An MI5 letter warning of the risk of “political embarrassment” from child sexual abuse claims has been found.
A 1986 note – by then head of MI5, Sir Anthony Duff – followed warnings an MP had a “penchant for small boys”.
The newly uncovered material, found in a search by the Cabinet Office, was not disclosed to a 2014 Home Office review.
Its author, the NSPCC’s Peter Wanless, said the new documents showed the risk to children was “not considered at all” but did not alter his findings.
The papers have come to light months after the conclusion of an official review into whether allegations of child abuse were covered up by the Home Office in the 1980s.
The review – written by Mr Wanless and Richard Whittam QC and published in November – examined how the Home Office dealt with files alleging child abuse between 1979 and 1999.
It concluded that there was no evidence of records being deliberately removed or destroyed.