A FRIEND of the family of a prominent Australian entertainer reportedly questioned in Britain on suspicion of sexual offences has expressed shock at the raging online rumour mill.
The questioning by Scotland Yard detectives is the latest action by Operation Yewtree, a national investigation into alleged abuse by the disgraced TV presenter Jimmy Savile.
No mainstream media outlets have named the interviewed man, who is in his 80s and lives in Berkshire, west of London, but widespread allegations against the Australian entertainer have appeared across the internet.
The family friend, who declined to be named, when asked if the entertainer could have committed such offences, said: ''Absolutely not. The whole thing is crazy. There is all sorts of speculation going on.''
A close family member, who lives in Sydney, declined to make any comment on Saturday. The man was interviewed on Thursday London time under caution on suspicion of sexual offences after attending a south London police station by appointment.
His property was also searched by officers the previous Saturday.
Officers are looking at three strands within their inquiry: claims against Savile, those against Savile and others, and those against others.
The individual was questioned in the ''others'' category, which consists mainly of allegations made against individuals in the entertainment industry, which has resulted in Gary Glitter, comedian Freddie Starr and DJ Dave Lee Travis being arrested and bailed.
Mainstream media in Britain have not named the man but social media was having a field day. The name of the individual was first tweeted by criminologist Mark Williams-Thomas, who has conducted research into the abuse by Savile.