Sunderland chief quits over Adam Johnson case

Sunderland FC's chief executive Margaret Byrne has resigned in the wake of the Adam Johnson child abuse case, saying her part in the decision to allow Johnson to continue playing for the club while he faced charges was a "serious mistake".

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Footballer Adam Johnson to be sentenced on March 24

Former Sunderland footballer Adam Johnson admitted sexual activity with a child. Credit: Anna Gowthorpe / PA Wire/PA Images

Disgraced footballer Adam Johnson will be sentenced on March 24 for sexual activity with a child.

The former England player admitted kissing the girl in his car and grooming her with hundreds of social media messages.

Johnson has already been warned to expect to receive a substantial prison sentence.

Judge Jonathan Rose said his preliminary view was that the offences fall into the category of a five-year prison sentence with a possible range of four to 10 years.

When he was given bail on March 2, Johnson was told: "You can say goodbye to your daughter. A prison sentence will mean you will not see her for some time."

PFA was 'shocked as anybody' over Johnson guilty plea

The chief executive of the Professional Footballers' Association has said the organisation "was as shocked as anybody" when Adam Johnson pleaded guilty to two child sex offences.

Sunderland FC faced questions over whether they knew Johnson had admitted he'd kissed his 15-year-old victim and sent sexually suggestive messages.

Sunderland FC's chief executive Margaret Byrne has resigned and apologised for the "serious error of judgement".

Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the PFA, told ITV News the PFA was not told about the evidence.

He said: "Why would we know if we didn't get told?"

He added: "We were as shocked as anybody on the first day of the trial."


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