Celebrity spiritual healer denies sexual assault

A spiritual healer, who claims to have treated actresses Joely Richardson and Tamzin Outhwaite, subjected a female patient to three sex attacks at his clinic, a court heard yesterday.

The Telegraph, UK/December 2, 2011

Graham Dare, 57, describes himself at the UK's top clairvoyant and boasts of celebrity clients including TV presenters Melinda Messenger, Kate Thornton and Michaela Strachan. He also claims to have communicated with the spirit of Diana, Princess of Wales.

Dare, who runs Sensitives Clinic in Farringdon, London, is facing three counts of sexual assaults after allegedly "grooming" a 31-year-old Japanese student during three genuine appointments. He denies the charges.

The woman was told the £95 charge per appointment would be waived until her migraines disappeared, the jury was heard.

Heather Stangoe, prosecuting, said the sexual abuse started during her fourth meeting with Dare on September 14.

"The defendant abused his position, he was building up this young lady's confidence and trust in him," she told Blackfriars Crown Court.

"He asked her to take off all of her clothes and although thinking this was unusual she thought it must have been part of the treatment.

"He said the clothes were getting in the way of spiritual healing and she agreed to take hers off, including her underwear, and lied down covered in a towel."

The court heard Dare touched her inappropriately, claiming it would connect with energy levels flowing from her spine.

The woman booked another appointment for two days later, believing the treatment was genuine, Miss Stangoe added.

"This was no genuine treatment, this defendant was sexually assaulting a vulnerable woman while continuing to claim he was a genuine practitioner," she said.

When the victim again returned on September 20, she refused to remove her underwear but Dare allegedly persuaded her to take off her bra.

After sexually assaulting her, he then told the woman it was her turn to perform the "healing" on him and removed his clothes, the jury heard.

The victim cancelled her next appointment after receiving advice from another spiritualist, who called the police.

"The Crown say the defendant chose this Japanese lady because she had poor English and was vulnerable and went on to assault her," Miss Stangoe told the jury.

When questioned, Dare, of Taymount Rise, Forest Hill, who has been a spiritual healer for more than a decade, denied he had abused the woman.

Miss Stangoe said: "He said she requested to learn the techniques and he allowed her to perform the treatment on him."

Dare, who charged £375 for home visits and more than £1,200 for one-week residential treatments, also claimed to be able to contact the dead, and offered artists the chance to communicate with dead masters such as Picasso and Van Gough for advice.

From 2000 to 2003, he was healing group leader at Battersea Spiritualist Church and stood as the English Democrats Lewisham mayoral candidate last year.

Giving evidence, the woman said Dare gave her full body massages for up to an hour.

"I did not like what he was doing to me, but because he was serious about his treatments I wanted to tell him nicely," she told the court.

"I did not want to offend him because he was not going to charge me until my migraines had gone. Looking back the whole thing sounds very strange."

The trial continues.

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