Roy Harper sex assault charges all dropped

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Roy Harper has been acquitted of all of the remaining sexual assault charges that were hanging over him.

The folk icon was acquitted of two charges by a jury earlier this year, but five others remained unresolved – including two counts of indecent assault, two of indecency with a child, and one of having sex with a child.

Today at Worcester Crown Court, the charges were all dropped and the 74-year-old has since spoken of his “anger” at having spent his life savings on defending the case.

He tells the Guardian: “This case should never have gone as far as this, or taken so long to resolve.

“The psychological and personal cost to my wife and myself has been enormous and the financial cost hugely unfair. I lost my livelihood and I spent my savings, and more, on my defence. Despite coming out of this without a blemish on my name, I cannot recoup my costs and that’s left me incredibly angry.”

A spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said: “We keep all our cases under constant review and in this case it was decided that based on the strength of the evidence there is no longer a realistic prospect of a conviction. We will be meeting with the complainant and her family in order to fully explain our decision.”

Harper is best known for his contribution to Pink Floyd track Have A Cigar, while Led Zeppelin, who cited him as an influence, wrote Hats Off To (Roy) Harper as a tribute. He’s also been namechecked by artists including Kate Bush, the Who and Jethro Tull.