17 Jun 2013

Stuart Hall jailed for 15 months for sex assaults

Veteran BBC presenter Stuart Hall is jailed for 15 months after admitting 14 counts of indecent assault on girls, one as young as nine-years-old.

Stuart Hall arrives at court (R)

Warning: This article contains explicit details you may find upsetting

Hall, 83, sat with his head bowed as details of the charges were read out at Preston crown court. The court heard he had given one victim champagne and offered others elocution lessons before sexually assaulting his victims.

The former broadcaster had made emotional protestations of innocence to the media when he was first charged, but then changed his plea to guilty in April this year.

The court heard in graphic detail the range of offences Hall had carried out between 1967 and 1987. One victim described the assault as a “frenzied maul”. Many of Hall’s victims were sitting behind him in the public gallery.

The judge said his age was taken into account, but that his brazen denial of charges had caused his victims distress, and said that there was a degree of planning and premeditation in some of the offences.

Judge Anthony Russell QC, said Hall was known to the public for his “genial personality” but there was “a darker side” to him.

Later on Monday, the Attorney General said he would look into Hall’s sentence after his office received a number of complaints that it was too low.

Victims accused of ‘vendetta’

The court heard how Hall had initially told police that there was a “vendetta against people in the public eye” and accused his victims of lying when he was arrested in December last year. He described one of the complainants as “a complete and utter liar”, another as “unstable” and suggested collusion was taking place.

Prosecutors had branded Hall an “opportunistic predator” following his guilty pleas last month.

Before sentencing, Hall’s lawyer Crispin Aylett QC said the accused was “a frightened and bewildered 83-year-old man”. At previous hearings, he said Hall was “only too aware his disgrace is complete”.

He said there was a big difference between Jimmy Savile and Hall, who had touched “all of 13, not 1,300, victims” over a quarter of a century ago. He said 27 years had passed since the last offence and that Hall had led an “unblemished life” over those years, doing charity work and with the support of his loving family.

At points during the hearing Hall, wearing a dark suit, shirt and striped tie, appeared wounded by what he was hearing in evidence. For long periods of time he leant back in his chair with his eyes closed.


A 13-year-old victim was assaulted by Hall on her birthday. She was drunk and had just vomited, when he touched her breasts and kissed her on her upper body, telling her she was “beautiful and gorgeous”.

Another victim was attacked after he had given her a steak and champagne dinner. He took her for a swim and when she came out of the water, gave her an It’s a Knockout t-shirt to wear saying she would not need underclothes. He then asked her to “cuddle him like one of her teddies” before assaulting her.

Another three girls aged between 11 and 14 went to Hall’s house to have elocution lessons when he asked them to shower and gave them loose clothing to wear, before assaulting them. In police interviews, Hall said that this was to correct their posture, adding: “It’s a programme I devised.”

Hall, who was granted bail at his last court appearance, was charged with offences on 5 December last year.

Police said that the publicity surrounding his initial arrest led to more victims coming forward. He was subsequently charged with abusing 10 more girls and raping a 22-year-old woman.

Hall has denied the rape charge and it has been left on file, in consultation with the alleged victim.