The DJ Tim Westwood is going through allegations from a lady who says he first had intercourse together with her when she was 14 and he was in his 30s.
The lady claims Westwood had intercourse together with her on a number of events within the early Nineteen Nineties, when the age of consent in England and Wales was, as it’s now, 16. “I sit right here immediately and face what I’ve been working from for a very long time,” she mentioned.
Her testimony varieties a part of a joint Guardian/BBC investigation that may elevate recent questions over the behaviour of the previous Radio 1 DJ.
The lady, and a number of other others, spoke to the Guardian and BBC after the information organisations revealed a narrative in April by which Westwood was accused of opportunistic and predatory sexual behaviour.
They make new allegations regarding separate incidents of alleged abuse, misconduct and inappropriate behaviour that date from 1990 to 2020.
The Guardian put the entire allegations to Westwood, who’s now 64. He didn’t reply.
He strenuously denied the allegations of the seven girls who featured within the unique investigation in April.
Attorneys appearing for Westwood mentioned on the time that he was a well-respected and extremely profitable DJ. They mentioned he denied of their entirety the intense allegations being made towards him, saying they had been false and defamatory, and he needed to clarify that he didn’t behave within the method described.
In 2020, Westwood mentioned claims of inappropriate behaviour made towards him on the time on social media had been fabricated, false and with out basis.
In a press release, he mentioned: “I can categorically say that I’ve by no means had an inappropriate relationship with anybody beneath the age of 18.”
4 girls who’ve determined to inform their tales after the primary investigation say they had been beneath 18 when the incidents they allege occurred. An additional six girls say they had been younger adults on the time.
The lady who alleges she was 14 when the DJ first had intercourse together with her describes herself as having been a susceptible teenager, and says she had needed to place the expertise “in a field and throw away the important thing”. After listening to the testimony of others, she says, she felt compelled to inform her personal story.
Now in her 40s, she says she desires girls with related tales to really feel much less alone. “It wasn’t their fault, they’re to not blame that they obtained taken benefit of and there’s no disgrace in any of that. None no matter,” she mentioned.
A second girl says she was 16 in 1997 when when Westwood began a sexual relationship together with her that she alleges was unhealthy and controlling.
Two different girls accuse Westwood of sexually assaulting them after they had been of their mid-teens. One says she was 15 and dealing for Westwood’s promotional “road group” in 1999 when he kissed her, whereas one other alleges she was in 12 months 9 at college when the DJ grabbed her breasts at an under-18s membership evening he was acting at in 2006.
An additional girl alleges she was 20 when the DJ compelled his penis into her mouth as she resisted in 2012. This seems to represent a critical sexual offence.
Different girls say they skilled predatory sexual encounters after they had been younger adults. One girl who labored for the DJ when she was 18 in 2003 alleges that he took benefit of his place as her boss and a a lot older man to have intercourse together with her. One other described two sexual encounters with the DJ after they met in 2019 as “uncomfortable”, as a result of she was 19 and the DJ was in his 60s and older than her mother and father.
4 additional girls allege different inappropriate encounters.
Other than two associates, the ten girls aren’t identified to one another and have by no means met. Not one of the girls – who’re all black – reported their interactions to the police. All however one have requested to stay nameless and have been given pseudonyms.
One of many girls mentioned she thought racial discrimination meant that black ladies and younger girls had been too usually handled like sexualised adults as an alternative of youngsters and younger individuals.
Westwood has been one of many best-known names in hip-hop and rap within the UK for the previous 40 years. He started internet hosting BBC Radio 1’s first rap present in 1994, welcoming the largest rappers on the earth – from Public Enemy to Jay-Z – on to his present.
He has courted a level of controversy. In 1999, he was injured in a drive-by taking pictures, with one bullet going by way of his arm and one other by way of a seat of the automobile he was in.
After virtually 20 years Westwood left the BBC in 2013. He moved to Capital Xtra, however after allegations towards him surfaced in April his employer World mentioned he was stepping down from the present “until further notice”.
