Two more ministers accused in the VIP child abuse scandal: MP wants Secrets Act lifted to let police speak out
Scotland Yard has been handed the names of two more former Government ministers accused of sexually abusing children.
Campaigning MP John Mann said he was approached last week by a victim who claims to have been abused by the politicians – one a peer – in the 1980s and has passed the detailed allegations to detectives.
The latest phase in his search for the truth about a suspected Westminster child sex ring came as he called for retired detectives to be granted an unprecedented amnesty from the Official Secrets Act to help lift the lid on alleged VIP abusers.
Allowing former Special Branch officers who witnessed the alleged events to speak out could be central to bringing prosecutions, said Mr Mann. He has now called on Home Secretary Theresa May to lift Official Secrets Act restrictions.
The new allegations of child abuse emerged after the Bassetlaw MP handed a carefully-researched dossier about five paedophile rings to police with the names of 22 MPs. It includes 13 ex-ministers, at least two of whom 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.
However, Mr Mann said the latest claims, which involve two former politicians who are still alive, are ‘entirely separate’. ‘Someone has contacted me with some very precise allegations – not just the names but the basis of the allegations – and it is going straight to the police,’ he said.
He said the key to unlocking the truth behind the saga lies with retired Special Branch detectives who witnessed events and could be ‘absolutely critical’ in providing information to an investigation.
He said ‘a number’ of officers have contacted him, including one who has read a 50-page dossier of evidence amassed by Tory MP Geoffrey Dickens which is now said to be missing.
He added: ‘It is clear there are a lot of people who could provide a lot of information, potentially vital information, to support ongoing criminal investigations.
‘But they are not doing so because of the Official Secrets Act. They are fearful of not only breaking the law but the potential effect on their pension. This is absolutely crucial if we are to get some of these ex-officers coming forward and to get prosecutions of some of the former MPs.’
Labour MP John Mann made has handed a dossier of information to Scotland Yard
Scotland Yard is already investigating sweeping allegations made by one man who claims he suffered systematic and organised abuse over nine years until 1984.
They want to trace witnesses to corroborate his astonishing claim that three boys were murdered by a sex ring that operated in London and the Home Counties.
Mrs May has already said the Official Secrets Act ‘should not get in the way’ of anybody giving evidence to an official inquiry.
But campaigners say the offer does not go far enough and want a guaranteed amnesty.
Those who sign the Act could face up to 14 years in prison if they breach it by revealing sensitive information, which could include the movements of top politicians.
One former Special Branch detective, now aged 81, said he was ‘shocked and surprised’ to be contacted out of the blue and warned not to speak out about disgraced Liberal MP Cyril Smith.
Tony Robinson, who claimed to have found files relating to the MP ‘deliberately hidden’ in a safe in Preston in the early 1970s, said he was told by his ‘old HQ’ the information was still protected by the Official Secrets Act.
The Government is under huge pressure to put its ill-fated child sex abuse inquiry back on track after two panel chairmen stepped down over potential conflicts of interest.
A meeting involving more than 100 people including alleged victims will be held on January 14.
THE WHISTLEBLOWER: MAN AT CENTRE OF THE INQUIRY
The man at the centre of the Dolphin Square inquiry says he was abused at depraved sex ‘parties’ from the age of seven.
Known only by the pseudonym Nick, he claims to have witnessed horrific acts at the luxury estate in central London between 1975 and 1984.
After being abused by his father, Nick says he was handed to a gang of top Establishment figures. He has described being driven by a chauffeur, along with a terrified 12-year-old boy, to a luxury townhouse where he watched as a Tory MP strangled the other child.
Nick also said he saw a second boy being brutally murdered in front of a Tory Cabinet minister in 1981. A third boy, aged ten or 11, had died in 1979 after being deliberately run over by a member of the paedophile gang in a ‘warning’ to victims not to speak out, he alleges.
He says he was taken to Dolphin Square at least ten times for ‘abuse parties’. He claimed one MP told him to thrash another boy – and ‘sexually punished’ him when he refused.
After receiving counselling he contacted the investigative website Exaro in May, whose investigators described him as ‘intelligent and articulate’, before going to the police.