Tuesday 27 January 2015

Max Clifford let out of jail for funeral

Published 18/08/2014 | 17:19

Max Clifford (centre, sunglasses) attends his brother Bernard's funeral on day release from prison, at the North East Surrey Crematorium. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday August 18, 2014. See PA story FUNERAL Clifford. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire
Max Clifford (centre, sunglasses) attends his brother Bernard's funeral on day release from prison, at the North East Surrey Crematorium Credit: John Stillwell/PA Wire

Max Clifford has been allowed out of prison to attend his brother's funeral in south-west London.

Clifford, 71, was at North East Surrey Crematorium, where his brother Bernard's funeral took place.

The disgraced PR guru wore a navy suit, pink shirt and sunglasses, and arrived and was taken away in a prison van.

Clifford was jailed for eight years after being convicted of a string of indecent assaults, carried out between 1977 and 1984, using his celebrity connections to lure women.

The Ministry of Justice said it does not comment on individuals, but a spokeswoman said prisoners need to apply to attend a funeral and the prison assesses risk to the public and also looks at the prisoner's relationship to the dead person.

If permission is granted, the prisoner is normally escorted to the funeral by staff.

Passing sentence at Southwark Crown Court in May, Judge Anthony Leonard told Clifford his personality and position in the public eye were the reasons his crimes were not revealed earlier.

The judge said that due to the historic nature of the offences, Clifford was charged under an act from 1956, which set the maximum term for each charge at two years.

Under later legislation passed in 2003, the maximum term would have been 10 years, and for the worst instances would have been charged as rape or assault by penetration, which attract a maximum life term.

The former celebrity agent, who branded his accusers "fantasists", remained defiant ahead of his sentencing, saying: "I stand by everything I have said in the last 17 months."

Clifford has lodged an appeal against his sentence.

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