as opposed to via a court.
Despite City’s intentions to compensate victims, Cliffe has still not been approached by the Premier League club with offers, and he does not know of any victims to have been paid as of yet.
Compensation figures will take into account “career blight” – a form of loss of earnings – legal fees, therapy fees and the psychological impact of the abuse.
Man City Launch Child Sex Abuse Compensation Scheme
It is expected that up to 40 victims could apply to the scheme, while payments made to those worst affected could run into six figures.
City say they commissioned a QC-led review in November 2016 into whether the club was used by former youth coach Barry Bennell and any other individual to facilitate alleged sexual abuse of children from 1964 to the present day.
Manchester City launches redress scheme for survivors of historic sex abuse by Barry Bennell and John Broome
It is understood that City have familiarised themselves with a case in the local area in which compensation was offered to the victims of Ian Paterson, a disgraced breast surgeon who operated on women unnecessarily.
Manchester City launch scheme to compensate victims of child sexual abuse
In that instance, a £37m fund, established by Spire Healthcare – the firm that runs the two private hospitals where Paterson worked – as well as his insurers, was shared between almost 750 victims.
The announcement of Citys “survivors scheme” is in stark contrast to the current stance from Crewe Alexandra, another club where Barry Bennell worked and carried out much of his abuse.
Press Association Sport understands that as well as involving financial compensation the scheme will see victims receive a face-to-face apology from a senior club official.
Former Crewe player Steve Walters is taking the club to court after he claimed they told him he had waited too long to report sex abuse by Bennell.
Manchester Citys review into historical sexual abuse is ongoing and the fund being established will not alter the path of this process.
That review, which is ongoing, led to the uncovering of serious allegations of child sex abuse in respect of another individual, John Broome.
An independent FA inquiry into footballs sex abuse scandal, led by Clive Sheldon QC, has been delayed several times and is not expected to deliver its findings until at least June.
Settlements will not have any confidentiality clause and the scheme will be kept open for those who prefer to consider pursuing a civil claim.
Manchester City said in a statement: “The club continues to be restricted as to what it can make public at present for legal reasons.
All victims were entitled to expect full protection from the kind of harm they suffered as a result of their sexual abuse as children.
“The club reiterates, however, its heartfelt sympathy to all victims for the unimaginably traumatic experiences that they endured.
“All victims were entitled to expect full protection from the kind of harm they suffered as a result of their sexual abuse as children.”
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Just over a year ago, former coach Barry Bennell (pictured), the serial paedophile whose sickening treatment of aspiring youngsters mainly in the 1980s rocked British football, was sentenced to 31 years in jail for 50 counts of child sexual abuse.
According to the likes of The Telegraph, the Premier League champions have launched a survivors scheme for the victims of Bennell and another paedophile, John Broome, who was also involved with the clubs youth set-up.
The move came following investigations into the conduct of two of Citys former youth coaches, saying the victims were entitled to expect full protection from the kind of harm they suffered as a result of their sexual abuse as children.
Last year Bennell lost an appeal against a 30-year prison sentence for multiple child sex offences. Three Court of Appeal judges ruled in June 2018 that the length of his jail term for multiple offences against boys he coached was not excessive.
Man City step up against child abuse: Man City launch child sex abuse compensation scheme
The 64-year-old former Crewe Alexandra coach and Manchester City coach and scout lived in Milton Keynes under the name Richard Jones until his arrest. He was sentenced last February for 52 offences committed against 12 boys he coached between 1979 and 1991.
March 12 – English Premier League champions Manchester City have launched a compensation scheme for victims of historical child sexual abuse experienced while at the club.
Manchester City introduce redress scheme for survivors of child sex abuse
The Court of Appeal judges said that because of the huge scale of his offending it would be wrong for them to reduce with the sentence. During his original six-week trial, Bennell was said to have committed industrial scale levels of abuse against vulnerable young boys in his care.
The move by Manchester City to launch a victims fund is expected to lead to the reigning Premier League champions offering compensation packages that could total several million pounds and an apology to the players who were sexually abused during their time at the club.
The scheme, which is the first of its kind to be set up by one of the clubs implicated in the sexual abuse scandal that has rocked football, was announced by City on Tuesday morning.
City launched an independent QC led inquiry in November 2016 into Bennells connections with the club and how the former youth coach – described as the devil incarnate by a judge – was able to exploit a prominent role to abuse boys as young as eight.