The family of disgraced UK TV presenter Jimmy Savile made its first public statement Saturday since a slew of claims of sexual abuse of under-age girls destroyed the reputation of a man they had regarded as a hero.
Savile's nephew, Roger Foster, had defended his late uncle - who hosted shows watched and heard by a generation of young Britons - in a newspaper interview before the allegations emerged in a TV documentary a month ago.
But as those few claims snowballed into hundreds, the family had to face up to the horrific truth: that the man they were so proud of as a media star and indefatigable charity fundraiser had a far darker side to his past.
A statement released Saturday by Foster spells out the family's anguish - and their deep sympathy for as many as 300 victims preyed on by Savile.
The documentary made them aware of "allegations of a darker side to him that we knew nothing about," Foster says - and the claims swiftly began to overwhelm the family.
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