Rolf Harris hid behind 'happy-go-lucky persona'

Rolf Harris hid behind his "happy-go-lucky persona" while committing a string of sexual offences which damaged the lives of his victims, a children's charity has said.

The NSPCC received 28 calls about the veteran entertainer through its helpline, including 13 people who said they had been abused by him.

Speaking after the guilty verdict, Peter Watt, director of national services at the NSPCC, said:

We’re delighted to have played a major role in helping bring Rolf Harris to justice and to uncover the dark side of an entertainer who hid behind his happy-go-lucky persona while committing sexual offences.

His reckless and brazen sexual offending, sometimes in public places, bizarrely within sight of people he knew, speaks volumes about just how untouchable he thought he was.

Like many children overwhelmed by the trauma of sexual abuse, those he targeted struggled to understand the ordeal they had been through at the time, and battled to come to terms with the impact of their experience at his hands. Some felt ashamed at what had been done to them.

But now the world knows only one person should be ashamed, and that is Rolf Harris.

Read: Rolf Harris mugshot released by Met Police

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Rolf Harris jailed for five years and nine months

Veteran entertainer Rolf Harris has been sentenced to five years and nine months in prison for indecently assaulting four girls over a near 20-year period. One of his victims told ITV News he was a "nasty man" who took advantage his position.