Since it was proposed that Alan Jones be appointed to the Police Citizens and Youth Committee, a number of subscribers and readers have emailed complaints citing the so-called “London toilet block incident” in December 1988. The best way of dealing with this is simply to reproduce some of the press cutting at the time, so here goes.

Re The Parrot and the London toilet incident.

This incident is so often referred to, but how many of us know what really happened , or can even accurately recall those details on the public record?

All I can remember is the arrest and a Daily Mirror (?) front page featuring some high flying mates of Jones saying what a wonderful bloke he was. Then the charges were dropped.

Crikey could perform an important service to us all by reassembling the facts of this matter: when was it, what were the charges, why were they dropped. What was the media reaction , maybe someone has kept the front page splash? If so, I’d love to see it scanned into your site.

I suppose it’s unlikely that anyone could track down the arresting officers and the legal people who decided not to proceed. It’s possible one of this lot would shed some light on the affair after so many years.

Many thanks if you or the subscribers can help.




Sydney Morning Herald, 7 Dec 1988, Page 3

Alan Jones would vigorously defend a charge of committing an indecent act in the City of London, his solicitors said today.

Following an application by his barrister, the Sydney radio announcer was remanded on unconditional bail.

His case will be heard on January 25 at the Marlborough Street Courts.

London police allege that Jones, 45, the former coach of the Wallabies rugby union team, committed an indecent act in a public lavatory in Broadwick Street, central London, yesterday.

But Jones, in a statement read outside the court by his solicitor, said he was of good character and was innocent.

His solicitor said that Jones could have left the court by a back entrance, but had elected to face the press.

Police dropped a more serious charge against Jones, that of outraging public decency, a common-law charge with a possible jail sentence.

Instead, he will face the court under the by-laws of the City of Westminster and, if found guilty, could face a fine.

Jones, who was met at the court by a large contingent of British and Australian media, was in Britain for the intervarsity rugby matches. In his only direct comment to reporters, he said he had cancelled plans to attend today’s big match at Twickenham.

He was appointed coach of the Wallabies in 1984 and guided the team through one of its most successful periods, including a grand slam tour of Britain and France in 1984.

He taught at Brisbane Grammar School and The King’s School, Parramatta, before moving to Canberra.

* The NSW Minister for Corrective Services, Mr Yabsley, is still considering whether Jones will be retained as a consultant to his department.

Mr Yabsley announced a week ago that Jones had been contracted to conduct a pilot program to help prison officers improve their self-esteem, and that a permanent program could be set up.

Alan Jones: My week of torment

Sun Herald, Dec 11, 1988

RADIO star Alan Jones last night told The Sun-Herald about his feelings during the worst week of his life. The 2UE breakfast announcer said: “The first thing is my lawyers have told not to say anything about the incident.

“Whatever the charges are I will be defending them. I am not an immoral nor an indecent person. Therefore I will be defending them.

“But I know that there are people in worse predicaments than mine.


“You’ve got to fight when the odds are against you – when they’re stacked up against you you’ve got to try to defend yourself.

“I’ve been fortified by phenomenal support from friends here and the response at home. My job is to make sure that I don’t let down those people who believe in me. I’m not in the business of saying one thing publicly and betraying that by doing another thing privately.

“On the other hand there are a lot of innocent people killed at level crossings.


“I don’t want to say it, but yes it is frightening, facing charges when you know you are innocent.

“I haven’t slept for a week and for most of the time I had no idea what my left hand or right hand was doing.

“By now I’ve had the first decent night’s sleep since it happened and I’m ready to kick a few goals now, perhaps even a few heads.”




Sydney Morning Herald, 23 Dec 1988, Page 2

Alan Jones, the 2UE broadcaster, would be back on air in January and there would be a “lot of people with egg on their face”.

That was the response last night from Mr Nigel Milan, the chief executive of the Bond Radio Network, to the news that a charge against Mr Jones of committing an act of indecency had been dropped.

Mr Jones issued a statement yesterday through his solicitor, Lord Mishcon, and his manager, Mr Harry M Miller, which said that the charge had been discontinued and there was no need for him to attend any court hearing.

Lord Mishcon, an English solicitor who is currently in Australia, said he would be applying for costs on Mr Jones’s behalf.

Mr Jones was alleged by London police to have committed an indecent act in a public lavatory in Broadwick Street, central London, on December 6.

He was accused initially of outraging public decency, a common-law offence carrying a possible jail sentence.

This charge was dropped by police, who continued with the charge of committing an act of indecency under the by-laws of the City of Westminster.

In his statement Mr Jones said: “There was never any truth in this allegation and I am naturally relieved that the charge has been unreservedly withdrawn.”

Mr Milan said Mr Jones was still in London, and likely to return to Australia after Christmas.

“It’s obviously been a very traumatic and trying time for him,” Mr Milan said.

He said he had been asked by Mr Jones’s lawyers not to discuss the circumstances of the charges and their subsequent dismissals, “but obviously the Crown Prosecutor just dropped the case”.

“We’re absolutely delighted for Alan and 2UE,” Mr Milan said. “We’ve supported him unequivocally from the beginning.”

Mr Jones would be back in the breakfast announcer’s chair no later than January 16. It would be up to him how he dealt with the episode on air, Mr Milan said.


Sydney Morning Herald, January 27, 1989

Mr Alan Jones, the broadcaster and former Australian Rugby coach, was awarded 70 pounds ($A140.90) costs when an indecency charge against him was formally dropped here today.

Mr Jones was not at Marlborough Street Magistrate’s Court when the prosecutor, Mr Ian Baker, said a notice of discontinuance had been served.

“This matter is in the court’s register for academic purposes only,” he said.

The magistrate, Mr John Nichols, awarded Mr Jones the money out of public funds.

Mr Jones, 47, was arrested in London’s West End on December 5 last year.

The prosecution dropped the more serious of two indecency charges against him before the matter came to court the following day.

The minor charge of committing an indecent act was dropped on December 22. Mr Jones had denied all charges.

Summing of from Crikey

So there you have it. Jones was charged but they were quickly dropped so you have to accept his innocence. The lad has never really spoken about what actually did happen in the toilet block but without charges he is not bound to speak about.

Peter Fray

Fetch your first 12 weeks for $12

Here at Crikey, we saw a mighty surge in subscribers throughout 2020. Your support has been nothing short of amazing — we couldn’t have got through this year like no other without you, our readers.

If you haven’t joined us yet, fetch your first 12 weeks for $12 and start 2021 with the journalism you need to navigate whatever lies ahead.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey