Trial over Eastwood child sex charges

Nottingham Crown Court.
Nottingham Crown Court.

A charge of possessing indecent photographs of children in Eastwood is among a series of sex-offence allegations being faced by the former leader of an air cadets’ group.

James Dodd (41) is to stand trial at Nottingham Crown Court in September with the most serious charges relating to alleged sexual offences against a young girl.

He was formerly the commanding officer of the 1803 (Hucknall) Air Training Corps (ATC) squadron.

Dodd, who lives at Masefield Avenue, Holmewood, Chesterfield, appeared at the same court to face charges dating back nine years.

He spoke only to confirm his identity.

He has yet to formally enter a plea. But Ian Way (defending) told the court that Dodd would be denying the charges.

“He had a genuine and reasonable belief that the girl in question was over 16,” said Mr Way.

A trial date was set for the week beginning Monday September 29. The next hearing, for plea and case-management, will be next Thursday, Jul 24.

When he appeared at Nottingham Magistrates’ Court in March, Dodd was accused of five offences in Hucknall between September 24 2005 and September 25 2006.

Four of the charges related to Dodd allegedly committing sexual acts or sexual touching, while the other related to an accusation that he incited the girl to engage in sexual activity.

The girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is now aged in her 20s.

Dodd was also charged with possessing two indecent photographs of children in Eastwood between September 24 2005 and May 1 2013.

Tina Dempster (prosecuting) told the court it was alleged that “the photos were downloaded from his phone after a complaint by a third party.”

Dodd was granted conditional bail.