{country_name} ↓ TRANS_MENU
Choose your location:
My coverMy coverMy cover

What's happening now?

Login Login with Facebook
Incorrect user or password!
1

Zac Evans pub machete murder accused due in court

A man charged with murdering a teenager in a machete attack is due in court later.Zac Evans, 19, died outside The Pike and Musket pub in Tuffley, Gloucester, at about 00:40 GMT on Saturday.Ewen Anthony Reynolds, 44, of Tuffley, has been charged with murder and the attempted murder of a second man assaulted during the same attack.Mr Reynolds will appear before magistrates in Cheltenham on Tuesday.

A man charged with murdering a teenager in a machete attack is due in court later.

Zac Evans, 19, died outside The Pike and Musket pub in Tuffley, Gloucester, at about 00:40 GMT on Saturday.

Ewen Anthony Reynolds, 44, of Tuffley, has been charged with murder and the attempted murder of a second man assaulted during the same attack.

Mr Reynolds will appear before magistrates in Cheltenham on Tuesday.

BBC
27/01
1 Points
1 2

Jesus gets tired of appearing on slices of toast and pops up in a wet dog’s ear

but now seems to be branching out into pets.Rachel Evans, 25, was astonished when the immortal son of God appeared in her dog’s ear after she bathed him in the bathroom sink.The holy visitor also bears a slight resemblance to a monkey, and can be seen in the terrier’s right ear (circled).Evans had used ordinary, non-holy water for the bath . The Son of God usually reveals himself to mortals in the form of unusual patterns on slices of toast .

The Son of God usually reveals himself to mortals in the form of unusual patterns on slices of toast ? but now seems to be branching out into pets.

Rachel Evans, 25, was astonished when the immortal son of God appeared in her dog’s ear after she bathed him in the bathroom sink.

The holy visitor also bears a slight resemblance to a monkey, and can be seen in the terrier’s right ear (circled).

Evans had used ordinary, non-holy water for the bath ? so was surprised when her partner pointed out the divine visage in Yorkshire terrier Dave’s ear.

The DVLA worker from Swansea, south Wales, said: ‘I was a bit freaked out to be honest.

‘I am a bit superstitious and it’s quite spooky.

‘At first I didn’t see anything at all. We were just giving them a bath in the sink and taking silly photos and selfies because they looked cute.

‘About an hour later I showed my partner and he said “can you see that face?”

‘We looked a bit closer and realised it looked like Jesus. It’s a bit strange.’

MORE: More than 50,000 sign petition to free father who gave cancer-stricken toddler cannabis oil

Metro
19/01
18 Points
1

Sports Gordon Taylor compares 'plight' of Ched Evans to families of the victims of Hillsborough

He has been put through the ringer and the minute you show any sympathy for Ched people will say what about the other parties concerned. I wish to make it clear that these people are not my supporters and I condemn their actions entirely.".

In comments that will shock and disgust football and non-football fans, Taylor said that, just as was the case with the Hillsborough disaster in which 96 Liverpool fans were crushed to death, time may prove that Evans was in the right as an appeal for his rape conviction is still pending.

Speaking to BBC Radio, Taylor said: "He [Evans] wouldn't be the first person or persons to be found guilty and maintain their innocent and then been proven right.

"If we're talking about things in football we know what happened, what was alleged to have happened at Hillsborough and it's now unravelling and we're finding it was very different to how it was portrayed at the time, indeed by the police at the time."

Oldham Athletic yesterday abandoned their bid to sign Evans after alleged death threats to board members, sponsors and staff.

One director was reportedly told that his 'daughter would be raped' if they signed the striker and the club admitted it had been under "intolerable pressure" from sponsors and fans to pull the plug on the planned deal.

For the first time since his release from prison, former Wales striker Evans issued an apology - but it came too late to save what he hoped would be his route back into the professional game after serving half of a five-year sentence for his offence.

Taylor added: "He [Evans] is in a very difficult situation. He has been put through the ringer and the minute you show any sympathy for Ched people will say what about the other parties concerned. Nobody's forgetting them. But as far as he's concerned, he's looking to keep himself fit.

"This latest Oldham situation has not made anything better for him. He is a human being, he is one of our members, we are a civilised society and the rule of law has always been in the hands of lawyers. It has been very delicate and word has to be checked because of the situation he's in and with the probabtion office he's under. So nobody is saying that it's easy for him for anybody else. It's not a good time for him, he needs support like everybody in this particular incident needs support, not least the woman concerned."

Oldham followed Sheffield United and Hartlepool inending plans to give Evans a second chance because of a furious public backlash. And Evans is facing up to the prospect of being an outcast, at least until the Criminal Cases Review Commission have decided on his appeal against the conviction.

