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October, 3

Lostprophets announce split

Welsh rock band Lostprophets have split up, they have announced.

The group, whose frontman Ian Watkins is due to stand trial accused of baby rape and a total of 22 other sex offences at the end of the year, announced the news on its Facebook page.

His bandmates said in a statement: "After nearly a year of coming to terms with our heartache, we finally feel ready to announce publicly what we have thought privately for some time. We can no longer continue making or performing music as Lostprophets.

"Your love and support over the past 15 years has been tremendous, and we'll be forever grateful for all you've given us. As we look forward to the next phase of our lives, we can only hope to be surrounded by people as devoted and inspiring as you guys have been."

The statement was signed "Jamie (Oliver), Lee (Gaze), Luke (Johnson), Mike (Lewis), and Stu (Richardson)".

Watkins appeared in a plea hearing at Cardiff Crown Court in June when he denied a total of 24 separate sex offences.

Among them are two counts of raping a baby, one of conspiracy to rape a child and one of conspiracy to sexually assault a child.

He also denies charges of sexually assaulting a baby and aiding and abetting a woman to sexually assault a baby.

Lostprophets formed in 1997.

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