A former professional footballer convicted of rape is trying to kick-start his career with a lowly non-league club.
Tesfaye Bramble – older brother of Newcastle and Sunderland star Titus – was jailed for four and a half years for attacking a teenager he took back to his hotel.
Both brothers were arrested over the incident in 2010 but Titus was released without charge.
Tesfaye, 33, was convicted in 2011 by a jury which heard him claim women he met on nights out “don’t just come back to the hotel to go to sleep, they come back for sex”.
Bramble, a striker who once played for Southend and Stockport, was released from prison earlier this month after serving two-and-a-half years.
He has now turned out for Suffolk side Hadleigh United FC in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division and has already scored for the club.
Club chairman Rolf Beggerow defended their signing of the shamed striker.
He said: “After taking into account several factors and obtaining references, it was a committee decision to support manager Stuart Crawford and several senior players who know Tes very well and give him the opportunity to restart his football career with Hadleigh United.”
Leeds Crown Court heard how Bramble raped his 19 year-old victim at a four-star hotel in Newcastle after meeting her in a local nightclub.
The teen fell asleep on a single bed and woke to find Bramble on top of her.
Bramble, of Ipswich, Suffolk, scored on his debut for his new club last Saturday (22/11) in a 6-1 victory over Woodbridge.
His career in the football league saw him score 61 goals in more than 200 appearances before spells at Cambridge United and Stevenage.