*This post is no longer being updated
What is perhaps most notable in placing a series of press reports on abuse scandals over any period of time is that there’s a lot of shock and outrage and not much action from anyone in a position of duty, responsibility or power to do anything except to apparently express more shock and outrage, this time on our behalf, before swiftly moving on. Something the collection of press reports at SpotlightOnAbuse ably demonstrate and which forms the spine of this chronology. This unfinished post is my ongoing response to an extremely powerful piece I’ve been digesting for a while now: What the Fluck! a blog post by Adam Curtis ( 5 December 2013) on his blog The Medium and The Message. A bit about Adam Curtis –
“He says, “My favourite theme is power and how it works in society”, and his works explore areas of sociology, philosophy and political history. He describes his work as journalism that happens to be expounded upon through the medium of film. His films have won six BAFTAs. He has been closely associated with the BBC throughout his film making career.”
The Missing List
- May 1982: Tam Paton’s 200 page dossier
- August 1983: Dickens Dossier A
- 24/11/1983: Minutes of meeting between LB, GD, who else
- 24/11/1983: Dickens Dossier B
- 18/01/1984: Dickens Dossier C
13 July 1962: Macmillan’s Night of the Long Knives – Longer blog post – A fly in the reshuffle. Sir Peter Rawlinson, Sir Ian Horobin’s defence counsel is given the role of Attorney General just as Horobin’s trial is about to begin. Tony Hetherington, a lawyer with the Government Legal Service (who later becomes DPP in 1977 and takes the decision to prosecute Jeremy Thorpe) becomes part of the legal team supporting the Attorney-General and the Solicitor General in 1962.
Peter Righton in Devizes, Wiltshire: After leaving Redhill Righton worked for two years (1963-65) as a tutor and organiser for the Workers’ Educational Association in Wiltshire; his address was given as North Flat, Marden Grange, Marden, Devizes, Wiltshire.
In July 1963, a police investigation began into complaints against Righton of abuse; around time he wrote several potential suicide notes admitting having done harm to boys. However, Righton was able to get the investigation dropped after having lunch with a police inspector (Source McKelvie). See Ian Pace’s blog http://wp.me/p2Eg3O-VO
1964: Sir Norman Skelhorne becomes Director of Public Prosecutions (‘DPP’)
Peter Righton from Ian Pace’s blog: From 1965 onwards, Righton established his influence within the world of social work and child care. He became a tutor in charge of a two-year course for child care officers at Keele University from 1965-68 (see Inside Story below); how and when exactly he had become qualified in this field, are who were his referees, are questions the answer to which remains unclear.
27 July 1967 Sexual Offences Act 1967: The Bill received royal assent
8 May 1968: Krays and 15 other members of their “firm” were arrested.
From 1968 to 1971 Peter Righton was a Senior Lecturer at the National Institute of Social Work, a government-funded educational and research centre.
September 1969 – October 1970: Mervyn Harris is interviewing and researching The Dilly Boys at Piccadilly Circus – notably in the run up to and immediately after the General Election.
The Times, January 22nd, 1970 Clifford Longley, ‘Reforming the law on sexual misconduct’ – reports that the Sexual Law Reform Society (SLRS) has been formed with Dr John Robinson, Bishop of Woolwich, Dean of Trinity College Cambridge heads up SLRS
Peter Righton [Ian Pace’s blog]:” The report by Tom Bateman for the BBC Radio 4 Today earlier this week made clear that as early as 1970, Righton was already credited as giving ‘considerable assistance’ to a Home Office report (Advisory Council on CHild Care: Research and Development Committee; Community Homes Project, Second Report (London: Home Office Children’s Department, April 1970).”
18 June 1970: General Election; Ted Heath PM Conservative, defeats Harold Wilson as Labour PM
It was the Sunday People, under the editorship of Geoffrey Pinnington (1972 – 1982), that had first covered Geoffrey Dickens MP calls to outlaw the Paedophile Information Exchange about six months to a year after it had first been formed
Criminal Justice Act 1972 – excludes s.8 SOA 1967 from applying where offences under Indecency with Children Act 1960?
1 March 1972 / Playland/Piccadilly Circus Trial No 1.: Old Bailey Trial of 1 March 1972 (reported in Evening Standard) – ref. The Dilly Boys, Mervyn Harris
The Times, July 6th, 1972 Basil Gingell, ‘Dr Robinson puts case for age of consent to be 14′
In November – December 1973 Mervyn Harris, South African journalist and author of The Dilly Boys which examines Pi also published a three-part article in The Spectator (On the Dilly – Part 2, 1 December 1973, On the Dilly – Part 3, 8 December 1973)
- Savile publishes his autobiography ‘As it Happens’ in 1974
- Document claims Royal Ulster Constabulary Army knew about Kincora in 1974 (Irish Times, 26 August 1985)
- 28 February 1974: General Election – Harold Wilson, Labour replaces Edward Heath – hung parliament – Johnnie Savile, Savile’s elder brother stands as a liberal candidate for Battersea North.
