British former glam rocker Gary Glitter, 61, was found guilty in a Vietnamese court of molesting two girls, aged 11 and 12, at his home in the resort town of Vung Tau in southern Vietnam, and sentenced to three years in prison. Glitter (real name Paul Gadd) also has to pay 5 million Vietnamese dong ($315) to his victims’ families and will deported upon his release.
The fallen flamboyant star, whose “Rock and Roll Part 2” still rocks sports arenas and stadiums around the globe (“Hey!”) over 30 years after its release, was convicted of kissing, fondling and engaging in other sexual acts with the girls. He escaped charges of child rape, which carry a maximum penalty of death by firing squad.
Glitter’s lawyer made compensatory payments to the families of the girls in December, who then appealed to the court for leniency toward Glitter.
Judge Hoang Thanh Tung said of Glitter, “His lewd acts have compromised the dignity of the Vietnamese people, law and common sense, and therefore it is necessary to punish him.” The judge told the BBC he believed Glitter understood he had “a sickness.”
Glitter told journalists after his conviction, “I haven’t done anything – I am innocent. It is a conspiracy by you-know-who.”
I knew Lord Voldemort got around, but Vietnam?
Piling on primly, the British embassy said in a statement, “Both the UK and the Vietnamese governments take the issue of child-sex tourism extremely seriously.”
It’s been a rough go of late for Glitter, who toured endlessly behind his ’70s hits through much of the ’80s and ’90s: He was convicted of possessing child pornography in Britain in ’99 and served two months, moved on to Cambodia which permanently expelled him in December 2002 for “suspected sex offenses,” then oozed to Vietnam for the activites that led to this conviction. He has three years to think about it.