Ex-teacher accused of abducting schoolgirl

Teacher Jeremy Forrest arriving at Lewes Crown Court where he is accused of abducting a pupil. Forrest, 30, was arrested in Bordeaux, France, on September 28 last year following the issuing of a European Arrest Warrant.
Teacher Jeremy Forrest arriving at Lewes Crown Court where he is accused of abducting a pupil. Forrest, 30, was arrested in Bordeaux, France, on September 28 last year following the issuing of a European Arrest Warrant.

Former Bishop Bell teacher Jeremy Forrest has this week gone on trial accused of abducting a 15-year-old schoolgirl last year.

Forrest pleaded not guilty to the charge in January this year and his trial began at Lewes Crown Court on Monday morning (June 10) in front of Judge Michael Lawson QC.

Newspapers and broadcasters have been banned by the judge from reporting details on the opening of the trial until futher notice.

Thirty-year-old Forrest was arrested in Bordeaux in France on September 28 last year following the issuing of a European Arrest Warrant.

He was with a 15-year-old girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons.

Following his extradition to Britain he was charged with child abduction by Sussex Police. At a plea and case management hearing at Lewes Crown Court in January, he pleaded not guilty to one count of child abduction when he appeared via videolink.

On Monday morning Forrest arrived at the crown court in a prison van.

He was clean shaven and wearing a dark grey suit. He spoke only to confirm his name in court.

A jury of eight men and four women were sworn in and prosecutor Richard Barton opened the case throughout yesterday. Witnesses are being called by the prosecution to give their evidence tomorrow.

The trial is expected to last two weeks.