Gary Glitter Headed Back to Prison

Gary Glitter, the disgraced former U.K. pop star convicted for sexually abusing three schoolgirls, was ordered back to prison earlier this month. He was released from prison in February after serving half of his 16-year prison sentence. However, the Probation Service said Glitter violated the terms of his probation.

Glitter, 78, was convicted in 2015 of attempted rape, four counts of indecent assault, and one count of having sex with a girl under 13. When he was released, the terms of his probation included wearing a GPS tag, and being closely monitored by police and probation officers, reports BBC News. A Probation Service spokesperson told the BBC on March 13 that their "number one priority" was protecting the public. "That's why we set tough license conditions and when offenders breach them, we don't hesitate to return them to custody," the spokesperson said.

Glitter was recalled to prison days after The Sun published a photo of the former singer using a smartphone at the bail hostel he was living in. The outlet also published a video of Glitter appearing to ask a friend about search engines and using the dark web. The Sun ran another story about Glitter on March 18, reporting that he had a £15,000 ($18,450) knee operation at a National Health Service hospital in November 2022 while people waited months for the same procedure. Healthcare staff was reportedly "disgusted" by Glitter's "pervy" behavior, and sources claimed he told them about his life abroad. The staff was told to avoid physical contact with him.

"While he was there, Glitter was very chatty and cheerful – and over-friendly. He asked quite a lot of questions about the staff, especially the younger female ones," one of The Sun's sources claimed. "He took a shine to one young, female nurse who was quite attractive and it made her feel sick. He also spoke quite a lot about going abroad and said what a great time he had in Cambodia and Vietnam. There was no shred of remorse about what he had done."

Glitter, born Paul Gadd, was a major pop star in the 1970s with his U.K. hits "Rock and Roll (Parts 1 and 2)," "Do You Wanna Touch Me," "I Love You Love Me, Love," "I'm the Leader of the Gang (I Am)," and "Hello, Hello, I'm Back Again." He was first arrested in 1997 and convicted two years later for downloading child pornography images and videos. He was arrested again for suspected child sexual abuse in Cambodia in 2002. After he was convicted of obscene acts with minors in Vietnam in 2006, he was deported to the U.K. and put on the sex offenders register for life.

The singer was arrested again in 2012 after British police launched Operation Yawtree to investigate allegations of child sex abuse throughout the country. Glitter's youngest victim was less than 10 years old when he tried to rape her in 1975. Glitter denied all allegations against him, but he was found guilty after a three-week trial.

When Glitter was sentenced to 16 years in prison, Judge Alistair McCreath said he saw "no real evidence" the singer atoned for his crimes, adding that the victims were "profoundly affected" by their abuse. McCreath said he would have given Glitter an even longer sentence, but was constrained by the sentencing requirements from the time the crimes were committed, reports BBC News. "You did all of them real and lasting damage and you did so for no other reason than to obtain sexual gratification for yourself of a wholly improper kind," McCreath said.