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Comedian Jim Davidson arrested

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    Posted: 02 Jan 2013 at 21:35

Comedian Jim Davidson arrested by Jimmy Savile detectives on suspicion of sexual offences

  • The 59-year-old TV personality - previously voted Britain's funniest man - and another 53-year-old man have been taken into custody
  • Comedian 'vigorously denies' the allegations against him
  • Detectives have arrested ten men in connection with Operation Yewtree
  • Both have been arrested under the 'others' strand of the investigation

By Suzannah Hills and Anna Edwards

PUBLISHED: 19:13, 2 January 2013 | UPDATED: 21:32, 2 January 2013

Comedian Jim Davidson was today arrested by Jimmy Savile detectives on suspicion of sexual offences as part of Operation Yewtree.

The 59-year-old TV personality and another unnamed 53-year-old have been taken into custody by detectives investigating the allegations surrounding Savile.

The comic 'vigorously denies' the allegations against him, his solicitor said in a statement today.

Davidson is believed to have been arrested in West London just a day before he is due to appear  on reality TV show Celebrity Big Brother tomorrow night.


Arrested: Jim Davidson has been arrested on suspicion of sexual offences by detectives investigating the allegations surrounding Jimmy Savile


House search: Unmarked police cars pictured outside the home of controversial comic Jim Davidson in Stockbridge, Hants, after his arrest by officers as part of Operation Yewtree


Investigation: Police officers arriving at Jim Davidson's home this afternoon after his arrest

Three people - believed to be plain-clothed police officers - arrived at Davidson's £820,000 house in a grey Ford people carrier this afternoon and let themselves into Davidson's riverside home in Stockbridge, Hants.

At least one was carrying clear evidence bags. Asked if they were police officers, one answered: 'We might be.'


British entertainer Jim Davidson outside Buckingham Palace after receiving his OBE in 2001

After entering the property they drew the curtains on windows on the ground floor.

Davidson and the other man have been arrested under the strand of the investigation labelled 'others' - meaning the allegations are not connected to Savile - as detectives sort through hundreds of accusations made after the revelations about the late disgraced Jim'll Fix It star.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: 'Officers working on Operation Yewtree have today arrested two men on suspicion of sexual offences.

'A 53-year-old man ('Yewtree 9') was arrested at approximately 8am at an address in Hampshire and taken into custody locally.

'A 59-year-old man ('Yewtree 10') was arrested at approximately midday in west London and taken into custody at a London police station.

'Both individuals fall under the strand of the investigation we have termed 'others'.

'We are not prepared to discuss further.'

Davidson became one of Britain's most well-known comedians after his big break winning the TV talent show New Faces in 1976.

He went on to present The Jim Davidson Show which ran for five complete series and won Davidson the TV Times award as 'Funniest Man On Television'.

In recent years, he has become better known for his television roles on Big Break and as the successor to Bruce Forsyth as host of the Generation Game.

In September 2007, Davidson appeared in the third series of Hell's Kitchen in the UK and in May 2008 he appeared in the BBCs Comedy Map of Britain.

In 2011 Davidson, who has been married five times, began touring with a new play, called 'Stand up.. and be Counted' but the show was cancelled shortly afterwards because of poor ticket sales.


Ongoing search: There was no sign of Jim Davidson today at his country home as police officers visited the £820,000 property


Inspection: Officers wore gloves and carried equipment into the home of Jim Davidson this evening

The comedian has kept a lower profile in recent years but was due to appear on the new series of Celebrity Big Brother tomorrow evening.

The Metropolitan Police Force is leading the national probe into claims made against the disgraced TV presenter and figures in the entertainment industry.

The latest arrests come after former BBC producer Ted Beston 'vehemently denied' claims that he molested young women while working for Jimmy Savile.

Mr Beston, 76, was arrested by Operation Yewtree detectives in December last year on suspicion of historic sexual offences.


