Hollyoaks star James Sutton says John Paul McQueen blames himself after he is the victim of a sex attack.

Teacher John Paul was raped by 16-year-old schoolboy Finn O’Connor – played by Keith Rice – who had subjected him to months of homophobic abuse, and while John Paul summoned the courage to report it to the police, he did not identify his attacker.

James told the Hollyoaks website: “I think he does feel he is to blame. He doesn’t run away, he doesn’t fight back. He doesn’t really have the opportunity, but in his head he doesn’t fight back. But he was completely frozen with fear, it’s a terrifying experience for him, but in his own head he struggles to justify that.

“I think a lot of it is to do with embarrassment. He feels ashamed, he feels quite dirty and he feels that people are going to judge him. He is in shock as well and he is still questioning why he didn’t stop it and why he didn’t do anything.”

James revealed that the attack will change both John Paul and Finn.

“It changes both characters. I don’t think either character can really come back from that in the same way. For John Paul, it changes him hugely. You see this outgoing, confident man be completely destroyed,” he said.