Amid Sir Cliff Richard’s denial of allegations of a sex crime against an underage boy, the singer has claimed the press were notified of the police search of his property before he was.
The 73-year-old has described the allegation against him as “completely false” and vowed to “cooperate fully should the police wish to speak to me.”
Referring to the search of his luxury home in Sunningdale on Thursday, Sir Cliff said: “… the police attended my apartment in Berkshire today without notice, except it would appear to the press.”
Sir Cliff Richard has dismissed allegations of an historic sexual assault as 'completely false'
He referred to the case in reiterating his call for suspects in sex offences to get anonymity and said “questions has got to be answered” over Sir Cliff’s claims.
He told Good Morning Britain: "It appears the press knew what was happening before he did and the world's media were camped outside his doorstep.
Conservative MP Nigel Evans says questions must be answered about Sir Cliff's claims the media knew about the search before he did
"A press helicopter was up before the police even arrived - he is quite right to be angry about that. Questions have got to be answered.
"I believe in the vast majority of cases [suspects] should have anonymity. We have to recognise the impact this has on people.
"People have zero per cent of the facts and 100% of the opinions. It's quite wrong for people to pre-judge."
Media outlets, including reporters from the BBC, were waiting at Sir Cliff's Berkshire home when unmarked police cars and officers entered the property on Thursday morning.
Sir Cliff owns a penthouse flat in this luxury Berkshire estate
— Dan Johnson (@DanJohnsonNews) August 14, 2014
A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police told Huffington Post UK the force was aware of the tip-off claims and it hoped to issue a statement on the matter shortly.
A statement from the force yesterday said: "A search warrant was granted after police received an allegation of a sexual nature dating back to the 1980s involving a boy who was under the age of 16 at the time.
"No one has been arrested and the owner of the property was not present."
The alleged assault is claimed to have taken place at an appearance by American evangelist Billy Graham in Sheffield in 1985.
The alleged assault is claimed to have taken place at an appearance by American evangelist Billy Graham in Sheffield in 1985
Sir Cliff is pictured here at the Christian rally where Graham spoke
Sir Cliff, who is currently in Portugal where he owns a property, said: “For many months I have been aware of allegations against me of historic impropriety which have been circulating online.
"The allegations are completely false. Up until now I have chosen not to dignify the false allegations with a response, as it would just give them more oxygen.
Sir Cliff and Graham pictured at the Ministers and Leaders Meeting at Westminster Central Hall in 1988
"I am not presently in the UK but it goes without saying that I will cooperate fully should the police wish to speak to me.
"Beyond stating that today's allegation is completely false it would not be appropriate to say anything further until the police investigation has concluded."
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