- 17 May 1974: Porn rampant in Broadmoor (The Guardian, 17 May 1974)
10 October 1974: second General Election – Wilson wins with slim majority
1974 – 1979: Melvyn Rees is Home Secretary under James Callaghan as Prime Minister , Labour
1 June 1975 – ‘Outlaw these vile men, says MP’
19 June 1975 The evil men in Playland (Daily Mail 20/09/1975): Charles Hornby pleads guilty
Spotlight: The Playland Cover-Up August 1975
Bank Holiday Monday 26 August 1975: Campaign for Homosexual Equality (‘CHE’) Annual Conference: Keith Hose of the Paedophile Information Exchange urges CHE to vote for developing an informed perspective on paedophilia which is passed. Keith Hose asked 1,000 delegates at CHE to stand up if they had no sexual interest in children. It was reported below that one third remained seated giving PIE 300 or so potential members to be recruited immediately. (Legalise Child Sex Call, Sheffield Morning Telegraph, 26/08/1975)
Spotlight: CHE and PIE: John Torode Letters to the Guardian
Antony Grey: – “In September 1975 I attended, together with the Albany Trust’s incoming Chairman, Harold Haywood, a seminar on sexual minorities and their problems which had been organised by MIND.” (see Ian Pace’s blog further )
20 September 1975: The Squire’s secret life in the Playland of Vice (Daily Mail)
23 September 1975:
The Times, January 22nd, 1976 Ronald Butt, ‘Who really wants a change in the age of consent?’
5 April 1976: James Callaghan takes over as Labour PM on Wilson’s resignation
Johnny Go Home the book by Meakin & Willis is published in 1976
- 1976 12 August 1976: Tom Driberg MP dies.
- Daily Mail, 30 November 1976 – Playland Trial No. 2 – David Archer’s ‘dossier threat’. Four defendants in Playland trial have some of their convictions quashed and sentences set aside reducing their overall sentence. While this would have occurred within the time frame of Sir Norman Skelhorne holding the title of Director of Public Prosecutions there does not appear to be mention of this in his 1981 Memoirs ‘Public Prosecutor’ (a reversal of much of the decisions of the Old Bailey when it sat in September 1975). Skelhorne however does have something to say on the Maxwell Confait case which may be of interest which I will also post here.
- 24 November 1976, “a violent storm burst around the Albany Trust. Mrs Mary Whitehouse, honorary General Secretary of The National Viewers’ and Listeners’ Association, got shockwaves of national publicity for her claim (in a speech to a ‘Christian Lunch and Dinner Clubs’ meeting at Central Hall, Westminster) that the Albany Trust – which she described as ‘the homosexual lobby front runner’…providing funding for paedophiles (see Ian Pace’s blog here)
- 1977 Savile wins Mary Whitehouse Award for ‘wholesome entertainment’.
- Home Office VSU starts funding PIE – between now and 1980 PIE will receive £70k (about £400k) in hard-working taxpayers’ money in order to campaign on issues such as lowering the age of consent to 4.
- August 1977 Hotel ban on paedophiles (The Times, 25/08/1977) Shaftesbury Hotel, London refuse PIE meeting booking after protests by staff
- Monday 19 September 1977: PIE meeting to discuss campaign to lower age of consent takes place at Red Lion Square. ‘Three Men Fined after Paedophile Meeting’, (The Times, September 21st, 1977) GLF veterans acted as stewards for a PIE meeting in Red Lion Square meeting in 1977 (PIE and the Gay Left, Lucy Robinson
- 1978 Home Office infiltration by Paedophile Information Exchange: Steven Adrian Smith, Barry Cutler and Clifford Hindley
- Bennett-England eventually wrote a letter to The Times in January 1978 complaining that for some time the Albany Trust had been the victim of ‘a particularly vicious campaign’ and was ‘completely powerless’ to defend itself against a barrage of MPs’ questions. (See Antony Grey – further Ian Pace’ blog)
- 1979: Year of a General Election
- May 1979
- 1 May 1979 – Voice of the Child in Care (ChildLine’s precursor) is established 3 May General Election – Thatcher leading Conservatives win, Callaghan leading Labour loses. David Steel is leading the Liberals.
- 4 May 1979 – Wille Whitelaw is Home Secretary, Rochdale Alternative Press publishes on Cyril Smith: Chilling claims that Cyril Smith child abuse scandal was concealed to avoid crisis at Westminster (Daily Mail, 23/11/2012) David Stanley is abusing at Cotsbrook Hall Care Home Shifnal, Shropshire during 1979, owned by Bryn Estyn owners, North Wales
- November 1979 Monday 5 November Guy Fawkes Night: Martin Allen, the 15 year old son of the British Commissioner to Australia’s chauffer’s son goes missing
- Islington Mayor Arthur Bell’s Chauffeur says I’m Ruined when he faces sack after ‘sex with boys’ case (Islington Gazette Friday 16/11/1979): David Gibson, 28 was convicted with old friend James Holland who he’d known since 1968. He would attend Gibson’s flat in Woodford Green. Parents of Finsbury Corps of Drums were meeting to decide his future with the band. We trapped little boy’s friend (News of the World 18/11/1979) Reg Burnham, PIE member, 56 married with 2 children pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting an 8 year old boy
- 1980 January 1980
“The now-disgraced TV and radio presenter, who died last year aged 84, approached Mrs Thatcher at a Downing Street event on 6 February 1980, while he was heading the £10m Stoke Mandeville appeal.
At the Number 10 meeting – a presentation ceremony for the children’s charity the NSPCC – Savile asked the then-prime minister how he might “pursue the question of tax deduction for charitable donations”, the papers show.” bbc report
- 6 February 1980: Savile attends 10 Downing Street and approaches Thatcher re tax deductions for charitable donations
- 19 February 1980: Reports on Kincora abuse scandal start to appear in the press, Social Work Today (19/02/1982) Brian Todd, a social worker is horrified by British Association of Social Workers NI branch “non-reaction”
- 21 February 1980: According to a letter from the private secretary at the Treasury to Number 10 dated 21 February 1980, the time period for charitable covenants was to be relaxed from seven years to four – and the measure would be announced in that year’s Budget
Savile in Ireland: Charles Haughey and Savile sat down for tea at the CRC on 26 May 1980.
