JIMMY Savile, Gary Glitter, Max Clifford, Leon Brittan, Cyril Smith, Greville Janner, Rolf Harris, Stuart Hall, Jonathan King, Oliver Reed and Chris Denning are just a few of the UK’s high profile child sex offenders to have been convicted or outed in the past three years.
But there are many more.
A ‘powerful elite’ of at least 20 prominent Establishment figures formed a VIP paedophile ring that abused children for decades, one whistleblower has now claimed.
Meanwhile the Metropolitan Police confirms it is investigating paedophile and sexual abuse claims against 76 British politicians, 178 TV and movie celebrities and seven sports stars.
Peter McKelvie – a former child protection officer who first raised the alarm about high profile individuals engaged in child sex abuse – said senior politicians, military figures and even people linked to the Royal Family are among the alleged abusers.
Mr McKelvie said that their campaign of abuse may have been going on for as long as 65 years, but ‘there has always been the block and the cover-up and the collusion to prevent an investigation.’
Mr McKelvie, whose claims led to Scotland Yard’s 2012 Operation Fernbridge investigation into allegations of a paedophile network linked to Downing Street, said the alleged VIP child abuse ring may at last face justice, although several members are now dead.
“For the last 30 years and longer than that, there have been a number of allegations made by survivors that people at the top of very powerful institutions in this country – which include politicians, judges, senior military figures and even people that have links with the Royal Family – have been involved in the abuse of children,” said Mr McKelvie.
“At the most serious level, we’re talking about the brutal rape of young boys,” he added.
Describing the child abusers as making up a ‘small percentage’ of the British Establishment at the time, Mr McKelvie admitted there was ‘a slightly larger percentage’ of people who knew about the abuse but did not report it to the police.
He said these people ‘felt that in terms of their own self-interest and self-preservation and for political party reasons, it has been safer for them to cover it up than deal with it.’
Meanwhile, a former Metropolitan Police officer says he was told a member of the Queen’s family and an MP had both been identified as part of a major child abuse inquiry.
But the operation was shut down by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for ‘national security reasons’.
The ex-officer explained how a named detective sergeant based at London’s Marylebone Police Station in the late 1980s, spoke to him about the investigation and the fact it had been axed.
The former officer said: “I was in a car with two other vice squad officers. They were discussing a madam who had provided a girl of about 15 to the film actor Oliver Reed.
“The detective sergeant said he had just had a major child abuse investigation shut down by the CPS regarding a royal and an MP.
“He said the CPS had said it was not in the public’s interest because it ‘could destabilise national security’.”
The former officer added: “What I was told has stayed with me to this day.”
Reed was never prosecuted over underage sex.
The Metropolitan Police now insists it is pursuing claims of abuse, no matter who was said to be involved.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Steve Rodhouse said: “We have seen lots of allegations of cover-ups, and I think it’s helpful that people are coming forward. We will go where the evidence takes us, without fear or favour, I think that is what the public expect.”
Earlier this year it was announced the Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating 14 separate referrals spanning four decades, amid cover-up claims.
The claims – referred to the IPCC by the Met – allege the force suppressed evidence, hindered or halted investigations and covered up offences because of the involvement of MPs and police officers.
Former Met Deputy Commissioner Albert Laugharne said that, while head of Lancashire police, he had been asked by a DPP officer to lie about allegations involving the late Lib Dem MP Cyril Smith, later unmasked as a paedophile.
A surveillance operation that unmasked Leon Brittan’s links to child sex abuse is also said to have been shut down by Met detectives.
The Sunday Mirror revealed last year how the former Home Secretary was snapped by officers during a 1986 investigation into rent boy orgies run in North London buildings.
But the day before swoops on alleged suspects were due to be carried out, officers on Operation Orchid were told it had been disbanded.
Smith and top judges were also believed to have been photographed entering the underage sex dens. Sources claim up to 16 high profile figures were due to be arrested.
