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Calcot man in child rape trial, Anthony Shackell, tells prosecutor: ‘You have an evil mind’

A MAN accused of raping and sexually abusing children has told jurors he can not be guilty - because he is impotent.

Former social club treasurer Anthony Shackell conceded that he had been prescribed Viagra to treat his erectile disfunction.

Reading Crown Court
Reading Crown Court

But he insisted he did not use it because the drug gave him a headache.

And he indignantly told the prosecutor: “You have an evil mind.”

Mr Shackell, now aged 81, is on trial at Reading Crown Court where he denies 16 charges of historic sexual misconduct towards children plus two, more recent, charges involving one girl aged just eight.

The prosecution allege Mr Shackell, of Mey Close, Calcot, violently raped one of the complainants after threatening her family if she did not comply.

He is also accused of raping another female and of sexually assaulting the eight-year-old.

Giving evidence, Mr Shackell vehemently denied he had any sexual interest in children.

The court has been told that the two main complainants, now adults, eventually contacted one another and went to the police, although an initial investigation resulted in no further action at the time.

But then Mr Shackell is alleged to have sexually assaulted the eight-year-old, who told her father what had happened.

The father reported the matter to police - who then reopened the case, resulting in the charges Mr Shackell now faces.

The girl told police in a recorded interview: “He put his hand in my pants and touched my privates and I didn’t like it.”

She said she pulled his hand out and said ‘stop,’ before bursting into tears and telling her family what had allegedly happened.

Mr Shackell denied ever doing so.

He told jurors he was a tactile person and said: “I simply gave her a cuddle and minutes later she was in tears.”

Under cross examination from Charles Ward-Jackson, prosecuting, Mr Shackell said he was unable to suggest a reason the girl had made the allegations.

Mr Shackell also told the jury the two main complainants had put their heads together and made the whole thing up.

He denied sexually touching them, much less raping them, “at any stage.”

He said that he had suffered from erectile disfunction and, although his GP had prescribed Viagra, he did not use it because it gave him a headache.

Mr Shackell said he had simply become resigned to a sexless marriage with his wife, Maria.

Pressed on whether he had been having sex with both the main complainants, he retorted: “Do you think I’m Superman?”

Mr Shackell insisted he was “totally astounded” by the allegations and added: “I don’t do that sort of thing.”

Under cross examination from Mr Ward-Jackson, he said it was mere co-incidence that the allegations from the main two complainants came at the same time he had stopped having sex with his wife.

He said the complainants had done “a terrible thing” to him but added that he was a forgiving sort of person.

Mr Shackell indignantly asserted that Mr Ward-Jackson, who pressed him on the allegations, had “an evil mind”.

The jurors have now been given final directions on the law by Judge Alan Blake and were considering their verdicts at the time of writing.

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