‘Explosive new revelations of the police and establishment cover-up over Cyril Smith’s paedophile past emerged last night.
A retired police officer said the 29-stone Liberal MP was protected by a sex-offender sergeant after he was caught at a sex party with two boys.
Smith walked free and the retired officer – then a probationary beat bobby – was threatened with the Official Secrets Act and told to stay silent by his colleague Don Mackintosh, who himself turned out to be a paedophile.’
Establishment figures stand accused of “looking after their own” after a City lawyer forced to resign as chair of the Westminster child sex probe was included in the New Year Honours list.
Establishment figures stand accused of “looking after their own” after a City lawyer forced to resign as chair of the Westminster child sex probe was included in the New Year Honours list
Fiona Woolf, the then Lord Mayor of London, was the second senior legal figure to quit as chair over her links to the Westminster political establishment.
Her resignation, following just months after retired judge Lady Butler-Sloss stepped down over similar concerns, has thrown the Government’s stalled child sex abuse inquiry into crisis.
Edinburgh-born Woolf, a City of London lawyer already honoured with a CBE in 2001, was made a Dame for services to the legal profession, diversity and the City of London in the New Year Honours.
But Simon Danczuk, Labour MP for Rochdale and a leading figure campaigning against child abuse cover-ups, was scathing about the honour.
He said: “Fiona Woolf misled the Home Secretary over her links with Leon Brittan, caused unnecessary distress to victims of child abuse and caused a lengthy and avoidable delay to a very serious inquiry that urgently needs to get started.
“It seems inappropriate that she’s now being invited to Buckingham Palace to pick up one of the highest honours.
“I can think of many more worthy recipients of this honour, but once again it looks like the establishment is looking after their own.”
Victims’ groups, who along with Mr Danczuk demanded Mrs Woolf step down from her role, are now also calling for a much tougher judge-led inquiry.
Mrs Woolf’s links to Lord Brittan prompted the calls for her resignation amid claims they were closer than had first been thought.
Lord Brittan is likely to be called to give evidence to the inquiry over a dossier he received from MP Geoffrey Dickens in 1983, documenting the alleged involvement of VIP figures in a child sex ring.
Within days of Mrs Woolf’s appointment, questions were asked about the new chair’s position after it emerged she is a neighbour of Lord Brittan, they enjoyed dinner parties together and both sit on the board of a City of London conference.
The Mail on Sunday also reported that Mrs Woolf sat on a prize-giving panel with Lord Brittan’s wife and sponsored her in a fun run.
Baroness Butler-Sloss quit six days after her appointment as chair because her late brother, Sir Michael Havers, was attorney general in the 1980s.
Mrs Woolf was named as replacement on September 5 and both Home Secretary Theresa May and Prime Minister David Cameron continued to support her appointment until she was forced to step aside in October.
Caged child abuser Charles Napier faces a grilling by detectives who believe he could help expose a network of VIP paedophiles with links to Westminster.
Officers probing claims that span decades think the former teacher – jailed last week for abusing 23 boys – can name Establishment figures including peers, Government ministers, civil servants and police.
Napier, 67, was treasurer of the twisted Paedophile Information Exchange, which campaigned on behalf of paedophiles in the 1970s and 1980s and argued that the age of consent should be lowered to FOUR.
Dossiers compiled by campaigning MP Geoffrey Dickens and handed to former Home Secretary Leon Brittan in the 1980s were said to contain damning evidence about the group.
Officers recently revealed there are now 18 separate operations probing historic allegations in the 70s and 80s – and campaigners believe Napier would have had a full list of those involved with PIE.
Whistleblower Peter McKelvie, a former local authority child protection chief who has been fighting to bring abusers to justice, said: “Napier is an evil, calculating, manipulative paedophile.
“The charges he was found guilty on were the tip of the iceberg.
“In 1993 I spoke to three victims who refused to give evidence.
“One told me very convincingly that Napier took him to parties where he was introduced to the rich and famous and that Righton was involved in all these activities.”
Mr McKelvie believes Napier – who has said he regrets his actions – should now come clean about everything he knows.
