Showbiz PR consultant Max Clifford has been sentenced to eight years in prison, having been found guilty of eight charges of indecent assault.
Clifford, 71, is the first of the public figures under inquiry to be jailed in Scotland Yard's Operation Yewtree, which is investigating sexual offences stretching back five decades.
He was found guilty on Monday of eight charges of indecent assault against women and girls as young as 15 spanning the period 1977-1985.
The judge told him that some of the offences would be charged as rape if they had happened today:
"... some of the sexual acts of which you have now been found guilty would now be charged as rape or assault by penetration for each of which Parliament has laid down a maximum term of life imprisonment".
Clifford is expected to serve at least half of his total sentence.
First Thoughts column in this week's magazine, Peter Wilby recalls an occasion when Clifford was featured in the New Statesman:
Unearthing journalists’ faulty predictions and poor judgements is always enjoyable. To my delight, I once discovered that the Sun, in a fawning interview in 1973, described Gary Glitter (later imprisoned for sexual offences against children) as “the rock’n’roll daddy who makes little girls ask to see more of his hairy chest”. So before anybody else finds out, I will reveal that, during my editorship, the NS ran an article under the headline “Max Clifford is a nice chap shock”. We reported that Clifford, who has just been convicted of sexually abusing four girls, was a man of “private modesty . . . committed to public service” whose “personal life has been a paragon of virtue”. Since this was in 2000, we don’t even have the excuse that it was the 1970s.