A MAN has been charged with kidnap and sexual assault after an incident involving a 14-year-old girl.

Police received a report of a teenager being followed by a man in a white vehicle at about midnight on Saturday.

Witnesses said they had seen the girl get into the vehicle, which then drove away.

An investigation followed and, in the early hours of yesterday morning, police tracked down the vehicle at a property in Withyham Road, Bexhill.

A man was arrested.

The girl was not at the property but was later found, safe, at an address which was known to her.

It was reported to police that she was initially picked up in Hastings town centre before being taken to a property in Bexhill where she was allegedly sexually assaulted before being driven close to an address she is familiar with.

Retired 64-year-old Steve Perry of Rothwell Drive in Solihull, West Midlands, was charged with false imprisonment, kidnapping with intent to commit a sexual offence and sexual assault.

He appeared in custody by videolink at Brighton Magistrates’ Court today where he was further remanded in custody and sent for trial at Lewes Crown Court with an initial appearance on July 27.