Thursday 22 February 2018

Max Clifford found guilty of eight counts of indecent assault

Celebrity publicist Max Clifford has been found guilty of eight counts of indecent assault, cleared of two and the jury was unable to reach a verdict on one other.

The 71-year-old became the first person to be convicted under the high profile Operation Yewtree sex crime investigation at Southwark Crown Court today.

He was found guilty of eight indecent assaults, cleared of two and the jury was unable to reach a verdict on one other.

Clifford repeatedly denied the claims, calling his arrest and prosecution "a nightmare" and protesting his innocence.

He was arrested by detectives from Operation Yewtree in December 2012, and charged in April the following year.

The investigation, Scotland Yard's inquiry into historic allegations of sexual offences, was prompted after claims were made against the late DJ Jimmy Savile.

The verdicts were taken in a hushed but packed courtroom, given by the forewoman of the jury on its eighth day of deliberations.

Clifford sat still in the dock as the jury forewoman returned the verdicts.

He could be seen breathing deeply as he listened through a hearing loop.

He walked out of the courtroom with friends and supporters in complete silence, one of them patting him on the shoulder as he walked.

Clifford was released on bail until his sentencing on Friday, but Judge Anthony Leonard QC warned him this is no reflection on the sentence that will be passed.

He said: "You must realise that the fact I have given you bail is no indication of what the final sentence will be."

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