The Who's Pete Townshend: Child porn arrest saved my life

The Who's Pete Townshend has said his child abuse pics arrest saved his life — as it led him to discover he had bowel cancer.

Guitarist Townshend, 74, admitted using his credit card to access a sick website in 2003, although he downloaded no images.

He was given a police caution and put on the Sex Offenders Register for five years — claiming he was only trying to prove banks were complicit with vile online pedophile networks.

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He told the Mail On Sunday: "Just for the record, my arrest was probably one of the best things that ever happened to me. It probably saved my life."

Townshend explained that he had been putting off having a bowel cancer check until cops raided his home.

He added: “While I was waiting for the police to go through my computers I decided to have that long-postponed colonoscopy. The doctor showed me the polyp. He said ‘this would have killed you in six months’. So it sort of saved my life.”

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Pete Townshend from The Who arrives at JFK Airport on Aug. 29, 2019 in New York City. Townshend says his child pornography arrest led to his colon cancer diagnosis, which saved his life.

Pete Townshend from The Who arrives at JFK Airport on Aug. 29, 2019 in New York City. Townshend says his child pornography arrest led to his colon cancer diagnosis, which saved his life. (Getty)

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Townshend, who survived abuse as a child, said the stigma of his brush with the law still haunts him.

He added: “It’s something I think about a lot. I’m very much involved in supporting charities that deal with the consequences of the sexual abuse of children, including those that are photographed. So no, I don’t think it has passed.”

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Townshend and Who frontman Roger Daltrey, 75, are the only surviving founders of the 60s superstar group.

Drummer Keith Moon died of a drug overdose in 1978 aged 32 and bassist John Entwistle had a fatal heart attack in 2002 aged 57.

The band is due to release a new album — titled "Who" — next month.

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This article originally appeared in The Sun.

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