In a statement the League One club said: "Proceeding could have placed significant financial pressure on the club and continued to be a divisive influence. As a consequence the deal could not go ahead.

"We deplore and condemn the vile and abusive threats, some including death threats, which have been made to our fans, sponsors and staff."

Earlier Evans, 26, broke his silence. In a statement released through the Professional Footballers' Association, he said: "It is with great sadness that today I have withdrawn from talks with Oldham. The most significant issue for me was that owing to the threat of funding opportunities being withdrawn, which may jeopardise the building of Oldham's new stand, it would mean workers would lose their jobs and others would be put at risk - that would simply not be fair.

"Whilst I continue to maintain my innocence, I wish to make it clear that I wholeheartedly apologise for the effects that night in Rhyl has had on many people, not least the woman concerned.

"Finally, it has been claimed that those using social media in an abusive and vindictive way towards this woman are supporters of mine. I wish to make it clear that these people are not my supporters and I condemn their actions entirely."

Express
09/01
25 Points
1

PFA boss sparks fury after 'comparing' Ched Evans situation to deadly Hillsborough tragedy

Gordon Taylor, head of the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA), made the comments tonight after Evans' proposed move to Oldham Athletic collapsed.Evans, 26, served two and a half years of a five-year sentence for rape and has so far unsuccessfully been looking to return to playing football professionally.

Gordon Taylor, head of the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA), made the comments tonight after Evans' proposed move to Oldham Athletic collapsed.

Evans, 26, served two and a half years of a five-year sentence for rape and has so far unsuccessfully been looking to return to playing football professionally.

Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live, Mr Taylor said: "He would not be the first person or persons to have been found guilty and maintained their innocence and then been proved right.

"If we are talking about things in football, we know what happened, what was alleged to have happened at Hillsborough.

"And it's now unravelling and we are finding it was very different to how it was portrayed at the time - indeed by the police at the time."

The comments sparked an angry response on social networking site Twitter with a number of football fans calling for Mr Taylor, 70, to resign.

One user said: "Time for Gordon Taylor to resign from the #PFA. Comparing the Ched Evans case to that of the Hillsborough disaster is beyond comprehension!!"

While another added: "Gordon Taylor comparing a club choosing not to employ a convicted rapist to the injustice of the Hillsborough disaster? One word - Resign."

The Hillsborough disaster in 1989 left 96 people in the crowds dead after a human crush during an FA Cup match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

An inquiry by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) last year identified 13 retired or serving officers as "suspects".

Offences they were accused of included manslaughter, misconduct and perverting justice the course of justice.

In December 2012 an accidental death verdict into the death of the fans was quashed in the High Court after a long fight by the victim's families.

Later in the interview, Mr Taylor said: "He's in a very difficult situation because he's been put through a wringer and the minute you show any sympathy for Ched everybody will say 'Well, what about the other parties concerned?'

"And that's why I'm making the point that nobody's forgetting them."

He added: "Obviously it's not a good time for him - he needs support like everybody in this particular incident needs support, not least the woman concerned."

The PFA has consistently supported Evans's right to return to football.

He was linked with returns to playing football with former club Sheffield United and one side in Malta.

However, after much public outrage the moves did not materialise.

Earlier today Evans issued a "wholehearted" apology for the effects of his actions in 2011 but continued to maintain his innocence.

He said: "I do remain limited at present by what I can say due to the ongoing referral to the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) and whilst I continue to maintain my innocence, I wish to make it clear that I wholeheartedly apologise for the effects that night in Rhyl has had on many people, not least the woman concerned."

Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room in Rhyl, North Wales.

The Welsh former Sheffield United striker denied rape, saying the sex was consensual, but he was found guilty by a jury at Caernarfon Crown Court.

He was released from prison in October after serving two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence.

After his release, he published a video on his website protesting his innocence and vowing to clear his name.

The victim, who cannot be named, has been hounded out of three homes and forced to change her identity twice because of Twitter trolls.

Express
09/01
3 Points
1

Sports Ched Evans statement: Oldham target finally issues apology to rape victim ? but maintains innocence

but maintains his innocence as he continues his bid to clear his name.Minutes after it emerged that Oldham Athletic had pulled out of signing the striker due to sickening threats from fans, Evans released the following statement through the Professional FootballersAssociation:. Ched Evans has finally issued an apology to the woman he was convicted of raping .

Ched Evans has finally issued an apology to the woman he was convicted of raping ? but maintains his innocence as he continues his bid to clear his name.

