August 21, 2008

Glitter is Refused Entry into Hong Kong

Paedophile pop star Gary Glitter has returned to Thailand after being refused entry to Hong Kong, the Foreign Office said today.

The increasingly farcical situation leaves the disgraced singer in international limbo.

He has already been barred from entering Thailand after travelling there when he was released from a Vietnamese prison.

A Foreign Office spokesman said the 64-year-old, travelling under his real name Paul Gadd, was denied entry to Hong Kong and had now returned to Bangkok.

The Foreign Office spokesman said: "We have been informed by the Hong Kong authorities that Mr Gadd was denied entry to Hong Kong and has returned to Bangkok.

"Mr Gadd was in contact with us seeking consular assistance."

The spokesman did not say what form of assistance Glitter sought.

He was refused entry to the Chinese territory last night after flying there on Thai Airways service TF 602, the Foreign Office confirmed.

Chinese authorities informed their UK counterparts that they had barred Glitter from the country after his arrival at 11pm local time (1600 BST).

Immigration police at Hong Kong airport said privacy laws meant they could not comment on Glitter's case.

Glitter spent more than 20 hours in the transit lounge at Bangkok airport yesterday following his release from a Vietnamese prison on Tuesday.

He had served two years and nine months of a three-year sentence for abusing two girls.

Under the terms of his release he was due to board a connecting flight to London's Heathrow airport but refused claiming ill health.

He was barred entry into Thailand and immigration officials said Glitter would be taken to a detention centre if he continued to refuse to leave the country.

Lieutenant General Chatchawal Suksomchit, the chief of Thailand's immigration police, said Glitter was denied entry because under Thai immigration laws those convicted of child sex abuse in a foreign country could be barred.

Yesterday afternoon Thai Airways and Thai Police confirmed that he had boarded a flight to Hong Kong. While on board the flight Glitter tried to arrange a VIP welcome at Hong Kong airport, the Daily Mail reported.

Calling from the plane he spoke to ground staff, saying: "I am quite famous and hard of hearing. Please can you arrange for an escort for me at the other end?" the newspaper reported. When asked why he was making the trip, Glitter reportedly said: "I am travelling to Hong Kong for medical treatment."

Yesterday Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said Britain could not enforce Glitter's return but must have a plan if he did. If and when he arrives in the UK, he will be met at the airport by police officers and served with an order which will put him on the sex offenders' register.

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