The children’s entertainer and artist was exposed in April as the subject of an international investigation called Operation Yewtree, a police op set up after claims of sexual abuse were made against BBC presenter Jimmy Savile.
The 83-year-old, who maintains his innocence to 16 charges and is expected to plead not guilty when his trial starts in April, is accused of assaulting four alleged victims – aged between seven and 19 – dating as far back as the 1960s. The charges range from indecent assault upon a minor in the 1960s to four counts of taking indecent images of a child in the first half of 2012.
2. Joel Madden drug bust
When 5gms of marijuana was found in the hotel room of visiting US rock star Joel Madden in June, the conspiracy theorists came out in force with numerous bizarre claims including that cleaners had placed the drugs in Madden’s room to sabotage the new Echo Entertainment CEO John Redmond in the interests of James Packer’s rival Crown Casino.
As Madden’s Voice colleague Seal ranted on his behalf – and later apologised said rant – the Good Charlotte frontman acknowledged his part in the melee, posting “I hope this didn’t cause too much drama for anyone”. He wasn’t charged but was turfed from The Darling apartments.
3. Miranda Kerr loses contract after contract after contract
As her three top sponsors closed the door on their associations, Miranda Kerr maintained a stiff upper lip and claimed it was she who was leaving them.
A month later she and Victoria’s Secret ended their association – the rumours she had been dumped for being “difficult” and “stand-offish with the girls” was denied by Kerr. She made the choice, she said.
Then in November, the month after she and husband Orlando Bloom announced their split, Spanish clothing line Mango dumped her as the face of the brand after one year.
4. Ben Barba and his estranged wife’s bloody lip
Former Canterbury Bulldogs star and 2012 Dally M Medal winner Ben Barba was suspended by his club in February due to off-field behavioural issues.
He would admit to having problems with gambling and alcohol. Soon after his estranged partner Ainslie Currie, the mother of his two children, posted a photo of herself with a bloodied lip and alleged Barba had hit her.
The incident prompted an investigation by the NRL into the way in which the Bulldogs had managed the incident following suspicions it had been covered up by the club which was accused of failing to enforce Barba’s rehabilitation.
The NRL found the Bulldogs had acted properly. Barba has since signed with the Broncos and has reunited with Currie.
5. Nathan Rees’ sordid parklife
Politicians engaging in steamy affairs is nothing new however it always manages to garner public fascination. This year, Nathan Rees was the man who had everyone talking when the Former NSW premier admitted to engaging in a relationship and sexual encounters with a public housing tenant.
The pair met at a community gathering, with the woman later asking for his assistance regarding a police matter involving the alleged failure of officers to arrest someone who had assaulted her son. As a result, Rees stood aside from the shadow cabinet.
6. Mel Doyle loses Sunrise gig
After building the Sunrise program into the nation’s most watched breakfast show during an 11 year career alongside host David Koch, Melissa Doyle announced she was leaving in June.
The truth, as insiders at the Seven Network were quick to point out, was that she had been replaced by a younger woman, Samantha Armytage.
Executives may have been justified in making the call – the show’s ratings have lifted since Armytage joined the cast but the fallout was immense.
7. Reece Mastin Twitter scandal
It wouldn’t be a scandal list without a sexting incident. Teen pop sensation Mastin likes to think of himself as a bad boy and that was demonstrated in May when he was allegedly caught attempting to sext another girl.
The X-Factor winner, who has been dating Home and Away hottie Rhiannon Fish for more than a year, became embroiled in a Twitter scandal after a fan alleged he tried to solicit nude images from her.
Someone using Mastin’s Twitter account asked a Newcastle teen to send a “secret snapchat”.
Mastin took to twitter at the time to thank his fans who “didn’t take part and believe this stupid thing”, however he didn’t deny the incident.
8. Mel B quits Australia due to visa bungle
In February, Spice Girl import and X Factor judge Melanie “B” Brown announced she was packing her bags and moving back to LA with her family after encountering “visa issues”.
The couple applied for citizenship in 2012 and talked of buying a house here but their plans were derailed when actor Eddie Murphy, the father of Brown’s second child, put his foot down on his daughter’s permanentl move to Australia.
This was exposed in court after Brown tried to skip out on Channel Seven and move to Nine’s Australia’s Got Talent.
9. Married Lote Tuqiri’s affair with Irish reality star
It was the story that shocked family and friends of former Wallabies star Lote Tuqiri: his affair with Dublin Wives star Danielle Meagher. While playing for Irish squad Leinster, Tuqiri and the buxom blonde had a one month romance that ended when she learned he was still married to wife Rebekka, with whom he has two young children. Meagher was heartbroken and “shocked”. Tuqiri – who is yet to comment on the drama – rushed back to Australia to try and save his marriage.
10. Drone invades Hawko’s Bali wedding
Paparazzi photographers will stop at nothing to get a million dollar shot and at Jennifer Hawkins’s lavish Balinese wedding one zealous freelance photographer enlisted the help of a $2000 remote controlled drone to capture aerial images of Hawko marrying her chippie partner. However things took an unexpected turn when Balinese security guards told the pap, “Land it, pack it up, or we will shoot it down,” and a sniper was recruited to shoot it down.
Hawkins went close to preserving her exclusive magazine deal – although pap photographers fighting in the driveway did slightly tarnish the big day.