Minutes after it emerged that Oldham Athletic had pulled out of signing the striker due to sickening threats from fans, Evans released the following statement through the Professional FootballersAssociation:

Metro
08/01
23 Points
1

Ched Evans issues apology as Oldham Athletic deal collapses

This comes as Evans, 26 saw his proposed move to Oldham Athletic collapse today after one of the League One club's main sponsor threatened to cut ties. 

The former Sheffield United and Wales striker made his apology in a statement issued through the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA).

He said: "I do remain limited at present by what I can say due to the ongoing referral to the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) and whilst I continue to maintain my innocence, I wish to make it clear that I wholeheartedly apologise for the effects that night in Rhyl has had on many people, not least the woman concerned."

Evans also condemned those "using social media in an abusive and vindictive way towards this woman."

He said: "Finally, it has been claimed that those using social media in an abusive and vindictive way towards this woman are supporters of mine. I wish to make it clear that these people are not my supporters and I condemn their actions entirely and will continue to do so."

Before adding: "I am grateful for the support of the PFA in helping me try to return to football and continue my career.

"Upon legal advice, I was told not to discuss the events in question. This silence has been misinterpreted as arrogance and I would like to state that this could not be further from the truth."

The League One team were apparently ready to sign a deal with Evans before the club's main sponsor ZenOffice reportedley threatened to cut ties. 

One Oldham board member said the deal had been called off due to "enormous pressure from sponsors and threats to staff and their families".

Oldham had allegedly agreed personal terms with Evans and had has gone as far as agreeing Evans could be a part of the football team ahead of Saturday's game against Doncaster.

A decision not to sign the former Sheffield United striker will be welcome news to a host of vociferous opposition who have campaigned for Evans never to play football again. 

Just hours after Oldham announced interest in signing Evans, a petition urging the club's chairman not to sign the former Sheffield United striker was begun and has already gained more than 22,000 signatures.

He had an offer to train with former club Sheffield United retracted in November following strong local opposition, while Tranmere and Hartlepool also rejected the opportunity to sign him.

Club sponsors Mecca Bingo have also said that they will terminate any involvement with Oldham if Evans is signed.

Labour leader Ed Milliband and Tony Lloyd, Greater Manchester's Police and Crime commissioner, have both urged the club not to sign the former Welsh international.

Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room in Rhyl, North Wales.

The Welsh former Sheffield United striker denied rape, saying the sex was consensual, but he was found guilty by a jury at Caernarfon Crown Court.

He was released from prison in October after serving two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence. 

After his release, he released a video on his website protesting his innocence and vowing to clear his name.

Evans had steadfastly refused to admit his guilt or apologise to his victim - who has been hounded out of three homes and forced to change her identity twice thanks to Twitter trolls.

Oldham Athletic are yet to comment or confirm reports.

More to follow. 

Express
08/01
4 Points
1

Sports Oldham close to securing deal to sign convicted rapist Ched Evans

But we want people to keep them in check.“I hope people don’t get too carried away and it doesn’t get too hot.”Oldham have been working closely with the Professional Footballers’ Association, who believe Evans has a right to return to the game. I would never tell people they are wrong to have their own views. We weren’t surprised by the backlash.“I completely understand people’s views and I respect them.

Two more club sponsors have threatened to terminate their relationship with Oldham as the League One side moves forward with the plan to offer convicted rapist Evans a route back into football.

But Corney, speaking to the Jewish Chronicle, said a deal might happen “at any time” and may even be before the weekend.

He said: “We believe he has served his time. There is an 80 per cent chance of us signing him. It’s not straightforward and there are some legal issues. There might be a cost implication, but you have to stick to your principles. We weren’t surprised by the backlash.

“I completely understand people’s views and I respect them. I would never tell people they are wrong to have their own views. But we want people to keep them in check.

“I hope people don’t get too carried away and it doesn’t get too hot.”

Oldham have been working closely with the Professional Footballers’ Association, who believe Evans has a right to return to the game. It is understood any announcement the club make will be in conjunction with the players’ union.

Chief executive Gordon Taylor was unavailable for comment yesterday but has previously said any club looking to sign the striker needed to be “100 per cent committed”.

It is understood Evans will be offered an initial contract until the end of the season, with the club having the option to extend the deal for a further two years.

Evans was released from prison in October after serving half of his five-year sentence.

He was jailed for rape in April 2011. Oldham, who are 14th in League One, had hoped to announce the signing on Monday but the move has dragged on after a backlash from supporters and club partners.

More than 60,000 people have signed a petition urging Latics chairman Corney not to go ahead with the decision, while three sponsors have announced their intention to end their relationship with the club.

ZenOffice and Verlin Rainwater Solutions yesterday joined the local branch of Mecca Bingo in saying they would walk away from their deals with Oldham.

