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Chelsea FC have issued an apology after a report has found that former chief scout Eddie Heath went “unchallenged” in abusing youth players at the club.
According to the report, even then assistant manager Dario Gradi refused to act when a complaint was made to him from a parent.
Twenty-three victims have given evidence as to how former Chelsea chief scout Heath groomed and abused young boys aged between ten and 17 during the 70s.
Chelsea FC have now issued an apology after the two-and-a-half-year report that have put club in bad light.
Chelsea have released a statement, thus: “Following the disclosures of non-recent child sexual abuse perpetrated at the Club in the 1970s, we set out our intention to do the right thing – to fully support those affected and carry out an exhaustive investigation into what occurred to ensure that abhorrent abuse like this can never happen again.
“Two-and-a-half years on, the external review team, led by Charles Geekie QC, a barrister specialising in child protection, has conducted more than a hundred witness interviews and reviewed thousands of pages of evidence.
“Although the club today is a very different place from the club then, with new ownership, operational structures and safeguarding procedures in place, we will not shy away from responsibility for what happened in the past.
“The intention of the review was to shine a bright light in the dark corners of the club’s history so that we can learn lessons to help protect the players of the future. We also have no desire to hide any non-recent abuse we uncover. Therefore, today, we are publishing the completed review in full.
“Charles Geekie QC’s review included a specific examination of the allegations of child sexual abuse by Eddie Heath, who was employed by the Club in the 1970s and died in the early 1980s. It is evident from the review that Heath was a dangerous and prolific child abuser. His conduct was beyond reprehensible.
“The report details how abuse was able to occur unchallenged, and the life-changing impact it had on those affected.”