Entertainer Rolf Harris denies sex charges


Former television entertainer Rolf Harris has pleaded not guilty to seven charges of indecent assault and one of sexual assault.

The Australian-born artist, 86, faces eight charges alleging he attacked women and girls between 1971 and 2004.

Wearing a grey suit and a multi-coloured tie, the former Animal Hospital host appeared via videolink at London's Southwark Crown Court on Thursday.

He spoke only to confirm his identity and to say "not guilty" to each of the eight charges as they were put to him.

Judge Alistair McCreath set a trial date of January 9 2017.

Some of the offences were allegedly committed at the BBC Television Centre in west London.

Harris is accused of molesting a girl under the age of 14 at the Wood Lane facility over the Christmas period in 1983.

Twenty one years later Harris is said by prosecutors to have struck again at Television Centre, indecently assaulting a woman there in 2004.

Prosecutors also allege he molested girls at the Lyceum Theatre in Covent Garden, outside Radio Victory, an independent station in Portsmouth, and in Jesus Green, a park overlooking the river in Cambridge.

Three of the indecent assault charges relate to girls aged under 14, and four to women aged over 16.

The sexual assault charge relates to a female aged 13 or over.

Harris will next appear before a court in July for a preliminary hearing.