ZenOffice have always believed that in order to be a successful business we need to give something back to the community,” said company managing director Les Kerr.

“We have a strong background in supporting local community and family based initiatives in the North-west.

ZenOffice have been sponsors of Oldham Athletic Football Club for five years. This partnership has been based on mutual respect as Oldham Athletic did share the same values as ZenOffice, based on family and community.

ZenOffice do not agree that the current path Oldham Athletic are embarking on espouses these values.”

Verlin Rainwater Solutions director Craig Verling said the company felt their support would “send out the wrong message”.

Reports suggested that Oldham’s losses would be subsidised by Karl Massey, the father of Evans’s fiancee but sources at the club say this is not the case. Oldham’s intention is to treat Evans like any other player.

Lee Johnson, the Oldham boss, has said the club face a “very difficult decision” but that he would “be a part of whatever the board decides”.

Evans, who has 13 caps for Wales, was a Sheffield United player at the time of his conviction and scored 35 goals in 42 appearances during the 2011-12 season.

The Blades had planned to offer him the chance to restart his career at Bramall Lane but withdrew their offer after facing similar public opposition.

Evans was found guilty of raping a woman, 19, in a hotel room in Rhyl.

He maintains his innocence and an inquiry into the conviction by the Criminal Cases Review Commission, which looks into potential miscarriages of justice, started last month.‘We do not agree with club’s path’

Express
08/01
22 Points
1 2

Revealed: Ched Evans will play again as Oldham Athletic prepare to sign him

far less than the £20,000 he earned while playing for Sheffield before his conviction.David Cameron’s Whitehall spokesman said of the decision: ‘[Mr Cameron’s] view hasn’t changed (from) .

Convicted rapist Ched Evans is expected to return to the pitch by signing with Oldham Athletic.

MailOnline has revealed that Oldham Athletic will sign the footballer, who served three years in jail for his crime, on Thursday if there are no last minute changes or issues.

60,000 people have signed a petition asking football teams to not sign Evans, and two sponsors of the club warned they will be ‘out of the door’ if he is signed, with even club manager Lee Johnson voicing his concerns over the decision.

Members of the public and several MPs have commented that Evans does not deserve to play professional football again due to lack of remorse he has shown towards his crime.

The footballer has maintained he is innocent even since being released from prison.

Earlier reports circulated that Evans, 26, would be signed to his old club Sheffield United, however after many of the club’s sponsors threatened to leave and Olympic champion Jessica Ennis said she would have her name removed from the stands, he was not signed.

Evans will reportedly be on a two-and-a-half year contract with the League One club and will earn between £1,500 and £2,500-a-week. far less than the £20,000 he earned while playing for Sheffield before his conviction.

David Cameron’s Whitehall spokesman said of the decision: ‘[Mr Cameron’s] view hasn’t changed (from) ? the time when there were reports around Sheffield United.

‘Ultimately, it is for employers to take decisions, but the Prime Minister does think that footballers are role models and he is sure that any potential would-be clubs and employers will weigh their decisions very carefully.’

MORE: Ched Evans will not train with Sheffield United, club confirms

MORE: Oldham Athletic confirm talks ongoing over Ched Evans signing

MORE: Ched Evans’ proposed move to Oldham Athletic looking unlikely after 25,000 fans sign petition

Metro
07/01
17 Points
1

Katie Hopkins tweets support for convicted rapist Ched Evans as he nears deal with Oldham

https://t.co/tW40KNP4VKReality star Katie Hopkins has taken to Twitter to voice her support for the disgraced footballer. "2.5 year contract for Ched. YES! To the 60,000 protestors - clicking on a petition - your lust for vengeance was based on jealousy. Go Ched!," she began."Listen you loons, it doesn't matter what Ched did. He served his time. You are cross because he isn't working in McDonalds. End of."Chuff off.

It is believed the club and the striker are putting the final touches to a controversial deal, which could see him back on the football pitch this weekend.

The rumoured signing of the convicted rapist has provoked a strong public backlash and some of the League One side's sponsors have threatened to cut ties with the club if he does join. 

However, not everyone is against Evans making his return to professional football. 

2.5 year contract for Ched. YES! To the 60,000 protestors - clicking on a petition - your lust for vengeance was based on jealousy. Go Ched!

Listen you loons, it doesn't matter what Ched did. He served his time. You are cross because he isn't working in McDonalds. End of.

Chuff off. If Ched apologised that wouldn't be good enough for you either. You are used to politicians apologising. Some of us stand strong

Ched didn't rape a football. Your logic is guardian level. https://t.co/tW40KNP4VK

Reality star Katie Hopkins has taken to Twitter to voice her support for the disgraced footballer. 

