CSA

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Beechwood Child Abuse Survivor Melanie Shaw Arrested Again

Published July 23, 2015 by JS2

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The intimidation recently led to Melanie leaving her house in Nottingham and travelling to Plymouth where she hoped to find refuge from the harassing actions of Nottingham police.

UKColumn was informed by child abuse survivor Mickey Summers early this evening that Melanie Shaw was arrested today 22 July 2015 at about 1745, in a public place in Nottingham. It is alleged that the arrest of Melanie was in connection with a charge of harassment concerning Nottingham Police Superintendent Helen Chamberlain, police Head of Public Protection, including Child Abuse.

It is understood that Superintendent Chamberlain was originally allocated as Melanie Shaw’s police point of contact following Melanie’s whistleblowing on abuse of children at Beechwood children’s home Nottingham, and during the subsequent police investigation under Operation Day Break.

The charge appears highly questionable when Melanie, who suffers PTSD following her abuse and has required mental health support over many years, has consistently reported over many months a catalogue of harassment and victimisation by Nottingham police officers, including officers smashing into her house, following her, detaining her and making telephone calls to her suggesting that they were sat in her house whilst she was out shopping.

The intimidation recently led to Melanie leaving her house in Nottingham and travelling to Plymouth where she hoped to find refuge from the frightening actions of Nottingham police. This was not to be the case however, as four Devon and Cornwall Police Officers were aggressively banging on the door of the UKColumn offices at 0730 in the morning, the day after her arrival in Plymouth. Desperate to know Melanie’s location, and following aggressive questioning of two members of the UKColumn staff, they ultimately left empty handed.

Just a few days later Melanie Shaw was arrested by two DCC constables and taken to Charles Cross Police Station Plymouth for questioning. It is understood this action was also in connection with a charge of harassment against Melanie, but she was subsequently released to report to the same police station in September later this year.

Following a move to new friends in Peterborough, a further four police from Cambridgeshire police were sent to apprehend Melanie at her new home with an elderly lady in sheltered accomodation. Arriving some hours after Melanie had again moved to yet another location, these officers also left empty handed, but were also intimidating in their questioning of the elderly lady.

Many people will be astonished at the immense police effort to track a highly vulnerable child abuse victim across UK. What the wider public will not understand is that having blown the whistle on substantial child abuse in Beechwood children’s home Nottingham, where it is already believed some 150 children were abused and some likely murdered, Melanie Shaw has now allegedly been designated a Multi Agency Public Protection MAPPA Category 3 target – a person who is designated a “seriously dangerous criminal.”

It is reported this designation was determined behind closed doors by the Nottinghamshire MAPPA multi agency board, during procedings in which Melanie Shaw, or her legal and medical professionals were not present and therefore had no right of challenge or reply. Following the MAPPA determination however, all police and public agencies in Nottingham and throughout UK can call upon considerable assets to assist her apprehension and / or arrest.

This excessive and deeply worrying classification of a highly vulnerable child abuse victim as a ‘dangerous criminal’ must surely bring into question every part of our rights, freedoms and common sense under common law. For three police forces to employ excessive police assets to hunt and detain Melanie Shaw at a time when Senior Police Officers claim insufficient public money to conduct day by day policing is an outrage, if not Misconduct in Public Office.

Tonight, abused and frightened Melanie Shaw is again in the hands of Nottingham police – the very men and women who have failed to protect Melanie, Mickey Summers and hundreds of other child abuse victims in Nottingham. Detained in the Bridewell Custody Suite the immediate future for Melanie is uncertain. Will she be safe in the hands of a police force that has already failed her, brutalised and intimidated her?

The abuse of Melanie Shaw by the British State is obscene. Whilst she again suffers, the Home Secretary Theresa May has allocated some £17.5 million to a child abuse inquiry that can afford to pay £500,000 p.a. salaries to NZ Judge Goddard – to do what? Sit in a plush office sifting paper whilst the real child abuse victims receive little or nothing in terms of state support, metal health care in the community and financial support. Her inquiry has already been labelled the ‘most transparent cover-up in British history’, and will surely seek to bury the truth of political establishment child abuse in the long grass of passing years. Few if any victims speaking to the UKColumn trust her or her appointment. We share their immense suspicion and concern.

