U.K. Celebrity Publicist Max Clifford Found Guilty of Sexual Assault
LONDON – U.K. celebrity publicist Max Clifford has been found guilty of eight of 11 charges of "indecent" assault on women and girls as young as 15.
The 71-year-old PR man, whose clients have included Simon Cowell, previously called all the allegations "completely false," pleading not guilty to the charges.
In December 2012, Clifford was questioned as part of one of several probes sparked by sexual abuse allegations against late TV host Jimmy Savile.
In 2013 he was charged with committing 11 assaults on seven people between 1966 and 1985. He was not charged in the case of three other allegations.
His guilty verdict by a jury Monday in Southwark Crown Court immediately hit the British mainstream media news services including The Telegraph, The Guardian and The Independent news sites along with TV reports on public broadcaster the BBC, satellite broadcaster BSkyB's Sky News and commercial web ITV.
Clifford was cleared of two charges of indecent assault, while the jury failed to reach a verdict on another charge of the 11.
Clifford was released on bail until Friday, when he will return for sentencing.
The jury delivered its verdict on its eighth day of deliberations.
BBC home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw described the Clifford verdicts as "hugely significant" as the first Operation Yewtree conviction.