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Savile abused women, children in 14 hospitals, mental homes

By Bloomberg News

This article was published January 11, 2013 at 7:09 a.m.

— The late British Broadcasting Corp. television star Jimmy Savile committed more than 200 criminal sexual-abuse offenses at the BBC, in schools and in more than a dozen hospitals, mental homes and a hospice, police said.

Savile, who died in 2011, abused women until at least two years before his death when he put his hand up the skirt of a 43-year-old woman on a train, the Metropolitan Police Service said in a report Friday.

His youngest victim was an 8-year-old boy and most were girls between the ages of 13 and 16, it said.

“Savile’s offending footprint was vast, predatory and opportunistic,” Commander Peter Spindler said at a news conference in London. “He cannot face justice today, but we hope this report gives some comfort to his hundreds of victims.”

The BBC was plunged into crisis after competitor ITV PLC aired a story in October about five women who said they were abused by Savile.

Former BBC Director General George Entwistle stepped down Nov. 10 as a result of the scandal, which includes claims the BBC dropped an earlier news investigation into Savile’s abuse and instead aired tributes after the 84-year-old TV star’s death.

Savile wasn’t prosecuted while he was alive, even after four women made reports to two U.K. police departments in 2007 and 2008, in which they described abuse when they were children.

Police and prosecutors could have filed criminal charges against Savile if the cases had been handled properly, the Crown Prosecution Service said in a report Friday.

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