We also watch as Lord Janner receives protective and beneficial treatment at the hands of Alison Saunders, the same Head of the Crown Prosecution Service that found unlimited time and effort to press criminal charges against Melanie Shaw.

This perversion of justice is not accidental. This is the inverted victimisation of victims that comes with the application of a deep evil. That evil is now clearly deeply entrenched in a criminal paedophilic British political system. It is an evil that makes me ashamed to be British – that we, the public, have alowed this rot to infest the very people and organisations that govern us.

I, for one, am not about to forget Melanie Shaw and the thousands of other child abuse victims and survivors. It is the duty of each and every good man and women to stand up for these most vulnerable of people, and it is our duty to bring the criminals abusing them, and covering-up that abuse, to justice. We must start not tomorrow, but now. The future of our own children depends on our actions from this very moment.

by UK Column

 

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Making failure to report sexual abuse a criminal offence not enough on its own to protect children

Published April 14, 2015 by JS2

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Shocking child abuse scandals have triggered campaigns throughout Britain for legislation making failure to report abuse a criminal offence.

A petition calling for “mandatory reporting” in Scotland has been lodged with the Scottish Parliament by campaigner Scott Pattinson.

Campaigners say staff in faith settings, schools, sports clubs, other institutions and childcare settings must be legally obliged to report to police and or social services. Who could object to that?

Yet many people experienced in working against child abuse and sexual violence have serious worries about the effectiveness of a crusade no-one, including politicians, likes to question. They believe it will both encourage complacency and ignore more urgent changes needed before mandatory reporting could make much difference – at least in sexual abuse, the main abuse in recent scandals.

However, we can all agree that the most senior management level in these settings should indeed be mandated to report so that scandals where church leaders, or heads of homes and schools kept information about paedophiles to themselves would end. But junior staff should not be threatened and intimidated with criminal sanction. Other reforms also need greater priority. Why?

Reporting doesn’t mean reports will be acted on, nor children protected. Countless reports were made by outraged staff to police and social services of children raped and brutalised by child exploitation gangs or in care homes, yet nothing was done. This will continue until key agencies and criminal justice interpret those acts as abuse, instead of deciding stigmatised young people make lifestyle choices, or are just prostitutes, troublemakers, delinquents or liars. Changes of attitude need to be enforced through compulsory training, backed by the professional sanction of disciplinary action.

Even if reports are acted upon, children and young people will continue being traumatised and discredited in court so long as they’re used as the main source of evidence and without further curbs on defence conduct. Why not pilot in Scotland one of the “children’s houses”, so successful in preparing such cases sensitively for court in Scandinavia?

Most children remain unable to tell adults if they are being sexually abused. In my research alone, young people gave 14 different reasons why they did not tell. The climate for “instant action” in mandatory reporting would further deter young people from confiding in staff. They need time to develop trust and overcome fears, and greater control over the speed of investigation. In successful child exploitation investigations, police have painstakingly built trust with stigmatised, distrustful young people. Hence three local authorities hope to pilot Scottish “confidential space” projects, to gather evidence thoroughly at sexually abused young people’s pace, with emphasis on making them safe and achieving some positive outcome. How would this child-centred practice coexist with mandatory reporting, or give young people any sense of control or involvement?

Worrying behaviour seen or heard is rarely clear cut, but filled with doubts and uncertainties. Mandatory reporting assumes people will clearly recognise sexual or other abuses. But most don’t, as any training exercise reveals. What am I seeing/hearing? Am I exaggerating, imagining, mistaken? Are they just kids experimenting? Might I ruin his career?

More “worry ‘phone lines'” and secure internet advice services, staffed by child protection specialists, where people can talk through worrying scenarios, are urgently needed. Most adults responsible for children think they’re not allowed to ask if they’re being sexually abused.

