Clarke innocent of sex abuse, say police

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The Independent Online
ARTHUR C CLARKE yesterday shrugged off child abuse allegations after a senior Sri Lankan police officer said there was no evidence that he was a paedophile.

The 80-year-old science fiction writer said he had never been worried by the claims, which erupted the day before he was due to receive an honourary knighthood from Prince Charles.

He said from his home in the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo: "Quite frankly I have never been worried about it. I was annoyed, but not worried."

Earlier today Sri Lanka's most senior detective, Deputy Inspector General of Police M S M Nizam said: "We have recorded every statement that Dr Clarke made, and we are satisfied that he has not violated any Sri Lankan laws or committed any crime."

Sir Arthur had dismissed claims that he paid for sex with boys which were made in the Sunday Mirror on 1 February.

But he postponed his investiture ceremony - due to take place during Prince Charles' trip to Sri Lanka - to avoid embarrassing the Royal visitor.

The writer, who retains his knighthood although the investiture ceremony was called off, was born in Britain but has lived in Sri Lanka since 1956.

He is the author of the science fiction classic 2001: A Space Odyssey, and 80 other books.