UK & World News
Rolf Harris: Jury Sworn In Ahead Of Trial
Twelve jurors have been sworn in ahead of the trial of Rolf Harris on a string of indecent assault charges.
Harris, 84, was in court for the procedure and was accompanied by his wife of 55 years Alwen Hughes, daughter Bindi, with whom he arrived holding hands, and other family and friends.
Trial judge Mr Justice Sweeney told the jurors the long-standing show business star faced charges dating from between 1968 to 1986 with some evidence from events in Australia and New Zealand.
Harris is accused of 12 counts of indecent assault on four girls, the youngest of whom was seven or eight and the oldest 19. He has already pleaded not guilty at an earlier hearing.
Seven of the charges are related to one girl aged between 12 and 19 years old and took place between 1978 to 1985.
Three regard a 14-year-old girl and are said to have taken place in 1986, while the other two are single charges concerning a girl aged seven or eight years old, who claims to have been assaulted between 1968 to 1970.
The other single charge is also on a then 14-year-old girl, who the prosecution say was targeted between 1975 and 1976.
Harris, famous for his songs, cartoons and TV shows, stood as the charges against him were listed.
He was dressed in a grey pinstriped suit, striped shirt and red tie with a black design.
Mr Justice Sweeney warned the jury of six men and six women not to research anything about the case or discuss it on any forms of social media, reminding them of a previous case where a juror had been jailed for doing so.
Before discharging them until Friday, when the case is due to begin, he said: "You know very little about the case but you will know a great deal more of what the allegations are tomorrow morning."
Afterwards Harris left in a silver people carrier surrounded by security staff.
The case at Southwark Crown Court is expected to last until the end of June.
Harris, who was born in Perth, Australia, has lived in the Berkshire village of Bray for more than 50 years and his trial has attracted huge interest not only in this country but also his country of birth.
Also famous as an artist, Harris painted a portrait of the Queen in 2005 and hosted her Diamond Jubilee concert in front of Buckingham Palace two years ago.
His first hit was Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport in 1960 and his 40-year music career included the UK number one Two Little Boys.
His lengthy career has seen him receive a number of honours including Officer of the Order of Australia in the Queen's Birthday Honours of 2012. He also has an MBE awarded in 1968, advanced to an OBE in 1977 and then further to a CBE eight years ago.