Saturday 21 October 2017

Max Clifford trial: I organised good, honest filth for people, he says

Publicist Max Clifford, 70,
Publicist Max Clifford, 70,

Max Clifford was the "ringmaster" who organised a succession of "legendary sex parties", a jury heard today.

The PR consultant described the parties as "good honest filth" and said that women would beg him to let their sisters, aunts or mothers come along.

He said the role of ringmaster is one "I like to have in many aspects of my life" but insisted as he gave evidence at Southwark Crown Court in London that he did not need to "groom" people to take part in the parties.

"No-one was doing anything to anyone that they didn't want to do," he said. "Everyone was old enough to know what they were doing.

"Sometimes when you are a star it's difficult to have the same kind of fun as other people. I was involved in organising good honest filth but that doesn't mean I had to stand there and take part. I was with my partner, I was quite happy with that.

"Sometimes there was sex, sometimes there wasn't. To call them sex parties obviously sells."

Asked how he found the girls for the parties, which he said were occasionally attended by film, music and television producers, he told the jury: "They found me. They would ring up and they would say 'Can I come, can I bring my sister, can I bring my mother, can I bring my aunt?"'

He also said he went as a teenager to sex parties hosted by Diana Dors and told the court: "I thoroughly enjoyed them!" But he said he did not think he had sex at the parties, just "an awful lot of laughs".

Mr Clifford, 70, talked of the sex parties as he was questioned by Rosina Cottage QC, counsel for the prosecution, who accused him of manipulating women for his own sexual ends. She said he "groomed" them by promising them film roles for sex.

He denied the suggestions and hit back: "As I did not know them it is difficult to say I groomed them. I didn't have to groom people."

Mr Clifford, who denies 11 counts of indecent assault against seven girls and women, branded his accusers as "fantasists and opportunists".

Asked to explain why a group of women from different areas, and of different ages and backgrounds, would have made claims about him allegedly assaulting them, he replied: "I don't know, because I don't know them.

"I know that what they are saying is untrue. I can only think it's because of an opportunity for compensation, an opportunity to make something out of this in the current climate.

"Possibly they are just fantasists, possibly because they don't like me, they see an opportunity - they would be the reasons. I know that what they are saying is totally untrue. It's pure speculation for me or anyone else as to why they are doing it. I know it's not true.

"I am not aware of anything that links them together apart from them telling a pack of lies."

Mr Clifford denies all charges against him. The trial was adjourned until Monday.

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