November 2019

Driving instructor from Ellesmere Port found guilty of sex attacks on his students

A DRIVING instructor from Ellesmere Port has been found guilty of sexually and indecently assaulting his students.

Frank Barham, 69, who ran the now-closed Frank’s School of Motoring, was found guilty on three counts of sexual assault and all nine counts of indecent assault.

The jury at Chester Crown Court had spent nearly 19 hours deliberating in the three-week trial before delivering their verdicts on Friday, November 8.

The jury found Barham not guilty on four further counts of sexual assault.

All charges had been related to Barham’s attacks on teenage and adult women between 1999 and 2017, while teaching them to drive.

Barham, a married former Sergeant Major, had originally stood trial in January this year for charges relating to six complainants, but the previous jury could not reach any verdicts on any of the counts.

Media coverage of the case then led a further two women to make similar allegations to the police.

A request for Barham to be sentenced on Friday could not be accommodated due to the court’s time constraints.

Instead Barham, of Halton Road, Great Sutton, will be sentenced on the morning of Wednesday, November 13 at Chester Crown Court.

Bail was not applied for and Barham was remanded in custody.

Judge Patrick Thompson warned him: “You have been convicted on a number of offences. I am sure you appreciate you face a significant custodial sentence.”

After Barham was sent to custody, Judge Thompson thanked the jury for their time and efforts.