November 16, 2017: The Court of Appeal clears Rolf Harris of one historical charge of indecent assault.
I wasn’t going to include this case on the False Rape Timeline because it does not include allegations of rape, but I changed my mind after the death of Max Clifford. Also, I was partly responsible in a very small way for this partially successful appeal. I won’t go into details here but it was simply a case of pointing someone in the right direction.
Rolf Harris was a massive star in both the UK and his native Australia, an A List celebrity with unique talents. When literally hundreds of allegations were made against the late Jimmy Savile, a large number of celebrities were accused and arrested. Some of them were charged. On February 6, 2014, William Roache was cleared of all charges at Preston Crown Court. Roache was the longest serving soap star in the world, but two big convictions were to follow: publicist Max Clifford, and Rolf Harris.
On June 30, 2014, Harris was convicted at Southwark Crown Court on all twelve charges. He was subsequently sentenced to five and a half years in prison. The grain of truth in the allegations against him was his consensual relationship with a much younger woman, a friend of his daughter, Bindi. This had actually been exposed a long time before and was all but forgotten, but this woman had been biding her time waiting to destroy him. Her motive appears to have been that Harris had had a second secret mistress whom he had actually moved into the family home!
Allegations against Harris were trawled from around the world for the express purpose of blackening his character, and this tactic coupled with a deluge of prejudicial reports in both the press and social media did the trick.
All the same, there was grave concern over the evidence of two of his accusers: Tonya Lee who had sold her story to the Australian press, and Wendy Wild who later waived her anonymity.
Two long term female fans (whom I called collectively Miss Marple) set up a campaigning website, and their investigations clearly exposed the lies of Tonya Lee.
The Wendy Wild allegation hardly needed refuting because if Harris had indeed visited the community centre at which he was alleged to have indecently assaulted her, there would have been a paper trail a mile wide.
However, not content with destroying his reputation, his career and his life, the lunatics who run our criminal justice system decided they wanted to keep him behind bars until he died. In February 2016, he was charged with seven further historical offences between 1971 and 2004. One of his accusers was a blind, disabled woman who said he groped her in 1977; this is how sick these people are. The case was heard the following year, and resulted in him being cleared on three charges and the jury deadlocking on the rest. Incredibly, a retrial was ordered and an extra charge was added. This time, in May 2017, the jury was unable to agree on any of the charges, and he was formally acquitted of all four.
I have written extensively on this shameful case, including a full length video, but here I will simply present the Court of Appeal judgment. Wendy Wild is referred to as WR (ie Wendy Rosher) and Tonya Lee as TL. It is clear the Tonya Lee allegations are a tissue of lies - unsafe, in legal parlance. It will be observed that Rolf Harris is not the first person to have been accused by Lee of sexual abuse. Like Wild she is also clearly a head case. The usual arguments advanced here is that women like her are deranged because of the sexual abuse they have suffered. The reality is they make false allegations because they are not right in the head, and a danger to any man who gets within half a mile of them. My view is the Lords Justices did not quash that conviction as well because doing so would have led to a retrial.
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