Rolf Harris stripped of Australian honours months after child sex offences conviction

The disgraced entertainer still holds a British CBE despite petition to remove it

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Rolf Harris has been stripped of honours in Australia almost eight months after being jailed for a string of historical sex offences against girls.

The disgraced 84-year-old entertainer is serving a sentence of five years and nine months for assaulting victims including a friend of his daughter and an eight-year-old fan who wanted his autograph.

He is still reported to be earning up to £1,300 every day from his prison cell thanks to shrewd investments during his career.

Harris has now lost his Officer and Member of the Order of Australia honours and people have long called for his British CBE to be removed.

Rolf Harris is surrounded by members of the media as he leaves Westminster Magistrates Court, in central London, 2013

Normal protocol sees honours from Buckingham Palace forfeited in circumstances where the person is considered to have brought the system into disrepute.

A statement from the secretary of the Order of Australia said: “It is notified for general information that the Governor-General has terminated the appointments of Officer and Member of the Order of Australia in the General Division, made to Mr Rolf Harris.”

A recommendation can be made by the Honours and Appointments Secretariat to the forfeiture committee to revoke an honour if a person has been found guilty of a criminal offence but the decision to revoke it must be approved by the Queen.

Harris's Bafta fellowship had been removed almost immediately after his conviction.

During sentencing last year, Mr Justice Sweeney told Harris: “Your reputation lies in ruins. You have been stripped of your honours and you have no one to blame but yourself.”

Footage from 1992 shows Rolf Harris drawing a portrait of Jimmy Savile as the pair joke together at ITV West studios in Bristol.

Two of his victims said the singer and artist’s status made them feel like they could not inform police of the attacks between 1968 and 1986.

Harris, from Bray in Berkshire, was convicted of nine assaults  in that period – one on the eight-year-old girl and the rest on teenagers aged between 14 and 19.

Additional reporting by PA