Haroon Kasir boasted of friendship with Jimmy Savile, and ‘was odd after star’s death’
By Fiona O’Cleirigh and Mark Watts | 16 February 2013
Exaro has also established that Haroon Kasir, known as Harry, who was co-manager of the guest house, used to boast that he was “best friends” with Savile.
The Metropolitan Police Service is investigating allegations, under ‘Operation Fernbridge’, that boys were sexually abused by prominent people – including MPs – and others at Elm Guest House in Barnes, south-west London.
The Met is also running ‘Operation Yewtree’, which is investigating multiple allegations of sexual abuse of children by Savile. The BBC television and radio presenter, who died in 2011 aged 84, was exposed as a paedophile last October.
But Exaro can today reveal disturbing evidence of links between Savile and Elm Guest House.
Friends of Kasir say that he would boast how Savile used to visit him frequently. But Kasir would also complain to friends that Savile later snubbed him.
One, who has already talked to detectives on ‘Operation Fernbridge’, told Exaro: “He said that Savile used to come around to his house and drink tea, but now he did not bother with him anymore.”
Kasir complained that Savile cold-shouldered him, and he was bitter about it.
The witness recalled one occasion when Kasir reacted angrily after Savile appeared on the television screen.
Pointing to the television, Kasir said: “That bastard! He used to be my best friend and now he will not even have a cup of tea with me.”
Kasir claimed that Savile “once lived in Barnes”, although it is unclear whether the disgraced star really had a home there. Savile was known to have lived in a penthouse flat in Leeds for more than 30 years.
The witness also said that Kasir reacted oddly to Savile’s death, saying: “Harry started to behave strangely after Jimmy Savile died. He became quiet and he seemed nervous.”
“He disappeared for a while, apparently to take some time out. He said that he needed to straighten his head out.”
Kasir ran Elm Guest House with his late wife, Carole, for about four years from 1979.
Detectives have raided Kasir’s home in Richmond, close to where the guest house used to operate. They did not arrest him.
Kasir is refusing to comment to Exaro as well as other journalists who have besieged him since being tracked down last month to Richmond.
After a police raid on Elm Guest House in 1982, Kasir and his wife, who died suddenly in 1990, were convicted at the Old Bailey of running a disorderly house – meaning a brothel – and fined £1,000 each. They were given nine-month prison sentences, suspended for two years.
Operation Fernbridge is focussed on the guest house and the nearby Grafton Close children’s home, which was run by Richmond council.
Fernbridge was separated from ‘Operation Fairbank’, which is investigating other allegations of sexual abuse of children by political figures.
Operation Yewtree, beyond focussing on Savile, is also investigating allegations against other celebrity figures.
For years, writes David Hencke, very powerful people wanted to make sure than nothing would ever be found out about evidence of a network of VIP paedophiles, but the tide is turning.