File photo of British disc jockey and BBC TV presenter Jimmy Savile at Madame Tussauds museum in London.

The number of people who say they were sexually attacked by Jimmy Savile has reached 450, police said on Wednesday.

Detectives said that 589 complainants - the majority of which were young girls at the times of the alleged attacks - had contacted police as part of a wider inquiry into sexual attacks carried out by Savile and others.

Commander Peter Spindler said a report into Savile’s crimes will be published in the New Year. He said: “These levels of reporting of sexual abuse against a single individual are unprecedented.”

Meanwhile, an inquiry is under way into allegations of a paedophile ring at the top of British society, Scotland Yard confirmed on Wednesday night. Detectives are examining claims senior politicians abused children in the 1980s and escaped justice because of their powerful connections. The investigation, codenamed Operation Fairbank, has been operating in secret since the claims were first made by MP Tom Watson in October.

He told MPs that police should investigate claims of a “powerful paedophile ring” linked to Parliament. Police stressed the operation is a “scoping exercise” rather than a full inquiry, but sources said arrests could be made within weeks.

Scotland Yard has arrested six men and questioned a seventh since complaints against Savile and other TV personalities were triggered by a TV documentary. Among those interviewed are PR consultant Max Clifford, comedian Freddie Starr, DJ Dave Lee Travis and paedophile Gary Glitter. They all deny any wrongdoing

Savile, who died in 2011 aged 84, is now accused of being one of the most prolific sex attackers and paedophiles in modern history.

A raft of inquiries have been launched since the scandal unfolded, including three BBC reviews.

A Department of Health investigation is looking at Savile’s activities at Broadmoor, Stoke Mandeville Hospital and Leeds General Infirmary.

Other inquiries include the director of public prosecutions’ review into the decision not to prosecute the DJ and TV presenter in 2009. - Daily Mail