Final week, the BBC/Guardian investigation revealed that the company was reviewing six complaints against Westwood, having beforehand mentioned it had no information of any complaints. On Tuesday, it mentioned it could publish an inner investigation into the allegations within the next two weeks.
A spokesperson for Westwood mentioned in April that there had been no official or unofficial complaints towards him in his profession.
Esther* says she met Westwood in 1990, when as a hip-hop-loving 14-year-old she would go to the Arch nightclub in Vauxhall, south London. She says she and her associates grew to become regulars and the DJ would allow them to in totally free. She remembers him asking her age. “I mentioned ‘I’m 14’ and he didn’t look shocked or something,” she says. He mentioned it wouldn’t be an issue if she continued coming to the nights, she says.
She says he requested for her quantity, saying he would go away her identify on the door. He referred to as and requested her to fulfill him, she says, and she or he remembers being picked up from Hammersmith station and being taken to a flat. She says he obtained her a drink of juice, they talked after which he kissed her.
“I used to be like, OK, I don’t have an issue with that. After which it progressed from there,” she says. “We had intercourse.” In England and Wales the age of sexual consent is 16.
Trying again, Esther says she didn’t really feel she had the facility to say no. On the time she thought it was “regular”. “I used to be a little bit of a troubled teen … I simply went by way of with it, mainly,” she says.
She says this occurred a number of occasions, and the DJ would name her on her house landline after her mum left for a nightshift and organize to fulfill her for intercourse, which she says felt like a “soiled little secret”.
“I form of thought it was regular however that’s as a result of I didn’t perceive the gravity of the scenario. It wasn’t a relationship and it wasn’t about love, it was only a factor, and a factor you couldn’t focus on with anyone.”
When she was 16, she says, she began a relationship and subsequently reduce contact with the DJ. Her ex-boyfriend has informed the BBC that Esther informed him about her alleged sexual encounters with Westwood after they began going out.
“I believe once I obtained to the age the place I knew it was unsuitable and I ended, though I’d stopped … there’s nonetheless a label that hung over you,” Esther says. “If you considered even addressing it, you recognize, you’re scared – who’s gonna imagine you, who’s gonna be in your facet?”
She says it feels just like the DJ groomed her, and describes Westwood as a “predator” and herself as his “prey”.
She says holding this secret had a big impact on her – she tried to kill herself thrice. She determined to contact the BBC after seeing the documentary Tim Westwood: Abuse of Power on BBC Three.
Requested how she feels now about her expertise, she says: “Disgusted. Offended. Upset. Soiled. Yeah, soiled. I want I might fake it by no means occurred nevertheless it did.”
Lydia* says she was 16 and at sixth-form school in London in 1997 when she met Westwood at a membership in Streatham. She says Westwood, then in his early 40s, requested for her quantity and referred to as her the following day. “I suppose if you’re 16 and a half all of it appeared actually thrilling,” she says. “We had intercourse and issues just about moved on from there.”
She alleges she was in a sexual relationship with him for about 18 months. She says she was susceptible and residing on her personal on the time and he knew she was beneath the age of 18 as a result of she was at sixth-form school and he inspired her to go to college.
She says she felt Westwood grew to become controlling and claims he would ask for the code for her landline voicemails to take heed to her messages, would touch upon what she was carrying and would flip up unannounced.
She says he would take her with him when he travelled to different cities to DJ. “There was various disruptions to my schooling,” she says. “And on the time I didn’t really feel like I might say no.”
She says she would usually go to the BBC, the place Westwood began his rap present in 1994. A BBC spokesperson mentioned that in 1997 it was normal process for individuals working in BBC buildings to sign up friends, and that the broadcaster launched a frequently up to date little one safety and safeguarding coverage in 2004 and a customer coverage in 2010.
A spokesperson mentioned: “At present, the BBC’s safeguarding preparations have by no means been stronger and are frequently up to date consistent with greatest apply. The place under-18s are permitted entry to BBC premises, beneath our safeguarding coverage they are going to all the time be accompanied by a chaperone and are by no means left alone.”
