A van driver accused of a catalogue of sex offences against vulnerable young boys has told a court he was bullied by youngsters on the estate where he lived in the 1990s.
Paul Boardman, 55, now of no fixed address, denies 47 counts of sexual abuse dating back to 1990.
But giving evidence at Manchester Crown Court, Boardman told the jury he did not know some of the youngsters who claim to have been assaulted by him,.
He dismissed claims made by the boys that he took them on day trips to Blackpool, Alton Towers and swimming as “fabricated”.
Boardman said the boys - now in their 20s and 30s were telling “malicious lies” about him. He said; “The way I’ve looked at it is that they are known to the police. They have got criminal records.”
Boardman was arrested and questioned about an allegation of sexual abuse made by one of the boys in 2000. He told the jury he had forgotten about an arcade machine in his flat in Ingol when he was questioned about it by police officers.
He said: “I was sat there being questioned by the police and they were putting all sorts of sexual allegations to me and they were asking me what was in my flat all those years ago.
Boardman told the court he knew one of the complainants as his mother was friends with his partner, who died in 1994.
But he said he did not know the names of the other boys he hung around with - and who later made complaints Boardman had abused them - until later.
He said the boys would ask him for cigarettes but denied several of them had been inside his flat. He said: “I didn’t really want to give them cigarettes all the time. Names started to be called. It was known on the estate.”
He described one occasion when a group of 20 to 25 youths gathered outside his flat, banging on the gate and calling him names, after which he called the police.
Boardman admits a charge of perverting the course of justice after colluding with another woman to say he was in a relationship with her when he broke bail conditions.
Following his arrest in February 2013 Boardman was ordered not to have any unsupervised contact with children.
However when a teenager made a complaint he had been sexually assaulted at Boardman’s flat in March, while another boy was present, Boardman admitted he lied about the false relationship to protect himself from being sent to prison.