Britain’s child sex crime is the ‘worst’ new head of abuse inquiry has ever seen
Child sex crime in Britain is a huge international scandal, the new head of the Government’s abuse inquiry warned.
Justice Lowell Goddard, from New Zealand, told MPs: “There has been worldwide interest in this. I can’t say there has been anything like it that I can recollect in New Zealand.”
She was making her first appearance in Parliament after being appointed to head the inquiry into historic child abuse.
The previous two chiefs were forced to quit over ties to the British establishment.
Justice Goddard said she had no links to people relevant to the inquiry.
She flew to Britain on Monday to meet survivors’ groups before the hearing at the Commons home affairs committee.
Next she will approve an inquiry panel before work begins in April.
The last one was scrapped due to infighting. The inquiry could last four years.
Theresa May hopes bringing in a top judge from the other side of the world will avoid a third embarrassment.
Asked if she considered herself part of the establishment, Justice Goddard replied: “We don’t have such a thing in my country.
“Do I have any links into any institution or any person relevant to the subject matter of the inquiry? No, I don’t.”
Panel member and child abuse survivor Sharon Evans was reprimanded by both the Home Office and inquiry lawyer Ben Emmerson QC for a series of media interviews she gave
Justice Goddard told MPs she does not believe the panel needs to include any survivors of child abuse.