George Ormond: Newcastle United facing civil claims over ex-employee behaviour

St James' Park
Newcastle United’s St James’ Park

Newcastle United are facing several civil claims regarding the behaviour of former employee George Ormond, who in 2018 received a 20-year jail sentence for multiple cases of sexual abuse.

Ormond coached a grassroots football club in the 1970s and 1980s before working with Newcastle’s youth teams in the 1990s.

Newcastle Crown Court heard how he used his “position of power” to abuse 18 boys and young men between 1973 and 1998, and was convicted on 36 charges.

Newcastle have declined to comment, but their insurers are denying responsibility.

They believe that Ormond’s crimes were not connected to his role at Newcastle and a legal timeframe has expired.

Claims for abuse which have taken place before the age of 18, must be issued before the victim reaches 21.

Former Newcastle player David Eatock, who is one of those mounting a civil claim, told BBC Sport: “The one thing I’ve wanted is for people at the club to hold their hands up.

“For Newcastle not to take any responsibility is another disappointment.

“I had to fight to get Ormond convicted, but I didn’t expect to fight to get some sort of ownership from Newcastle. I just want some closure.”

Thomas Beale, of lawyers Bolt Burdon Kemp, added: “Newcastle have had every opportunity to apologise for the terrible abuse perpetrated by Ormond and accept responsibility for what happened while he was at the club.

“By failing to accept responsibility and forcing the survivors to go through litigation, the club is causing yet further distress and trauma rather than helping the survivors to try and move forward with their lives.

“Clearly, this is not just about compensation. It is about Newcastle accepting responsibility and apologising for their failings. I would really encourage the club to reconsider their stance and accept liability.”

BBC News