A Lewisham driver who was the first person to be charged with sex offences in the wake of the Jimmy Savile scandal took his own life, a coroner has ruled.

David Smith, 67, was found dead in his flat in Effingham Road after he failed to turn up to Southwark Crown Court for the start of his trial last October.

Mr Smith faced two counts of indecent assault, two of indecency and one of a serious sexual offence all relating to a 12-year-old boy, between 1 June and 21 July 1984.

Southwark Coroner’s Court coroner Dr Andrew Harris said Smith, who has previously been described in court as a BBC driver, took a "fatal combination" of drugs and left a note by his bed.

Mr Smith was charged as part of Operation Yewtree - the national investigation into historical abuse cases prompted after claims were made against disgraced TV presenter Savile.

He was a prolific sex offender whose first conviction was in 1966. He had 22 convictions for sexual offences against young boys.

He was described in court last year as a former BBC driver but the BBC says it has no record of him having worked for the corporation.