“Backlash” propaganda has made school and youth staff fear to ask even sensitive, open-ended (and clearly permitted) questions of children, even when they strongly suspect sexual abuse. Disclosures and reports remain tiny in most schools. Simply making quite clear to teachers that it’s permissible to ask would make a big difference.

Most adults find sexual abuse a difficult, upsetting subject they prefer to avoid. Threats of prison increase fear and panic: support builds confidence and courage. Regular confidence- building and reflective discussion for staff groups throughout organisations will achieve this – not stern instruction, nor the big stick.

We need to campaign for the changes above so that, if mandatory reporting is eventually implemented, it only takes place in a climate of informed awareness and confidence, lack of prejudice against children, and a legal and criminal justice system which gives them better hope of protection.

Sarah Nelson is a writer and researcher specialising in sexual abuse issues, based at the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships at the University of Edinburgh.

Woman suspected of trafficking 40 children into Heathrow as ‘ringleader’ of child sex smuggling gang arrested in Nigeria

Published April 1, 2015 by JS2

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A woman suspected of being a ringleader in a sex trafficking gang that used Heathrow to smuggle children into Europe has been arrested in Nigeria.

Police held Franca Asemota, 36, on suspicion of money-laundering offences in an operation co-ordinated by the National Crime Agency.

She is facing extradition to Britain, where she is wanted for organising a network that trafficked young women — most aged under 18 — from remote Nigerian villages into Europe using Heathrow airport as a transit hub.

The girls were promised education or jobs such as hairdressing in countries including France and Spain but were forced into prostitution.

Some were raped and the traffickers were said to have used witchcraft to terrify their victims so they would not talk to police.

Asemota, who was arrested in Benin City, is accused of accompanying about 40 victims on eight separate flights into Heathrow between 2011 and 2012.

A European arrest warrant was issued for her when she was thought to be in Italy but she is believed to have fled to Nigeria, where the NCA traced her.

The NCA said: “Asemota’s arrest was the result of exceptional collaboration with our partners at home and in Nigeria.

“This operation demonstrates our global reach and our determination  to track those wanted in the UK, no matter where in the world they are.”

A Nigerian member of the trafficking ring, Odosa Usiobaifo, of Enfield, was jailed for 14 years by Isleworth crown court in 2013 for conspiring to traffic for sex exploitation.

Last October David Osawaru, of Nigeria, was jailed for nine years for chaperoning two women in transit to Prague. He had been arrested by Border Force officers at Heathrow.

London Evening Standard

Essex: Commissioner appeals for people to keep faith in police after child sex abuse investigation failings

Published March 2, 2015 by JS2

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Commissioner appeals for people to keep faith in police after child sex abuse investigation failings

POLICE are looking into more cases of how officers handled child abuse allegations.

Earlier this month, Essex Police admitted failing to properly investigate 30 claims of child sex abuse involving almost 59 victims in Tendring and north Essex.

Seven more cases handled by the force’s north child abuse investigations team are now being looked into by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

But Essex police commissioner Nick Alston still believes the public can have faith in the way the force handles child abuse probes.

He said: “I will continue to insist the investigations into the handling of child abuse investigations by our police force is fully and thoroughly reviewed.

“As the review progresses, regrettably I do not find it surprising it has identified further cases of concern and fresh referrals.

“It is distressing that the number of child abuse cases being referred has increased.”

However, he added: “I would stress the number of cases being investigated independently or under the management of the IPCC still remains a small proportion of the total number of such cases investigated by Essex Police each year.

“I am convinced the force is making real efforts to identify and resolve problems with the quality of child abuse investigations.

“I want the public to have confidence in Essex Police. Most cases of child abuse are investigated thoroughly and professionally. I strongly encourage anyone who feels their case may not have been properly investigated by Essex Police to contact the force on 101.”

The urgent review of child abuse investigations launched by the chief constable is expected to be completed soon. Mr Alston said it would identify where procedures needed to be improved.

