UK

Dave Lee Travis Denies Pantomime Assault

11/09/2014 14:28 BST | Updated 11/09/2014 14:59 BST

Veteran DJ Dave Lee Travis flatly denied claims he would sexually attack anyone at a pantomine because he is not a "moron".

Speaking for the first time from the witness box in his sex offences trial at London's Southwark Crown Court, Travis said: "It doesn't bear thinking about to be honest."

Travis is accused of sexually assaulting a female stage-hand in his dressing room when during a production of the pantomime Aladdin in the 1990s.

dave lee travis

Dave Lee Travis arriving at the court earlier this month

The former Radio 1 star told the jury that he was "tactile" but denied that he is an opportunist who seeks chances to touch young women.

He told the jury: "The thought of sexually attacking someone as part of that team is just not something you would want to do. You would have to be a complete moron to do that - something that I am hoping that no-one is going to suggest is that I am a moron."

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He added he enjoyed playing a baddie in the pantomime, saying: "I relish it, there is nothing better than going on stage and saying `I hate kids'."

Travis said that pinching someone's bottom was a line he has not crossed.

Travis, who has been a household name since the 1970s, said there was a culture of friendliness in the world of showbusiness where you might touch someone on the shoulders.

dave lee travis

Travis giving a statement with his family when he learned he would be retried

Asked by his barrister Stephen Vullo if he ever crossed the line said: "No I am not going to go up to a strange person and pinch their bottom - it's just not going to happen - or any other part of them."

Vullo also asked if he was tactile and if this was a problem.

Travis said: "Yes very much so. I am tactile with everybody - men, women, certainly women, anyone because it's just a natural thing for me to greet someone. I give a squeeze and have been known to give a guy a hug and a kiss on the cheek if I know he is a great guy. "

Travis, 69, who is charged under his real name David Griffin, denies two counts of indecent assault and one of sexual assault.

He is facing a retrial on two counts - one of indecent assault of a woman between November 1 1990 and January 31 1991, and another of sexual assault on a different woman between June 1 2008 and November 30 2008 - on which a jury was unable to reach verdicts at a trial earlier this year.

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Travis in court last year

Travis, of Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, has also pleaded not guilty to an additional count of indecent assault alleged to have taken place on January 17 1995.

Travis, a keen photographer, also denied that he was sleazy in the way he approached his work with the camera.

One of his previous projects included taking images of people and asking what they liked or disliked about themselves.

He said: "No, sleazy is a terrible word that is easily banded about. Sleazy has nothing to with what I did ever."

He said he strived to be professional and hoped that any interviewer who would came to his home would be welcomed with a cup of tea and general friendliness so that "it was a nice experience but it had to be right on both sides".

He added: "We are professionals. I do not think about that because I have not thought about should or should I not touch a journalist."

Vullo asked how he would react if he accidentally touched someone inappropriately, perhaps on the breasts.

Travis said he would apologise adding : "I would not sneakily want to touch someone and walk away - it is just not done."