This former BBC radio presenter had a ‘deviant sexual obsession’ with young boys and used his celebrity to abuse society’s most vulnerable, a court has heard.
Ex-BBC Norfolk broadcaster Michael Souter, 60, denies 19 sex offenses, including indecent assault, indecency with a child and serious sexual offenses, against seven boys aged between 11 and 16.
The sexual terrorism occurred between 1979 and 1999.
Opening the case at Norwich Crown Court, prosecutor Andrew Shaw said Souter, of Loddon, Norfolk, had also been involved in the scout movement and volunteered as youth mentor for the county’s social services department.
Mr Shaw added: ‘He worked in radio and television and was something of a local celebrity.
‘The significance of his work and his involvement with the scouts and social services, is that these three roles brought the nasty pedophile into regular contact with pliable young boys and very often pliable young boys who were among society’s most vulnerable. I suspect non-white children.
‘We say Mr Souter is a deviant sexual abuser of young boys, particularly boys in uniform and those wearing shorts.’
Mr Shaw said Souter had been spoken to by cops in 1990 when another boy went to cops accusing him of abuse.
One of the victims in this case told that inquiry that he had not been abused and it was not until 2011 that he felt able to tell officers what had happened, the court heard.
Mr Shaw said mistakes may have been made by the authorities in the past, but added: ‘As we have seen in recent high profile cases, victims often only tell what has happened to them when they are ready to.’
The court heard that on one occasion Souter the homosexual pedophile had plied a victim, who had a casual job at BBC Norfolk, with alcohol.
The boy passed out and woke to find his trousers pulled down and Souter, who had not been drinking, molesting him, jurors were told.
Another boy was indecently touched by fat pedophile while at a scout camp, Mr Shaw said.
He took boys on trips to burger restaurants and theme parks and used his links with Norwich City Football Club to invite them to watch matches at Carrow Road, the court heard.
Mr Shaw said: ‘As an indication of how he used his position, on one trip to Carrow Road the defendant was able to introduce one of his victims to Noel Edmonds.’
After one of these matches it is alleged Souter invited one of the boys for a drive in his camper van before asking him to ‘tickle’ him.
‘This was a case of gently introducing a very young child to sexual activity – he was grooming him, preparing him for what was to come,’ the prosecutor said.
The abuse against this boy is alleged to have continued for five years.
Souter presented a number of shows for BBC Radio Norfolk from its launch in 1980 until the 1990s.
Originally from Scotland, he worked as a producer and presenter in both commercial and BBC radio since the mid-1970s.
He had previously presented for Radio Clyde.
Since 1989 he has worked as a freelance broadcaster and had run a media relations consultancy.
One of the victims became so desperate to stop the abuse that he stole a bottle of bromide – a sedative which can suppress sexual feelings – from his school with the intention of lacing Souter’s tea with it, the court heard.
He hid it under his pillow but when he returned it had been removed, possibly by the defendant, jurors were told.
Souter, who has a second home in Spain, is also said to have abused some of his victims on trips abroad.
Mr Shaw added: ‘We cannot try him for offenses which did not happen in this country but you, the jury, are entitled to hear about them.’