Tarot cards Picture: Pixabay

London - A clairvoyant asked to exorcise spirits from a ‘haunted’ family home was on Thursday cleared of sexually assaulting a young woman in a bid to free her body of a ‘demon’.

Ryan Halsey, 27, who also works at B&Q, told the 18-year-old he was trained at a ‘Harry Potter’ school and his chanting was compared to ‘parseltongue’ – the language of serpents described in the JK Rowling books.

He was contacted to help the alleged victim’s grandparents, who for seven years had experienced ‘strange things’ in their home such as hearing footsteps and seeing a male figure, a court was told.

An ‘old lady sitting in a chair’ in the conservatory was also seen by the teenage granddaughter and her boyfriend.

On his first visit to the house in Hull, Mr Halsey claimed to be involved in an ‘altercation’ with a spirit and was ‘poked in the eye’.

He said he had seen an old woman in a corner and the spirits of two orphaned children. Mr Halsey claimed he had cleared the house of a spirit and cleansed it of ‘negative energy,’ but was called back for a second visit in August 2016 when problems continued.

It was then he was said to have assaulted the granddaughter by touching her in an intimate manner during a ‘spiritual cleansing ritual’.

He accepted carrying out the one-on-one session but said nothing sexual occurred and he was unanimously cleared by the jury at Hull Crown Court after just 40 minutes’ deliberation.

Mr Halsey had told the young woman she had a ‘demonic attachment’ and set about trying to heal her after writing a ‘do not enter’ sign which he placed on the bedroom door, Claire Holmes, prosecuting, said. Miss Holmes said they were in the bedroom for two hours. The woman later told police Mr Halsey asked her to remove her T-shirt and bra and get comfortable on the bed. He then used a ‘crystal pendulum’ and said it was ‘going crazy’ around her back to indicate the spirit’s presence.

Later, with her breasts partially covered, he was allegedly ‘feeling her up and down her body’ and touched her breast area over her top for about 40 minutes. During this healing session, Mr Halsey began to chant in a language that sounded like ‘parseltongue’.

He chatted to the complainant, who claimed to feel increasingly uncomfortable, and complimented her on her breasts, saying the demon would go to her ‘boobs’ to try to ‘turn her on’, said Miss Holmes. When interviewed by police, Mr Halsey denied touching the woman’s breasts or sexually assaulting her in any way during the ritual. The ‘psychic medium clairvoyant’, who said he had been ‘born with a gift’, claimed he was later stabbed by a demon during this second visit to the house. Although he did not charge for his services, Halsey was given £20 on both visits to the house, the jury was told. During the first visit, Mr Halsey and a female assistant he described as his ‘student’ were inside the property for four hours while the family waited outside. After he finished the family joined him and they all walked around with a white sage joss stick to ‘cleanse the house of any negative energy’, said Miss Holmes.

Under cross-examination, he was asked about his altercation with the spirit who poked him in the eye. Mr Halsey said it was ‘one of those things’ where they ‘get a bit angry and try and attack me’.

He added: ‘I’m well protected anyway so it won’t harm me, but there was a few bangs, or whatever.’ Asked by Miss Holmes what had caused bangs in the room, Mr Halsey said: ‘When you get energy to a room, any collision can possibly create a sound.’

The defendant said the ghost was ‘a particularly nasty one’.

Mr Halsey, of Hull, denied sexual assault and there were tears from supporters in the public gallery when the verdict was announced. He refused to comment after.