An amateur ghosthunter faces prison after being convicted of rape.
Gaz Coward, of Birchwood Drive, Hambleton, denied two charges of raping a woman over the age of 16 but was found guilty last Wednesday following a trial at Preston Crown Court.
The 29-year-old will be sentenced on Tuesday, October 25, and could be jailed for up to 15 years according to Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) guidelines.
Coward is lead investigator for online TV show Paranormal Intent, and has investigated several Fylde coast locations for spooks, including The Cedar Tavern pub in St John’s Square, Blackpool town centre, and the Grapevine pub in Poulton.
The father-of-one is also a keen filmmaker, with 26 director credits to his name according to the International Movie Database (IMDb), and claims to have co-founded online news site Scisco Media.
In recent weeks, Coward has talked in an online video of ‘personal’ issues.
Shortly before his trial started, he told his 191 YouTube subscribers: “I have got a lot of stuff taking place next week which means I won’t be able to upload a video.
“What’s going on next week is pretty personal and I’d rather just keep it to myself until the time comes when I feel I can reveal what’s going on to you guys.
“However, I’m staying busy and something great has recently happened.
“Now, not only am I doing film work, but I’m also doing music artist management. We’re going to be launching a brand new music agency soon.
“Thank you guys and hopefully, well... I promise you I will have a new video update very soon. Let me get next week out the way and we’ll go for that.”
As a boy, Coward attended Hambleton Primary School and later St Aidan’s High School and Beacon Hill high School – now Unity Academy – but dropped out of classes after being bullied, he said in his part-written autobiography The Catalyst.
He studied leisure and tourism at Blackpool and the Fylde College while also trying to kickstart his film career.
His first short film, Rest In Peace, was shot as a tribute to his dad, who died of heart disease, and in 2014 he filmed Ten Memories Until Freedom on the Promenade.
That project was dedicated to his step-father, who died from cancer, and in memory of a close friend.
Last July, Coward said he had been wrongly accused of rape but acquitted after a trial.
“I am elated at the verdict. Justice has been served,” he said on his Facebook page.
“Some people just want to destroy this world, others like me want to connect and create.”