1981 Maxwell Confait case (Hetherington’s obituary The Independent, 06/04/2007)
“At the start of the Eighties, public disquiet was beginning to grow over early examples of miscarriages of justice, with the trigger case being that of Maxwell Confait, a murdered male prostitute. Three educationally subnormal boys – all younger than 18 – were arrested and charged. While held by the police, they were subjected to long and intensive interrogation without the presence of a lawyer. All confessed and were convicted, although new evidence eventually showed those convictions to be unsafe. The fallout of the Confait case was the creation of the Royal Commission on Criminal Procedure, headed by Sir Cyril Philips, which reported in 1981 and significantly affected the remainder of Hetherington’s career as DPP. That report led to the landmark Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984, known fondly today by criminal law specialists as Pace, which set out strict guidelines for the provision of legal representation for suspects in custody and for police interviews. The Philips report also laid the groundwork for a subsequent piece of legislation, the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985, which created the Crown Prosecution Service.” http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/sir-henry-fisher-6148367.html
(March – May 1981 furore over Dickens MP use of Parliamentary Privilege) Why the DPP resurrected an ancient law to deal with paedophiles (The Guardian, 14/03/1981, Alan Rusbridger) Criticism as ‘judge made law’
The Sunday People don’t appear to have reported the Elm Guest House raid in August 1982 although under the editorship of (the later, Sir) Nicholas Lloyd (1982-1983) The Sunday People did publish articles in 1983. Elm Guest House: How a powerful paedophile network was covered-up for 34 years (August 1982)
- Wednesday 29 July 1981: Prince Charles marries Princess Diana Lost boys last walk is retraced (Daily Express, 04/08/1981) ‘Boy who vanished on day of Royal Wedding’ (Daily Mirror, 03/03/1982) 9 year old Vishal Mehotra goes missing on the Royal Wedding day. Leaving his home in Holm Bush Road, Putney to go to a local shop he vanished until in March 1983, 6 months later his remains are found. Just over a month before the Royal One Year Anniversary Elm Guest House is raided, perhaps significant in the context of what Scotland Yard may have known concerning Kings & Queens parties taking place. Spotlight: Was the investigation by Scotland Yard into missing boys stopped?
- September 1981 19/09/1981: Prince Charming by Adam & the Ants reaches No 1 – the video features Diana Dors.
- November 1981 Howard Marks ‘Mr Nice Guy’ Old Bailey trial – Marks found not guilty of plotting to smuggle cannabis into Britain and the Crown is forced to admit he was an MI6 recruit.
- 1982 Hackney social workers allow unnamed man to return home – later in 1994 Judge Richardson QC will rule his previous convictions will prevent a fair trial Spy’s Complaint Not Upheld
- February 1982 Sex ring cover-up inquiry (News of the World, 14/02/1982) Judge led inquiry Case embarrassed Security Chiefs (Glasgow Herald, 17/02/1982) : Marks recruited to trap an IRA arms and drugs dealer who remained free in South of France. British Agents in Vice Ring Probe (News of the World, 21/02/1982, Gordon Leak) Ulster Secretary Jim Prior orders a public inquiry to determine the part played by fanatical Protestant para-military groups like Tara.
- March 1982 I’ll expose top men’s vice ring says killer (News of the World, 21/03/1982) Kincora, Colin Wallace
- May 1982 I’ll shame the stars: Sex secrets threat by pop boss (News of the World, 09/05/1982, Andrew Drummond) Following the jailing of Tam Paton for offences against 15-20 year old boys and men, ex-manager of the Bay City Rollers says he has a 200 page dossier containing damning evidence and photographs, “I’m talking about young male prostitutes and I’m talking about respectable people.”
- June 1982 Bow Wow Wow’s I want Candy single reaches peak position at No.9 in UK charts (05/06/1982). The “ethos” behind Bow Wow Wow was recently written about in GQ Magazine (24/03/2014) in Fred Vermorel’s profile on Malcolm McClaren. Adam Ant tops the chart for 2 weeks at No 1 with Goody Two Shoes.
Wednesday June 23 1982
July 1982 On 20th July 1982, Margaret Thatcher told Parliament that Prime had been charged under the Official Secrets Act. (Guardian 21/07/1982) Seven weeks on from Jilly Cooper’s journal entry for The Common Years, news of a raid at an an address in Rocks Lane, Barnes breaks in the national press…
- Saturday 7 August 1982 The Elm Guest House story at Rocks Lane, Barnes, West London, broke on 7th August 1982, when the Daily Express reported that “at least three MPs, a member of staff at Buckingham Palace, and leading lawyers, doctors and City businessmen” were questioned as part of inquires relating to “a vice ring” in “a brothel in a smart London suburb”.
- Monday 9 August 1982 Spotlight: Was Scotland Yard investigation into missing boys stopped? More houses face probe by vice team (Daily Express, Monday 09/08/1982)
- Friday 14 August 1982 Police hunt VIPs in den of vice (News of the World, 14/08/1982, Jeff Edwards): Visitors alleged to be MPs, Buckingham Palace staff, doctors, lawyers and businessmen.
