Chief Constable and MP row over ‘threats’ made in paedophile case

Published March 16, 2015 by JS2

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A MINISTER last night stood by claims Thames Valley Police tried to pressure him not to raise in Parliament its failure to stop an Oxford paedophile.

Rob Wilson said he regarded discussions with officers as threats when he was preparing to ask questions in the Commons as to why David Cullen was free to abuse children when the convicted paedophile was being monitored by the force.

Thames Valley Police and Oxfordshire social services were criticised in a serious case review over former Blackbird Leys man Cullen.

The Reading East MP has raised the 2009 discussions following revelations two weeks ago of similar failings over the abuse of young girls in Oxford in Bullfinch.

Mr Wilson said Chief Constable Sara Thornton was one of those he spoke to over Cullen – jailed for life in 2008 – but she hit back, saying his allegations were “unfounded and potentially libellous”.

The Civil Society minister said: “There were all sorts of darkly veiled threats if I went head-to-head and toe-to-toe with Thames Valley Police. I had phone calls from at least two members of Thames Valley Police who rang me up directly about this and tried to stop me raising this matter in Parliament.

“My intention is to ensure that should similar cases arise in the future, they are dealt with properly – which was not the case with [Cullen] nor more recently with children in the Oxford area.”

Police described emails between an officer and Mr Wilson as “professional and polite on both sides”.

Ms Thornton, who has written to Mr Wilson over his comments, added: “I categorically deny ever making any sort of threat, veiled or otherwise, to Rob Wilson MP.”

Mr Wilson said: “It is very disappointing that Sara Thornton is making legal threats, which will prevent proper open discussion. I have sought transparency and openness and it is a shame that the police are still seeking to close down a reasonable and honest debate.”

by Jason Collie

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2 comments on “Chief Constable and MP row over ‘threats’ made in paedophile case

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