Dear Mr. Wilson,
I wonder if you would be prepared to help me.
I am a retired Child Protection Team Manager and the source of Tom Watson, MP’s PMQ to David Cameron on 24th October 2012, regarding the high profile paedophile ring that was partially exposed as a result of a police raid on Peter Righton’s home in 1992. The allegations that I took to Tom Watson resulted in the setting up of the ongoing Metropolitan Police investigation, Operation Fernbridge.
Today I have become aware, after the intense speculation surrounding the article in the Mail On Sunday regarding the MP “north of Watford” , of your previous role with Social Work Today and by implication BASW.
I was heavily involved with the making of the BBC’s Inside Story Documentary in 1994 – The Secret Life of a Paedophile – which was about Righton. It remains very much unfinished business for me as to how much of a major player Righton was in an international not just national network of abusers, and I admit to almost obsessional behaviour in trying to get the whole truth out on how evil a man he was and how many vulnerable children were abused directly by him or through the access he provided for fellow paedophiles.
Righton made little secret to close colleagues of his inclinations, as described by Barbara Kahan and Daphne Statham in the Secret Life documentary. Did your paths cross when you edited Social Work Today from 1976 – 79?
I have recently been told that Righton and Cyril Smith not only knew each other but may have operated together as paedophiles. Nothing in the 3 days I spent at Evesham Police Station in 1992 going through the tons of paperwork, letters, diaries etc removed on arrest from Righton’s home gave a clue to any such relationship.
However I am aware that Cyril Smith was the Liberals spokesperson on Social Services during your time at SWT and so it was highly possible that they knew each other through that link.
If you wish to check on my authenticity you can google the Spotlightonabuse site and look at my various contributions such as “An Open Letter to David Cameron”.
I will also now send you communication seperately between myself and Norman Baker who has agreed to meet me on 13th May as Minister of Justice to discuss my concerns raised in the Open Letter to Cameron.
I know that you have a reputation of being a very successful campaigner (“We can only try to edge the world in the right direction” is a quote of yours I understand) and so I hope you will appreciate what I am trying to achieve.
Incidentally and I hope you don’t mind me raising this, can I assume that today in the Mail isn’t the first time you have made such serious allegations about what you knew to be happening with the “MP north of Watford”. I would like to believe that you passed this information to the Police at the time or certainly not long afterwards.
If you are able to share what happened to it after that I would be grateful to know. I am not asking for the name of the MP!!
Please Note – as of 7th June, no reply has been received to this letter
Red Hill School was a special boarding school in Maidstone, Kent. It was where Peter Righton started his career in 1957 and where he went on to sexually abuse a number of vulnerable young boys. This was reported in the BBC Inside Story documentary, The Secret Life of a Paedophile. Peter Howarth also worked there, and was later jailed for child sex offences that took place at the Bryn Estyn home in Wrexham.
A recently discovered news report shows that a convicted child sex offender worked as a helper at Red Hill School in 1978/79. James Russell applied for the job using the false name of James Stewart, and lied about his background to disguise his criminal record. He had “three convictions for offences against young boys, and had spent most of the last eight years in jail”.
Two friends gave him references, and were both fined £200 after admitting “helping Russell by not disclosing his name and mis-stating his character”. One of the friends was Nicholas Douglass of Muntham House School.
Muntham House was a special boarding school 50 miles away from Maidstone in Horsham, West Sussex. In 1998, Nicholas Douglass was jailed for 16 years for his part in a paedophile ring that abused young boys at Muntham House in the late 1970s. (The Argus 25.08.98)
News of the World, 1st July 1979
The morning after the broadcast of ‘Secret Life of a Paedophile’ in 1994, Richard Johnson, the author of the book A Kind of Hush, rang in to the Inside Story team to say that at 1.30 am he had received a phone call from ‘Mick’ (who the central character in A Kind of Hush is based on) to say that the documentary had vindicated him and everything he had told Richard about many years before. According to Richard Johnson the book was loosely based on a paedophile network that included Peter Righton, a Labour MP, a well known Labour politician, and a central figure allegedly named as a major paedophile in Islington children’s homes.
This information is based on written evidence seen at first hand by Peter McKelvie.
The Sunday Times, 25th August 1996
By Stephen Grey
SCOTLAND YARD detectives are investigating allegations of a paedophile network involving teachers from some of Britain’s top public schools.
The paedophile and child pornography unit is inquiring into a ring of private school staff who allegedly exchange information, boast of abusing youngsters and travel abroad together on “sex tours”. At least six teachers have been questioned and their homes raided as inquiries continue into the ring that has links to some of the most notorious paedophiles in Britain.
