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Musician's fury as sex abuse case is dropped

By Matthew Cooper

Folk-rock musician Roy Harper has expressed anger at delays in the legal system after being cleared of sexual abuse allegations dating back to the mid-1970s.

In a statement issued after the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) decided to offer no evidence against him, the 74-year-old songwriter hit out at the length of time it took to prove his innocence.

Harper was acquitted earlier this year of indecently assaulting a 16-year-old girl in 1980, but a jury failed to reach verdicts on other counts relating to a second complainant.

The guitarist and songwriter, formerly of Herefordshire, but now living in Rossmore, Co Cork, attended Worcester Crown Court to hear the CPS had decided to drop the remaining charges.

In a statement issued by his legal team, Harper said he lost his livelihood after being informed of the allegations in February 2013.

The recording artist, who has released 32 albums during a 50-year career, added: "I'm now going to restart my working life where I left off nearly three years ago."

The CPS said in a statement: "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."

Belfast Telegraph


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