Max Clifford trial: I have been living a nightmare, says publicist

Man who exposed paedophiles Gary Glitter and Jonathan King describes sex charge as ‘revolting’

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The Independent Online

Max Clifford told police he had helped expose the paedophiles Gary Glitter and Jonathan King and said he found it “revolting” when he was accused of abusing a teenage girl, a court has heard.

The publicist described his arrest as the worst day of his life, and said he and his family had been living a “nightmare”.

Following his second arrest last year as part of an investigation into historic sex offences,  he revealed how he had been approached by women wanting to profit from the scandal over Jimmy Savile but he said he refused to help cash in on photographs of themselves with the disgraced DJ, telling them: “It’s your word against his.”

Mr Clifford, 70, told officers he had no need to make up associations with famous people to trick women into having sex with him because he knew many celebrities through his work, including The Beatles.

The PR consultant admitted having sex in his office, telling detectives: “I had a very active sexual life for many, many years.”

The jury at Southwark Crown Court was told that the publicist gave police a statement he had written with the help of his solicitor. It said: “I am both shocked and amazed at the nature of these allegations. I wish to emphasise that I have never forced any female to indulge in any form of sexual behaviour with me against her will.”

He was questioned over an anonymous letter written to him by one of his alleged victims detailing her claims of abuse which was discovered in his bedside drawer. 

The prosecution alleges that the PR consultant met the woman when she was still a teenager while on holiday with her parents in Torremolinos, Spain, in 1977. Mr Clifford, who denies 11 counts of indecent assault against seven women and girls, admitted being at the resort but did not remember meeting the girl.

Mr Clifford said he was intending to show it to his wife. “I’ve received letters about controversial things, when I was involved in OJ Simpson and Guantanamo Bay. It’s the first one I’ve ever received accusing me of being a paedophile. It’s disgusting and totally without any foundation at all. I didn’t abuse this girl,” he said.

Earlier, the court heard from another woman who claimed Mr Clifford exposed himself to her when she was a 16-year-old aspiring model, promising her a role in a film alongside Blade Runner actor Rutger Hauer.

The woman, who is now 42, had been in care, and said she felt humiliated after being asked to masturbate him during a visit to his Bond Street offices in 1988, the court heard

Giving evidence via video-link, she said she was introduced to the former boxer and actor Gary Stretch by Mr Clifford and went on to have dinner with Mr Stretch, Gary Lineker and his then-wife Michelle.

Under questioning by prosecutor Rosina Cottage QC, the woman said Mr Clifford invited her to a restaurant in Raynes Park, south west London, where he was a regular and where they sat with a large group of people including girls of around her age. She said that the publicist asked her to go to the toilet with one man, but she refused.

Jurors heard that in the statement she gave to police, the woman described Clifford as “not well endowed”. This echoes the description given to the court by other witnesses.

Wearing a grey blazer, white shirt and grey trousers, Clifford listened from the dock with the aid of a hearing loop.

The trial continues.