Rolf Harris victims share joy and relief over disgraced entertainer’s death

Vanessa Feltz on Rolf Harris ‘ordeal’

Rolf Harris’ death was confirmed yesterday after the disgraced entertainer died at his home on May 10.

The convicted sex offender’s victims have now spoken out about the abuse they suffered at his hands, whilst sharing their relief over his death.

Dr Lin Berwick, who accused Harris of assaulting her when she was 27, screamed “Yippee, thank God”, upon hearing of his death, according to MailOnline.

BBC radio host Karen Gardner – who claims she was assaulted by the former TV star when she was 16 – shared a statement where she described him as “evil”.

Broadcaster Vanessa Feltz also recalled during her TalkTV show how she was previously assaulted by Harris live on national television.

She alleges the incident occurred metres away from his wife when Harris appeared on The Big Breakfast with her.

Harris was convicted of abusing a close friend of his daughter, Bindi Nicholls, over the course of 16 years, as well as an eight-year-old girl who wanted an autograph, and two girls in their early teens.

Harris was a regular on TV for decades before he was jailed for five years and nine months after being convicted of 12 indecent assaults, which occurred between 1968 and 1986.

In May 2017, he was formally cleared of four unconnected historical sex offences, which he had denied.

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Later that same year, one of the 12 indecent assault convictions was overturned by the Court of Appeal.

Harris was released on licence from HMP Stafford on May 19 2017, less than three years after his sentence began.

Harris’ crimes were brought to light by detectives from high-profile sex crime investigation Operation Yewtree.

He was the second person convicted under the national inquiry, set up in the wake of abuse claims made against the late DJ and and fellow children’s TV entertainer Jimmy Savile.

Due to his conviction, former musician and comedian Harris had his 2012 BAFTA fellowship removed and was stripped of his CBE. He also had Australian honours taken away.

Following Harris’ release from prison in 2019, reports claimed that his health had declined quite dramatically.

Last year, his Berkshire neighbour Portia Wooderson told News Corp Australia: “Only carers and nurses, who care for him 24 hours, come and go.

“I’m told he can’t eat anymore.”

William Merritt, a private investigator who wrote a book about Harris’s trials told the Mirror: “As far as his health goes, yes, he is very ill. But, Rolf keeps going. He’s still around but he’s not well at all.“

A statement from his family, released through his solicitor, announced that Harris’ funeral had already taken place.

The statement to PA read: “This is to confirm that Rolf Harris recently died peacefully surrounded by family and friends and has now been laid to rest.

“They ask that you respect their privacy. No further comment will be made.”

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