Starr released in Savile inquiry


Comedian Freddie Starr has been released on police bail after being questioned by detectives investigating allegations of sexual abuse surrounding Jimmy Savile.

A man named by sources as Starr (69), was arrested in Warwickshire yesterday on suspicion of sexual offences by officers working on Operation Yewtree before being released during the early hours of this morning.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “Officers working on Operation Yewtree yesterday arrested a man in his 60s in connection with the investigation.

“The man, from Warwickshire, was arrested at approximately 5.45pm on suspicion of sexual offences, and was taken into custody. He has since been bailed.”

A force spokesman said the suspect was released on bail between 1am and 1.30am this morning. The date when he must represent himself to officers is yet to be released by Scotland Yard.

The police spokesman said the arrest falls under the strand of the investigation termed 'Savile and others'.

Starr been publicly implicated in the Savile scandal over the past month but has strongly denied the accusations.

Last month he branded Savile “despicable” and “disgusting”, and urged police to interview him so he could clear his name.

His arrest follows that of Gary Glitter on Sunday by officers working on Operation Yewtree.

The former pop star was questioned at a central London police station after being detained at his home in the capital.

Glitter, whose real name is Paul Gadd, was photographed leaving Charing Cross police station later that day but Scotland Yard did not comment on his release.

Savile, who died last year at the age of 84, is now believed to have been one of the UK’s most prolific abusers, with about 300 possible victims.

Scotland Yard is leading a national investigation into the television and radio star’s activities.

Detectives are following 400 lines of inquiry while the BBC has launched an inquiry into the culture and practices at the corporation in the era of Savile’s alleged sexual abuse.

It is also looking at the decision-making process which saw a Newsnight investigation into Savile’s activities shelved. The review, led by Nick Pollard, former head of Sky News, will report back on its findings later this month.

Savile’s estate, reportedly worth £4.3 million, has been frozen in response to the mounting allegations.

NatWest Bank, which is acting as the Jim’ll Fix It presenter’s will executor and trustee, yesterday revealed the distribution of his assets had been put on hold in anticipation of legal action from his alleged victims.

Savile’s will was written in 2006 and bequeaths his savings and other assets to 26 separate beneficiaries, according to the Financial Times (FT).

The newspaper said it had obtained a copy of the document, which instructs that £20,000 in cash was to be shared between 20 of the celebrity’s friends, family and neighbours. It says a further £600,000 was to be put into a trust fund, with the interest shared between eight people.

The remainder - just under £3.7 million before expenses - was to be held by NatWest on behalf of the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust, according to the FT.

Savile’s intended individual beneficiaries include the trustees of both his charities and existing and former employees of Leeds General Infirmary and Broadmoor Hospital, the newspaper added.

Savile’s relatives said they do not want a penny of his estate and called for the cash to be donated to an organisation to tackle sex crimes.

The late presenter’s nephew, Guy Marsden, 58, said his uncle was “a monster” and it was only right that the money should be given to a police-run anti-paedophile unit, and Savile’s victims.

Savile’s victims are to sue the star’s estate to get answers and compensation, and to “move on with their lives”, a lawyer said yesterday.

Liz Dux, who is representing more than 20 people who claim to have been sexually assaulted, said some had not been able to form adult relationships since the attacks.

She said: “Their main objective is to get answers as to why their previous complaints weren’t listened to, to get some sort of compensation and to move on with their lives.”

A solicitor representing alleged victims of Savile said lawyers are also looking into the late presenter’s overseas assets, thought to be administered from tax haven the Channel Islands.