Footballer Adam Johnson has been sentenced to six years for grooming and sexual activity with a girl aged 15. Johnson, 28, was found guilty of sexual touching but cleared of one charge relating to another sexual act following a trial at Bradford Crown Court.
The former Sunderland winger previously admitted grooming the girl and one charge of sexual activity. Judge Jonathan Rose said the girl had “suffered severe psychological harm”.
He told the England international that she had “suffered threats and thousands of abusive remarks” on social media. Judge Rose told Johnson there had been “an abuse of trust – you are trusted by young fans to behave properly”.
Judge Rose told Johnson there had been “an abuse of trust – you are trusted by young fans to behave properly”. He said: “She had only just turned 15 when you began grooming her, because, as you were to admit, you found her sexually attractive.”
He added that the footballer’s intention had been to engage in sexual activity with her, knowing that she was under 16. Johnson began his career at Middlesbrough before moving to Manchester City and then on to Sunderland in 2012. He won 12 England caps from 2010-12.