He added: “I don’t believe he has shown one iota of remorse in an adulthood dedicated to the ruthless pursuit of vulnerable children purely to abuse sexually.
“As a test of his newfound ‘remorse’, he can share all the names of the rich and famous who attended the parties that his victims referred to.
“As PIE treasurer in its peak period of membership in the mid-1970s, Napier holds the key to the identity of hundreds of dangerous abusers who continued to abuse thousands of children over many decades.
“He can now pass all this to police as testament to his newfound regret and remorse.”
The Sunday People was the first newspaper to track down Napier, who is the half-brother of Conservative MP John Whittingdale. He was found in picturesque Sherborne, Dorset.
After we passed our information to police, Napier was arrested as part of Operation Cayacos – an offshoot of Fairbank, which was set up to investigate allegations of historical child abuse.
At the time of our probe we spoke to respected author and journalist Francis Wheen, a former pupil at the boarding school Napier taught at.
The 57-year-old said: “He recruited a few of us, saying ‘Spend more time in the gym’ and appointed himself gym master.
“There was a room off the gym and that became his haunt. Four or five of us started going down there, vaulting over horses and things like that, in our gym shorts in all our innocence.
“At the end of it he would take us into his room off the gym and give us beer and cigarettes – bottles of Mackeson’s and Senior Service untipped.
“We thought this was all terrifically exciting. Here we were, 11 years old, being given beer and fags. We were thinking that he was on our side, not like any of the other masters.
“Of course, this was for an ulterior purpose, which very soon became clear when he stuck his hand down my gym shorts and I had to sort of fight him off.”
Sick Napier then revealed his technique for grooming the youngsters by trying to humiliate him.
Mr Wheen said: “He said ‘Don’t be such a baby’ and said I wasn’t grown-up enough for that sort of thing.
“He would point to a couple of other boys, saying ‘They let me do it, you just won’t let me because you’re so babyish’.
“I think he was hoping I’d say ‘No, I’m as grown up as them’ and let him get on with it but I didn’t.
“It meant I was excluded from his ‘charmed circle’ but by then I knew where he kept his beer and cigarettes.
“I used to break into his room, steal them and then go and sit in the woods.”
Mr Wheen visited Southwark Crown Court last week to see Napier sentenced.
He described the jail term as “a signal the judge was giving – these things will be pursued now, even if it’s 46 years later don’t think you’ve got away with it”.
Mr Wheen admitted there had been times before the sentence when he almost felt pity for the pervert – but those feelings quickly evaporated.
He said: “I am glad that it’s been done.
“I’m glad that it’s happened after all these years.
“I thought in the last year or two, ‘Well, he’s getting quite old, maybe it wasn’t that serious,’ feeling a tiny bit of pity occasionally.
“But I don’t feel that now, hearing as we’ve heard about the sheer extent of what he was doing right under our noses while I was at school with all these other boys.
“We just had no idea of the scale of what he was doing and how damaged some of them were by what he did.
“Any element of pity disappeared fairly quickly.”
The site of the former Elm Guest House in Barnes, London
Retired Detective Chief Superintendent Roger Gaspar said Scotland Yard top brass feared what Operation Hedgerow would unearth when it was launched in August 1987.He told the Sunday Express he was denied extra resources and was told to “deal with what he had” throughout the two-year inquiry.Mr Gaspar, who now lives on the Essex coast, also suggested a paedophile unit should be set up to investigate abuse in the late 1980s, but the request was turned down.The operation centred on a north London paedophile ring in Kilburn and dealt with 653 claims by 150 boys and young men.Over 20 were arrested and 14 men convicted.
According to reports at the time the ring was “used by highly placed civil servants and well known public figures”, but police lacked the “evidence or manpower to pursue them in court”.
During the investigation accusations were uncovered of abuse at Grafton Close, a boys home linked to the notorious Elm Guest House.
The names of two prominent people, a top MP and a member of high society were also given by victims during the inquiry.
However, Mr Gaspar said he found no evidence to support the claims.
Last week the Metropolitan Police confirmed they are probing allegations of three murders linked to historic sex abuse by an alleged Westminster paedophile ring.
