Ryan Giggs trial: what the prosecution and defence said in closing speeches to the jury - court case latest

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Ryan Giggs has been on trial accused of assaulting his ex Kate Greville and using controlling and coercive behaviour towards her

The jury in the Ryan Giggs trial has heard closing speeches from both the prosecution and defence.

Giggs, 48, is on trial over allegations he assaulted his ex-girlfriend Kate Greville, 38, causing her actual bodily harm, and of controlling and coercing her during their relationship between August 2017 and November 2020.

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The former Manchester United star is also accused of assaulting the PR executive’s 26-year-old sister, Emma, in the same incident at his home in Worsley, Greater Manchester, on 1 November 2020.

He denies the charges.

In his closing speech at Manchester Crown Court, prosecutor Peter Wright QC said there were “two very different Ryan Giggs”. While the defence for Giggs said that watching the cross-examination of the ex-footballer by Mr Wright was “almost a blood sport”

Ryan Giggs has been on trial at Manchester Crown Court.Ryan Giggs has been on trial at Manchester Crown Court.
Ryan Giggs has been on trial at Manchester Crown Court. | PA

What did the prosecution say in their closing speech?

Mr Wright said: “The one who is exposed for public consumption and the Ryan Giggs who exists on occasion behind closed doors.”

Mr Wright invited the jury of seven women and five men to conclude the defendant is “not a thing of unalloyed beauty but when the mask slips” is the person capable of the charges he faces.

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On Monday, Mr Wright said: “This case is about abuse of power of a man over another human being.

“It’s actually a tale which is as old as the hills.

“It is about a man who thinks, or thought he could do whatever he liked in respect of his treatment of Kate Greville and that he could get away with it because the sad history of this relationship revealed that his excesses were endured by her, excused and kept private.

“But all that changed on the night of November 1 when the basis upon which he operated disintegrated before his very eyes and the public persona of Ryan Giggs was exposed to public scrutiny.

“When the woman he had controlled or coerced in their lengthy, fractious and volatile relationship had the courage to stand up to him.

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“When later his messages in all their ugly detail were exposed to a wider audience than that was intended and the intended target.”

Giggs’ expressions of affection across more than 19,000 messages exchanged between the former couple were “utterly hollow”.

Mr Wright said: “The messages in this case, all of them, when contextualised, tell their own sorry tale of emotional manipulation, physical excess and control and coercion.”

He went on: “The reality is the truth has caught up with him (Giggs) and now it’s time.

“It’s time to pay the price.

“Lets just consider what Kate Greville was prepared to do.

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“She had the courage not only on the night but later in the crucible of the witness box to speak up.

“To reveal in all its deeply embarrassing detail what he had done and said to her in the period of their relationship.

“You may think that speaking up was, for her, cathartic.

“The pent-up emotions of what he had said or done were to finally spill out.

“Scheming? Manipulative? Devious?

“Or a previously emotionally brittle vulnerable woman, previously malleable to this man, who had eventually reached her breaking point and was now empowered and able to speak out.”

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What did the defence say?

In his closing speech to the jury of seven women and five men, Chris Daw QC, said: “Infidelity is what this case is about”.

Mr Daw asked the jury at Manchester Crown Court to consider if the prosecution had “cherry-picked” evidence.

The court heard that some 19,671 messages between the couple during their six-year on/off relationship had been recovered as part of the investigation into the allegations – enough to fill 56 lever arch files containing 350 pages each.

Mr Daw said: “There is no argument in this case that both Ryan Giggs and Kate Greville were compulsive, if not addictive, messagers.”

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He said it was “quite staggering” that if stacked up the files “could probably reach the ceiling”, compared with the prosecution’s selection of messages fitted into a “small, white” file”.

Mr Daw went on: “Ryan Giggs is not on trial for being human or having human failures and succumbing sometimes to using extreme language, very rarely. His emotions got away with him on a very small number of occasions.

“From those thousands of messages the prosecution has managed to point to a tiny number of examples of loss of control in language. Not one single reference to him having been violent to her.”

He said though there were “dozens and dozens” of messages accusing Giggs of cheating and her not trusting him.

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Mr Daw said: “That’s because infidelity is what this case is about.

“Why were the allegations made? There is no doubt that Ms Greville was deeply deeply upset, furious, about Mr Giggs’ inability to remain faithful for any length of time.”

The barrister suggested it was “simply, utterly incredible” there was an attack with a headbutt on the evening of 1 November.

He said: “It was something created because she (Kate Greville) had a cut lip – as he did – and she started screaming and shouting he had headbutted her.”

The defence say the clash of faces was accidental.

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Mr Daw said watching Giggs’ cross-examination by Peter Wright QC was “almost a blood sport”.

He said: “One of the leading barristers in the last 40 years against someone who had a limited education and whose talents mostly lie in his feet. If it was the other way round it would be like Mr Wright being in goal against Ryan Giggs at his peak.

“You may think he was like a rabbit in the headlights in the witness box faced by Mr Wright… and you may have thought Mr Giggs would have agreed with anything and that his career was at Bolton Wanderers rather than Manchester United.”