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Ex-BBC broadcaster Hall admits assault, faces rape trial

Former BBC broadcaster Stuart Hall pleaded guilty on Tuesday to indecently assaulting a girl but will face trial on 15 counts of rape.

LONDON: Former BBC broadcaster Stuart Hall pleaded guilty on Tuesday to indecently assaulting a girl but will face trial on 15 counts of rape.

The 84-year-old admitted an indecent assault on a girl aged under 16, between 1978 and 1979.

He denied 20 other counts of sexual assault, including 15 alleged rapes.

A jury was to be selected later Tuesday at Preston Crown Court in northwest England ahead of a trial on those charges which is expected to last seven days.

Hall presented the hit BBC television show "It's a Knockout" in the 1970s and 1980s and later became a well-known radio football commentator.

He is charged with eight counts of rape and three indecent assaults against one alleged victim between 1976 and 1981, in Manchester and the neighbouring county of Cheshire in northwest England.

One of those alleged rapes is said to have taken place when the complainant was under 13.

He is also charged with seven counts of rape and two of indecent assault against another complainant, between 1976 and 1978 in Manchester.

Five of the alleged rapes are said to have taken place when she was under the age of 16.

Known for his florid descriptive style, scattered with allusions to literary classics, Hall was until recently a familiar voice on BBC radio commentating on English Premier League football.

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