DLT ‘thought he had perfect right to grope young women’

DJ Dave Lee Travis arrives at Southwark Crown Court
DJ Dave Lee Travis arrives at Southwark Crown Court
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DISC JOCKEY Dave Lee Travis was an “opportunist” who acted as if he had the “perfect right” to grope young women, jurors in his retrial were told.

Travis, who is standing trial on three charges, inappropiately touched women who were “many years” younger than him over a period of more than 20 years, London’s Southwark Crown Court heard.

The former Radio 1 DJ, who is charged under his real name of David Griffin, faces a retrial on two counts - one of indecent assault of a woman between November 1 1990 and January 31 1991, and another of sexual assault on a different woman between June 1 2008 and November 30 2008 - on which a jury was unable to reach verdicts at a trial earlier this year.

He has also pleaded not guilty to an additional count of indecent assault alleged to have taken place on January 17 1995.

Miranda Moore QC, prosecuting, told the jury of six men and six women that the airing of a television expose on Jimmy Savile in 2012 had prompted a number of women to come forward to Operation Yewtree - the investigation set up in the wake of the Savile scandal - about Travis.

She said the allegations spanned a period from 1985 to 2008 and were alleged to have taken place when Travis was working as a DJ or entertainer, such as starring in a pantomime, or as a guest celebrity, or in his own home while he was being interviewed.

Ms Moore said: “We say ... he has a propensity towards laying his hands in a sexual manner on young women who are alone with him or in vulnerable positions. He is an opportunist.”

Ms Moore added: “Generally speaking, you will hear evidence that the ladies concerned were in their early 20s or 20s, with this defendant being older by many years when it happened, probably 20 years-plus.”

She said the women were left embarrassed and shocked by the alleged assaults and, while they had not told police amid concerns that Travis was a celebrity, all had confided in other people at the time.

Ms Moore said the first charge related to a woman who was working on a production of Aladdin in which Travis was starring.

The woman claimed that the DJ assaulted her while they were alone in his dressing room, holding the door closed as he put his hand inside her trousers.

She managed to prise open the door to the corridor - where comedy stars the Chuckle Brothers were standing - and escaped.

The second charge relates to an alleged assault by Travis on a young woman working on the Mrs Merton Show.

Ms Moore said Travis approached the woman in the corridor where she was smoking, commenting on her “poor little lungs”, then put his hands on her chest for at least 10-15 seconds until she backed away.

The alleged victim’s first thought was “Oh my god, Dave Lee Travis has got his hands on my breasts”, the court heard, and she went and told another member of staff in similar words.

She was “mildly hysterical” at the time she told her colleague, the court heard.

In a third count, Travis is alleged to have groped a female journalist when she went to his home to interview him. He touched her chest, holding his hands there for several seconds, the court heard.

The case continues.