Clacton Gazette

‘They filmed us digging our own graves’: Young girls reveal terrifying details of what went on in ‘horror house’ of Australian man arrested on child sex abuse charges… after child’s body is found under his home

Published March 1, 2015 by JS2
  • Peter Gerald Scully was arrested in Philippines on child sex abuse charges
  • The Melbourne man, 51, is also now implicated in a 10-year-old girl’s death
  • He was charged with human trafficking and child porn-related offences in 2014 from alleged sexual abuse of Filipino girls and posting videos online
  • Scully had evaded capture until February 20 after his arrest, a former partner told police Scully had killed one of his child victims in 2013
  • Graphic video footage led to the rescue of seven young victims 
  • Agents on case describe footage as ‘the worst video we have encountered’

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The unspeakably twisted world of a bankrupt Australian businessman is unravelling after he moved to the Philippines and allegedly lured innocent children into his home – and has now been implicated in a child’s death.

Peter Gerald Scully, from Melbourne, was charged last year with human trafficking and child porn-related offences arising from his alleged sexual abuse of Filipino girls which was filmed and then posted online for paying clients.

The 51-year-old managed to avoid being arrested until February 20 this year before a former partner told police that Scully had killed one of his child victims in 2013.

It was after this shocking revelation that the remains of a 10-year-old girl were found at a home formerly rented by Scully in Malaybalay, Bukidnon.

An extremely graphic and distressing account by two young girls, who survived the trauma of Scully’s alleged torturous abuse, paints a horrifying picture of what at least a dozen children are alleged to have endured in his home.

Cousins, going by the name of Daisy,11, and and Queenie, 10, told rappler news site about the fateful day in September 2014 when they were approached by Scully’s live-in partner, Carme Ann ‘Angel’ Alvarez.

Alvarez, who was only 17 at the time and an alleged former victim of Scully’s, offered the girls food at Centrio Mall in Cagayan de Oro City and then invited them back to their house.

Daisy said when they got to the house, Alvarez bathed the girls while Scully, who she referred to as the ‘American’, videoed them.

The next morning the girls were asked to start digging a hole in the ground but had no idea why they had been asked to do the unusual task.

It was then after lunch that things became even more disturbing when allegedly Scully undressed the girls and told them to kiss each other.

‘I started crying, I don’t know what we were doing,’ a tearful Daisy said.

Agent Francisco (right) , who was responsible for cracking the case and the rescue of several victims from Scully's house, pictured with one of the rescued girls (left)

Agent Francisco (right) , who was responsible for cracking the case and the rescue of several victims from Scully’s house, pictured with one of the rescued girls (left)

Scully then allegedly rubbed mineral oil on the girls’ bodies and sexually assaulted them, while Alvarez was took photos.

They were then told to keep digging and Daisy was made to sleep in the same room where they had been digging the holes.

The next day Daisy said they were forced to perform sexual acts on the man.

‘I was crying and screaming so much that Alvarez covered my head with a pillow. I choked so much but Scully continued his abuses on me,’ Daisy said.

‘Alvarez slapped me and said that I if don’t stop crying, Peter will continue doing this.’

The girls were then told to keep digging after the horrendous ordeal.

That evening, Daisy said they were forced the alcohol and she managed three drinks before passing out and woke up the next morning to discover she had slept in one of the dug-out graves because she had kept crying and calling for her ‘mama’.

It was on the fourth day that became unbearable for the little girls.

‘They were filming, taking photographs while we dug our graves, and they again brought us to their room, this time, I was tied with a nylon cord, my hands, my feet – I could not move,’ Daisy said.

‘I wanted to kill myself, I wanted to die that night, because I could not bear it any longer.’

However, it was the very next day that the girls fled for their lives when Scully and Alvarez left the house.

Queenie’s mother took the girls to the local police station to file a complaint against Scully and Alvarez.

The remains of a 10-year-old girl were found at a home formerly rented by Scully after he was arrested

The remains of a 10-year-old girl were found at a home formerly rented by Scully after he was arrested

When the police turned up to the house – they apprehended Alvarez but Scully escaped.

