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British PR man found guilty of indecent assaults

Published on NewsOK Modified: April 28, 2014 at 11:07 am •  Published: April 28, 2014

LONDON (AP) — Max Clifford, once one of the most powerful figures in the British entertainment world, was found guilty Monday of eight counts of indecent assault stemming from attacks on teenagers dating back more than 40 years.

He was known as a confidante of the stars and counted on by many celebrities to manage their careers during times of crisis. He represented TV mogul Simon Cowell and advised countless others on public relations strategy and damage control.

Prosecutors charged in Southwark Crown Court that he lured young girls into sex by offering them acting roles, including in the hit TV soap opera "Dynasty."

Peter Watt, director of a national child protection group, said Clifford had "rightly been unmasked as a ruthless and manipulative sex offender."

In one case, Clifford was found guilty of repeatedly abusing a 15-year-old girl after he became friends with her family in Spain in 1977. She said he convinced her parents he could make her a star before taking her out in his car and sexually abusing her.

Prosecutor Jenny Hopkins said the verdicts "provide a long-denied justice to the victims of serious sexual offenses."

A London jury also cleared Clifford, 71, of two counts of indecent assault and was unable to reach a decision on another count after more than a week of deliberations. He will be sentenced Friday.

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