Monday 16 September 2019

Max Clifford kept bin bag full of sex photos, ex-wife reveals

The celebrity publicist, who was jailed earlier this year, told his wife: "I just used to be able to get women to do whatever I wanted"

Bill Gardner and Nicola Harley

Max Clifford kept a bin bag full of sexually explicit photographs of women at his home, his ex-wife has revealed.

The celebrity publicist, who was jailed earlier this year for abusing teenage girls, kept mementos of dozens of women he encountered during his career.

When challenged over his hoard, he told his wife: “I just used to be able to get women to do whatever I wanted.”

Speaking for the first time to ITV’s This Morning, Jo Westwood, 51, said Clifford was“proud to have” the bin bag full of photos.

She said: “I felt very uncomfortable about it. It was a bag full of photographs of women.

“I made it very clear to him that I didn’t like them being in the house and he put them somewhere, I don’t know where.

“Some of them had faces but a lot of them didn’t… and they were sexual. And when I said to him, “How did you get all these?”, he would say, “I just used to be able to get women to do whatever I wanted”.

Miss Westwood, who divorced Clifford 18 days after his conviction, said she discovered a letter from one of Clifford’s victims, which later triggered his downfall.

In the letter, the victim said it had taken her 35 years to write to him and asked the publicist if he was proud of abusing her for four months when she was 15, nearly driving her to suicide.

She recalled: "He came home from work one day and said that he’d received this letter. He showed me the letter and I was horrified. I said, “Well, I think you should go to the police”, and he said, “No I’m not going to the police”.

"I said, “What are you going to do?”, and he said, “Tear it up and put it in the bin where it belongs”.

"I thought that’s what he’d done with it and then a little while later when I was going through the drawers I found the letter and I felt so uncomfortable about it I took a copy, because at that time I was going to leave him anyway, and this was just more evidence of some of the things I was having to put up with.

"I just feel desperately sorry for this person."

Clifford was jailed in May on eight counts of indecent assault between 1977 and 1984.

His ex-wife said she was shocked by the sentence, which was upheld by appeal judges last week, adding: “It was a shock. But I expected him to call me because I think he knew I would be left in this media circus, but he didn’t and that was hard.”

Last week Clifford lost a challenge to reduce his eight-year jail sentence.

A decision to uphold the 71-year-old's sentence, which had been described by his barrister as "too long", was announced by three judges at the Court of Appeal in London.

She added: "I would love him to tell me why."

His former wife revealed how she had caught him making a sexual phone call to another woman while they were on their honeymoon in 2010 and said during their marriage he would accuse her of being "insanely jealous" and claim she was "mad".

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