Police said there had been numerous complaints made against Peter Riddel and Peter Russel.

Authorities also said that Scully’s youngest victim was only one-year-old at the time.

Agents assigned to the case described the video footage as ‘the worst video we have encountered in our years of campaign against child pornography’ which led to seven young victims being rescued, the inquirer.net reported.

Alvaraz, now 18, revealed her bizarre lifestyle to a prison warden at the Cagayan de Oro City Jail where she was detained

She met Scully when she working as a prostitute at just 14-years-old and allegedly endured a similar ordeal to Daisy and Queenie before paid by Scully to entice the children into their home.

Following information from Scully’s former live-in-partner named Margallo, police officers checked on a home that Scully used to live in when they discovered the remains of what is suspected to be of the 10-year-old girl that Scully allegedly abducted from Talakag town in Bukidnon.

Police believed the girl was murdered in July 2013 after Scully had ensured her parents that he would get their daughter a good education.

Police said a team would be sent to the ‘horror house’ to check if any other children had been buried.

Scully had been implicated in an alleged home-buying scheme scam in Melbourne before leaving for the Philippines in 2011, The Age reported.

The following year, the Supreme Court of Victoria banned Scully from operating the Key Home Buyer Program which cost investors $2.68 million.

Police said they had been searching for Scully since September when two teenage girls were allegedly found naked and chained in an apartment that he rented.

Leesa Smith

‘Utterly depraved’ paedophile love triangle of married couple and another woman, 22, is jailed for total of 14 years for plotting to sexually abuse children

Published February 25, 2015 by JS2

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  • Kevin Barnett, his wife and his girlfriend jailed for ‘repugnant’ abuse plans
  • Susan Barnett and Nikita Moore were said to have been ‘besotted’ with him
  • They both discussed and planned sexual abuse in order to win him back
  • Preston court heard their sexual exchanges became ‘utterly depraved’
  • Moore and Barnett shared fantasies of her giving birth to a child to abuse
  • Barnett’s wife also agreed to help facilitate his child sex abuse fantasies

Three ‘utterly depraved’ paedophiles – a married couple and another woman – have been jailed for a total of 14-and-a-half years after plotting to inflict horrific sexual abuse on children.

Kevin and Susan Barnett, along with Nikita Moore, were convicted of sharing plans to rape and sexually assault young children in June 2014, via online messaging service WhatsApp, after a two-and-a-half week trial in December.

Both women – the ex-wife and lover – moved in together after Barnett left them for another woman and they both went along with his paedophilic desires in a bid to win him back, a court heard.

Barnett, aged 28, of Barrow, Cumbria, received a six-year prison sentence for one count of arranging or facilitating the commission of a child sexual offence, jointly with his wife Susan, 28, and two counts of conspiracy to commit a child sexual offence, jointly with 22-year-old co-defendant Nikita Moore.

The two female defendants, who were living together, sobbed in court as Susan was handed a four-and-a-half year sentence and Moore a four year sentence.

Judge Christopher Cornwall, passing sentence at Preston Crown Court today, described how extreme sexual exchanges between Barnett and the two women descended into plans to abuse children.

He said: ‘By this time you had all sunk so low and your thinking was so distorted that all basic, fundamental morality protecting children from adult sexual provision was simply absent.’

Susan was told it was to her ‘eternal shame’ that she did not react with ‘outrage’ to her husband’s twisted suggestions.

Moore, who began an affair with Barnett following the funeral of her partner in October 2013, shared ‘violent sexual fantasies’ with him involving giving birth to a child for them to abuse together.

She also shared indecent photos of children, and spoke of her desire to see him rape a young child.

Judge Cornwall said: ‘The offences were committed in quite extraordinary circumstances in which two women were so desperate to rekindle their relationships with Kevin Barnett, that they were prepared to indulge his every terrible whim.

‘The content of the messages was truly horrific and utterly depraved.’

