Townshend released on police bail
Pete Townshend has been released on police bail following his arrest yesterday after he admitted that he paid to see child pornography on the internet.
The 57-year-old guitarist with the Who was held on suspicion of possessing, making and inciting the distribution of indecent images of children. Police officers spent several hours searching his home in Richmond, south-west London, as well as a nearby office.
Detectives removed several items including computers before questioning Mr Townshend for an hour and 20 minutes at Twickenham police station. He was released on bail just after midnight and left in the back of a Mercedes. His solicitor, John Cohen, said he had not been charged and had been bailed to a future date when he "may be required to answer some questions".
The arrest comes two days after Mr Townshend issued a statement in which he admitted using his credit card to access a pay-to-view child pornography website on one occasion.
He acknowledged looking at what he described as "child porn sites" three or four times but said he did not download the images of abuse. He insist-ed he was not a paedophile and that he only looked at the illegal sites while doing research for his autobiography.
Yesterday's operation was part of Britain's biggest paedophile inquiry in which 1,300 people have been arrested so far. Mr Townshend's details were on a list of 6,500 people in Britain passed on to the police by US authorities investigating a child pornography site based in Texas. The maximum penalty for possessing indecent images of children is five years' jail and an unlimited fine.
Officers from Scotland Yard's paedophile unit, major investigation team, and child protection units, arrived at Mr Townshend's Georgian mansion at 3pm. Mr Townshend had arrived about 20 minutes earlier and was present during the search.
Phoenix Survivors, a group of child abuse victims, criticised Mr Townshend's statement yesterday. Shy Keenan, theorganisation's spokeswoman, said: "How can anyone find any reason at all to give child molesters money? What is more, what is the difference between molesting a child and paying someone else to do it?"
Out-of-touch MPs ‘don’t get it’, says ex-Civil Service chief
George Clooney and Amal fail to get special treatment at New York restaurant
Cindy Crawford 'un-PhotoShopped' viral Marie Claire image was doctored, photographer claims
'A girl is more responsible for rape than a boy': The statement that shocked the world... except India
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
- 1 What happens to your body when you give up sugar?
- 2 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 3 Turkish Airlines flight TK 726 crash-lands on Nepal runway in dense fog
- 4 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 5 The majority of sex workers enjoy their job - why should we find that surprising?