A serving police officer has appeared in court charged with three more counts of raping a child aged under 13.

James Ford, who had been a 999 response officer in east Hertfordshire for almost two years, was already facing two counts of child rape - the total is now five.

He was also charged with three counts of sexual assault on a child under 13 and three counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity.

The 30-year-old is also charged with committing an act to pervert the cause of justice.

He appeared at Peterborough Crown Court on Monday to deny all the charges.

Ford pleaded not guilty to all matters and the case was adjourned until August 8, 2022 when a trial is due to be held.

He was released on bail and was suspended from his role with Hertfordshire Police back in October.

He appeared at Peterborough Crown Court (

Image:

Cambridge Police/Triangle News)

Deputy Chief Constable Bill Jephson said: "This case continues to cause significant concern and we must allow it to proceed through the criminal justice system without being impeded by inappropriate speculation."

DCC Jepson previously said about the case: "I am deeply concerned that a serving Hertfordshire officer has been charged with such serious offences.

"I also fully recognise that members of the public will also be concerned by this news."

The allegations are the result of an independent investigation by officers in Cambridgeshire Constabulary's Public Protection Unit.