Woman ‘shocked’ after ex-TV host John Leslie grabbed her breasts, court told

A woman was left shocked and stunned after former Blue Peter presenter John Leslie made a “solid grab” of her breasts at a Christmas party, a court has heard.

The pair had just shaken hands when the star grabbed both of her breasts and laughed, his sex assault trial was told.

The woman, who cannot be identified, had recognised Leslie at the gathering in London’s West End more than a decade ago, and had just introduced herself before he groped her, she told Southwark Crown Court.

John Leslie court case
John Leslie court case

She told the jury: “I put out my hand to shake his hand to say ‘hello… nice to meet you’.

“He shook my hand and was smiling and then immediately thereafter he grabbed both of my breasts, one hand on each breast, quite firmly, and laughed.

“It was very confident, I would say. I was very shocked. It wasn’t a kind of quick grab. It was a solid grab and then after a period of a couple of seconds, I think he let go and was laughing.

“I was a bit stunned. I didn’t say anything, I was a bit annoyed, I was shocked I think. He just sort of laughed and walked off to the bar and that was it.”

Demonstrating the alleged incident to the jury with her hands out and making a grabbing motion, she said it was not “accidental”, adding: “It was an ‘I’m going to grab your breasts’.”

The woman told a friend after the alleged incident, recalling saying to one of them: “Oh my gosh, this just happened, John Leslie just groped me.”

Leslie, 55, denies sexual assault by intentionally touching the woman without her consent on December 5 2008.

A new jury was sworn in on Tuesday and the trial opened afresh, after the original jury was discharged on Monday because one juror was “unable to carry on”.