Disgraced television presenter Jimmy Savile carried out an “unprecedented” campaign of sexual abuse across Britain with up to 450 victims.
These included 34 who claim to have been raped, an official report revealed today. Peter Spindler, the officer in charge of the investigation, said Savile had “groomed the nation”.
Since the paedophile DJ died in October 2011 aged 84, a staggering 214 official crimes have been recorded by 28 police forces.
Today’s report into his abuse states Savile targeted victims as young as eight and sexually assaulted at least 23 on BBC premises, as well as in 14 hospitals, prisons and at least one hospice between 1955 and 2009.
Compiled by Scotland Yard and the NSPCC, today’s report, called Giving Victims a Voice, claims Savile could have been prosecuted for sex offences while he was still alive if police and prosecutors had taken victims more seriously.
It reveals the paedophile was “hiding in plain sight and using his celebrity status” to carry out the “unprecedented” level of abuse but states “he had committed sex crimes before he became famous”.
The report branded him one of Britain’s worst “predatory sex offenders”.
Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer said: “I would like to take the opportunity to apologise for the shortcomings in the part played by the CPS in these cases. If this report and my apology are to serve their full purpose, then this must be seen as a watershed moment.”
The earliest reported offence committed by Savile was in Manchester in 1955, and the final reported allegation was in 2009.
The peak of his predatory attacks was between 1966 and 1976, and 73 per cent of his victims were children.