PR guru Max Clifford charged with indecent assault

Publicist (70) to appear in court in May after denying offences against teenaged girls

Publicist Max Clifford makes a statement to media after being arrested by Operation Yewtree officers on December 6th, 2012 in London. Photograph: Warrick Page/Getty Images

Publicist Max Clifford makes a statement to media after being arrested by Operation Yewtree officers on December 6th, 2012 in London. Photograph: Warrick Page/Getty Images

Fri, Apr 26, 2013, 18:54

PR guru Max Clifford has been charged with 11 counts of indecent assault against teenage girls, Scotland Yard said tonight.

The force said Mr Clifford, who answered police bail today, faces charges linked to girls aged between 14 and 19 between 1966 and 1985.

Mr Clifford (70), who was arrested in December as part of the inquiry sparked by abuse allegations against Jimmy Savile, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on May 28th.

Announcing the decision to charge, chief crown prosecutor for CPS London Alison Saunders said there was “ sufficient evidence” against Mr Clifford.

The alleged offences are said to have been committed against girls ranging in age from 14 in a case dating back to 1966 to 19 years of age, the CPS said tonight.

Mr Clifford, who has publicly denied any inappropriate behaviour, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on May 28th.

The CPS said there was insufficient evidence to charge him with three other allegations.

“May I remind all concerned that Mr Clifford has a right to a fair trial,” said Ms Saunders.

“It is very important that nothing is said, or reported, which could prejudice that trial. For these reasons it would be inappropriate for me to comment further.”

In a statement, Mr Clifford said the allegations were “completely false” and he hadmade this clear to the police “during many, many hours of interviews”.

“Nevertheless a decision has been taken to charge me with 11 offences involving seven women, the most recent of which is 28 years ago and the oldest 47 years ago.

“I have never indecently assaulted anyone in my life and this will become clear during the course of the proceedings.

“I am naturally disappointed about today’s decision, particularly because of the distress it has caused my wife, Jo, my daughter, Louise, and all those close to me,” Mr Clifford said.

“However, at least I will now be in a position to fully consider all the evidence against me and to answer the evidence in public and ultimately clear my name in a court of law.

“Since last December I have been living a 24/7 nightmare. A black cloud has been placed over me, obliterating the bright blue skies that I have been fortunate to live my life under for the vast majority of the past 70 years.

“Fortunately I have and continue to receive wonderful support and understanding from those who knew me, those who know me, as well as people I meet everywhere I go.

“This has made this nightmare so much easier to cope with and I am extremely grateful for this as you can imagine.”

Additional reporting: PA