"2.5 year contract for Ched. YES! To the 60,000 protestors - clicking on a petition - your lust for vengeance was based on jealousy. Go Ched!," she began.

"Listen you loons, it doesn't matter what Ched did. He served his time. You are cross because he isn't working in McDonalds. End of.

"Chuff off. If Ched apologised that wouldn't be good enough for you either. You are used to politicians apologising. Some of us stand strong.

"Ched didn't rape a football. Your logic is guardian level."

The 39-year-old columnist, who is rumoured to be entering the Celebrity Big Brother house, is one of the only public figures to come out in support of Evans

On Tuesday, Prime Minister David Cameron expressed his doubts over the decision.

Asked at a regular Westminster news briefing whether Cameron thought Evans should be given a new footballing contract, the Prime Minister's official spokesman told reporters: "His view hasn't changed (from) ... the time when there were reports around Sheffield United.

"Ultimately, it is for employers to take decisions, but the Prime Minister does think that footballers are role models and he is sure that any potential would-be clubs and employers will weigh their decisions very carefully." 

Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room in Rhyl, North Wales.

The Welsh former Sheffield United striker denied rape, claiming the sex was consensual, but was found guilty by a jury at Caernarfon Crown Court.

He was released from prison in October after serving two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence and has never admitted his guilt or apologised to his victim.

Express
08/01
3 Points
1 2

Sports Ched Evans: Oldham Athletic owner says deal is 80% certain

Oldham Athletic owner Simon Corney says there is an "80% chance" that the League One club will sign convicted rapist Ched Evans. Wales international Evans was expected to join the Latics on a long-term deal and train with the club on Monday. Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a woman in Rhyl, North Wales. Oldham, who are 14th in League One, said there would be no statement on Wednesday but hope to make an announcement later in the week.

Oldham Athletic owner Simon Corney says there is an "80% chance" that the League One club will sign convicted rapist Ched Evans.

Speaking to the Jewish Chronicle  from New York, Corney said the deal could happen "at any time", but that it "wasn't straightforward" and there were "some legal issues" to overcome first.

"We believe he has served his time," Corney said.

Club sponsors have been told to prepare for confirmation of the Evans deal.

Oldham, who are 14th in League One, said there would be no statement on Wednesday but hope to make an announcement later in the week.

Speaking after a third day of talks between club board members and other parties, Oldham director Barry Owen said: "There are ongoing negotiations with regard to signing Ched Evans.

"Unfortunately there is quite a lot of due diligence which still needs to be completed. We're still in talks with the PFA and other agencies.

"There are things to be done, genuinely. I don't anticipate it will be done over the next few days."

One sponsor, Verlin Rainwater Solutions, has now ended its association with the club. Director Craig Verling said the "imminent signing" of Evans, 26, had prompted the decision.

He said: "We would like to take this opportunity to make clear that we feel that Mr Evans should be able to lead a life without further punishment after serving his sentence, although our feelings remain the same that this should not be within the public domain where his previous behaviour may influence the next generation.

"We sincerely wish the club a very successful future and have no regrets about being associated with Oldham Athletic over the past few seasons, but feel our continued support would be sending out the wrong message."

A second sponsor, ZenOffice, said it will also end its association with the club if Evans signs.

Managing director Les Kerr said Oldham's "current path" did not "espouse" the company's values of "family and community".

More than 60,000 people have signed a petition calling for Oldham not to sign the Wales international, while campaigners and politicians have voiced opposition to the move.

Mr Corney also told the Jewish Chronicle that he was not surprised by the backlash.

He said: "I completely understand people's views and I respect them. I would never tell people they are wrong to have their own views. But we want people to keep them in check.

"I hope people don't get too carried way and it doesn't get too hot."

The Oldham chairman added that the decision to sign Evans had been taken "unanimously" by the Latics' six-person board.

Wales international Evans was expected to join the Latics on a long-term deal and train with the club on Monday.

But the move met with widespread opposition, stalling the deal.

A counter-petition calling for Evans to be given a second chance has attracted more than 2,000 signatures, while some sponsors have also said he should be given a second chance.

Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a woman in Rhyl, North Wales.

He was released from prison in October after serving half of a five-year sentence.

The former Manchester City and Sheffield United player continues to protest his innocence, and an investigation into his conviction by the Criminal Cases Review Commission is under way.

Evans has already held talks with former club Sheffield United about a return to football, but they decided against signing him following criticism from supporters and club patrons, while more than 160,000 people signed a petition against his return.

BBC
07/01
1 Points
1 2 3 4 5

What difference would it make if Ched Evans said sorry?

