The Sri Lankan holiday home of TV presenter Matthew Kelly has been raided by police, the head of the country’s child protection agency said today.
Officials from Sri Lanka’s National Child Protection Authority, accompanied by local police officers, seized 54 video tapes and a computer from Kelly’s house in a suburb of Colombo.
NCPA chairman, Harendra De Silva, said Saturday’s raid was carried out after a tip-off from a British journalist.
The Stars In Their Eyes presenter was arrested and bailed by Surrey Police last week over allegations of sexual abuse on boys under the age of 16 during the 1970s. Kelly, 52, has denied the claims.
Professor De Silva told PA News his investigation team were playing through the videos, which mostly appeared to be cartoons and children’s films, from the start to the finish of each tape.
Experts would begin analysing the contents of the computer tomorrow but an initial search showed a number of adult sites had been accessed, Professor De Silva said.
He added: “If we have any evidence of any wrong-doing taking place in Sri Lanka we will take action.”
He said Kelly’s caretaker Aruna Rodrigo has been questioned by the NCPA team and released to return to his home, yards from Kelly’s £100,000 four-bedroomed house.
Granada announced on Saturday that Davina McCall is to step in for three special celebrity editions of Stars In Their Eyes.
The company said it fully supported Kelly, but that “in the circumstances” he was being replaced.
Kelly was arrested by plain clothes officers as he came offstage from a performance as Captain Hook in Birmingham on Wednesday.
As soon as he was released Kelly returned to the performance of Peter Pan where he was given a rapturous applause by the audience.
Granada said he would start rehearsals in 10 days’ time for Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s touring version of John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men.
He was questioned by Surrey Police at Guildford in connection with allegations of sexual abuse against boys under 16 in the 1970s.
He has been bailed until March 12 and said in a statement that he “emphatically” denied the allegations and said it had come as a “complete shock and surprise”.
He said he had co-operated fully with the police and would continue to do so.
Kelly was questioned about allegations understood to have surfaced because of Operation Arundel, the inquiry which saw pop mogul Jonathan King jailed.
King, now 58, was given a seven-year jail sentence for a string of sex crimes against schoolboys, who the Old Bailey heard, were lured by his celebrity status.
Cambridge-educated King was convicted of four indecent assaults, buggery and attempted buggery on five youths aged 13 to 15 between 1983 and 1989. He still denies the charges.