Authorities say British comedian Freddie Starr was arrested Thursday as part of the ongoing inquiries into sexual abuse offenses being conducted following claims made about deceased BBC television presenter Jimmy Savile.
Starr, a 1970s variety show favorite known for his good looks and roguish humor, was the second person arrested as part of the Metropolitan Police’s Operation Yewtree, which is investigating abuse allegations from around 300 victims over a 40-year period at a number of institutions, including the BBC and three hospitals.
The first person arrested was the glam rock musician Gary Glitter, real name Paul Gadd, was taken into custody on Sunday. The Guardian notes Glitter has gone to prison in the United Kingdom for downloading child pornography and in Vietnam for child sex offenses.
According to BBC News, Starr’s arrest follows claims by a woman who has publicly accused Savile and Starr of touching her while they were both in a BBC dressing room in the 1970s, when she was just 14.
The 69-year-old comedian has since vehemently denied the allegations and in a television interview last month said he wanted to speak to police to clear his name.
“I would never, ever, ever touch an underage girl,” Starr said, and branded Savile “despicable.” He urged police to contact him over what he described as “false accusations.” His attempt to obtain an injunction from the High Court banning media reports of the allegation was overturned last month.
Since the sexual abuse case went public last month, Savile’s estate, reportedly worth $6.9 million, has been frozen in response to the mounting allegations.
Lawyers representing Savile’s alleged victims are expected to sue for damages.