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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 December 2005, 12:19 GMT
Glitter 'pays money to accusers'
Gary Glitter
Glitter has denied all allegations of abuse
Former singer Gary Glitter paid $2,000 (1,150) each to the families of two Vietnamese girls he is accused of sexually abusing, his lawyer has said.

The money was paid two weeks ago "for co-operation" in the upcoming legal case, Le Thanh Kinh said.

Both families have since written to the authorities asking them to drop child rape charges, which they have done.

But Glitter, who denies all charges, is still thought to be facing charges of child molestation.

Police said they had not produced enough evidence to bring the child rape charges to court.

If we pay the money for the two families, when this case goes to court, maybe Mr Gary will receive a lighter penalty
Le Thanh Kinh
Lawyer for Gary Glitter

If convicted on those charges, Glitter, 61, could have faced death by firing squad.

"If we pay the money for the two families, when this case goes to court, maybe Mr Gary will receive a lighter penalty," his lawyer told the AP news agency.

"After receiving the money, they informed the investigation bureau that they don't want to go to court and they want to drop the case."

Prosecutor Nguyen Van Xung told AP the money would have no bearing on whether the case goes to trial but that "the court may consider it as one factor to lessen the sentence".

But Stephen Jakobi from campaign group Fair Trials Abroad described the Glitter payments as "shameful".

If found guilty of child molestation, Glitter - whose real name is Paul Francis Gadd - faces up to 12 years in jail.

Allegations denied

BBC correspondent Tony Cheng said that, without the co-operation of the two girls, aged 11 and 12, who initiated the arrest, it was unclear what evidence the Vietnamese authorities could rely on.

Glitter denies allegations that he molested the girls at his home in the resort of Vung Tau, where he has lived for the last six months.

He was arrested at Ho Chi Minh City airport on 19 November as he tried to leave Vietnam for Thailand.

His detention was extended by four months at the start of December while the claims were investigated.

Glitter was found guilty in the UK in 1999 of possessing child pornography and served two months in jail.

Hear details about the charges Glitter could still face

Glitter police 'drop rape charge'
26 Dec 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Glitter 'admits to girl at house'
08 Dec 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Four month detention for Glitter
25 Nov 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Glitter 'denies abuse charges'
22 Nov 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Glitter 'had sex with girl, 12'
21 Nov 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Gary Glitter arrested in Vietnam
19 Nov 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Glitter deported from Cambodia
07 Jan 03 |  Asia-Pacific
Fall of Glitter the pop superstar
07 Jan 03 |  Entertainment

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