Unfair to accuse Rolf of lying, says presenter

NICK MILLER
Last updated 05:00 06/06/2014

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Respected British TV presenter Sue Cook has said it was unfair to accuse Rolf Harris of lying in court.

Cook, a writer and broadcaster since 1974 who has presented flagship news programmes, told Southwark Crown Court she had seen the footage of Rolf Harris at the Star Games game show in Cambridge in 1978, and realised she had been one of the participants in the same series. But she had no memory of where it was shot, like other public events she had totally forgotten being involved in, she said.

Harris has pleaded not guilty to 12 charges of indecently assaulting four girls between 1968 and 1986.

One of the complainants described a scene in Cambridge at a celebrity event in the 1970s, where she said Harris sexually assaulted her. In the witness stand Harris said he had never been to Cambridge until a few years ago. But on Monday a surprise find of old TV footage showed him leading a team of celebrities in a game show shot in the centre of Cambridge in 1978.

Prosecutor Sasha Wass, QC, said Harris had deliberately lied to the jury and the video "supports pretty much everything" that the complainant had described.

But Harris said it was just a "lapse of memory" and he hadn't realised he was in Cambridge because he and the other celebrities had been shuttled there in a coach.

On the witness stand Cook said she remembered being in an episode but couldn't remember where they were.

"I don't think [Harris] can be accused of lying, I wouldn't have remembered either," she told Southwark Crown Court.

Also on Thursday, two witnesses gave evidence from Australia about Harris' good character.

Harris' long-time Australian tour manager Ken Jeacle said he "absolutely, categorically" never saw Harris behave inappropriately towards women or children in all the time they had spent together.

And entertainer Kerrie Robson, who toured with Harris in the mid-80s when she was in her 20s, said he was a complete professional who never made her uncomfortable.

Shortly before lunch, Harris' defence team said it would not be calling any further witnesses.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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