Trial of Rolf Harris Begins, Entertainer Faces 12 Counts of Indecent Assault
Harris denies the charges of indecent assault said to have taken place between 1968 and 1986.
The trial of veteran entertainer Rolf Harris is set to begin today with the television personality facing 12 charges of incident assault against four young girls.
Rolf Harris arrives at Southwark Crown Court
Harris, who denies the charges, arrived at London's Southwark Crown Court shortly after 9am this morning, accompanied by his wife Alwen, whom he married in 1958. The couple have one daughter together, Bindi, born in 1964.
He is accused of 12 charges of indecent assault on four girls, the youngest of whom was seven or eight at the time with the oldest being 19. The alleged incidents were were said to have taken place between 1968 and 1986.
In an initial hearing in January, Harris entered a plea of not guilty to all charges. Today the jury selection is scheduled to begin with the prosecution case to open later in the week.
Born in Australia, Harris has resided in the Berkshire village of Bray for over five decades. His long career as an entertainer began after his first single ‘Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport’ was released in 1960. Since then Harris has been known for his music as well as his art and was selected by the Queen to paint her portrait in 2005 for her 80th birthday.
Harris and his wife Alwen
The charges against Harris came as part of the Operation Yewtree investigation into historical sexual abuse allegations. Last week, veteran publicist Max Clifford was found guilty on eight charges of indecent assault and sentenced to eight years in prison. Harris’s trial continues and is expected to last around six weeks.