Elton John and his husband David Furnish were called as witnesses for the defence during Kevin Spacey’s ongoing sex offence trial on Monday.
The Rocket Man singer and his producer partner appeared separately in Southwark Crown Court via video link from a boardroom in Monaco. They were asked questions relating to one of the actor’s accusers, who claimed that Spacey grabbed him by the crotch when he was driving the actor to John and Furnish’s White Tie & Tiara Ball in 2004 or 2005.
According to The Associated Press, Furnish supported Spacey’s testimony by stating that he only ever attended the event, which raised funds for the Elton John AIDS Foundation, in 2001.
He testified that he had gone through the photo archives and could only find pictures of the Oscar-winning actor that year. He insisted it was not possible for celebrity guests to attend without being snapped.
“It never happened,” Furnish stated. “It was understood that we were promoting a charity that involves the eradication of stigma around the disease and if a celebrity wanted to come they would be photographed and appear in OK (magazine).”
Furnish confirmed that he recognised the alleged victim and added, “He was a little bit cheeky, he always had a cheeky smile on his face. You could always engage in playful banter with him.”
John testified that he did not recognise the accuser’s name or face and that he assumed Spacey had come straight to the ball, where he “arrived in white tie”, from his private jet.
He told the court that the American Beauty star stayed over at their home in Windsor after the event but never on any other occasion. However, the Mini Cooper Spacey bought during the charity auction remained in storage there for some time.
Spacey has pleaded not guilty to 12 charges of sexual assault, indecent assault and causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent. The counts relate to four men and alleged incidents which occurred between 2001 and 2013.
The trial continues.