LONDON (AP) — A British jury on Thursday cleared veteran radio and television DJ Dave Lee Travis of 12 counts of indecent assault.
It was the second high-profile acquittal this month of a veteran British entertainer on sex charges. Jurors at London's Southwark Crown Court failed to reach a verdict on two more charges against Travis. He had been accused of assaulting young women — at concerts, in radio studios and elsewhere — over a period of three decades.
The 68-year-old had denied 13 counts of indecent assault and one of sexual assault. Outside court, Travis said he had been through "a year-and-a-half of hell." "I had two trials," he said. "I had one trial by media and one trial by crown court. And I have to say in all honesty that I prefer trial by the crown court."
Travis — whose real name is David Griffin — said during the trial that he was not a sexual predator, as prosecutors claimed. "I do not have a predatory nature with women. I have a cuddly nature," he said.
Travis, a longtime radio DJ and former host of TV music show "Top of the Pops," was one of several veteran U.K. show business figures arrested after revelations that the late BBC entertainer Jimmy Savile was a serial sexual predator who abused scores of young people.
The allegations in the cases stretch back decades, and securing convictions has been difficult. Last week the 81-year-old "Coronation Street" star William Roache was acquitted of multiple sexual assault charges in a separate trial.
Detective Chief Superintendent Keith Niven, who heads the Savile-related investigation, said victims should still come forward. "We will ensure that all victims have a voice," he said. A hearing will be held Feb. 24 to decide whether Travis faces retrial on the two outstanding charges.