The paedophile unit has been assisted by detectives from forces around the country as well as social workers.
The inquiry began after a former teacher at Abberley Hall preparatory school in Herefordshire allegedly confessed to a colleague to being part of a huge network of paedophiles. Abberley Hall, which charges £2,500 a term for boarders, confirmed last week that both teachers were no longer on staff.
The former teacher claimed that he had had sex with “hundreds and hundreds” of boys and named teachers at six other leading establishments. There was no suggestion that any abuse took place at the schools.
Trips for the teachers to indulge in child abuse with “rent boys” have allegedly been organised to countries including the Philippines, Czech Republic, Romania, Albania, Thailand and even Bosnia.
“These people decided a few years ago it was no longer safe to talk openly of abusing kids in this country, but decided they were perfectly safe abroad. At home they content themselves with sick pictures of child abuse,” said one source.
Although full details cannot be revealed for legal reasons, the investigation has involved a series of police raids, including one at the home of a head of department at a prominent London public school, where pornography was removed.
Another raid took place at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex. Last week Stephen Meek, headmaster of the £3,500-a-term school, confirmed that two staff had been dismissed after a police caution for the possession of indecent material. “It was nothing to do with pupils at the school,” he said.
Other teachers also named include three masters at another leading public school, two masters at two famous preparatory schools in the home counties, and a choir school teacher.
The teachers were said to exchange paedophile videos. When they feared police raids, they allegedly worked together to conceal material.
“Many of these teachers will be secure in the knowledge that they will never be prosecuted,” said one police source.
Also named as allegedly linked to the network are Peter Righton, the former childcare expert exposed as a paedophile, and Charles Napier, a former treasurer of the Paedophile Information Exchange and a former staff member of the British Council in Cairo who was jailed last year for sex assaults on youngsters in London.
In 1993, Hereford & Worcester social services department produced a report about paedophile ‘child care expert’ Peter Righton and his connections with other child sex abusers who were working in schools and children’s homes across the UK.
The report (dated 13.05.93) was sent to Virginia Bottomley’s Department of Health via Sir William Utting. It clearly stated that the abuse networks were still active and that children in care were at risk, yet the Department of Health – who have overall responsibility for children in care – did nothing to stop the abuse from continuing.
The report stated:
“The infiltration of the social work profession by paedophiles appears to be an extensive and serious problem. It has become apparent that there may be a co-ordinated network of professionals at every level who are involved in the abuse of childen.”
“Amongst the men who have been identified from information in Righton’s home as paedophiles or likely paedophiles are a Bishop, current social services and education staff, and civil servants. A number of these individuals have criminal records for the sexual abuse of young boys, and, in the case of teachers, are on the D.E.S.’s List 99
“It is also clear that Righton has used his professional roles and/or contacts to meet and subsequently abuse a significant number of children either in care or known to Social Services Departments in various parts of the country.”
The report went on to give recommendations of how the Department of Health should deal with the problem, including a national investigation by a small team of experienced social workers and police. It was recommended that the investigation should be jointly funded by the Department of Health and the Home Office.
Until now I thought there was actual no evidence to prove that the Department of Health had received the report. But a Daily Mail article from February 1994 written by Peter Rose clearly states that the Department of Health did receive the report.
“A child sex ring has been operating at the very heart of the system set up to protect youngsters in care, claims a secret report.
The paedophile network included two bishops, child care experts and academics, according to the document compiled after a joint inquiry by social workers and police.
The Government was last night facing demands for a full public inquiry in to the claims, which were made as a result of an investigation into disgraced former child care consultant Peter Righton.
The report calls for a national unit to be set up to investigate allegations against care staff, which are usually dealt with in isolation by local authorities. The Department of Health confirmed that the matter was raised with them last year and earlier this week claimed that they had passed the information on to the Home Office. But yesterday a spokesman admitted: ‘The letter was not passed on as originally thought because it was felt that a unit already exists, namely the Obscene Publications Squad, albeit that they cover the Met.
‘We are not prepared to release the letter because it raises sensitive issues particularly about striking a balance between protecting children and civil liberties’ “
It appears that the report was suppressed by Virginia Bottomley’s Department of Health, who refused to even pass on the information on to the Home Office. The police investigation in to Peter Righton was shut down shortly afterwards.
Hopefully the current Operation Fernbridge/Fairbank investigation will finally reveal who gave the orders that led to the protection of well-connected paedophiles and the continuing abuse of vulnerable children.
Daily Mail, 24th February 1994
Hereford & Worcester Social Services Department report, 13th May 1993