An officer carries an unmarked brown bag from Jim Davidson's home in the affluent village of Stockbridge, Winchester, Hants


Officers pictured leaving the house of Jim Davidson after searching the property for several hours


TV personality: Jim Davidson pulls a face as he samples his cooking on ITV's This Morning earlier this year

In a statement released through his lawyers on December 20, the former Radio 1 producer said he was shocked by the allegations and had not known about Savile's revolting abuse.

The producer, nicknamed 'Uncle' Ted by Savile on air, was bailed until February.

Mr Beston, 76, was held at his home in Bromley, South London, at 6.30am and taken to a police station.

He became a close friend of Savile’s while working for years as his producer on Radio 1 on shows including Savile’s Travels.


Jim Davidson pictured on the Generation Game after replacing Bruce Forsyth as presenter of the show


Jim Davidson, pictured with his then partner Debbie Corrigan in 1997, is also well known for his panto


Comedian Jim Davidson relaxes between performances of Dick Whittington at the Bristol Hippodrome in 2002

Beston is accused of procuring girls for Savile and other men to molest in the 1960s and 1970s.

Some women have also claimed that he sexually assaulted them himself.

He was the eighth man to be arrested as part of Operation Yewtree, the Savile sex abuse investigation.

Mr Beston produced several shows for Savile and also used his skills producing hit shows for DJ Mike Read and latterly Simon Mayo's Breakfast Show in the 80s.


Panto king: Davidson, pictured in a photocall for Aladdin with actress Lucy Benjamin, has won numerous awards for his contribution to comedy


Davidson, pictured with his fifth wife Michelle in 2003, left and 2004, right, is known for his controversial jokes


Jim Davidson and his wife Michelle Cotton at politician Michael Howard's Summer Reception at The House of Commons on the Tory leader's 62nd Birthday


Davidson and an unnamed 53-year-old have been arrested as police investigate accusations made in the wake of revelations about disgraced Jimmy Savile

At the time a police spokesman said: 'The man, who is in his 70s and from London, was arrested at 06.30hrs on suspicion of sexual offences and taken into custody at a south London police station.

'The individual falls under the strand of the investigation we have termed "Savile and others".'

In some cases victims will not be identified or press charges. But in at least a dozen cases, police are reported to believe there is enough evidence for the celebrities to be arrested.


Held: Ted Beston was arrested by police  and bailed

The investigation has three strands, one dealing with allegations directly involving Jimmy Savile, the second involving allegations against associates of the disgraced DJ and the third involving 'others'.

Operation Yewtree has already cost around £2million and involves a team of 30 officers.

In December a man from London in his 60s was arrested on suspicion of sexual offences.

PR guru Max Clifford was arrested earlier on suspicion of sexual offences but was later bailed as part of the probe.

A man aged in his 80s from Berkshire was interviewed by detectives three weeks ago.

Gary Glitter, comedian Freddie Starr, DJ Dave Lee Travis and a man in his 70s, reported to be former television producer Wilfred De'Ath, have been arrested and bailed as part of the probe.

On Monday, Starr and Clifford were re-bailed to return on dates in February and March pending further inquiries.

Officers are looking at claims against Savile, those against Savile and others, and those against others.

Police revealed a total of 31 allegations of rape have been made against Jimmy Savile.

Detectives said they had received 199 complaints of sex attacks against the late BBC star from 450 different people.

Savile is said to have carried out the attacks in 17 police force areas.

Detectives said that 589 complainants – the majority of whom were young girls at the times of the alleged incidents – had contacted police as part of a wider inquiry into sexual attacks carried out by Savile and others.


PR guru Max Clifford (left) leaves his Surrey home after being arrested by police. (Right) Former BBC producer Wilfred De'ath was arrested at an earlier date. Both were bailed


Dave Lee Travis (left) was arrested at his Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire home in November. Gary Glitter (right) was arrested and bailed in October

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