A babysitter is said to have molested a 10-year-old girl while he read her younger sister bedtime stories. 

Antony Williams, 37, was in his mid-teens when he allegedly carried out the abuse in the late 1990s. He denies six counts of indecent assault.

Prosecutor Virginia Cornwall told jurors at Swindon Crown Court yesterday the alleged assaults all took place while he was babysitting the complainant, then aged between nine and 10. He also looked after the girl’s younger sister, although there was no suggestion he had assaulted her.

It was said he had touched the older girl's private parts as she lay on her bed or while they were at his home playing video games.

She also alleged he got her to touch him sexually, including while he read bedtime stories to her younger sister.

Interviewed by police in 2018, the alleged victim said: “I just thought it was normal. I didn’t think anything of it.” 

The girl was said to have told her mum about what had happened, prompting the woman to confront Williams. He denied sexually assaulting the girl, suggesting the mum take her to a doctor to show she had not been assaulted.

Opening the case on Monday afternoon, Ms Cornwall said: “The Crown say that this defendant was, during the course with which we are concerned, of an age where he knew very well what was right and what was wrong and that is why he is before you now . 

“He was aged 15 to 16 years of age. He knew that it was wrong to sexually touch his complainant and the Crown say you can be sure on the evidence he did just that at two locations on different occasions.” 

Williams denies indecent assault, also claiming that he would have been much younger – aged 11 or 12 – when he babysat the complainant and her sister.

The jurors were told if they believed Williams had carried out the abuse when he was under 14 they would need to be sure he knew what he was doing was seriously wrong.

The law, known as doli incapax and abolished in 1998, presumed that children under-14 did not know the difference between right and wrong. 

Williams, of Ramsbury Avenue, Penhill, denies indecent assault. The trial continues.