No Ordinary Methods – Supplementary Post

My post ‘No Ordinary Methods’ detailed some of the practices and connections of George Carman – and how so many parts of his life and career touched on those who concealed the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. I have more information concerning Carman’s network, so I’m writing this post for readers interested in how Carman came to be so powerful, who else assisted him and indeed how many people knew about his violent, abusive conduct towards many people but kept silent.

George Carman was a member of the Garrick, a club favoured by lawyers, actors, politicians, newspaper editors and High Court judges. Carman was friends with a fellow member of the Garrick, Sir Robin Day – they had been barristers together in the early 1950s. Sir Ronnie Waterhouse was also a member, as were a number of others who concealed wrongdoing in north Wales. Joshua Rozenberg the legal journalist and broadcaster was a regular at the Garrick in the 1990s – Rozenberg maintains that by then Carman had pretty much stopped visiting the Garrick.

The drinking holes, clubs and gambling dens in Manchester frequented by George Carman included the Embassy Club, where he drank with journalists.

His favourite watering holes in London included:

El Vinos – Carman was often seen at this Fleet Street favourite for lawyers and journos, accompanied by Mungo Fitzpatrick and James Crespi QC. Crespi managed to marry a ‘young nightclub hostess’ who left him after three weeks.

Dalys Wine Bar – this was opposite the Royal Courts of Justice and from the mid-80s was Carman’s regular starting point for a night out.

Wine Press – a regular haunt of Carman’s. He used to drink here with Paul Callan, a feature writer for the Mirror and Express.

Jimmy’z Bar, Sloane Avenue. Carman socialised here with his friend Christopher Moran, a property tycoon. Also with Aidan Barclay – the Chairman of Press Holdings, the owner of the Ritz, Carman’s client and friend.

Blondes, a Dover Street club – a popular haunt of sex workers and gangsters. Carman hung out here with George Best, as well as viscious criminal Frankie Fraser.

Carman was a regular at Le Rififi, Hay Hill, Mayfair. John Obertelli, the owner of Le Rififi, was a friend of Carman. Carman also frequented other ‘gentlemen’s clubs’ such as Bruton Suite, Toppers, Chaplins and L’Hirondelle.

In 1988 Carman visited Amsterdam with his son Dominic. George took the opportunity to tour the sex clubs.

Carman’s favourite casinos in London included Aspinalls, Curzon Street and the Playboy Club. He knew the Manchester casino located next to the Midland Hotel because in the 1970s Carman had applied for their licence on behalf of Cyril Stein, the Chairman of Ladbrookes.

At various stages in his career George Carman lived in Sale, Hale, Wilmslow, Altrincham (until 1980), Huntingdon, Evelyn Gardens Chelsea (1987-93), Wimbledon (both in Marryat Road and in Wimbledon Village) (1993 onwards).

Carman’s close colleagues in chambers will have known much of what he got up to. They included his junior counsel in London, Hugh Tomlinson, who lived in Islington -presumably near to two other junior barristers who had worked in Carman’s chambers, Tony Blair and Cherie Booth.

Frederic Reynold QC was Carman’s London chambers colleague for 29 yrs. Reynold specialises in employment law and has advised both the Equal Opportunities Commission and the BMA.

Fred Turner was a junior clerk in Carman’s chambers. Carman’s senior clerk when Carman was working both in Manchester and London was Ronnie Lynch- he had homes in Weybridge and Salford and commuted between the two.

Another solicitor that Carman knew well was Fabian Williams of James Chapman and Co in Manchester – Williams sent many briefs to Carman and Carman was godfather to Williams’s son.

Carman worked as a Recorder at Knightsbridge Crown Court but resigned in Dec 1983 – so he’ll have been very well known there.

‘No Ordinary Methods’ named many of the high profile clients of Carman, but there were more besides.

After he successfully defended Jeremy Thorpe, Carman acted for the engineering company William Press after a dawn raid upon them by the Inland Revenue – shortly after this William Press became AMEC following a merger.

In 1986 Carman acted for the Chief Constable of South Yorkshire, Peter Wright, after Arthur Scargill sued him for false imprisonment. Wright had Scargill’s activities monitored using officers from South Yorkshire. Carman won the case. Peter Wright may well have been an old buddy of Carman’s anyway, because Wright joined the Manchester Police in 1954 and by 1975 was a Chief Superintendent in the Greater Manchester Police. In 1979 Wright was Deputy Chief Constable of Merseyside Police and was in that role at the time of the Toxteth riots. He was Chief Constable of South Yorkshire 1983-90. So Wright was at the helm during the glorious days of South Yorkshire Police officers removing their numbers and covering their faces whilst they beat up striking miners at Orgreave as well as screwing up at Hillsborough and then falsifying statements to back up their untruthful version of events. Wright himself amended reports in an attempt to deflect blame away from the South Yorkshire Police even after the grim truth became known. But the only way was up for Peter Wright – he was President of ACPO, a member of the Parole Review Committee 1987-89 and after retirement an advisor to the MoD police 1991-94.

