Ryan Giggs trial, day nine: Ex-player accused of creating ‘false narrative’

It was Ryan Giggs’ third day in the witness box and, under intense questioning, these were the moments when it was put to the former Manchester United player that he had created a “false narrative” to cover his alleged violent behavior.

It was also the day Giggs admitted that part of his previous evidence, from a prepared statement he had given to the police, was untrue.

Giggs had told the police he was “pleased” they turned up on the night he was accused of headbutting his then-girlfriend, Kate Greville, and assaulting her younger sister, Emma. His statement said he had wanted to call the police himself and that he thought it was the only way the argument would end.

Now, though, he accepted he had not wanted the police to be involved and, in fact, had angrily berated Emma for ringing 999.

To questions about why he would provide a police statement which was partially not true, the former Wales manager replied, “I don’t know.”

Giggs, 48, is charged with causing actual bodily harm to Kate Greville, a PR executive, as well as assaulting Emma by elbowing her in the jaw. He faces a separate offense of using controlling and coercive behavior towards his partner in a three-year period before November 1, 2020 — the night of the alleged violence.

He denies the offenses and says he was attacked by Greville during an argument at his house in Greater Manchester after she decided to end the relationship.

In a series of dramatic exchanges, Peter Wright QC, prosecuting, put it to the former footballer that he was trying to “create a narrative that didn’t properly or fairly reflect what had gone on… that sought to create the impression you were the victim, not them… that you were the one who had been attacked, not them”.

Did the court hear the 999 call?

Giggs later described himself as “scared” that the police had been rung and, asked what was in his mind about the potential consequences, he replied, “I’m not too sure but it didn’t look good.”

The transcript of Emma’s 999 call was read to the jury. Giggs could be heard in the background as he interrupted Emma by telling her, “You fucking caused this.”

Emma had told the 999 operator that Giggs had headbutted her sister and had threatened to do the same to her.

Cross-examining Giggs, Wright asked, “Why didn’t you say, ‘That’s rubbish’, or, ‘What are you talking about?’.”

Giggs leaves court earlier this week (Photo: Peter Byrne/PA Images via Getty Images)

Giggs: “I don’t know.”

Wright persisted with this line of questioning and asked Giggs why he could not be heard responding to Emma’s claims by stating, as the former footballer now says, that it had been an accidental clash of heads.

Giggs: “I don’t know.”

Wright: “I’m going to suggest that what she was saying was the truth… What you did is try to turn the narrative into blaming Emma. Why are you accusing her?”

Giggs: “I don’t know.”

What else did the court hear?

Wright went on to say that Giggs had used “emotional blackmail” to try to talk Emma out of ringing 999.

Giggs accepted he had asked Emma to think about the effect on his daughter if the police were involved and the story reached the media.

“You were seeking to dissuade her from making the complaint and reporting it any further to the police and seeking to use your daughter as the lever,” said Wright.

The previous day, Giggs was asked by the prosecution whether he accepted his conduct towards Greville had caused her “serious harm or distress”.

Having said “yes” to that question, Giggs was asked by his QC, Chris Daw, to clarify what he meant.

“That I had upset her because of my infidelity,” Giggs said.

In another exchange with Daw, Giggs was reminded that he had accepted, under cross-examination the previous day, being “impetuous.”

He was asked if he understood what the word meant and, to begin with, he said that he did. Asked to explain it to the court, Giggs started laughing and said he would rather Daw do it for him.

Asked again if he knew what the word meant, Giggs replied this time, “I’m not too sure.”

What happens next?

The trial at Manchester Crown Court was originally listed for two weeks but the jury has already been told that it will go into a third week.

The prosecution and the defense both still have to give their closing speeches and then the judge will give directions to the jury of seven women and five men.

It is anticipated that the jury will retire next Tuesday to consider a verdict.

(Top photo: Getty Images; design: Sam Richardson)


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