UK & World News

  • 3 May 2014, 17:59

Max Clifford: New Claims Under Police Review

Scotland Yard detectives are looking into new allegations against disgraced publicist Max Clifford, who has spent his first night in prison after being jailed for eight years.

A spokesman for Scotland Yard said other people had since come forward with allegations since Clifford was sentenced yesterday for a string of sex sexual offences against four women aged 15 to 19.

"We have received further information and this is currently subject to review," he said.

Meanwhile, children's charity NSPCC helpline said the 71-year-old's "substantial sentence" sent a "clear message" that victims of historic abuse can achieve justice.

Its director Peter Watt said: "It's clear the judge has recognised the pain and suffering Clifford caused and the additional distress he put his victims through by forcing them to relive their ordeal in court.

"His victims showed an enormous amount of courage in coming forward, four through the NSPCC helpline, and were treated with contempt throughout by Clifford, who called them liars and fantasists in court.

"As we heard in the trial, Clifford seriously damaged many years of their lives, with some being left suicidal by their terrible experiences at his hands."

He added: "The sentence, and those of other recent cases up and down the country, sends a clear message that victims of non-recent abuse can get justice.

"All allegations, however long after the abuse took place, must be fully investigated and assessed by the police and CPS, with victims fully supported."

Passing sentence, Judge Anthony Leonard told Clifford: "The reason why (your crimes) were not brought to light sooner was because of your dominant character.

"Your victims thought you were untouchable, something I think you too believed."

He also blasted Clifford for causing an "additional element of trauma" to the women he abused by his "contemptuous attitude".

Judge Leonard said that due to the age of the offences, that occurred between 1977 and 1984, Clifford was charged under an act from 1956, which set the maximum term for each charge at two years.

Under later legislation passed in 2003, the maximum term would have been 10 years, and for the worst instances would have been charged as rape, which attract a maximum life term.

Clifford, who was taken to Wandsworth Prison in south London, will have to serve at least half his sentence.

The former celebrity agent repeatedly shook his head as the judge made his comments in Southwark Crown Court.

Clifford, who branded his accusers "fantasists", remained defiant ahead of his sentencing, saying: "I stand by everything I have said in the last 17 months."

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