I was warned not to open the box to find what else is going on because it would just carry on and on
As part of the inquiry, Operation Midland, and the wider Operation Fairbank, officers are trawling through a haul of 900 documents.Mr Gaspar was a detective chief inspector when Operation Hedgerow began after allegations against social worker Kenneth Martin were made to Kilburn police.He said: “I was lucky that I had a great deal of support from senior officers, some of whom were advised not to do it by other senior officers.“There was this ‘don’t open the box, you’ll never get the lid back on’ kind of idea.“There were a couple of policy discussions.
“Early on I went to see the commander about resources because I needed aid from other divisions, but I was told to just deal with what I had.
“I was warned not to open the box to find what else is going on because it would just carry on and on… which is the kind of the thing the Met is finding now with its historic abuse inquiries.”
The names of the MP and member of high society were provided by boys aged in their early teens, who were akin to rent boys in Piccadilly Circus and Victoria Station.
Mr Gaspar said his officers took the view that the information had little credibility.
He said: “When you are doing an inquiry like that, lots of names get thrown at you.
“There were a couple of famous names… but when we looked at them it was rubbish.”
Files from Operation Hedgerow were among the first to be computerised by the Met and named about 30 suspects who were worth further investigation.
Mr Gaspar also wrote an internal report called People Not Property, which recommended a specialist paedophile unit be set up at the end of the 1980s, but it was shelved.
He recalled: “I put up a proposal asking that if we had an obscene publication unit, why can’t we afford a team to focus more on a proper intelligence led approach.
Dossier: Labour MP John Mann (pictured) has submitted an explosive dossier to police naming 22 politicians linked to historical child abuse
Police are investigating claims that at least five paedophile rings operating at the heart of Westminster were covered up.
Labour MP John Mann has submitted an explosive dossier to police naming 22 politicians – including three serving MPs and three serving members of the House of Lords – linked to historical child abuse.
Last night, he said the complexity of the criminality at the heart of the Establishment during the 1970s and 1980s had been underestimated.
The latest claims come after Mr Mann revealed in the Mail last week that he was aware of five investigations dropped by Scotland Yard into alleged VIP child abuse which took place over the last three decades.
Last night the Bassetlaw MP said: ‘There are at least five paedophile rings which involved MPs. Each of them involved at least one MP, some involved more, and these were groups of people who knew about the activities of one another.
‘In some cases I believe they committed abuse together.’ He told the Daily Telegraph: ‘Three of these figures were highly influential.’
The document submitted to police by Mr Mann also includes the names of 13 ex-ministers, including at least two who are claimed to have gone to ‘abuse parties’ held at Dolphin Square, the luxury riverside estate in Pimlico which has been home to dozens of MPs.
Mr Mann acted after receiving hundreds of reports from the public. Last month the Mail revealed how in 1989 as a young councillor in Lambeth, South London, Mr Mann uncovered evidence that a Tory Cabinet minister was allegedly involved.
He alerted police but was told three months later that the inquiry was being shelved on the orders of ‘those at the top’.
Now Mr Mann has compiled ‘credible’ information about 22 high-profile figures alleged to have committed offences between 1970 and the late-1990s.
Estate: The document submitted to police by Mr Mann also includes the names of 13 ex-ministers, including at least two who are claimed to have gone to ‘abuse parties’ held at Dolphin Square, Pimlico
Probe: Met Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Steve Rodhouse (pictured) has confirmed he is now assessing Mr Mann’s dossier as part of a raft of allegations that police acted inappropriately in relation to child abuse investigations covering a period from the mid-1970s up to 2005
The report names 14 Tory politicians, five Labour and three others. Mr Mann told the Daily Mail: ‘All of these allegations are historic but some of these people are still in positions of power, having been local councillors or MPs at the time. The offences span almost 30 years.
‘But I am still getting more information coming into me. There may be more.’ He added: ‘All those 22 names are worthy of investigation by the police. The evidence against half of them is very compelling.
Missing: Last month, it emerged another dossier, which named MP Cyril Smith (pictured) as being involved in abuse, had vanished
‘Some of them could definitely be prosecuted and I believe several of them were definitely child abusers.’
