The Straits Times
Published on Oct 08, 2012

Britain's BBC apologises over sex abuse scandal


LONDON (REUTERS) - Britain's BBC on Monday apologised to a group of women who allege that one of the state-funded broadcaster's top entertainers sexually abused them decades ago, a scandal that has raised questions about the BBC's judgment then and now.

The man accused of using his status as a celebrity and prominent charity fund raiser to commit the crimes is Jimmy Savile, an eccentric BBC presenter who died last year aged 84.

Instantly recognisable for his shock of blonde hair, Mr Savile was famous for his larger-than-life personality and for his love of smoking cigars, donning tracksuits and coming out with catch phrases that sometimes became part of the national lexicon.

The former DJ travelled around London in a Rolls-Royce and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth for his charitable work in 1990.