Rolf Harris arrested by Jimmy Savile police

It has been claimed that the number of people abused by Jimmy Savile could be doubled or even trebled.  Picture: Getty
It has been claimed that the number of people abused by Jimmy Savile could be doubled or even trebled. Picture: Getty
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Rolf Harris was today named as the veteran entertainer who was arrested by police investigating allegations of sexual abuse following the Jimmy Savile scandal.

The news comes as it was revealed that Savile could have sexually abused treble the number of victims who have come forward so far, according to the former head of the investigation into his crimes.

Harris, 83, was originally interviewed by detectives from Scotland Yard’s Operation Yewtree in November and was then arrested over the allegations on March 28.

Until today, the TV personality, who performed for the Queen at her Diamond Jubilee concert last year, had only been named online.

However The Sun named him today and other news outlets followed.

Operation Yewtree, which is looking into allegations of sex crimes against the former DJ and presenter and a host of other celebrities, has recorded 450 complaints against him.

Victims

But The Sun reported that ex-Metropolitan Police Commissioner Peter Spindler, who led Yewtree until earlier this year, told an NSPCC conference that as well as those who came forward there were “probably double, treble that who haven’t”.

He then told the paper: “My best guess is that there are many other victims who won’t have come forward because they don’t want to talk about it.

“They’ve dealt with it, they’ve put it in the past.

“So even with the 450 that have come forward there must be many more. That’s not just true for Savile, it’s true for other offenders as well.”

A report released earlier this year revealed the disgraced TV presenter was one of the UK’s “most prolific known sexual predators” and said his victims included an eight-year-old boy and a seriously ill teenager.

The report by Scotland Yard and the NSPCC, released in January, found that Savile’s reign of sexual abuse spanned 54 years.

Since the initial claims emerged in early October last year the former Top Of The Pops host, who died in 2011 at the age of 84, has had 214 criminal offences recorded against his name, including 34 rapes,

Mr Spindler stepped down from Operation Yewtree earlier this month to become an Assistant Inspector of Constabulary.

Dangerous

Other have previously said the number of possible Savile victims could be much higher.

Mark Williams-Thomas, who presented the original ITV documentary which first exposed the Jim’ll Fix It star as a dangerous sexual predator, said he could have targeted hundreds more victims in his near six decades of abuse.

In January he said: “The first offence was in 1955 and the last in 2009, that’s almost 60 years of offending. There could be at least double the number of potential victims, it’s a mere drop in the ocean.”