Carman acted for Joan Collins in 1986 and for Liz Hurley in 1996. He won damages from the Sun for Jason Connery and Stefanie Powers.

Carman won a case for M&S against Granada after they alleged that M&S were involved with the use of child labour.

He represented the Observer after Edwina Currie sued them – Richard Hartley QC appeared for Currie and Carman’s old friend Justice Drake presided. Currie won but it was observed after she published her diaries some years later that the information in them was sufficient for the Observer to have appealed the decision. They never did. Currie also admitted in her diaries that she and other Tories – as well as Thatcher – knew that Sir Peter Morrison, Thatcher’s aide, was molesting under-aged boys. Some of those boys were living in children’s homes in north Wales. Morrison was MP for Chester – not a million miles away from where Carman lived when he worked in Manchester.

Another case of Carman’s also saw him up against Richard Hartley QC with Justice Drake (Sir Maurice Drake) presiding – that was when Carman acted for the People after Mona Bauwens and David Mellor sued them. That case led to the end of David Mellor’s political career.

‘No Ordinary Methods’ explains why I suspect that Carman may have been throwing cases or doing undeclared deals behind closed doors – I explained that I suspected that something along these lines may have happened when Carman acted for the Guardian in 1997 after Jonathan Aitken sued them for libel. Although Aitken was supposedly thrashed at the hands of Carman, Aitken remained on remarkably good terms with him and escaped comparatively unscathed from both losing the libel case and being convicted of perjury. There were a few other aspects to the Aitken case as well. When Alan Rusbridger (the editor of the Guardian)heard that Aitken was going to sue, he stated that the Guardian needed to retain George Carman before Aitken did. Aitken’s side attempted to settle before Court – Lord Saatchi acting on behalf of Aitken had lunch with Rusbridger before the trial but obviously no settlement was thrashed out.

The judge who presided over Aitken’s libel case was Justice Oliver Popplewell. Popplewell ruled that the case should be tried by a judge without a jury. Carman took the decision to Appeal – the Appeal was heard by Tom Bingham, the Lord Chief Justice, who upheld Popplewell’s decision. Popplewell, Rusbridger and Carman were all members of the Garrick.

In 1975 Popplewell, in his capacity as a barrister, defended his 18 year old godson at his trial for credit card fraud – a young man called Stephen Fry. Popplewell and his wife had been friends with Fry’s parents for many years. The Garrick contains many actors as members. At one point Popplewell was Vice-Chair of the Parole Board.

In 1990 Carman acted for businessman Rolf Schild in a libel case against Express Newspapers. Carman lost against Robert Alexander QC who was representing the Express. Presiding judge William Mars-Jones upheld an Appeal against Carman. Nevertheless, Carman continued to enjoy good relations with Sir John Junor the editor of the Sunday Express and they had a very jolly lunch together not long afterwards.

Robert Alexander QC became a Tory peer and was Chair of the Bar Council 1985-86. He represented Jeffrey Archer in his libel case against the Star in 1987 – the case that the Star later took to appeal when new evidence emerged… Alexander retired from the Bar in 1989 and was Chair of Nat West bank 1989-99. He was Chair of JUSTICE, 1990-05 and was Chancellor of the University of Exeter, 1998-05.

William Mars-Jones grew up in north Wales and retained many connections there. He was President of UCNW (now known as Bangor University) whilst Gwynne the lobotomist and paedophiles’ friend was employed in the Student Health Centre. Mars-Jones was a member of the Garrick.

Carman won libel actions for Philip Oppenheimer and Norman Tebbit against David Bookbinder, the Labour leader of Derbyshire County Council.

Celebrity friends of Carman’s included David Tang – who was friends with Sarah Ferguson and Diana -and Conrad Black and Barbara Amiel (Carman was a regular at their dinner parties). Piers Morgan was an admirer of Carman.

Carman acted in many cases involving sport. Benetton were charged with interfering with the refuelling equipment on Formula One driver Michael Schumacher’s car before the German Grand Prix in July 1994 – a second Benetton car had gone up in flames. Benetton were also charged with a lesser offence involving cheating as well. Benetton Chairman Flavio Briatore hired Carman to defend the company and the driver when they were due to appear before a hearing of the World Motor Sports Council of the FIA in Paris. The day before the hearing in Sept 1997 Carman met with Max Moseley. Bernie Ecclestone, the Chairman of Formula One, was also present. Carman succeeded in getting the charges against Benetton dropped.

