Rolf Harris’ cause of death confirmed as it emerges he died weeks ago

Convicted sex offender Rolf Harris died of neck cancer and “frailty of old age” at his home in Bray, Berkshire, on May 10, according to his death certificate.

The news of the disgraced Australian entertainer’s death was announced by a registrar at Maidenhead Town Hall on Tuesday afternoon.

In his final years, it was reported that the former TV presenter was “gravely sick” with neck cancer and was receiving around-the-clock care.

A statement from his family, released through his solicitor, announced that Harris’s funeral had already taken place.

The statement to PA read: “This is to confirm that Rolf Harris recently died peacefully surrounded by family and friends and has now been laid to rest.

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“They ask that you respect their privacy. No further comment will be made.”

Last year, his Berkshire neighbour Portia Wooderson told News Corp Australia: “Only carers and nurses, who care for him 24 hours, come and go.

“I’m told he can’t eat anymore.”

William Merritt, a private investigator who wrote a book about Harris’s trials told the Mirror: “As far as his health goes, yes, he is very ill. But, Rolf keeps going. He’s still around but he’s not well at all.“

After Harris was released from prison in 2019, reports claimed that his health had declined quite dramatically.

The disgraced star was a regular on TV for decades before he was jailed for five years and nine months after being convicted of 12 indecent assaults, which took place between 1968 and 1986.

In May 2017, he was formally cleared of four unconnected historical sex offences, which he had denied.

Later that same year, one of the 12 indecent assault convictions was overturned by the Court of Appeal.

Harris was released on licence from HMP Stafford on May 19 2017, less than three years after his sentence began.

Harris’s crimes were brought to light by detectives from high-profile sex crime investigation Operation Yewtree.

He was the second person convicted under the national inquiry, set up following abuse claims against the late DJ and and fellow children’s TV entertainer Sir Jimmy Savile.

Due to his conviction, former musician and comedian Harris had his 2012 BAFTA fellowship removed and was stripped of his CBE. He also had Australian honours taken away.

Years prior to his conviction, Harris was made an MBE in the 1960s, OBE a decade later and CBE in 2006 – the year after he painted the late Queen Elizabeth II’s 80th birthday portrait.

The decision to revoke an honour, which can be recommended by the Honours and Appointments Secretariat to the Forfeiture Committee, must be approved by the sovereign.

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