A celebrity publicist accused of sex assaults over a range of two decades has vowed to clear his name.
Max Clifford faces charges of 11 indecent assaults, incidents including seven teenagers that allegedly took place between 1966 and 1985. Calling the charges “completely false,” the publicist to celebrities mainly in the UK vowed to fight the sex assault case.
The fact that the first assault allegedly took place close to 50 years ago is not easy for the publicist to swallow.
“I find it hard to accept that women, 30 to 40-odd years later, can make complaints like this and they remain anonymous,” Clifford told Sky News. “And, of course, you have got to prove that you’re innocent.”
The celebrity publicist was caught through a sting for another media personality, BBC host Jimmy Savile. Police set up what became known as Operation Yewtree to investigation claims against Savile after a documentary by broadcaster ITV uncovered a number of allegations against him.
Savile had a reputation as a charismatic but somewhat eccentric star who was active in charitable causes. Though police were initially looking into charges against the late Savile, they ended up uncovering allegations of sex abuse against the publicist and led to Clifford’s arrest in late 2012.
Clifford said he’s got many people in his corner as he faces the sex assault charges.
“I’ve had tremendous support from everywhere, not just people who know me and did know me, but my clients and also people I meet everywhere I go,” Clifford said. “All of my clients have remained loyal and I’m working with all of my clients on a regular daily basis. That support is as strong as it has ever been, which I’m very grateful for.”
The publicist will face the sex assault charges in court on May 28. Police noted that there were more allegations against Clifford than the 11 he was charged for, but said there wasn’t enough evidence to bring more charges.