‘Giving Victims a Voice’ A joint MPS and NSPCC report into allegations of sexual abuse made against Jimmy Savile under Operation Yewtree
1.1 An ITV programme broadcast on 4 October 2012 featured five women who recounted being abused by the late television presenter and charity fund-raiser Jimmy Savile during the 1970s.
1.2 At the request of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) took the lead in assessing and scoping the claims made in the programme and in the days and weeks following the broadcast hundreds of people came forward to say they had also been abused by Savile and others.
1.3 Co-ordination has been extensive and police have been working in partnership with the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) and the National Association for People Abused in Childhood (NAPAC).
1.4 The MPS investigation - given the operational name ‘Yewtree’ - brought together officers with paedophile and serious crime investigation experience and has collated all the allegations against Savile, irrespective of where the offences took place. The MPS is grateful for all the assistance provided by police colleagues from across the UK in contacting victims, taking statements and making appropriate referrals.
1.5 A number of reviews relating to Savile’s reported offending at various institutions and whether earlier opportunities to arrest and prosecute him were missed are also underway. These matters have not been investigated by Operation Yewtree and do not form part of this report.
1.6 An issue that has understandably been raised is that as Jimmy Savile is dead there can be no criminal prosecutions against him and the testimony of his victims cannot be challenged in the courts.
1.7 However it is this lack of criminal proceedings - and justice for victims - that has contributed to the MPS and NSPCC view that the information contained in our joint report should be put into the public domain.
1.8 Account should also be taken of the substantial rise in the reporting of nonrecent sexual abuse since Operation Yewtree began and the beneficial impact of this in apprehending other potential sex offenders.
1.9 Not all the victims who have come forward have been interviewed by police. However the patterns and similarities of the offences and behaviours that have come to light so far have given police and NSPCC staff an informed view that most people have provided compelling accounts of what happened to them. It should be recognised that others will also have experienced abuse but have chosen not to speak out.
1.10 We therefore consider it pragmatic to present this report in as factual a way as possible given that the information provided has not been corroborated. Further
investigation seeking corroboration of individual allegations, the majority dating back many years, is considered disproportionate when there is no prospect of criminal proceedings.
1.11 This is why the report is entitled Giving Victims a Voice - we hope that those who suffered as a result of Jimmy Savile’s actions can take some comfort that information based on their accounts is being published. We also hope that the data and information will be useful to the organisations concerned as they take steps to ensure that similar offending to that reported is not currently happening or wouldn’t go unnoticed or unchallenged in the future.