“Scotland Yard has denied there had been a cover-up to try to protect MPs and other important visitors to the house. They say the case is a routine investigation being conducted by officers from Richmond police station. Clients are not normally involved in investigations into brothels. But because a schoolboy is alleged to have been one of the major attractions at Rocks Lane police say clients must be traced.”
- Tuesday 25 July 1982 Charles Oxley who had infiltrated PIE, attends one of their meetings but Peter Bremner announced that he thinks PIE has been infiltrated and Oxley considers his position untenable, in attending any further.
- September 1982 Head hits out at in ‘scandal’ row (Daily Express, 10/09/1982) A lust too gross to allow (The Guardian, 24/09/1982) October 1982 Police drop the worst Elm House charges (Capital Gay, Friday 01/10/1982)
- November 1982 Stalls are down on PIE (Islington Gazette, Friday 04/11/1983): Islington’s Chapel Market traders collected more than 2,000 signatures for a petition calling for the banning of the controversial Paedophile Information Exchange. Signatures included Islington Council Leader Margaret Hodge, former council leader Don Hoodless, Councillor Alex Farrell and the former Mayor of Finsbury Bill Withey. Petition organisers hope to present the petition to Chris Smith MP (Lab: Islington South & Finsbury – now Baron Smith of Finsbury in the House of Lords).
- On Thursday 10th November 1982 Prime was jailed for 38 years, which at the time was one of the longest sentences to be handed down by a British court. “Geoffrey Prime, sentenced to 38 years’ jail yesterday, was rated by the Americans as the most important Russian spy since the war”
- Friday 12 November 1982 Prime had links with child sex group (Daily Mail, Friday 12/11/1982) Elm Defendants speak out (Capital Gay, 12/11/1982) In a written reply to Dickens on Monday 15th November 1982, Thatcher denied that Geoffrey Prime was a PIE member: “I understand that stories that the police found documents in Prime’s house or garage indicating that he was a member of the Paedophile Information Exchange are without foundation, and that nothing was discovered to suggest he was”. (MPs continue to press for debate on Prime, Guardian 16/11/82)
- 1983: Year of General Election in June (Thatcher’s Second Term) During his tenure as Chairman of the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) between 1983 and 1985, Maurice Oberstein convinced the British government of the huge contribution made by the UK music industry’s overseas profits to the exchequer. He was also on the Band Aid committee. At some point during 1983 two members of the Paedophile Information Exchange are interviewed for television about their opinions.
- Len Davis wrote Sex and the Social Worker (Heinemann Educational Books, 1983), which was influential in forming social work practice in residential care, and goes some way to explaining why sexual crime against children was frequently ignored and not subject to investigation. Peter Righton is acknowledged by Davis as having read the draft of this book and “making many valuable and challenging suggestions”.
- In February 1983 John Picton, a former care worker, abducted a boy
- Spotlight: The Spartacus paedophile network was exposed by The Sunday people in February 1983
- Kincoragate: Loose Ends (The Lobster, Feb 1984)
- February 1983 – Exposed the Spartacus travel/child prostitution and tourism network (eight months after the Elm Guest House raid – see below for Jilly Cooper’s The Common Years)
- 27 February 1983 – ‘Evil Menace to Children’
- The Dark Truth about Jimmy Savile (11-13 April 1983, The Sun) A week before the Elm Guest House trial begins Savile chooses to give an interview headlined ‘The Godfather’ serialized over three days in The Sun newspaper, which almost scuppers his chances of a knighthood and putting Thatcher in the awkward position of being turned down  times before reluctant civil servants granted her wish.
- Owners of Elm Guest House, Carol and Haroon Kasir trial started on 18th April 1983 at the Old Bailey.
- May 1983 Elm Guest House Couple Walk Free (Capital Gay, 06/05/1983) A month before the General Election is due to take place Ex-Agents lifts lid on spy ring / Lowdown on Tara homosexuals (Sunday News, 22/05/1983) The amazing story of Officer X: Police fury over sex crime claim (Sunday News, 29/05/1983)
- On Friday 9th June General Election sees Thatcher and the Conservatives returned for a second term.
- Monday 11 June Leon Brittan became Home Secretary in Thatcher’s second term cabinet
- Wednesday 13 June 1983: Alan Clark MP (Con. Plymouth Sutton) writes in his diary:
“In London I collected the coven and off we went to Brooks’s for dinner. At intervals Joei said, “Gosh, Al, are you really a minister, zowee.” Valerie was less forthcoming. Ali sulked and sneered. Driving away, we went past the Ritz and Joei said, “Gosh, is that the Ritz? I wish we could go in there.” “Why?” “To go to bed, of course.” I was thoughtful. I have always been culpably weak in such matters”
August 1983 In August Labour-run Islington Council announces ‘gay jobs pledges’ according to Capital Gay in an attempt at a positive discrimination package which also completely disregarded child protection considerations. Islington takes the wraps off pledges(Capital Gay, 05/08/1983) The previous Thursday Council Leader Margaret Hodge formally proposed the new gay anti-discrimination/ positive discrimination package drafted by the Council’s Policy and Partnership Committee. Unanimously voted through, only Councillor Bob Crossman spoke.
“We discovered that paedophiles had penetrated the network of homes so completely that they had begun using them to procure children. The council had wanted to encourage gay men into childcare in the interests of equal opportunities, but this well-intentioned aim was so naively implemented that paedophiles posed as gay men to take advantage of the policy. The council exempted any man who said he was gay from needing professional qualifications or references, declared gay men less likely to abuse children than heterosexuals as a matter of policy and repeatedly assumed that any criticisms of men who claimed to be gay were motivated purely by homophobia. Even children who tearfully described abuse were considered prejudiced.”