That the abhorrence of the crime of which he was convicted disqualifies him from professional sport forever. He is currently serving a prison sentence for dangerous driving.Graham Rix managed Portsmouth, Oxford and Hearts after he was convicted of having sex with an under-age girl. Evans is still on licence, and as such still serving his punishment. She has reportedly been driven from her house five times as a result of harassment from Evans's supporters.

Fresh protests have erupted over Ched Evans's return to football after serving two-and-a-half years in jail for rape. Despite intense pressure, Oldham Athletic's sponsors say the club is signing him. Some argue that before he is allowed to play again professionally he should apologise. What would it mean if he did?

Ched Evans is a convicted rapist. He continues to protest his innocence. He is unrepentant.

A promising young striker prior to his conviction in 2012, Evans has been the focus of angry protests whenever it has been suggested he might return to the game - at his former club Sheffield United, at Hartlepool, and now at Oldham.

He was convicted of the rape of a 19-year-old woman who was estimated to be two-and-a-half times over the drink-drive limit and unable to give consent.

There's one overarching factor cited by virtually all of his critics - the failure to say sorry.

Labour leader Ed Miliband said he would not sign Evans because "he hasn't shown remorse". The player's "lack of remorse and failure to acknowledge his offence" disqualified him from the game, added Greater Manchester police and crime commissioner Tony Lloyd.

The player's inability to display "even a modicum of regret" for his behaviour disbarred him from football, wrote Rowan Pelling in the Daily Telegraph. Similarly, former Sports Minister Richard Caborn argued in October that Evans should only be given a second chance if "he publicly apologises", or if an appeal against his conviction were to succeed.

An online petition urging Oldham not to sign Evans so long as "he still refuses to acknowledge his guilt, apologise to his victim" and admit to fans "that what he did was wrong" has attracted more than 50,000 signatures.

Of course, there's a very simple reason why Evans has not apologised.

He maintains his innocence, and although he has been refused leave to appeal, an investigation is under way by the Criminal Cases Review Commission into his conviction. His family have set up an extensive website dedicated to clearing his name.

Even notwithstanding the question of his guilt, he has not apologised to his victim for the distress he has caused her. She has reportedly been driven from her house five times as a result of harassment from Evans's supporters. She has been vilified on social media and in 2012 nine people were fined for naming her in breach of a court order. Her father has said she was "living her life on the run" and had to spend Christmas apart from her family as "it's too risky for her to visit".

The only person to whom Evans has said sorry is his girlfriend Natasha Massey, for having been unfaithful to her.

Ched Evans's return to football has been met with a storm of protest. But how should rapists be treated when they leave jail? - What should happen to a released rapist? (November 2014)

But for now he remains, in the eyes of the law, a rapist. And for many that remains incompatible with playing football as long as he fails to apologise.

It isn't simply a moral question. According to criminologist David Wilson, a former prison governor who has worked with sex offenders, acknowledgement of culpability is absolutely key to making rehabilitation work.

It would be entirely right for Evans to return to football "if he had acknowledged his guilt, if he had completed the required sex offender treatment programmes, if he developed an understanding of why what he did was wrong", says Wilson, a former vice-chair of the Howard League for Penal Reform.

But Wilson adds: "Unless a convicted sex offender admits their guilt, there is absolutely nothing you could do with them in terms of treatment programmes."

Not everyone agrees with this point of view.

There are Evans's supporters, many of whom vocally protest his innocence.

On the other hand, there are those who say that he should never play football again, apology or no apology. That the abhorrence of the crime of which he was convicted disqualifies him from professional sport forever. That footballers are supposed to be role models. That his presence on the pitch reinforces a "rape culture" in which sexual violence is normalised.

"If he did apologise, it would be too little too late," says Jill Saward, who has campaigned for victims since she was raped at her vicarage home in Ealing, west London, in 1986.

The problem is not that Evans has not said sorry, she says. It's that he appears genuinely to believe he has not committed a crime.

"He doesn't want to change because he doesn't think he's done anything wrong. It's a fact that it's a very high-profile role. He would be there in people's faces."

To Evans's victim - whose repeated harassment is, Saward says, a direct result of Evans's protestations of innocence - this would be extremely upsetting, and many other survivors of sexual violence would find it distressing, too.

Evans would not, of course, be the first to return to front-line sport following a rape conviction. Mike Tyson resumed his career as a boxer after he was jailed for the crime - a crime of which he, too, continues to insist he is innocent.

Other footballers have picked up their careers in the wake of prison sentences.

Marlon King resumed his career after he was jailed on separate occasions for groping and punching a woman in the face, and receiving stolen goods, and convicted of a series of other offences. He is currently serving a prison sentence for dangerous driving.

