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Dame Janet Smith report identifies 72 Jimmy Savile victims during his time with the BBC

BBC's "macho culture" prevented justice being served report finds, while another investigation lays bare the activities of Stuart Hall

Published: Thursday, 25th February 2016 at 9:00 am

A report into Jimmy Savile's sex abuse revealed that there were 72 victims of the DJ and presenter during his time with the BBC.


19 Savile victims were assaulted in his connection with Top of the Pops, while 17 were assaulted in connection with Jim'll Fix It, the report has found.

In total, 57 of his victims were women or girls, 34 of whom under the age of 16, and 15 were boys, the report by former Court of Appeal Judge Dame Janet Smith concludes.

Dame Janet’s report, published today, lays bare the full extent of Savile's crimes committed while working at the BBC. A separate report reveals the claims of sexual assaults committed by fellow BBC broadcaster Stuart Hall.

Revealing the report, Dame Janet said that, "The culture of the BBC certainly enabled both Jimmy Savile and Stuart Hall to go undetected for decades.”

It discloses that 44 assaults took place in the 1970s, 17 in the 1980s, three during the 1990s and one during the 2000s. One assault took place in 1959.

Smith says most of Savile’s rapes and sex abuse crimes took place in his flat or caravans, but admitted that she had heard of incidents occurring in “virtually every one of the BBC premises at which he worked”.

"Savile would gratify himself sexually on BBC premises whenever the opportunity arose and I heard of incidents which took place in virtually every one of the BBCs premises in which he worked," Dame Janet said.

She says that there was a "culture of not complaining about talent" at the BBC, which allowed Savile to escape justice for his crimes.

"Some complaints were made and some concerns raised, although not many considering how many incidents of abuse occurred," says Dame Janet.

"The evidence I heard suggested that the Talent was treated with kid gloves and rarely challenged."

It adds that there was also a "macho culture" at the BBC which prevented justice being served to Savile's victims and their complaints being properly heard.

The retired judge’s report outlines in sometimes graphic detail multiple rapes and indecent assaults on children by Savile.


Among his many crimes, Savile indecently assaulted an underage girl on the set of Top of the Pops in 1969 and a 17-year-old girl in 1976.

Savile would arrange for particular girls to be on the podium next to him during the making of Top of the Pops, witnesses say in the report.

A chapter on the BBC management culture's role in the scandal says that there is no evidence that senior individuals in London were aware of Savile's crimes.

However, Dame Janet says, "The management structure of the BBC did not facilitate the making of complaints or the raising of concerns."

She adds later: "The BBCs investigations into the possibility that young girls attending Top of the Pops were at risk... did not evince any real concern for the welfare of the young audience."

The report contains 372,400 words and took two-and-a-half years to complete. It interviewed more that 380 witnesses in connection with Savile, who died in 2011.

The report was published today after police said they were no longer concerned about the report prejudicing ongoing investigations.

A separate report by Dame Linda Dobbs also examines the victims of BBC broadcaster Stuart Hall, which it says numbered 21. The majority of incidents involving Hall took place in the 1970s and 1980s. Once incident took place in the 1960s and one in the 1990s. All of Hall's victims' were young women and the latest known incident was in 1991.

Dame Linda's report contains specific findings that members of BBC management in Manchester were aware of Hall's activities, while Dame Janet's concludes that there is no evidence that senior individuals in London were aware of Savile's crimes.


Dame Janet says of both cases: "The events which Dame Linda and I have described took place many years ago. However, the BBC must resist the temptation to treat what happened then as being of limited relevance today. It is clearly not."


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