Esther Rantzen on Jimmy Savile: I believe interviewees
ESTHER Rantzen has reiterated her belief that television star Jimmy Savile was guilty of sexual abuse.
Speaking at the Cheltenham Literature Festival yesterday, the founder of Childline told a hushed audience 'it seemed to me to be absolutely clear' that the late television presenter abused children.
The broadcaster was asked how quickly she made up her mind after viewing the testimony of his alleged victims.
She said: "They showed me the interviews and I consulted ChildLine because I wanted to know what they felt about me taking part in the documentary and they said it's obviously better if I stayed neutral. But as I began to listen to these women talking without any sensational, vindictive, any kind of emotion, just reliving vivid memories, each one convinced me individually.
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"Having heard how the women were corroborating each other, describing such similar events, I could not stay neutral.
"That's why I said that the jury is no longer out."
She spoke of the 'terrible conflict' that arises whenever such accusations are levelled at high profile person.
"You have this national icon who was knighted, who spent time at Chequers – he knew everyone," she said.
"All the scales were weighted against the individual child."