The late star, who died in 2011 aged 84, targeted girls and boys as young as eight years old in a catalogue of abuse spanning 54 years. Some of the incidents took place at BBC Television Centre and others occurred in hospitals and prisons while Savile was carrying out charity work.
A probe into the entertainer’s activities was launched last year (12) after several women came forward to allege he had abused them, and the official report by police and officials at Britain’s National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) was released on Friday (11Jan13).
It concluded the DJ and presenter of hit music show Top of the Pops had abused 450 victims, including at least 30 children, between 1955 and 2009. His youngest victim was an eight-year-old boy and the oldest was 47. More than 70 per cent of his victims were children, with the primary age range being 13 to 16.
The report added that Savile had used his high-profile celebrity status to mask his crimes and “hide in plain sight”.
A spokesman for London’s Metropolitan Police, which spearheaded the probe, says, “It paints a stark picture emphasising the tragic consequences of when vulnerability and power collide. Savile’s offending footprint was vast, predatory and opportunistic. He cannot face justice today but we hope this report gives some comfort to his hundreds of victims, they have been listened to and taken seriously.”
An NSPCC spokesman adds, “(Savile was) without doubt one of the most prolific sex offenders we have ever come across.”
Savile was a much-loved figure in his native U.K. and was knighted in 1990 for his tireless charity work, but following his death came the revelations he was a paedophile. A memorial plaque on the wall of his former home has since been defaced with graffiti and Savile’s family has vowed to remove the headstone of his grave and have it destroyed.