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Rolf Harris walks free after sexual assault trial

Rolf Harris: “Whilst I am pleased this is finally over, I feel no sense of victory just relief.
Rolf Harris: “Whilst I am pleased this is finally over, I feel no sense of victory just relief."

DISGRACED former TV star Rolf Harris has walked free after he was found not guilty of four sexual assault charges when a jury could not reach a verdict.

It was the second jury to fail to reach agreement on allegations Harris molested three teenage girls between 1971 and 1983.

British prosecutors considered whether to pursue the charges but told the court they would not seek a new trial.

"We have reviewed whether it would be appropriate to seek a further retrial on these allegations," Prosecution barrister Jonathan Rees QC told the court. "We have come to the firm view that it would not."

Judge Deborah Taylor then entered a verdict of not guilty and released Harris.

The jury of seven women and five men were earlier dismissed by Justice Taylor when they could not reach agreement on the charges after just five hours of deliberations.

After the jury revealed they were split the judge asked if they could reach agreement with a majority of 10 but was told this was not possible.

Harris thanked his supporters and expressed relief at the verdict in a statement read by his lawyer outside the court.

"Whilst I am pleased this is finally over, I feel no sense of victory just relief," Harris said in the statement.

The former entertainer described himself as an 87 year old "with a sick wife".

Harris remained silent as he left the court surrounded by a media pack.

He was accompanied by his loyal niece Jenny who has appeared in court to watch the trial.

At an earlier trial that finished in February, another jury was also unable to reach a verdict on three charges relating to the same allegations.

The 87-year-old former children's entertainer was released from Stafford Prison earlier in May where he had been serving time for 12 other convictions of indecent assault.

His youngest victim was aged just seven or eight at the time of the assault.

He was released from prison less than three years into a sentence of five years and nine months handed down in June 2014.

Harris did not give evidence in the trial and his lawyers told the court he did not remember meeting the women he was alleged to have assaulted.

Topics:  london rolf harris trial

News Corp Australia

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