THE ex-partner of a man accused of historical sexual offences told jurors the alleged victim sent him 'friendly and flirty' text messages years after the alleged abuse.

Prosecutors at Oxford Crown Court claim that Mitchell Purvis regularly abused his child victim – who cannot be named for legal reasons – on numerous occasions during the 1980s in Didcot.

The 54-year-old, of Kynaston Road, Didcot, denies eight counts alleging indecent assault, sexual intercourse with a child and buggery.

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A woman who was his girlfriend for seven years took to the witness box yesterday, as the case came to a close.

She told jurors she remembered him telling her around 10 years ago about an incident at a pub where the woman 'butted in' into a conversation he was having and asked him to buy her a drink. She added he later told her about texts asking him to meet up, which she described as 'friendly and flirty'.

Prosecutor Matthew Walsh, in cross-examination, asked her if she knew those texts had actually come from the alleged victim, to which the woman said no.

Emma Goodall, closing the case for the defence, said evidence from the electoral register meant it was 'simply not possible' for the alleged abuse to have happened when woman was aged 11 as she claimed and attempts to alter the charges to fit was not credible.

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Earlier in the trial the alleged victim told jurors from the witness box she had thought the sex was 'normal' and she saw him as her 'boyfriend'.

Mr Walsh argued her evidence had been 'heartfelt' and that gaps in memory were to be expected from such 'harrowing' childhood events.

The trial continues, with the jury due to be sent out to deliberate on Monday.