BBC inquiry begins as sex abuse scandal grows

The probe begins a year to the day since the death of Savile, the eccentric presenter now considered one of the most prolific sex offenders in British history, with some 300 alleged victims coming forward in recent weeks.

It also starts the day after 1970s glam rocker Gary Glitter, a convicted paedophile, was questioned on suspicion of sexual offences, the first arrest in the widening police probe into the activities of Savile and others around him.

Janet Smith, a former Court of Appeal judge, is heading an independent review into the British Broadcasting Corporation's culture and practices during the decades that Savile worked for the national institution.

Her inquiry will also examine whether the BBC's child protection and whistle-blowing policies are fit for purpose.

The remit also includes "the extent to which BBC personnel were or ought to have been aware of unlawful and/or inappropriate conduct by Jimmy Savile on BBC premises or on location for the BBC".

Smith led the inquiry into notorious serial killer Harold Shipman, which reported in 2005 and established that the family doctor who was convicted of 15 murders probably committed 250, if not more.

Gathering evidence
She was to start gathering evidence from people who allege they were sexually abused on BBC premises and from those who say they raised concerns about Savile.

Savile died aged 84 at his parkside penthouse in his native Leeds, northern England.

The claims against Savile have plunged the BBC into crisis and destroyed the reputation of a man who, with his garish tracksuits and ever-present cigar, was one of the most famous faces on British television from the 1960s through the 1980s.

He claimed to have been the first club disc jockey and hosted the BBC's flagship music programme Top of the Pops.

Savile was also knighted by Queen Elizabeth II and pope John Paul II for single-handedly raising tens of millions of pounds for charity.

Ex-colleagues have said there were rumours about the bachelor throughout his lifetime, and seven alleged victims made complaints to the police while he was alive – though none led to his arrest.

Abuse allegations
However, an ITV documentary earlier this month – which took its cue from a dropped investigation by the BBC current affairs programme Newsnight that never made it to air, the subject of another independent probe – saw a handful of women make abuse allegations.

Dozens have come forward since, triggering a crisis at the BBC described as a "tsunami of filth" by former Hong Kong governor Chris Patten, who chairs the corporation's BBC Trust governing body.

Police are dealing with around 300 alleged victims and following more than 400 lines of inquiry.

Glitter (68) was the first person arrested under the operation. He was escorted from his plush central London home and spent the day being questioned by officers. He was bailed to return in mid-December.

The king of the glam rock era with a string of stomping hits, Glitter, whose real name is Paul Gadd, sold more than 20 million records and had a string of hits like I'm The Leader Of The Gang (I Am) and Rock and Roll (Parts 1 and 2).

He spent two months in jail in Britain after being caught with thousands of hardcore child pornography images on his computer in 1997.

Glitter left the country and was convicted in Vietnam in March 2006 of "obscene acts" with two girls aged 11 and 12. He served nearly three years in jail before being deported. – Sapa-AFP

Advertisting

‘Judge President Hlophe tried to influence allocation of judges to...

Deputy Judge President Patricia Goliath accuses Hlophe of attempting to influence her to allocate the case to judges he perceived as ‘favourably disposed’ to former president Jacob Zuma

SAA grounds flights due to low demand

SAA is working to accommodate customers on its sister airlines after it cancelled flights due to low demand

Isabel dos Santos did not loot Angola alone

Once again, Western auditing and consulting firms shamelessly facilitated corruption on an international scale

Lekwa municipality won’t answer questions about why children died in...

Three children are dead. More than a dozen homes have been gutted by fires in the past six months. And, as...
Advertising

Press Releases

Upskill yourself to land your dream job in 2020

If you received admission to an IIE Higher Certificate qualification, once you have graduated, you can articulate to an IIE Diploma and then IIE Bachelor's degree at IIE Rosebank College.

South Africans unsure of what to expect in 2020

Almost half (49%) of South Africans, 15 years and older, agree or strongly agree that they view 2020 with optimism.

KZN teacher educators jet off to Columbia University

A group of academics were selected as participants of the programme focused on PhD completion, mobility, supervision capacity development and the generation of high-impact research.

New-style star accretion bursts dazzle astronomers

Associate Professor James O Chibueze and Dr SP van den Heever are part of an international team of astronomers studying the G358-MM1 high-mass protostar.

2020 risk outlook: Use GRC to build resilience

GRC activities can be used profitably to develop an integrated risk picture and response, says ContinuitySA.

MTN voted best mobile network

An independent report found MTN to be the best mobile network in SA in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Is your tertiary institution is accredited?

Rosebank College is an educational brand of The Independent Institute of Education, which is registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training.

Is your tertiary institution accredited?

Rosebank College is an educational brand of The Independent Institute of Education, which is registered with the Department of Higher Education and Training.