Lydia says that by the top of the connection her psychological well being had deteriorated to the extent that she tried to take her personal life. “I used to be fairly depressed, I wasn’t spending any time actually with my associates by then. More often than not I’d spend with him.”
She provides: “I really feel actually unhappy for that 16-year-old lady. I really feel I used to be very naive. I used to be simply swept up by the entire thing … I want the adults who had been round him … had stepped in to do one thing as a result of by the point the connection had ended I used to be 18 years previous, however I wasn’t 18 once I met him and I used to be very susceptible.”
Her brother has informed the BBC that he confronted Westwood as a result of he was indignant concerning the relationship, whereas one other pal has mentioned she remembers the psychological impression it had on Lydia.
Lydia says she needed to inform her story after Westwood “categorically denied” having any inappropriate relationships with anybody beneath the age of 18 in 2020. “At that time I believed: truly, that’s a lie,” she says. “I used to be actually beneath the age of 18 when he met me.”
Lydia says she had believed Westwood was in his 20s, till she noticed his passport. “I opened it and … he was born in 1957 and I believed: oh, that’s virtually as previous as my mom. And that was surprising. I felt actually sick.”
She provides: “He didn’t power me to have intercourse with him, it was by selection, nevertheless it didn’t really feel like a wholesome sexual relationship as a result of he was a grown man and I used to be a youngster.”
Paige was in 12 months 9 at college, aged 13 or 14, when she says she met the DJ in 2006. She had gone to an under-18s evening at a nightclub in Cardiff the place Westwood was enjoying.
She remembers the evening being a “college disco” evening with everybody dressing up in uniforms. Paige says she received a dance competitors and was informed to go to the DJ sales space. She says that when she requested Westwood to signal her shirt, he grabbed her breasts.
“He, like, grabbed my boobs from beneath and went: ‘Whoa, take a look at these!’ and simply continued to signal my shirt,” she says.
She feels this type of expertise is frequent amongst black ladies who’re handled as adults regardless of their age. “Younger black girls are hyper-sexualised from a really younger age. We’re so used to it,” she says.
Paige’s mum mentioned she recalled choosing up her daughter up from the membership that evening, and informed the BBC that Paige informed her concerning the alleged grope a couple of years later.
Emma* says she met Westwood when she joined his promotional “road group” in 1999, when she was 15. She was an enormous hip-hop fan and would hand out flyers on nights that the DJ was enjoying, and work backstage.
She says that when Westwood requested her to hang around she didn’t suppose it was a romantic proposition. “He’s like an older man, so simply asexual to me in a approach,” she says. She says she remembers being picked up from her London house and the DJ saying he needed to cease by his flat. They went inside and listened to music however the environment modified and she or he began to really feel anxious, she says.
“I didn’t really feel secure already and I used to be like I don’t need the rest to occur, like I must get the hell out of right here.”
She says she made excuses to go house, and claims that after they had been within the automobile he leaned to kiss her. “He leans [in] very quick, like he’s speaking to me. After which he sticks his tongue down my throat,” she says. “I keep in mind … pursing my lips, making an attempt to deliver them collectively as tight as potential. [I] tried to be simply non-sexual.”
She informed him she was solely all in favour of working with him and wanted to get house, she says. “He was in a strop. He simply obtained quiet. It was the injured ego of the person, and also you be taught it very early on to not bruise that ego.”
She says he dropped her off and she or he was not referred to as on to work on the road group once more.
Sophie* was 18 and at school when she began engaged on Westwood’s road group in 2003.
She says individuals would drink collectively after his present. One evening she says he provided to take her house, however as an alternative drove her to a flat and “issues did occur”. She says: “[He] didn’t, like, power me down and maintain me all the way down to do issues; nonetheless, issues occurred that I wasn’t snug with.”
