A PROMINENT Australian entertainer based in the UK has been arrested by police investigating the Jimmy Savile paedophilia scandal under suspicion of sexual offences.
The 82-year-old performer was arrested by detectives as a part of Operation Yewtree, which was formed in response to the revelations that late British television personality Jimmy Savile had sexually abused and assaulted as many as 400 victims over a period of fifty years. The Australian entertainer is the eleventh person arrested as a part of the ongoing police inquiry, joining fellow entertainers Gary Glitter and Jim Davidson as targets of the operation.
It is understood that the Australian entertainer arrested by Operation Yewtree has been accused of offences that are not directly related to the allegations against Savile. The allegations are the result of unrelated allegations that have come to light as a by-product of the overall investigation into sexual abuse in the British entertainment industry.
It is believed that the person arrested this week, a Berkshire resident, was interviewed under caution by police and had his home searched by detectives from Operation Yewtree last November. He was released without any charges being laid, with social media reporting that he may have been questioned as a witness rather than as a suspect.
Operation Yewtree formally concluded its primary investigation in December, with officers stating that a total of 589 alleged victims had come forward over the course of the inquiry with 450 claiming to have been abused by Savile himself. The operation had followed three separate investigatory paths: victims of Savile, victims of Savile associates and victims of ‘other’ individuals identified by the taskforce.
The report published by Operation Yewtree in January, Giving Victims A Voice, stated that over 70% of Savile’s victims were under the age of 18 with police recording allegations against the entertainer between 1955 and 2009. It alleged that Savile used his popular BBC television programme Jim’ll Fix It to gain access to victims and used his status as a beloved celebrity as a way of avoiding public scrutiny of his actions.
The unnamed Australian entertainer arrested in conjunction with the Savile sex probe has been released on bail and is expected to appear in court in May, pending further investigations into his conduct by officers from Operation Yewtree.