Max Clifford guilty: Simon Cowell is first high profile client to disassociate himself from publicist after he is ‘horrified’ at teenage sexual assault verdict

Simon Cowell has reportedly washed his hands of his PR advisor Max Clifford, after the publicist was found guilty of eight counts of sexual assault on women as young as 15.

Clifford has represented Cowell for over a decade as his spokesperson, and is one of the key figures behind shaping the music mogul’s ‘cruel to be kind’ public image.

However, the pair are thought to have finally parted company following Clifford’s guilty verdict, which was delivered at Southwark Crown Court yesterday.

A source close to Cowell has allegedly since told The Sun that the X Factor boss was “horrified” by the revelations made during Clifford’s three-week sexual assault trial, and has decided to distance himself from the former PR man.

A Syco spokesperson for Cowell, who first hired Clifford in 2001 when he became a judge on Pop Idol, has since confirmed that he is no longer working with the publicist.

 

However, Clifford’s company website, Max Clifford Associates, are still using a bannered image of Cowell to advertise its services.

“Clifford's unique combination of protection and publicity helped cement [Cowell's] place as one of the world's most successful music/TV moguls in the world,” reads the slogan.

It also prominently features a photograph of Clifford with Olympic cyclist Sir Chris Hoy, who is now listed as a past client.

Yesterday, it was reported that Clifford, who talked up his charitable work during his trial, was no longer the patron of two organisations – Shooting Star Chase children’s hospices and Woking and Sam Beare Hopices.  Both hospices have since confirmed the news.

The Only Way Is Essex star Lauren Goodger, one of few still listed among Max Clifford Associates’ ‘Current Clients’ list, has since also removed the mention of the company website from her social media profiles.

Dragon’s Den judge and business mogul Theo Paphitis is yet to make his relationship with Max Clifford Associates clear: his lingerie company, Boux Avenue, has long been represented by the firm. As are the Chinese Three Tenors, model Lilah Parsons and entrepreneur David Fishwick, a self-made multi-millionaire.

Of course, the irony of one of the world’s most renowned spokespeople, who for years was relied upon to cover up the sexual indiscretions of his clients, failing to mask his own is not lost: truly the worst publicity any recognisable figure can afford is to be associated with a convicted sex offender.

"I've been telling lies on behalf of people, businessmen, politicians and countries for 40 years,” he told a wide-eyed audience at a PR Week debate in 2007.

"It shouldn't be necessary, but it is. I'd rather be honest, but I cannot be all the time. The only mantra I work to is that your duty is to your client.

"I lie on behalf of a cross-dressing MP, a prominent businessman who is having an affair with a man, and a gay footballer. Always the aim is to keep their identity out of the press.

"I'm proud I've been able to do it. There's only been one footballer who was revealed to be gay, and he hanged himself. I know the ruin that will befall these people if news gets out. Here, the truth is destructive - I lie because there is no choice."

The odds would certainly suggest we could be set to see more famous faces rushing to disassociate themselves from the man they once trusted to lie for them as his sentence is delivered on Friday.

Read More: Max Clifford - The Man Who Couldn't Escape His Dirty Secrets
Grace Dent - Clifford Ended In The Centre Of Story He Had No Control Over
Why Size Mattered So Much In Max Clifford's Trial For Sexual Assault
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

Finance Manager - Recruitment Business (Media & Entertainment)

£28000 - £32000 per annum + negotiable: Sauce Recruitment: We have an exciting...

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

Day In a Page

Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album
Hugh Bonneville & Peter James: 'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'

How We Met: Hugh Bonneville & Peter James

'Peter loves his classic cars; I've always pootled along fine with a Mini Metro. I think I lack his panache'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's heavenly crab dishes don't need hours of preparation

Bill Granger's heavenly crab recipes

Scared off by the strain of shelling a crab? Let a fishmonger do the hard work so you can focus on getting the flavours right
Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

Radamel Falcao: How faith and love drive the Colombian to glory

After a remarkable conversion from reckless defender to prolific striker, Monaco's ace says he wants to make his loan deal at Old Trafford permanent
Terry Venables: Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England

Terry Venables column

Premier League managers must not be allowed to dictate who plays and who does not play for England
The Inside Word: Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past

Michael Calvin's Inside Word

Brendan Rodgers looks to the future while Roy Hodgson is ghost of seasons past