Last month this man killed himself in Thailand after being accused of sexually abusing 300 boys(Mail On Sunday, Eileen Fairweather, 11.6.06)
- Sunday 14/08/1983: ‘Brighton Beasts’ – A 6 year old boy is kidnapped and sexually assaulted by 3 men in a car, Lewes Road, Brighton and left at Newhaven, Sussex. During the last week of August Geoffrey Dickens MP featured in headlines of a variety of newspapers as the police continue to seek the perpetrators of the Brighton attack.
- Saturday 20 August 1983 ‘Outlaw evil child sex peddlers says MP’, (The Daily Mail, 20/08/1983) The Sun’s ‘Ban child sex cult angry MP demands’, The Telegraph’s ‘Ban PIE call’
- Sunday 21/08/1983
- Monday 22/08/1983 In August 1983, The Sun reported that Geoffrey Prime had been a PIE member, and that “angry Americans” were convinced that the Attorney General, Sir Michael Havers, had held back from mentioning this “to avoid embarassing security chiefs”. Sir Michael Havers, complained to the Press Council and his complaint was upheld after The Sun failed to produce any evidence of their claim. (The Times 22/08/83) The Sun and Sir Michael: Press Council rap over spy (The Sun, 22/08/1983)
Jill Knight MP (Con. Edgbaston) and Sir Bernard Braine MP (Con. Castle Point, Essex) back Dickens call to ban PIE. Charles Oxley, PIE infiltrator sent his report to then Home Secretary Willie Whitelaw and asked what he would do if an organisation banded together to make rape legal
Dickens MP posts a letter to Home Secretary Leon Brittan – see Ban Pie Call below Tuesday 23/08/1983
- Top people shield the child sex VIPs (Sunday People?? 23/08/1983)
Sir Bernard Braine MP (Castle Point, Con) and Valerie Riches had teamed up to form The Responsible Society, in order to battle paedophiles. Home Secretary Leon Brittan has informed them he is planning an urgent “council of war” using conspiracy laws, ‘a blitz’ at customs and ‘tough action’ against people who send obscene material through the post. – Scotland Yard sends 2 year report to DPP
- Ban Pie Call (Telegraph, 23/08/1983): Dickens threatens to whip up a backbench revolt
- Sex with Children DPP Gets Names ‘ (Daily Mail, 24/08/1983) Previous evening Scotland Yard sent dossier on PIE to the DPP “naming active supporters of the PIE and giving details of the organisation’s latest activities. The DPP Sir Tony Hetherington, and his staff of lawyers will study this evidence to consider prosecutions. Home Secretary Leon Brittan has called for the same Yard dossier to be on his desk when he returns from holiday on Friday.” Dickens MP also preparing to name a list of paedophiles in the House of Commons under parliamentary privilege.
- ‘Why the Yard acted on PIE’ (Evening Standard, 24/08/1983)
The two-year investigation into PIE began after the prosecution of Tom O’Carroll in 1981 and the DPP dossier was undertaken and produced by just two members of Scotland Yard’s Obscene Publications Squad. Leon Brittan will see the report on his return from holiday on Friday.
- Thursday 25/08/1983 Brittan wants paedophile report (The Telegraph, 25/08/1983): There were two dossiers already being passed to the DPP – One was a dossier on individual PIE members sent to DPP, the other was a ‘A Special report by Scotland Yard on an organisation campaigning for the legalisation of sex between adults and children has been called for by the Home Secretary, Mr Brittan.’ Report suggests Brittan has to request the Scotland Yard Special Report to be sent to him on his return having heard of its imminent publication while he was away on holiday.
News of Dickens dossier reaches Canada
- ‘Public figures named in files on sex offenders in Britain’ (The Global Canada & Mail ,25/08/1983)”Home Secretary Leon Brittan has ordered a copy of the report by tomorrow, his officials said.Mr. Dickens said the Scotland Yard report, like his own dossier, contain the names of a number of top people in public life and show business.The allegations come amid continuing national outrage over an organized abduction and sexual assault on a 6-year-old boy by three men in southern England 10 days ago.”
- Public Figures in Sex Dossier (Lethbridge Herald, Alberta, 25/08/1983)
- Eight top names on my list of shame (Daily Express, 25/08/1983) “One of these people is a friend of mine but you have to be merciless to protect the young,” says Dickens MP.
- David Nicholson-Lord, ‘Police hunting men who assaulted boy lack vital computer software’, (The Times, 25/08/1983)
- Yard send child sex file to DPP (Daily Mirror, 26/08/1983): Two Home Office contract workers sacked once revealed as being member of PIE. See here for further information on Home Office employee Clifford Hindley. Many of the 3,000 calls police received as giving information on the Brighton assault on the 6 year old boy are reported as having been regarded as jilted lovers attempting revenge on their ex-boyfriends?
- Kinky Child Cult wins new recruits (The Sun, 26/08/1983)
- You Scum! The Sun verdict on child sex group (The Sun, 26/08/1983)
Saturday 27/08/1983 Dexys Midnight Runners – Come on Eileen has been Number 1 for 4 weeks.
Sunday 28/08/1983 Campaign for Homosexual Equality Annual Conference takes place in London: CHE voted in an emergency resolution to deplore witch-hunts against minority groups including PIE in the wake of the attack on the 6 year old boy in Brighton. It condemned all violent attacks on children (sexual ones as well, or considered to be one and the same?) and declared support for the Brighton Gay community in the face of concerted efforts to link them with the case.