Graham Rix managed Portsmouth, Oxford and Hearts after he was convicted of having sex with an under-age girl. Lee Hughes and Luke McCormick both returned to football after they were jailed for causing death by dangerous driving.

With these precedents in mind, there are those who argue that, however vile his crime, Evans has already paid a hefty price for it and should be allowed to return to football. That rehabilitation is possible without repentance.

While it may be difficult to extend forgiveness to someone who is defiantly unrepentant, believes Richard Garside, director of the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies, it's more important to tackle the sexist attitudes within football and wider society that shaped Evans rather than focus on one individual.

"He was found guilty and a prison sentence was his punishment, not unemployment," says Garside. "That was not part of his sentence and nor should it be."

His sentence has not yet, however, been completed. Evans is still on licence, and as such still serving his punishment.

Having signed the sex offenders register, he must report to the police every year giving information about his bank details and if he has a person under 18 in his house. He needs the permission of his probation officer to travel abroad, a condition of release that prevented a rumoured move to Maltese side Hibernians.

Whether or not he returns to football, he will be prevented from work deemed "regulated activity" and jobs such as teaching, social work or health care that would involve working with children or vulnerable adults.

Regardless of what happens to his career, Evans will never, in truth, be free of the crime for which he was convicted.

Subscribe to the BBC News Magazine's email newsletter to get articles sent to your inbox.

BBC
07/01
1 Points
1

Ched Evans: Oldham Athletic sponsors told to prepare for signing of convicted rapist

The club and the controversial striker are believed to have spent today putting the final touches to the controversial contract, which could see him back on the football pitch this weekend. The club's sponsors say they have been told to prepare for an announcement confirming the signing of former Sheffield United striker Evans on Thursday or Friday.One of the League One side's sponsors, Verlin Rainwater Solutions, has cut ties with the club due to the "imminent signing" of  Evans, 26, as a result.

The club and the controversial striker are believed to have spent today putting the final touches to the controversial contract, which could see him back on the football pitch this weekend. 

The club's sponsors say they have been told to prepare for an announcement confirming the signing of former Sheffield United striker Evans on Thursday or Friday.

One of the League One side's sponsors, Verlin Rainwater Solutions, has cut ties with the club due to the "imminent signing" of  Evans, 26, as a result.  

Craig Verling, director of the club which sponsors a stand in Boundary Park, said: "After receiving the news regarding the imminent signing of Ched Evans it is with great regret that Verlin Rainwater Solutions will no longer be associated with Oldham Athletic.

"We would like to take this opportunity to make clear that we feel that Mr Evans should be able to lead a life without further punishment after serving his sentence, although our feelings remain the same that this should not be within the public domain where his previous behaviour may influence the next generation.

"We sincerely wish the club a very successful future and have no regrets about being associated with Oldham Athletic over the past few seasons, but feel our continued support would be sending out the wrong message."

Evans was jailed in April 2012 for raping a 19-year-old woman in a hotel room in Rhyl, North Wales.

The Welsh former Sheffield United striker denied rape, saying the sex was consensual, but he was found guilty by a jury at Caernarfon Crown Court.

He was released from prison in October after serving two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence. Following his release, he 

After his release, he released a video on his website protesting his innocence and vowing to clear his name.

Evans has steadfastly refused to admit his guilt or apologise to his victim - who has been hounded out of three homes and forced to change her identity twice thanks to Twitter trolls.

A signing is likely to cause outrage due to vociferous opposition. 

Just hours after Oldham announced interest in signing Evans, a petition urging the club's chairman not to sign the former Sheffield United striker was begun and has already gained more than 22,000 signatures.

He had an offer to train with former club Sheffield United retracted in November following strong local opposition, while Tranmere and Hartlepool also rejected the opportunity to sign him.

Club sponsors Mecca Bingo have also said that they will terminate any involvement with Oldham if Evans is signed.

Labour leader Ed Milliband and Tony Lloyd, Greater Manchester's Police and Crime commissioner, have both urged the club not to sign the former Welsh international.

The Daily Express online have contacted Oldham Athletic for comment. 

Express
07/01
2 Points
1

Ched Evans 'doesn't know what rape is', blogger 'Jean Hatchet' claims

A woman who started a petition against convicted rapist Ched Evans's proposed move to Oldham Athletic says the player "doesn't know what rape is".The blogger, who uses the pseudonym Jean Hatchet, said: "He was convicted of rape and he still doesn't acknowledge it was rape. And that's the incredibly dangerous message."Her petition to push the club to refuse to sign Evans has gained more than 45,000 supporters since Sunday.

