The Inner London Crown Court in the United Kingdom has sentenced a self-appointed Nigerian football coach, Emmanuel Igwebuike to 25 years imprisonment.
Igwebuike was found guilty of sexually abusing seven teenage boys by the court.
Reports from the UK stated the 35-year-old was sentenced after the same court found him guilty in April of 22 counts of sexual assault following a five-week trial.
His victims were between the ages of 14 and 18 years at the time the offences were executed between June 2019 and April 2021.
The sexual assaults were reported to have taken place at his former addresses in Lambeth and Putney, and at a hotel in Birmingham.
According to the Metropolitan Police, Igwebuike was at the time acting in a self-appointed role as a football coach in his football academy based in the Stockwell and Putney areas of South London.
He, who was not affiliated with the English Football Association (FA) or any local football club, was reported to have committed the assault after having a trusting relationship with the boys with promises of furthering their football careers and providing them with football opportunities.
Police said that at the time of the offences being committed, none of the boys knew of abuse to the others and thought they were the only ones being sexually assaulted.
Although, he was charged with assaulting seven boys, police said that at the time the allegations were levelled against him, the names of other possible victims and witnesses to Igwebuike’s crimes were mentioned.
Hence, the Police urged anyone else who was Igwebuike’s victim to come forward.
Detective Constable Elaine Hutton, from the Met’s specialist crime command, said:
“These offences committed by Igwebuike are of an extremely serious nature. They have had a significant impact on the life of the young victims and especially their families who trusted him and were subject to his manipulation.
“I would like to thank them all for their bravery during this investigation.
We are keen to establish whether there are other victims of Igwebuike who have yet to come forward. Anyone who believes they were a victim of Igwebuike is asked to contact police.”
More so, Igwebuike was given a lifelong sexual harm prevention order and will also be on the Sex Offenders Register for life.