Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Alan Roberts 6th Dan Banned for life

Find below an article about Alan Roberts 6th Dan who has been barred for life from the British Judo Association. I am not going to say whether Alan was guilty or not guilty of the allegations made against him, as I am not privy to the details of the BJA Disciplinary Boards evidence. That brings me to my first point surely if someone is found guilty of something especially when it comes to children, all the facts should be made public so we the public and those of us involved in Judo can make our own decision. It was common knowledge that the BJA involved the Police who under took a major investigation and found that there was insufficient evidence to bring charges against Alan Roberts. The premises of his guilt was based on 'a balance of probabilities', which is a lower standard of proof than the standard used in criminal cases. Which in most cases would be judged by a Civil Court with people who know the law. Was the BJA Disciplinary Board legally trained? 
The fact this has been announced on TV has prejudiced any appeal, it seems the BJA have not announced this officially so who leaked the story and what was there motive?

This case proves how much power a Governing Body of Sport but Child Protection is a very emotive issue and anyone accused of this type of action has to be immediately told to keep away from the club and association events. This is one of the few things that you are guilty till proven innocent. 

Leading coach
File on 4 can reveal a disciplinary hearing earlier this year found one of British judo's leading coaches was involved in abusing five athletes over 33 years. Until now the details of the hearing have not been made public.
Alan Roberts, who trained champions and Olympians, helped build the Dartford Judo Club, which is one of the leading sports facilities in the country.
A British Judo Association (BJA) panel decided that over a period spanning four decades, "he manipulated his position, influence and experience for the purposes of his own sexual gratification."
The finding was made on 'a balance of probabilities', which is a lower standard of proof than the standard used in criminal cases.
"He was found guilty of sexual assault on five individuals, two of whom were children under 16 at the time," says Scott McCarthy, the chief executive of the BJA.
"He has been banned from the BJA for life, he has been stripped of his membership and stripped of his coaching and that will keep him out of the British judo family forever."
Indecent Assaults
One of the coach's victims, who started training with Alan Roberts when he was 17, revealed that he was indecently assaulted during lessons over a period of three years.

"I've not told my wife anything in depth - you keep getting reminded of what happened and you want to forget it," says David (not his real name).
The BBC understands that Alan Roberts is no longer involved in any form of coaching but he wrote to File on 4 saying he hopes to appeal against the judo association's ruling at some stage in the future.
"I have been the subject of conspiracy and spreading of malicious comment by several of the complainants," he said.
"Recently the BJA have been notified by eight very senior members of their concerns and individual experiences about untruthful comment and/or malice said to them concerning me, during the investigation."
The BJA has now made a referral to the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA), which gathers child protection information in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

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