- ‘What we exposed and they ignored’ Sunday People (28/08/1983)
- ‘The Nasty Nine’ (News of the World (28/08/1983, Michael Parker, Alex White, Alex Marunchak)For the wider context of this article regarding Barry Cutler’s employment at the Home Office see Ian Pace’s post PIE and the Home Office: Three+ members/supporters on inside, funded, magazine printed and phone line
- ‘They even snare kids of four’(News of the World (28/08/1983)
Emblazoned as News of the World shock report. Subtle as ever. Why does Lee Edwards break ranks all of a sudden? He has a 14 year old boyfriend but while the headline suggests outrage at plans to abuse 4 year olds, Edwards discomfort is directed at PIE Executive Committee to insert names of VIPs into a bogus list of members. He wants to expose this sinister plan suggested a week ago, in response to the two year investigation by Scotland Yard and the dossier given to the DPP which rather suggests PIE were a little late with their ‘cunning plan’ ? However one assumes that the plan being published in the press at the same time gave Dickens sufficient pause for thought. News of the World spoke to ‘a retired charity chief and a former top British diplomat in the Foreign Service’, which are both descriptions which could apply to Sir Peter Hayman. This former diplomat’s response was: “I’ll have to think about legal action against whoever has used my name.”
- ‘Child sex and a VIP’ (Daily Star, 28/08/1983)
- Twisted bid to help hunt in Brighton (News of the World (28/08/1983)
PIE former Executive Committee member Lee Evans tells of PIE meeting the previous week in the Hemingsford Arms, Islington, where it was debated to offer £5,000 as a reward to find three men who assaulted 6 year old in Brighton. Ferry quiz on attack boy(News of the World (28/08/1983) Detective Inspector John Bishop takes police to Newhaven ferry port in Sussex to greet and quiz holiday-makers returning from a fortnight break ago, who might have seen something on their outward journey.
- Bank Holiday Monday 29/08/1983 PIE has right to speak, say gays ( The Guardian, 29/08/1983)
- Tuesday 30/08/1983 ‘MPs named in child sex smear bid’ (Daily Mail, 30/08/1983) Lee Edwards’ story gets legs. The full Scotland Yard report will be on Leon Brittan’s desk on his return to Whitehall this morning. The Home Secretary will be told of a bid to smear MPs and a TV star. Envoys in Child Sex Quiz: FBI uncover link to traitor Prime (Daily Star, 30/08/1983) Public anger after attack on six-year old boy – Child sex group’s leaders step out of the shadows (The Canberra Times, 30/08/1983) – Australia.
- A month later the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE) ‘steps up support for PIE’ (Capital Gay, 30/09/1983), a few weeks after The Observer reports ‘PIE Account closed’ (04/09/1983) in early September.
By the end of November Geoffrey Dickens MP has collated his first dossier and his offices are raided before Christmas (‘Sex Tory crusade MP’s office raided’ The Daily Mail, 02/12/1983)
September 1983 Child abuse – Brittan orders police review (Daily Mail, 02/09/1983) Backbencher Vivian Bendall MP (Con. Ilford North 1978 -1997) is unimpressed – ‘standard Whitehall holding operation.’ – forecasts;
“There is going to be trouble at the Tory Party conference. This won’t satisfy our group – it certainly doesn’t satisfy me.”
PIE published propaganda material seeking to ‘normalise’ sex with children, and placed it in locations including public libraries and the Citizens Advice Bureau. (Daily Express 03/09/83)
David Nicholson-Lord, ‘Child sex group men arrested’, The Times, September 9th, 1983 – Steven Adrian Smith, Peter Bremner and David Joy from PIE are arrested. Nicked! A cop in child porno hush-up! (News of the World, 18/09/1983) Home Office orders police visit (Capital Gay, 09/12/1983) An unnamed man is questioned by police as a gay rights activist. October 1983 14 October: Tory Party Conference – Does Vivian Bendall MP’s forecast of trouble over Brittan’s response to child abuse scandals hold true? November 1983 Spotlight: Geoffrey Dickens and Arthur Hutchinson’s ‘Hit List’ Police guarding home of Tory MP (The Guardian, 03/11/1983) Guard for ‘hit list’ MP (Daily Mail, 03/11/1983) Lame fox caught in big chase: Fugitive limps to the final drama (News of the World, 06/11/1983) MP alleges paedophilia at palace (The Times, 24/11/1983) – Also diplomatic and civil service allegations, not just Buckingham Palace. Palace link in child sex scandal (Daily Express, Friday 25/11/1983): ‘Express Exclusive on the dossier of shame that shocked the Home Secretary’ – ‘massive dossier of evidence’ – ‘sex scandal involving a 16 year old boy’ at Buckingham Palace – Dickens MP was ‘greatly encouraged by his 30 minute meeting with Mr Brittan’ – ‘…the Home Secretary was equally as sickened about this as I am. He told me that he would investigate all the cases in my file. Mr Brittan also told the MP that he would take action to fill any gaps in the law relating to child sex’.’ If Brittan’s memory is of the same meeting Dickens was quoted on attending above, Dickens had been greatly encouraged by Brittan’s response. Dickens was quite open to the press about the nature of the allegations contained in the dossier and yet the Buckingham Palace, diplomatic and civil service allegations which had ‘equally sickened’ Brittan weren’t memorable.
