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Michael Le Vell's alleged rape victim fights back tears in court

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Sep 03, 2013 | 1:01pm EDT

The girl at the centre of British actor Michael Le Vell's child rape trial broke down in tears on Tuesday (03Sep13) as she denied allegations she made up "wicked lies" of sexual abuse to damage the star's reputation. Le Vell, who has starred in hit U.K. soap opera Coronation Street for three decades, stands accused of assaulting the youngster repeatedly between 2001 and 2010, beginning when his reported victim was just six years old. His trial began at Manchester Crown Court in England on Monday (02Sep13), as prosecutors claimed that during the alleged abuse, the actor gagged the child with a teddy bear and told her she would "die" if anyone found out about their encounters. The girl took the witness stand on Tuesday (03Sep13), appearing from behind a screen, and fought back at defence lawyer Alisdair Williamson's suggestions that she was lying about her ordeal. Asked why it took her so long to come forward with the accusations against Le Vell, she explained that she had been left "very confused" by her flashbacks, which she only recently began to experience more of. She told the court, "What he did to me was so wrong. I was so young." The child also dismissed allegations she harboured a "vendetta" against the actor and insisted she decided to speak up about the allegations of abuse "because they are true". Le Vell was arrested in 2011 but reportedly told cops the girl was a "fantasist" and an "attention-seeker". He denies 12 sex abuse charges, including five counts of rape and three indecent assaults. The case continues.

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