Jimmy Savile victims 'ignored or laughed at'

Many of Jimmy Savile's victims were ignored or laughed at when they revealed at the time that he had sexually abused them, a new NSPCC report has found.

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Victims 'told to feel lucky for Savile's attention'

Peter Watt, the NSPCC's director of national services, said:

The responses these victims received when they first revealed Savile's sickening crimes makes heart-rending reading.

They were ignored, dismissed, not believed, laughed at and, astonishingly, told in some cases they should feel lucky he had paid them attention.

Half a century on, the world finally discovered just how dreadful his crimes were - something these men and women had known all that time but felt powerless to do anything about.

The anger, frustration and sheer helplessness of the situation obviously damaged their lives in various ways.

But they showed true courage in coming forward once more to talk about their experiences and hopefully they can now start to put the terrible trauma behind them.

'Ignored' Savile victims left with 'devastating scars'

Savile pictured at the Tate Britain gallery in London in 2000. Credit: PA

According to the report, Would They Actually Have Believed Me?, some of the victims, who were aged between eight and 26 when Savile assaulted them, told hospital staff, who dismissed their claims.

One of the 26 victims interviewed by NSPCC counsellors went to the police but no action was taken. The vast majority were children when they were abused but four were adults.

The NSPCC said the research, which was commissioned by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary, highlighted the "devastating scars" that victims had suffered from the abuse, with some turning to drink and drugs to cope.

Others have suffered mental illness, poor relationships or contemplated suicide, it said.

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