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Dario Gradi stripped of MBE

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Dario Gradi stripped of MBE

Dario Gradi, the former Crewe Alexandra manager, has been stripped of his MBE after a complaint from The Offside Trust, an organisation founded and run by survivors of child sexual abuse in sport.

Gradi received an MBE in 1998 for services to football – his career saw him take charge of more than 1,000 games at Crewe Alexandra where paedophile Barry Bennell worked as a youth-team coach.  Former Crewe defender Andy Woodward came forward in November 2016 to say that he was abused by Bennell in the 1980’s following which many other former players from Crewe, Manchester City and other clubs came forward with stories of their own abuse at the hands of Bennell.   

Bennell is now serving a 36-year prison sentence after being convicted of multiple offences against boys in the youth systems of Crewe and Manchester City in the1980s and 1990s.  Gradi has always denied any direct knowledge of Bennell’s crimes but has faced heavy criticism for not doing more to protect boys in the youth teams and investigate rumours about Bennell. 

David Hawkins is a specialist in Child and Adult Abuse compensation law with Biscoes Solicitors and has successfully represented a number of former players at Premier League clubs, in cases where they were abused by youth team coaches.  If you have been affected by this issue, please contact him for confidential advice as to your legal rights.