BBC releases Savile probe documents

Feb. 22, 2013 at 7:50 AM
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LONDON, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- The BBC posted 3,000 of pages of transcripts online Friday from a review into why an investigation of abuse by BBC personality Jimmy Savile was dropped.

The pages included interviews with BBC management officials and journalists and emails and text messages, but some details about the investigation by the BBC's "Newsnight" program were deleted.

The BBC said some of the details were removed to protect the identities of people who may have been abused by Savile, as well as to avoid being sued by others.

Police said they believe Savile, a DJ who was 84 when he died in October 2011, abused hundreds of young people, including children, over five decades.

The review, led by ex-Sky News chief Nick Pollard and concluded in December, said the decision by "Newsnight" was "flawed" but "done in good faith."

Tim Davie, acting director general, said the BBC was being "open and transparent in its handling of this unhappy chapter in our history."

"It has not been an entirely comfortable process for us to go through but it is right that we did it this way," Davie said. "It is important that the BBC now moves forward with the lessons learned and continues to regain the public's trust."

The BBC sought the review to determine if management failed during the six-week Savile investigation, which was dropped by the current affairs program in December 2011.

A review led by Dame Janet Smith that will examine the culture and practices at the BBC during the years in which it employed Savile is under way.

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