BARM/ Fame Pictures
After a whirlwind, sanctuary-denying spin around Asia, onetime British glam rocker Gary Glitter returned to his native England Friday morning, vowing to clear his name after a "travesty of justice" led him to spend 27 months in a Vietnam prison on charges of child molestation.
Greeted at London's Heathrow airport by an overflowing contingent of media, police and curiosity seekers, the 64-year-old, called his conviction in Vietnam a "charade" and is demanding around-the-clock protection lest any would-be vigilantes not get the memo on his innocence.
Though he was due to appear for a hearing at Uxbridge Magistrates' Court upon his arrival in the U.K., Glitter, whose real name is Paul Gadd, failed to show.
District Judge David Simpson said the singer had "demonstrated his desire to avoid the jurisdiction of this court" and gave him three days in which to register as a sex offender in the country.
Glitter has 21 days to appeal the order.
His attorney, David Corker, was present for the hearing and said his client was the victim of an "unfair trial" and that the system of justice in Vietnam is "far, far below what is acceptable in western European standards."
Glitter was convicted in 2006 of molesting two prepubescent Vietnamese girls.
Corker also added that Glitter was nonetheless "pleased to be back in the U.K."—this despite his repeated declarations that he would not return be returning to England and failed attempts to relocate to three Asian nations in as many days.
As for what Glitter plans on doing in the U.K., receiving medical attention is at the top of his list. While holed up in the Bangkok airport this week, Glitter complained of an ear ache and an apparent heart attack.
"The last few days, as you know, he has been traveling around Asia and that time was not wasted," Crocker said. "It enabled Mr. Gadd and others to put into practice a plan for his proper and safe arrival.
"Mr. Gadd is not a well man, he needs medical attention and is also, unsurprisingly, concerned about his safety and these past few days have enabled the Metropolitan Police and I, on his behalf, to put into plan a proper procedure for his protection and his well-being.