BBC presenter Paul Gambaccini bailed after arrest as part of Operation Yewtree

The 64-year-old is understood to have been arrested under a strand of Yewtree that is not connected to the Savile investigation

Veteran BBC presenter Paul Gambaccini protested his innocence after being arrested arrested as part of Operation Yewtree, the investigation into historical sexual offences prompted by the Jimmy Savile scandal.

The 64-year-old presenter was one of two men arrested on Tuesday morning, the fifteenth and sixteenth arrests made during Operation Yewtree. Both men were later released on bail.

The arrest of the broadcaster is a surprise because he is gay and has publicly welcomed the unmasking of Savile as a paedophilic predator of girls, and a man “who conned an entire society”.

He was arrested under a strand of Yewtree that is not connected to the Savile investigation and has denied all the allegations made against him.

In a statement he said: “On Monday night, 28 October, I attended an excellent production of the Kander and Ebb musical, the Scottsboro Boys, at the Young Vic theatre.

”It concerned a group of black men in Alabama in the 1930s who were falsely accused of sexual offences. Within hours, I was arrested by Operation Yewtree. Nothing had changed, except this time there was no music.“

A spokesman for the broadcaster added: ”Mr Gambaccini was interviewed by Operation Yewtree officers about historic allegations. He answered their questions and was co-operative. He denied all allegations.“

Scotland Yard confirmed that two men, one 64 and the other 74, had been arrested and bailed but would give no details about their identities. A spokesman said of the 64-year-old: ”The man was arrested at an address in south London on suspicion of sexual offences and taken into police custody. He falls under the strand of the investigation we have termed 'others'.“

The presenter spoke out against Savile last year, saying that there were rumours the disgraced DJ was a necrophiliac and that it was well-known among BBC staff that Savile had targetted vulnerable, ”institutionalised“ young people.

Gambaccini hosts a weekly show on BBC Radio 2 and was due to present a 30-minute documentary for Radio 4 about the music world's reaction to the assassination of President John F Kennedy, to coincide with the 50th anniversary of his death.

The BBC said he would not be presenting his Saturday show on Radio 2 show. A spokesman said: ”Paul Gambaccini has decided that, in light of today's media attention, he would rather not be on air at present and we respect that decision.

“Therefore, Paul will not be presenting on BBC Radio in coming weeks and replacement programmes for the period will be announced soon.” The replacement show on Radio 2 tomorrow will be Johnnie Walker Meets Art Garfunkel.

Gambaccini was born in New York and has been dubbed the Professor of Pop for his encyclopaedic knowledge of popular music. He is also well-versed in other genres, including classical music.

His career at the BBC began in 1973 on Radio 1 and he has also presented regular shows on BBC Radio 2, 3 and 4, and Classic FM. During the summer his 40th anniversary with the Corporation was marked with a four-part series, The Gambaccini Years.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project