December 1983 Charity Boss quizzed over porno swoop (News of the World, 18/12/1983) Care worker bailed on kidnap charge (Islington Gazette, Friday 16/12/1983) John Picton, 53, former care worker at Conewood Street Assessment Centre charged with unlawfully taking a 13 year old boy, remanded on bail until 29 December to appear at Highbury Magistrates Court.
1984 January 1984 Dickens gives second dossier to Leon Brittan, Home Secretary The January 1984 dossier , reported to be 50 pages, contained information on the Paedophile Information Exchange, an organisation that campaigned to legalise sex with children, and gave details of ‘sex assaults at a children’s home’, named prominent paedophiles including a ‘top television executive’ alleged to have had sex with a child and seen with known paedophiles, and alleged police were accepting bribes from sex-shop owners.
Row over Palace Vice ‘Cover-Up’ (News of the World, 15/01/1984, Alex Marunchak) – ‘A secret report alleging an Establishment cover-up over a homosexual vice ring at Buckingham Palace is being studied by Home Secretary Leon Brittan’ – ‘been operating for years’ – ‘senior civil servants who he says had in his office 57 obscene slides showing adults having sex with children. The incident was hushed up by the Civil Service, he claims’.
Thursday 19th January 1984 Huddersfield Daily Examiner (19.1.84) gives more detail on the January 1984 dossier – apparently it also contains ‘allegations of child assault at the ceremonies of religious cults‘. MP hands over shock report on child sex (Daily Mirror, 19/01/1984) Limited Inquiry will not satisfy Kincora critics (Irish Times, 19/01/1984) : Terms of reference confined to Social Services field – unsure if it would have the powers to:- (a) subpoena witnesses; or (b) make witnesses produce documentary evidence; or (c) require witnesses to answer questions In Scotland The Glasgow Herald reports Woman tells Old Bailey jury she never met Heath (19/01/1984) The defendant to an accusation of rape claimed his ex-lover was trying to silence him because he saw photos of Edward Heath and a Detective Sergeant Wallace in pornographic photos involving his two children and his wife. “The court heard on Tuesday that Mr Heath categorically denied he was in the alleged photographs.”
TV Chief is named in child sex probe (Daily Express 20/01/1984) Wednesday 25 January 1984: GCHQ employees told that they are no longer able to join a trade union, only a departmental staff association approved by the director of GCHQ.
March 1984 Evil Secrets of a Scots address(Sunday Mail 25/03/1984) Ian Campbell Dunn, 40 year old planning officer with Edinburgh District Council. May 1984 Cecil ParkinsonJune 1984 Funfair man in Mark hunt 9th June Daily Mirror Jason Swift ‘ I didn’t know human beings could do such evil things’ Rumors in Westminister of child-sex scandal prompt PM to step in (The Globe & Mail Canada, 23/06/1984, Vera Frankl) ‘Child sex link man’ sues for £20,000 (Capital Gay 15/06/1984) Ian Dunn Defence Fund. 30th March Police action urged over ‘Mason’ network. Islington Gazette During 1984 several children were abducted froman amusement arcade Fair Play on the Holloway Road Dickens in Hansard 27/06/1984: paedophile holidays – FCO investigation
September 1984 Sex for sale by girls in care starts home inquiry (Daily Mail, 22/09/1984) – Dave Adams House, Norman Grove, Bow, E London – Tower Hamlets. ‘young girls sold sexual favours with the knowledge of the staff’ – ‘aged 12 – 14’.
October 1984 Friday 12th October : Brighton – IRA bomb at Tory Party Conference.
November 1984 Child Sex ring’s Home Office Link (Evening Standard, 07/11/1984): During the trial of Bremner and Joy it was revealed a Home Office telephone number was being used in Steven Adrian Smith’s office. Smith, 30, Christchurch Avenue, Harrow fled to Holland. ‘Child sex pair cleared’ (The Sun, 14/11/1984) November 1984: PIE Trial of Bremner and Joy
1985 Rolf Harris: “Kids Can Say No” 1985 Full Video http://wp.me/p2Eg3O-ID
During 1985 Demetrious Panton complains about abuse while as a child in care of Islington Social Services – see Timeline: Margaret Hodge Row (The Guardian, 19/11/2003)
February 1985 Leeds Child Abuse dossier given to Home Secretary Leon Brittan (Yorkshire Evening Post, 14/02/1985) – Shock dossier on the schoolgirl prostitutes
May 1985: Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 comes into force on 23rd May establishing Crown Prosecution Service and codifying prosecution process.
July 1985 6 July 1985 – Jason Swift goes missing from his sister’s home in Hackney, aged 14 Spotlight: Sidney Cooke and the Crown Prosecution Service When Operation Orchid ended, “detectives admitted that they knew there were up to a dozen members of the ring who had escaped prosecution“. We now have a much better idea of who these other members of the ring might be, thanks to a former Operation Orchid detective who spoke to the Mirror.
A former detective who worked on the original investigation into Cooke told the Sunday Mirror that the minister was among those alleged to have been photographed in a 1986 police surveillance on premises where boys had been dropped off. Others allegedly included Jimmy Savile, MP Cyril Smith and top judges – though none of them were ever arrested.
