Friday 24 February 2017

'It's a Knockout' star Hall (82) charged with child abuse

Steven Swinford and Sam Marsden

Stuart Hall, the former 'It's A Knockout' presenter, has been charged with sexually assaulting three girls in the 1970s and 1980s.

Hall (82) allegedly abused an eight-year-old girl in 1983, and assaulted a 13-year-old girl the following year. He has also been charged with assaulting a 16-year-old girl in 1974.

Hall, pictured, who has been married to wife Hazel for 54 years and has two children, was given an OBE in 2012 for services to broadcasting and charity.

Police arrested Mr Hall yesterday and conducted searches of his £1.5m home in Wilmslow, Cheshire.

John Dilworth, head of the Crown Prosecution Service's complex casework unit, said: "I have concluded that there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that it is in the public interest to prosecute this case."

Mr Hall, has enjoyed a broadcasting career stretching back 50 years. He presented 'It's A Knockout', the gameshow, and was the original host of a 'Question of Sport'. He is still a regular contributor to BBC Radio 5 Live and is renowned for his effusive football commentaries.

A BBC spokesman said: "In light of the serious nature of these charges Stuart Hall will not be working at the BBC while the police continue enquiries."

BBC sources later said the commentator's "working relationship is on a case-by-case basis" and he is a "contributor" rather than an employee and in only paid for his appearances.

At the time of receiving his OBE he said: "I'm overjoyed. It's a great surprise, totally unexpected. I'm grateful. I've always regarded myself as a second-rate provincial hack. Well, that was yesterday. Now I've got the OBE I'm still a provincial second-rate hack, but I'm a good one. (© Daily Telegraph London)

Irish Independent

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