He told the Sunday Times: ‘Some of these victims have been ignored for years by the police and the Met really needs to step up to the mark now and do a proper job.’
Mr Mann also said he had received allegations that an organised crime gang and a celebrity were involved in the trafficking of young boys to abusers at Dolphin Square.
But many of the reports were never investigated at the time.
Met Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Steve Rodhouse has confirmed he is now assessing Mr Mann’s dossier as part of a raft of allegations that police acted inappropriately in relation to child abuse investigations covering a period from the mid-1970s up to 2005.
Scotland Yard last week made a dramatic appeal for witnesses to three alleged child murders carried out by the Westminster paedophile ring, describing claims that a Conservative MP strangled a boy of 12 as ‘credible and true’.
An expert panel set up in July to look into historical child abuse is poised to be scrapped after being beset by problems, including the resignation of two chairmen.
Home Secretary Teresa May has told its eight members that a new body will be established with more powers.
Sharon Evans, who runs a children’s charity and is on the panel, said: ‘Halting the inquiry would send a very negative message to so many people who we have promised they can have confidence in us to do the right thing.’
Last month, it emerged that another dossier compiled by MP Geoffrey Dickens had vanished after being sent in 1983 to the then home secretary Leon Brittan. It named MP Cyril Smith and other suspected establishment figures as involved in child sex abuse.
A series of covert police investigations into alleged VIP paedophile rings were shut down as they went ‘to the heart of the Establishment’, officers have claimed.
Serving and former detectives have vented their fury on an internet chat forum, claiming Scotland Yard investigations into child sex abuse were ‘canned’ during the 1980s and 1990s as they closed in on powerful figures, some of whom were said to be at ‘cabinet level’.
It comes as a senior MP said he was aware of six police probes into child sex abuse being shelved, five of which were run by Scotland Yard.
Detectives have vented their anger on an internet chat forum where they claimed investigations into child sex abuse in the 1980s and 1990s by Scotland Yard as they closed in on powerful figures were ‘canned’
The extraordinary claims of a cover-up by 14 members of the forum will heap pressure on the Government and Scotland Yard, which have launched a string of probes into historic child sex abuse allegations linked to politicians.
One ex-officer of 30 years’ service wrote: ‘Some very senior people have been habitually sexually assaulting the most vulnerable in
‘This is about kids being raped by those in power that included politicians of all sorts. It goes to the very heart of our Establishment.
‘There is very clear evidence that the general nature of the allegations are true.
‘There are enough officers on this site who have mentioned paedophile ops involving high-profile politicians being stopped at the eleventh hour.’
Labour MP John Mann yesterday admitted that he was aware of six inquiries which were shelved for ‘no good reason’
A former detective constable said: ‘In the 90s I uncovered a middle class paedo ring at [a police station in east London]. It linked into a massive UC [undercover] paedo job which was being run by [a named detective sergeant].
‘The UC who shall remain nameless found that it went to cabinet level and four years of work was pulled overnight.’
Some of the officers also claimed there was a secret file dating back to the 1960s on a celebrity recently linked to historic abuse.
One civil servant, who said he had signed the Official Secrets Act, wrote: ‘The cover up began in 1985 when operations were closed for no apparent reason except that prominent persons were allegedly involved and again in 1990 and again over the North Wales child abuse and successive governments have continued the practice.’ The forum is open only to those who have worked in the Metropolitan Police or closely alongside the force.
The discussions surfaced in an investigation by Exaro, a news website, which was allowed access to the forum by one member.
The claims were posted over a four-month period from July, when child protection campaigner Chris Fay, of the now-defunct National Association of Young People in Care, said a Special Branch detective held a gun to his head, telling him to stop investigating an alleged paedophile ring at Elm Guest House in south-west London.
Yesterday Labour MP John Mann said: ‘I am aware of six inquiries that were shelved for no good reason. These officers are obviously aware of more than that.
‘It’s important that they are interviewed by the police, the Home Affairs Select Committee and the national inquiry. If these officers fail to come forward it would be a dereliction of duty.’