Leon Brittan was under investigation by the Met over sex abuse allegations at the time of his death in January this year. However, in October, the CPS said they had not found enough evidence to prosecute.
In 2013, police investigating allegations of a child paedophile network seized a list naming top politicians, members of the Royal household and a world-renowned pop star.
They were allegedly visitors to a bed and breakfast guest house which operated as a brothel where youngsters were abused at gay sex parties.
The names were recorded on a handwritten note found by police at the North London home of child protection worker Mary Moss during a raid.
She had initially declined to co-operate with the investigation.
Documents and a laptop were seized and Ms Moss later handed over other 19 files she had put in a neighbour’s shed.
The papers include a list of men who went to sex parties in the 1980s at the Elm Guest House, in Barnes, south west London.
Among them were two former Conservative Cabinet ministers, four other senior Tories, a Labour MP, a prominent Irish republican and a leading National Front member.
The note also allegedly names two members of the royal household – one a former Buckingham Palace employee – plus the owner of a multinational company and two pop stars.
In Government documents released in July this year, Leon Brittan was one of four senior Westminster figures named in connection to child sexual abuse.
Along with Brittan, the former British diplomat Sir Peter Hayman, and former ministers William van Straubenzee and Peter Morrison were named in the secret government files.
It was reported that Brittan and Hayman were among the suspects who were involved in an alleged Westminster paedophile ring operating in the 1980s, according to an investigation by the Australian current affairs programme 60 Minutes entitled Spies, Lords and Predators.
One victim accused Brittan of regularly abusing children at the Dolphin Square apartment block in Pimlico.
The victim told 60 Minutes that Brittan liked boys to dress in women’s underwear before abusing them.
The fact that a paedophile ring had been operating within the British Establishment first emerged in an investigation by campaigning Tory politician Geoffrey Dickens.
In November 1983, the MP for Littleborough and Saddleworth sent a 40-page document to then Home Secretary Leon Brittan detailing alleged VIP child abusers, including Cyril Smith and other senior politicians.
In a newspaper interview at the time, Mr Dickens claimed his dossier contained the names of eight ‘really important public figures’ that he planned to expose, and whose crimes are believed to have stretched back to the 1960s.
But in March 1984 Home Secretary Brittan told Mr Dickens that his dossier has been assessed by prosecutors and passed on to the police, but no further action is taken.
In 1989, Brittan was suddenly made European Commissioner for Competition at the European Commission, resigning as an MP to take the position. He accepted the post as European Commissioner reluctantly, as it meant giving up his British parliamentary ambitions.
(In late 1990, while I was working as the editor of a weekly newspaper in Argyll, I was told by a leading Scottish Conservative politician that Brittan had been moved to Europe, because “he has an unnatural fascination for young boys”.)
In May 1995, Geoffrey Dickens died. A short time later his wife destroyed his copy of the paedophile dossier.
The only other copies – one received by Mr Brittan and another allegedly sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions – are believed to have been lost or destroyed.
In September 2010 Cyril Smith died aged 82 without ever being charged with sex offences.
In October 2012 during Prime Minister’s Questions, Labour MP (and now Deputy Leader) Tom Watson claimed there is ‘clear intelligence suggesting a powerful paedophile network linked to Parliament and No10’.
A month later the CPS admitted that Smith should have been charged with crimes of abuse more than 40 years earlier.
The CPS also admitted Smith had been investigated in 1970, 1974, 1998, and 1999, but rejected every opportunity to prosecute him.
A former special branch officer, Tony Robinson, said a historic dossier ‘packed’ with information about Smith’s sex crimes was actually in the hands of MI5 – despite officially having been ‘lost’ decades earlier.
Then in June 2014, Labour MP Simon Danczuk called on Leon Brittan to say what he knew about the Dickens dossier.
A month later Home Office permanent secretary Mark Sedwill revealed that 114 files relating to historic allegations of child sex abuse, from between 1979 and 1999, have disappeared from the Home Office.
It is clear that this nasty can of worms only opens from the inside.
To be continued…