November 1985 Parliament: Concern at prosecution tactics – DPP’s office (The Times, 12/11/1985): Dickens MP has lost hope in Sir Tony Hetherington’s ability to prosecute 4 and a half years after he first used parliamentary privilege to name Sir Peter Hayman in the House of Commons,
“The Director of Public Prosecutions should be asked to put his house in order or resign, Mr Geoffrey Dickens (Littleborough and Saddleworth, C) maintained during questions in the Commons to the Solicitor General. Many MPs and members of the public were very disturbed at the workings of the DPP’s office, said Mr Dickens. Time and time again (he said) good and proper evidence is put forward and many times charges are abandoned. Many times lesser charges are brought which disturbs many people like myself and certainly disturbs observers at the trial. Will the Solicitor General ask the DPP to get his house in order or resign? Sir Patrick Mayhew, the Solicitor General: I shall talk to the DPP at 3.45pm today but I shall not put to him that question or suggestion Mr Dickens has just put. His question was rather long on generalities but singularly short on particulars.”
Police identify body of murdered boy (The Times, 04/12/1985): The body of 14 year old Jason Swift is found in Ongar, Essex. 1986 During 1986 the new Crown Prosecution Service is established, see Sir Tony Hetherington, the Director of Public Prosecutions from 1977 – 1987 – Obituary
“Partly as a result of many emerging concerns and following a Royal Commission on Criminal Procedure, a decision was made to form a new national body, the Crown Prosecution Service, and it was Hetherington’s task to oversee the changeover and to head up the new operation in 1986. He had offered to stay on beyond his retirement date to assist in the difficult early days. He had to weather the storm of criticisms which greeted the new organisation as it experienced many teething problems and staff shortages. Colleagues of the time praised his low-key manner and quiet wit.”
Friday 14th February 1986 ‘MP calls for report on child brothels’ (The Times, 14/02/1986) ‘Scandal of Brothel kids’ (Daily Mirror, 14/02/1986) Council tenant had sent a tape of recordings of children screaming during ‘sex sessions’ to Scotland Yard and Dickens. When the council tenant when interviewed gives more detail as to why screaming, “I think it is dreadful to think that violent child prostitution can occur on this kind of scale Dickens alleges Archway district estates have a brothel with up to 40 children to age of six being pimped.
‘[Dickens’ informant] has passed on to Scotland Yard tapes purporting to depict the voices of children clearly taking part in unsavoury activities. Scotland Yard has told me it is treating these allegations seriously. I hope that urgent action will be taken to stamp out this evil trade.’
- Tuesday 18 February 1986 Conventions of the House (Hansard, Tuesday 18/02/1986) There was seemingly no love lost between Dickens and local MP Jeremy Corbyn MP, in whose constituency the Elthorne and Archway estates were located, Islington North. Dickens poked at Corbyn for an incident involving the IRA somehow, and Corbyn repeats his request that Dickens attend the estate and apologise to the residents there.
- Wednesday 19 February 1986 ‘Parliament: Apology sought for child brothel claim’(The Times, Wednesday 19/02/1986) Jeremy Corbyn MP (Lab – Islington North) asked Dickens to go to the Archway estate and apologise
- Friday 21 February 1986 Estate in fury over child sex ‘slur’’(Islington Gazette, Friday 21/02/1986) Dickens remained unrepentant and refused to apologise having received further information from another source.
- Monday 24 February Child Brothels: More evidence’(Social Work Today, Monday 24/02/1986) Dickens states police investigation has started and refuses to apologise. John Rea Price, (also on VCC) Islington Social Services Director says no evidence has been found of brothels.
- Friday 28 February ‘What this crusader is really up to’ ….. (Letter to Editor, Islington Gazette, Friday 28/02/1986) For further information on what the writer of this letter had really been up to himself, Roger Moody, a paedophile rights activist and convicted child abuser see Spotlight:
- August 1986 ‘Wyman ‘had girl, 13, as a lover’ (Telegraph, 05/08/1986 L Swayn) ‘Commons ‘lynch law’ under attack / Analysis of the growth in use of parliamentary privilege’ (The Guardian, 15/12/1986, Alan Travis)
- 1987 Spring 1987: Sidney Cooke’s charges downgraded from murder to manslaughter In spring 1987, when the decision to downgrade the charge was made, the Director of Public Prosecutions would have been either Sir Thomas Hetherington or Sir Alan Green. I haven’t been able to establish the exact date in 1987 when Hetherington stepped down and Green replaced him. They were both a safe pair of hands for the Establishment. In 1981, Hetherington had taken the decison not to prosecute paedophile diplomat Sir Peter Hayman.
- December 1987: Operation Hedgerow 140 boys quizzed in sex ring scandal: 23 arrested over chid porn probe (Daily Mirror, 02/12/1987) Operation Hedgerow, one of the most successful investigations and prosecutions of a network of child abusers centred around Brent involving a Foreign Office lawyer, Colin Peters, resident in Notting Hill. A special hot line was set up to encourage others to come forward in December 1987. When the trial later took place in November 1988 at the Old Bailey it was one of the first trials where adults who had been abused as children were allowed to give evidence behind screens shielded from the defendant and via video link. Boys between 10 and 15 years old were the targets. Police arrest 16 in child sex swoop (Willesden & Brent Chronicle, 03/12/1987, Mark Leslie) Lords Man quizzed as 7 face child sex charges (Daily Mirror, 03/12/1987, Sylvia Jones & Gordon Hay) Amongst 24 arrested in police swoop earlier this week was a “top House of Lords official” – “married…seen by millions of viewers in a TV series on the Lords” – “He was believed to have been arrested at a clinic in central London where he was being treated for a recurring long-term illness. He was taken to a police station and quizzed for an hour before his medical condition gave rise to concern and he was returned to the hospital” – “Seven men due to appear before Willesden magistrates today are the only ones still in custody following the police swoop.”