UK's Jimmy Savile child sex scandal linked to an Australian music legend
Charles Miranda, Janet Fife-Yeomans and Yoni Bashan
The Daily Telegraph
December 01, 2012 12:00AM
AN Australian entertainer (My Guess is it is Rolf Harris) has been interviewed by Scotland Yard detectives in relation to one of the biggest sex scandals to rock the UK, a prominent child protection expert claimed last night.
In Sydney, the entertainer's brother said he was not aware of the events unfolding in London.
"I haven't spoken to him, he's just come back from America," the brother told The Daily Telegraph.
"I know what (he) did as an entertainer - he didn't have anything to do with Jimmy Savile.
"He'd been involved with the BBC so maybe they're talking to him about the fuss with Savile. That could be it."
Another director of the entertainer's company said at his city centre office that he knew nothing about the matter.
Operation Yewtree was established in the wake of revelations British entertainer Savile sexually abused and assaulted more than 400 people, mostly children, over five decades, in hospitals, schools and BBC's London studios.
There are two strands to Yewtree, one directly related to Savile's acts and the other, simply called "others", related to sexual offences that had come to light during the overall investigation but not directly related to Savile.
The latest man fell into the latter.
News of the man's questioning came in a statement from Scotland Yard, released soon after he left Lewisham Police Station in London's south at 5pm where he had attended "by appointment" and was "interviewed under caution", meaning he was read his rights before he spoke with police.
He has not been arrested or charged. Police searched his home in Berkshire in southeast England last Saturday when they arranged for him to formally be spoken to.
"A man in his 80s, from Berkshire, was interviewed under caution on suspicion of sexual offences after attending south London police premises by appointment at midday today," police said.
"We are not prepared to discuss (the matter) further."
The entertainer could not be contacted last night, nor could his London agent.
Australian entertainer linked to Jimmy Savile child sex scandal left 'almost suicidal'
CHARLES MIRANDA in London
The Daily Telegraph
December 02, 2012 12:00AM
FRIENDS of the Aussie entertainer interviewed by police on suspicion of sexual misconduct have accused detectives of indiscriminately rounding up suspects and tainting their names.
The Australian celebrity aged in his 80s was nowhere to be seen at his property yesterday; his partner of many years was at home with other relatives including a man believed to be his son-in-law but both declined to comment.
But friends have said he has been left “almost suicidal” by the claims of being guilty by association with now deceased British celebrity Jimmy Savile who allegedly sexually abused at least 450 people mostly children over a five decade period.
A friend told the British press the Australian entertainer and children’s TV presenter, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had done nothing wrong.
“Quite frankly I think police should be ashamed of what they are doing,” the friend who has known the Australian for 50 years has said.
“He wouldn’t do anything like this. We’ve spent hours on the river together and in each other’s homes and we often confide in each other. Is everyone who has ever worked with that man Savile going to be hauled in? He is being tainted with guilt by association.”
The friend said it was a shocking slur.
Giant TV broadcast vans with roof-top satellite dishes and a number of Fleet Street photographers have clogged the small laneway outside the star’s home. The attention prompted a number of police to patrol the laneway a number of times during the day. Many media remain in their cars with heaters on prompting locals to complain about the constant car engine drones.
Metropolitan Police yesterday announced the man aged in his 80s had been formally interviewed under caution by detectives from Operation Yewtree which was set up to probe allegations British entertainer and national icon Jimmy Savile assaulted more than 450 people over a five decade period.
Savile died last year before revelations emerged he abused children aged as young as nine years mostly at BBC but since the revelation first emerged four other celebrities had been arrested and charged including the notorious former pop star Gary Glitter and comedian Freddie Starr. Both have denied the charges.
The Australian entertainer is the fifth man to be spoken to but unlike the others has not arrested.
Yewtree is divided into two branches; one looking specifically at Savile’s sexual crimes and the second one simply dubbed “others” looking into suspicion of sexual misconduct that had come to light during the Savile inquiries.
In some instances the latter has involved multiple claims of groping by BBC employees and personalities of mostly young women and girls brought to the dress rooms backstage for private meetings with their celebrity heroes. The majority of the alleged offences took place in the 1960s and ‘70s.
Police were remaining tight-lipped about what detectives called suspicions of sexual misconduct made against the Aussie but confirmed he fell into the second “other” grouping. He was read his rights before he was questioned by police. His house was searched by police last weekend although it is not known what items were seized if any.
The story first broke on Twitter by a person believed to be a well-known former police officer turned criminologist.