Sophie says her reminiscences are fragmented, however she alleges that intercourse occurred and that she wasn’t snug with it. “I even query myself: why did I’m going there? As a result of I’m not the form of particular person to go to an individual’s home. However on the similar time, possibly as a result of I labored for him. Perhaps as a result of I used to be intoxicated as effectively … I used to be younger.”
She says it appears apparent to her now that it was an abuse of energy. Afterwards, she says, he dropped her off house “like nothing had occurred”. She says she didn’t work for him once more.
Talia* says she was 20 when she met Westwood on the Oceana nightclub in Nottingham in 2012. She says the DJ pointed her out to his bodyguard, who came visiting and requested her to attend behind.
She says she and her pal had been planning to return to their college halls, and the DJ provided to drop them off. The plan modified and his driver drove again to the lodge the DJ was staying at, she has informed the BBC.
“Perhaps this was simply me being naive,” she says, “as a result of [my friend] and I believed it was simply gonna be a chat and that will be it and, you recognize, I’d return to halls.”
Talia says she went to his lodge room alone they usually talked briefly after which he kissed her. She says she was “OK with” this, however she says that in a short time he obtained bare and she or he began to really feel uncomfortable, and she or he says she informed him she didn’t need to “do something like that”.
“I stored saying: ‘No, you recognize we’ve simply met, let’s simply speak,’” she says. “Then clearly the battle began and I stored saying no.”
She says he was then straddling her on the mattress and was making an attempt to get her to present him oral intercourse. She alleges her legs had been pinned between his and he was holding one in all her arms.
“I used to be simply pondering: ah God, this may’t be occurring. Right here is that this tall man like simply towering over me and I simply felt, you recognize, caged, like I couldn’t get out. And I used to be saying no. So I felt actually, like, actually powerless, I’d say, in that second.”
Talia remembers repeatedly saying no, and she or he alleges Westwood pushed his penis into her mouth. She says she mentioned “no, simply let me go” and shuffled from beneath him, grabbed her belongings and left.
“I used to be fairly disturbed by the entire thing,” she says. “Trying again I simply really feel used and I really feel disgusted in a approach. I simply really feel prefer it’s fairly demeaning.”
She says she considered going to the police however she didn’t suppose her criticism can be taken critically. “The police would suppose, effectively, it was an evening out, you’re 20 years previous, they usually simply wouldn’t have taken it any additional.”
Talia’s pal Tatiana* has informed the BBC she remembers the evening in Nottingham in 2012 and going to the lodge. A month or two later, she says, she noticed Westwood once more in Nottingham. She says she talked about Talia and was shocked when he mentioned he didn’t keep in mind her. “[He] mentioned: ‘Oh, I don’t keep in mind,’” she says. “I used to be like: huh? How? Why don’t you keep in mind her?”
She claims he then touched her backside. “I rotated to look and he acted prefer it wasn’t him. Nevertheless it was me and him and my two ladies there. He was appearing like nothing occurred. I used to be in shock,” she says.
Different girls have alleged to the BBC that the DJ groped or behaved inappropriately with them. Isla* says she met Westwood in August 2017 at Boxpark in Croydon, and alleges he rubbed his genitals on her behind. Josie* says she met Westwood in the summertime of 2018, when she was 22, and that after she gave him her quantity he “pestered her” to return to his home and tried to flash her on a FaceTime name earlier than she hung up. She says he messaged afterwards to say he was sorry and that he had been joking.
The latest allegation dates to 2020. Elizabeth* says she met Westwood in a nightclub in East Sussex in 2019 and that over the course of 2020 that they had two sexual encounters, which she says had been “uncomfortable”. She says she felt beneath stress to drink, and notes that the DJ was older than her mother and father. She alleges that when she informed Westwood she was about to show 20, he replied: “I want I’d had extra time to fuck you if you had been a youngster.”
*Names have been modified.
Hip Hop’s Open Secret: Tim Westwood airs on BBC Three at 10pm on Wednesday 13 July and might be on iPlayer.