The jury delivers its verdict, the gavel bangs and the Mayfair pavement will never be the same. Millionaire publicist Max Clifford has been found guilty of eight counts of indecent assault against teenage girls. He now has the same social standing as a dog-turd. With complete predictably, his celebrity bedfellows – with X-Factor impresario Simon Cowell and Dragons’ Denizen Theo Paphitis to the fore – trample over each other in the rush to escape from the sticky deposit that has so annoyingly spoiled their perfectly airbrushed lives.

Distancing

In media-manipulated circles this is called ‘distancing’, although it happens at the same speed as someone with a dose of the shits rushing to the toilet. This is where Clifford’s business now finds itself as his longstanding friends scamper off with their fingers tightly clenched over their noses.

In media-manipulated circles this is called ‘distancing’, although it happens at the same speed as someone with a dose of the shits rushing to the toilet

Prior to the trial, the whiff of impending ordure around Clifford had already forced him to downscale his business. He moved from Mayfair to Somewhere Other than Mayfair, where rents are much lower. How his “all female staff of eight” reacted to this postcode humiliation is uncertain. But the phrase “all female staff” takes on creepy overtones in light of Clifford’s conviction.

“Modern public relations activity”

Even creepier is the statement issued by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR). “Mr Clifford has never signed himself up to industry recognised professional standards, nor is his line of work akin to anything that is undertaken by credible and accountable public relations professionals. There is also no evidence that he has ever engaged in what the CIPR and our members understand as modern public relations activity”.

If, for all these years, Max Clifford hasn’t been providing “modern public relations activity” to celebrity clients, then what has he been providing? Clifford’s dog-turd has been hosed off the Mayfair pavement but something still stinks.