January 31 2015 Latest news:
By edp reporter
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
A Norfolk man has been charged with a number of historic sexual offences against children over a 20-year period.
Michael Souter, 59, has been charged with 18 offences relating to children, plus an offence against a man and an offence against a woman, which are alleged to have taken place in Norfolk between 1979 and 1999.
Souter, of Low Bungay Road, Loddon, is a broadcaster, freelance journalist and travel writer.
He is due to appear before Norwich Magistrates on November 30.
Norfolk Constabulary said Souter was accused of 10 indecent assaults on a boy under the age of 16 and six sex offences with a boy under 16.
He is also charged with indecently assaulting a man aged 16 or over, two counts of gross indecency with a boy under the age of 14 and one count of indecent assault on a woman over the age of 16.
In a statement last night, Souter said: “This is the third time that Norfolk police have investigated these alleged offences, which I strenuously deny and will vigorously defend.
“On both previous occasions, the Crown Prosecution Service advised against making charges.
“It has taken Norfolk police nearly 20 years and two years in the current investigation to get to this stage.
“For that reason, plus the fact I have now been charged, you will understand that I cannot go into detail.
“My close friends have been a tower of strength during what has been an extremely difficult period and I cannot thank them enough for their support.
“I would just ask that nobody jumps to any conclusions and I look forward to being able to prove my innocence and get on with my life.”
On his website, Souter describes himself as a producer and presenter for commercial and BBC radio and television since the mid-1970s.
It says he has worked as a freelance broadcaster and has run a media relations consultancy since 1989.
Souter was one of the original team recruited by BBC Radio Norfolk when it first opened in 1980 and presented a number of shows.