Kevin and Susan Barnett (pictured at their wedding in June 2013) had split up but were continuing to see each other when they discussed possible sexual abuse

Kevin and Susan Barnett (pictured at their wedding in June 2013) had split up but were continuing to see each other when they discussed possible sexual abuse

Judge Cornwall accepted that other than indecent images being shared, there was no evidence that any other physical abuse was enacted on children by the three defendants.

Barnett was described as a ‘baneful influence’ on the two women, and was said to have ‘little understanding’ of the harm he had caused.

Sentencing Susan, Judge Cornwall said: ‘You have a heavy burden to carry which you will be judged on for some considerable time to come.’

Regard was given to mental health issues suffered by Moore, stemming from the loss of her baby two hours after its birth when she was 14 years old.

The court heard she met Barnett at an ‘extremely low ebb.’

The trio were arrested after an 18-year-old woman, who was in a relationship with Kevin Barnett, tipped police off about messages she had read on his phone.

Kevin Barnett (pictured) was at the centre of a love triangle in which his wife and girlfriend were prepared to indulge his sick fantasies in order to win him back

Kevin Barnett (pictured) was at the centre of a love triangle in which his wife and girlfriend were prepared to indulge his sick fantasies in order to win him back

As well as the conspiracy and facilitation offences, Barnett and Moore were sentenced to six months, running concurrently with their other prison sentences, for possession of indecent images of children.

The Barnett’s each received six month concurrent sentences for possession of extreme pornographic images involving sexual activity with dogs and horses.

All three defendants were banned from working with children and ordered to sign the sex offender’s register indefinitely.

They also received a Sexual Offences Prevention Order placing severe restrictions on any future use of the internet, computers or devices capable of digitally storing images.

The conspiracy emerged by chance in June when Barnett found himself arrested over a domestic disturbance at a third woman’s address.

At that time he was said to be in a relationship with his wife Susan and Moore, both living at the marital address.

The court heard the Barnetts had married in June 2013, but then separated early this year.

Prosecutor Charles Brown said that in the course of graphic text message conversations with each other, the Barnetts had made arrangements and had discussed possible sexual abuse by Barnett, with her indicating she would assist in the commission of those acts.

Mr Brown said there were messages of a sexual nature between those two defendants which progressed to discussing sexual abuse.

Mr Brown added: ‘The conversations with Susan Barnett were taking place at the same time and often almost simultaneously with text conversations between Kevin Barnett and Nikita Moore.’

Matters progressed with the two women seeking a relationship with the male defendant. The court was told before separating from his wife, Barnett had had a sexual relationship with Moore for three months.

Barnett and Moore agreed together to engage in sexual activity with children. It was an escalating course of conduct between those two defendants, during which in text messages he requested her to perform a variety of sexual acts.

Mr Brown said: ‘In further mobile text messages they agreed and discussed in detail abusing children. The inference is Nikita Moore had been prepared to carry out his ever extreme sexual requests. The messages planning these sexual acts with children represented a genuine plan of action.’

Nikita Moore (pictured), who was Barnett's girlfriend, told him she had had thoughts about sexually abusing a child

The night before his arrest, Barnett had had a sexual liaison with his wife and Moore.

In June this year, he was at the home of the third woman, but was texting his wife and Moore. Police were called to a domestic disturbance and Barnett was arrested, initially to prevent a breach of the peace. She indicated he was no longer welcome at her home and drew police attention to text messages she had seen on his mobile phone. She had been suspicious he intended resuming a relationship with his wife.

Mr Brown added: ‘They saw the conversations in which Susan Barnett had agreed to facilitate and assist in sexual activity with a child.’

Her phone was then seized, as well as that of Moore. All the phones were analysed. Some discussions were found that had taken place between Moore and Barnett.

Mr Brown added: ‘They discussed how they could gain access to children.’

Barnett suggested she could get a job in child care. Moore disclosed to him she had had thoughts of sexually abusing a child, which he encouraged.

‘It’s a highly sexualised world in which he appears to live. He is lost in a world of unusual sexual practices where nothing appears to be ruled out.’

Mr Brown said Susan and Moore were ‘besotted’ with Barnett and willing to assist him.

