The estranged wife of Justin Lee Collins has told a court that he is a ' lovely, genuine person' who was never violent towards her.
Karen Collins, who married the TV presenter in 2003 and has two children with him, described him to St Albans Crown Court as 'brilliant, he's a lovely dad... he's very gentle, not aggressive, he's very kind and generous.'
She went on to say that the pair are still friends even though they are currently going through divorce proceedings and that he had never tried to control her during their marriage, saying: 'I was always free to go out with friends if I wanted to.'
Mr Collins's friend Boyd Hilton, a journalist, also described him as 'incredibly friendly, funny and down to earth'.
Mr Hilton, who ghost-wrote Mr Collins's autobiography and has been on several holidays with him, said: 'He is obviously quite famous but is always very normal.
'He is really quite shy. He doesn't really like the showbusiness world and he doesn't hang out in that world.'
The jury was also played a recording secretly made by Anna Larke, who is accusing Collins of harrassment, on which Mr Collins is heard telling Ms Larke she brings out 'the demon' in him, and insulting her with some very upsetting names.
Mr Collins denies harassment causing her fear of violence.
The trial continues.
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