Famous pianist interviewed after latest allegations

Concert pianist John Briggs

Concert pianist John Briggs

First published in Keighley

Renowned concert pianist John Briggs, who is accused of historic sex abuse against boys, has been re-arrested after new allegations were made against him.

Briggs, 65, has been interviewed by detectives after another man contacted West Yorkshire Police with fresh claims of abuse.

The internationally-known musician was arrested on August 6 and questioned about the new allegations before being released on bail pending further inquiries.

Briggs, of Little Lane in East Morton, who was awarded an MBE for his community work a decade ago, appeared at Bradford Crown Court last month, facing a string of sex charges. He was accused of three offences of indecent assault against boys under 16, indecently assaulting a male aged 16 or over, and committing an act of gross indecency with or towards a boy under the age of 14.

He previously indicated he would plead not guilty to the charges.

The offences are alleged to have taken place at his home in the early 1990s and involved two boys under 16 and a male over that age.

Regarding the new allegations, a police spokesman said: “A 65-year-old male was arrested on suspicion of the sexual touching of a male, alleged to have occurred in the late 1970s.

“He was interviewed and has been released on bail pending further inquiries.”

At last month’s crown court hearing, Briggs’ barrister, Nick Askins, said it would be disputed whether the alleged offences occurred.

A date next February has been fixed for a ten-day trial, but Briggs is due to appear for a plea and case management hearing on October 18.

Briggs has played at prestigious musical venues across the world, including the ancient city of Petra, at the request of the Queen of Jordan.

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