Paedophile football coach Barry Bennell dies in prison

Paedophile former football coach Barry Bennell has died in prison aged 69.

Bennell, also known as Richard Jones, was jailed for 30 years in 2018 after being convicted of 50 child sexual offences against 12 boys.

The former Crewe Alexandra coach and Manchester City scout abused boys in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

One of his victims said he hoped Bennell’s last 10 years had been as “difficult as possible”.

He died at HMP Littlehey, near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, on Saturday, the Prison Service said.

A spokesperson added: “As with all deaths in custody, the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman will investigate.”

Bennell was being treated for cancer for a number of years and had operations to remove tumours from his tongue in 2004 and 2016, although he was said to be in remission in 2020.

His cause of death has not been disclosed.

David Lean, who was abused by Bennell after meeting him at Butlin’s holiday park in Pwllheli, north Wales, said he was “glad” to hear of his death.

He said: “It’s sort of happened in the way I wanted it to happen because I wanted him to go to prison for a period of time. “I just hope that last 10 years has been as difficult as possible.”

Lean, 56, a counsellor, said: “I appreciate he’s got children – and ultimately my thoughts are with his children today – but my thoughts are also with the many survivors because of the pain he has put everybody through.”

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