UK & World News

  • 5 October 2012, 15:25

Savile: Street-Porter Heard Sex Abuse Claim

Janet Street-Porter says she was aware of rumours about Sir Jimmy Savile's alleged abuse of underage girls when she worked at the BBC during the late 1980s.

The broadcaster and journalist said there was a culture of inappropriate behaviour in the entertainment industry.

She claimed that, even if she had raised allegations about the Jim'll Fix It presenter with the BBC, nothing would have been done.

Speaking on BBC's Question Time, she said: "A lot of people in the BBC knew what was going on.

"I heard the rumours but I was working in an environment that was totally male.

"Do you really think that if I said to someone at the BBC higher up than me this was going on - they wouldn't have taken any notice of me whatsoever."

Ms Street-Porter, who started working in commercial television as a presenter in 1975, said she had been aware of "things going on in dressing rooms" across the industry.

"There was definitely a culture where there was inappropriate sexual behaviour, not necessarily with underage boys and girls, but there was a culture in light entertainment that made me feel uncomfortable," she added.

A growing number of people have come forward to allege that Sir Jimmy sexually assaulted them.

It follows a documentary in which five women claimed they had been abused by the late Top of the Pops host when they were schoolgirls in the late 1960s and 1970s - some while on BBC premises.

Police have not launched a formal investigation, although the Metropolitan Police is assessing the claims.

"Our priority will be to ensure a proportionate and consistent policing response, putting the victims at the heart of our inquiries," the force said in a statement.

"It is too early to say how many individual allegations there are, and we will be making contact with all those concerned in due course."

The BBC said it will assist police with any investigation.

A spokesman said: "We have asked the BBC investigations unit to make direct contact with all the police forces in receipt of allegations and offer to help them investigate these matters and provide full support to any lines of inquiry they wish to pursue."

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