Adam Johnson exchanged 830 messages with teenage girl and risked SAFC fine

Adam Johnson
Adam Johnson

More than 830 messages were exchanged between Adam Johnson and the 15-year-old girl he groomed, a court has heard.

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Kate Blackwell, prosecuting, told the court that the communications took place over less than two months.

Johnson is accused of two counts of sexual activity with a 15-year-old.

When interviewed by police, Johnson told officers that the girl was just a friend - but Miss Blackwell claimed that this was something the footballer played down when he spoke.

She added: "You as a 27-year-old won't be desirous of forging a friendship with a 15-year-old schoolgirl would you?"

Jurors heard in evidence that Johnson had said certain things to the girl ahead of them meeting, which Miss Blackwell said would have made her "amenable" to engage in sexual activity.

Johnson agreed - and admitted that he did want her to describe what she would do to him sexually as they spoke over WhatsApp, and that he did want to engage in sexual activity with her.

"But we never did," he added.

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The court heard that Johnson wanted to feel the girl's body and touch her private parts, but he didn't.

He said: "It didn't happen because as soon as we had the kiss I knew it was wrong and I didn't want it to carry on any further."

The day that Johnson met with the girl for the second time was on the eve of a Sunderland match - and the footballer today admitted that he was willing to risk receiving a late fine to spend some time with the girl.

The 28-year-old explained that fines are handed to players if they are late to meet when they are catching transport ahead of a fixture. These can range from a couple of hundred pounds to two weeks' wages.

Johnson had told the girl a certain time which he needed to leave by - and this would have made him late to meet the team at the allotted time.

He said he arrived on time and faced no fine - but agreed he was prepared to pay the late money to spend time with the girl.

The jury were told earlier in the week that Johnson was reportedly wearing a cast on his left hand at the time of the second meeting. This was due to a thumb injury.

He told police in a prepared statement that this went from just above his wrist to the tips of his fingers, and rendered his hand immobile.

Today, he agreed with Miss Blackwell that he cast was not that restrictive - but added he had confused it with he bandage he wore following surgery in the injury.

He denied that he had exaggerated it to the police, so they would think it impossible that he had unbuttoned and unzipped the girl's jeans as claimed.