22 Aug 2008

Sex offender Gary Glitter back in Britain

9:21 pm on 22 August 2008

Former glam rocker Gary Glitter, branded the "pervert pop star" by a tabloid newspaper, has returned to Britain after failing to find sanctuary in Asia.

He was released on Tuesday from a Vietnamese prison after spending a three-year sentence for child sex abuse offences.

Glitter, real name Paul Gadd, was flown to Bangkok for a connecting flight to London, but failed to board the flight saying he had ear and heart problems.

He was not allowed into Thailand and was also rejected by the authorities in Hong Kong.

Glitter, famous in the 1970s with songs such as "Hello, Hello, I'm Back Again" and "I'm the Leader of the Gang (I Am)", was met at Heathrow Airport in London by paparazzi and police.

They were expected to have him sign an order putting him on the sex offenders' register, an official list of convicted paedophiles kept by the authorities.

Tabloid snapshots show a pale, drawn figure sporting a long white goatee beard, his face partially hidden by a baseball cap.

Glitter was convicted in Britain in 1999 of downloading thousands of images of child pornography onto his personal computer.

He later left the country and moved to Cambodia, staying for several years before being blacklisted, again on sex allegations. He moved to Vietnam, where he was arrested in 2005 and charged with the sexual abuse of two young girls.

Ahead of his return, the Sun newspaper told how the "pervert pop star" was coming back, and The Mirror printed a headline saying "Warning: This vile man lands back in Britain today" next to a picture of a grinning Glitter.