No way back for arch-betrayer

He may often have been at the sleazy end of the PR business, but believe it or not journalists often found Max Clifford to be a nice chap.

He seemed courteous and considerate and returned their calls promptly. He provided them with super stories, even if some turned out to be fabrications, such as Freddie Starr eating a hamster.

He was the arch-manipulator of the media and a consummate publicist. He was feted by the media departments of universities. Simon Cowell used to think he was the bee’s knees.

None of them knew what a string of women and young girls knew all along – that he was a vile bully and a serial abuser who exploited his reputation to dominate them for sex.

Now we all know the horrific truth. His victims have expressed relief. His family and work colleagues must feel utterly betrayed.

There may be places in the world where behaviour like this is condoned, or at least forgiven, but not here. His reputation is utterly finished. Not even Clifford can get out of this one.

– GARETH WEEKES, Deep South Media