A woman who started a petition against convicted rapist Ched Evans's proposed move to Oldham Athletic says the player "doesn't know what rape is".

The blogger, who uses the pseudonym Jean Hatchet, said: "He was convicted of rape and he still doesn't acknowledge it was rape. And that's the incredibly dangerous message."

Her petition to push the club to refuse to sign Evans has gained more than 45,000 supporters since Sunday.

Oldham are still mulling over a deal.

Former Wales international striker Evans, who was found guilty of raping a 19-year-old woman at a Rhyl, Denbighshire hotel in 2011, was freed from prison in October.

The now 26-year-old served half of his five-year sentence and is currently on licence under the supervision of the probation service.

Speaking to BBC News, the blogger said: "Crucially he hasn't served his time, he's served half of his time, he's still on licence.

"He's also not, as far as I can see, reformed or rehabilitated - he doesn't acknowledge his crime. And that's the key thing here - he doesn't know what rape is."

She added: "It's time that the Football Association [and] the Professional Footballers' Association realised that accepting players back into a high-profile role that have committed such an atrocious crime is wrong. They've got to take a stand on this."

After his release from prison, Jean Hatchet also started a petition - which gained about 169,000 supporters - designed to dissuade Evans's former club Sheffield United from reinstating him.

He was offered the use of their training facilities before the League One side backtracked amid heavy criticism from supporters and club patrons including Olympic heptathlon champion Jessica Ennis-Hill.

Evans maintains his innocence, and an investigation into his conviction by the Criminal Cases Review Commission is under way.

BBC
06/01
1 Points
1

Ched Evans: Michael Fabricant under fire after seemingly backing convicted rapist

Ideal staff for a mysogynist like you #chedevans."And Adam Bateman said: "@Mike_Fabricant would you let your kids put his poster on the wall and tell you they wanted to be just like him. The former Tory vice-chairman posted the seemingly supportive message to his 17,000 Twitter followers last night - but caused outrage among furious social media users. The 64-year-old wrote: "Ched Evans committed an awful crime, he was punished and served his prison sentence. "He should now be free to earn a living.

The former Tory vice-chairman posted the seemingly supportive message to his 17,000 Twitter followers last night - but caused outrage among furious social media users. 

The 64-year-old wrote: "Ched Evans committed an awful crime, he was punished and served his prison sentence. 

"He should now be free to earn a living. #OldhamAthletic." 

This comes as Oldham Athletic are expected to announce the fate of Evans, who will hear whether or not he is to be unveiled as the club's new striker today. 

Mr Fabricant's post was retweeted dozens of times with many venting their anger at the politician, who is an MP for Lichfield in Staffordshire. 

James Thomas responded: "He hasn't served his sentence, he remains on licence. 

"He shouldn't be in a position to be an icon." 

While Twitter user Susan wrote: "He is unrepentant. "Why don't you give him a job @Mike_Fabricant? Ideal staff for a mysogynist like you #chedevans."

And Adam Bateman said: "@Mike_Fabricant would you let your kids put his poster on the wall and tell you they wanted to be just like him?" 

But other Twitter users appeared to back the MP's  views.

Evans, 26, was released from prison in October after serving two-and-a-half years of a five-year sentence for raping a 19-year-old woman in 2011.

Last night League One side Oldham Athletic, who controversially signed Lee Hughes in 2007 following his release from prison after being convicted of causing death by dangerous driving, announced that negotiations were ongoing.

A club spokesperson said: "Oldham Athletic is not at this stage making any official announcement with regard to the speculation concerning Ched Evans.

"Whilst acknowledging the considerable media attention, we continue to have conversations with representative bodies such as the PFA and will conduct due diligence with regard to any decision we make on this matter.

"Although it has been reported that a press conference would be held we will officially advise if and when any such event will take place.

"The club would also request that its stakeholders and partners position and privacy be respected until this matter has been concluded.

"We will not be making any further comment for the time being." 

A petition urging Oldham's chairman not to sign the former Sheffield United striker was begun on Friday and has already gained more than 22,000 signatures.

Labour leader Ed Milliband and Tony Lloyd, Greater Manchester's Police and Crime commissioner, have both urged the club not to sign the former Welsh international.

Club sponsors Mecca Bingo and Verlin have also said that they will terminate any involvement with Oldham if Evans is signed.

Evans is yet to play professional football since being released from prison.

He had an offer to train with former club Sheffield United retracted in November following strong local opposition, while Tranmere and Hartlepool also rejected the opportunity to sign him.

Mr Fabricant's office has been contacted for comment. 

Express
06/01
2 Points
Ad
Ad
Ad