‘REPUGNANT’: PAEDOPHILE TRIO SENTENCED TO 14 YEARS PRISON

Acting Detective Inspector Brian Murray, of the South Cumbria Public Protection Unit, said: ‘I am pleased that justice has been served today and these three individuals will be facing prison for their crimes.

‘Thankfully cases like this are extremely rare in Cumbria and the quick arrests of these three people once information came to light show that we are committed to protecting children in Cumbria.’

After the case, prosecutor Charles Brown said: ‘Susan Barnett, Kevin Barnett and Nikita Moore have been found guilty of extremely alarming offences whereby they planned amongst themselves the sexual abuse of vulnerable young children.

‘They sent shockingly explicit messages to each other, including photographs of the children they planned to abuse, over a prolonged period of ten days. The messages shown during the trial proved that the abuse was intended to be made real and would have been put into action once the opportunity arose.

‘All three defendants denied they intended to carry out the abuse they had discussed and attempted to explain it away as general talk about sexual fantasies. However, after carefully considering all the evidence against them, the jury has today found them guilty of all the repugnant offences they faced.

‘The CPS and Police are dedicated to protecting children and young people, and will continue to do all in our power to bring to justice all those who harm them or plan to harm them in any way.’

Corey Charlten

Essex Police apologises over 30 child abuse investigations

Published February 11, 2015 by JS2

Nick Alston

PCC Nick Alston said officers had been accused of “a lack of honesty or integrity”

A police force has apologised to alleged child abuse victims after it found problems with 30 investigations involving 59 children.

One police officer has been suspended and 11 others have been put on restrictive duties by Essex Police.

Some cases are said to involve a “lack of honesty or integrity” by officers.

Deputy Chief Constable Derek Benson said: “If individuals have failed in their duties then they will be held to account.”

The force said 28 cases had been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), which was already reviewing two other investigations.

Most of the cases relate to the work of the child abuse investigation team covering the north of Essex.

Mr Benson said: “We have contacted the families of those involved in these investigations to let them know what is happening and apologise for the undoubted distress.

“We will also look at the possible aspects of why this has happened.”

Mr Benson said an experienced retired detective had been brought in to review the “live” investigations being conducted in the north of the force area.

He said the alleged victims included some very young children.

Nic Alston, Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said Chief Constable Stephen Kavanagh had ordered an “urgent review” late last year after concerns were raised about the quality of investigations.

‘Lack of integrity’

“This work led Essex Police to refer a number of cases to the IPCC, to suspend one officer and place another 11 officers on restricted duties,” he said.

“The IPCC has announced that it is conducting two independent investigations and a managed investigation of referrals relating to the handling of 28 child abuse investigations which were reported to Essex Police between April 2011 and November 2014.

“These cases involve 59 victims. Some of those investigations involve allegations of a lack of honesty or integrity by officers.”

Essex Assistant Chief Constable Derek Benson
Derek Benson said new officers had taken over the investigations under review

Some of the investigations which have been referred to the IPCC are based on allegations of historical abuse, dating to the 1960s and 1970s.

The IPCC says its investigation will look into whether officers failed to:

  • consider the safeguarding of children
  • progress investigations properly, including not arresting suspects and delays
  • refer cases to the Crown Prosecution Service

BBC news

Mary Cunneen, IPCC Commissioner for Essex, said: “Child abuse ruins people’s lives, so it is important police get these investigations right and victims feel confident their cases will be properly handled.

“It is vital our investigations are able to establish what happened in the north child abuse investigations team investigations, and why.”

Essex Police headquartersThe IPCC was already reviewing two other investigations from the same team

The IPCC said it was already investigating the conduct of five officers from the north child abuse investigations team following referrals from Essex police last August and October.

These concern an allegation that a police officer fraudulently signed a complainant’s signature, and how officers responded to reports a girl was allegedly the victim of child sexual exploitation.

A helpline has been set up for anyone who feels concerned about child abuse investigations carried out by Essex Police. The number is 01245 282103.