Robert Sugden is to pay a fake second victim in Aaron’s abuse case in order to ensure that Gordon Livesy faces justice.
Gordon’s neighbour Ryan (played by guest star George Sampson) will be seen being bribed by Robert in upcoming scenes. But Robert’s actions are set to have far-reaching consequences when Gordon then turns up at the Woolpack and accuses Chas of setting him up.
“Robert ends up coming clean to Chas about what he’s done and she’s really upset,” says actor Ryan Hawley, who plays Robert. “But he explains that he’s doing this for Aaron’s benefit. He’s only set up this fake victim to strengthen Aaron’s case. People are starting to doubt him and he thinks that if someone else makes the allegation that Gordon sexually assaulted them, then they’ll be a better chance of him standing trial.”
Robert will be left trying to convince Chas not to tell Aaron the truth about the new witness, but the choice is taken out of her hands when DS Wise informs them that Gordon can now be charged. But surely Robert is running a huge risk with this plan?
“Yes, setting up a fake witness has risks and Robert could be punished for what he’s doing because he’s perverting the course of justice.”
That sneaking sense of anxiety looks set to intensify when Ryan arrives to tell Robert that he’s starting to have doubts about going through with the scheme. And when Robert tries to win him round by offering more cash, he’s spied by Aaron, who forces him to come clean about what’s going on.
Speaking about Robert’s actions in trying to aid Aaron, Hawley adds: “Robert wants what’s best for Aaron and he thinks that this is the best way to get Gordon to face justice. He wouldn’t be doing it if he thought it would destroy Aaron’s case.
“This is all about Robert being there for Aaron and supporting him, which I think is really nice. We’re definitely seeing a different side to Robert.”
And will Robert’s support eventually lead to a reconciliation with his one-time lover? “Well, Robert is facing the fact that he does love Aaron. He really wants to be with him. But I don’t think it’s at the forefront of Robert’s mind at the moment.
“It’s more about looking after someone who’s very damaged. Aaron’s had a horrible thing happen in his life and Robert wants to support him.”
But #Robron fans can certainly take heart from Hawley’s hopes that he and co-star Danny Miller continue to get plenty of scenes together. “You can ever be happy in a soap because it doesn’t leave much space for drama. There have to be ups and downs. But Danny Miller and I get along very well – we enjoy working together and we have chemistry, so I hope that there’s a long future for the relationship.”
You can watch a 60-second rundown of next week’s episodes of Emmerdale below.
And visit our dedicated Emmerdale page for all the latest news, interviews and spoilers.