Carman appeared for the Mirror Group when Graham Souness sued the People after they published allegations that Souness had mistreated his wife and about his divorce settlement. Lord Gareth Williams QC represented Souness and Justice Morland presided. Williams and Morland were old pals of Carman. Souness won, although damages were reduced on appeal.

Many of the cases that Carman lost resulted in people being accused of deeply unpleasant things being exonerated – as in the cases of Gordon Anglesea and Peter Adamson. Carman lost when he represented the Mail after they published allegations of sexual abuse involving Indian boys by former charity head Joe Homan. He lost when he represented the Mirror Group over three articles that they published concerning Dr Doolittle aka Dr Anthony Percy, after it was alleged that he failed to attend a seriously injured patient. Carman also lost for the Sunday Express regarding their allegations concerning Peter Bottomley sharing a platform with Martin McGuiness.

In 1996 Carman represented cricketer Imran Khan after Khan was sued by Ian Botham and Allan Lamb. Botham and Lamb were represented by Charles Gray QC and Justice French presided. Carman won the case despite the production in Court of a letter of apology to Botham written by Kahn after the incident concerned.

Carman represented the Sun in 1999 when Bruce Grobbelaar sued them after they accused him of match-fixing. Grobbelaar was represented by a man well acquainted with Carman, Richard Hartley QC. Justice Gray presided. Carman lost the case. After Carman died, the Sun appealed and won.

In 1999 the News Of The World alleged that Lawrence Dallaglio dealt in coke and ecstasy during the 1997 Lions tour of South Africa. Dallaglio resigned as captain and pulled out of a planned Australian tour. Twenty four hours later he held a press conference, denying any drug taking in 1997. The RFU appointed a panel to examine the allegations. The Chair was Sir John Kay, a judge known to Carman – also the judge who issued a High Court injunction against me upon the affidavits of two Gwynedd social workers who both perjured themselves. One had never met me, one had met me at most three times. The injunction was granted because I had written too many letters of complaint about Gwynedd Social Services, Gwynedd Health Authority and Clwyd Health Authority re the misconduct of their mental health staff.

After Sir John Kay’s panel considered Dallaglio’s  case, charges were laid against Dallaglio, who then met with Carman. The tribunal was due to be Chaired by retired High Court judge Oliver Popplewell – who had presided over Jonathan Aitken’s libel case in which Carman had acted for the Guardian and won. Carman persuaded the prosecutor Richard Lissack QC to drop the drugs charges in a ‘behind the scenes’ deal – Carman then got Dallaglio off the charge of bringing the game into disrepute.

Charles Kennedy once asked Carman at a party if he’d like to be a Lib Dem peer – Kennedy asked Carman to speak to Lord Razzall about it. Yet Carman never appeared on the Lib Dem peers list, although no reason was ever given.

A reader has sent me a link to an article that Carman’s son Dominic penned for the Guardian in Oct 2012, in which he explains his fears that his father may have covered-up for Jimmy Savile. Paul Connew the editor of the Sunday Mirror in 1994 maintained that at the time, the Sunday Mirror had ‘credible and convincing evidence’ that Savile had abused two women whilst they were in a children’s home years previously. Connew explained that the in-house lawyers at the Mirror Group plc didn’t dare risk publishing because they feared that Savile would sue them, using George Carman. Dominic explains that in 1992, Savile’s lawyers retained Carman ‘over a different matter’ – he does not say what. Although Carman had previously been very good mates with the Mirror Group and had acted for them himself many times, in Oct 1993 he acted against them – successfully – on behalf of Elton John, winning substantial damages. Dominic alleges that it was this that terrified the Mirror Group when they were faced with the decision as to whether to publish the Savile story.

Dominic has missed something here. By 1994, Maxwell was dead and David Montgomery had become Chief Exec of Mirror Group plc – Montgomery had been appointed in 2002. In his capacity as Chief Exec, Montgomery had purchased sizeable portions of the Independent and the Independent On Sunday. In 1994 Gordon Anglesea sued the Independent On Sunday – as well as Private Eye and HTV – for alleging that he had sexually abused boys in care in north Wales. Carman acted for the defence. Carman lost – as I explained in my post ‘Y Gwir Yn Y Byd – Additional Comments’, I really do believe that Carman threw that case. A matter of weeks later, one of the young men who gave evidence that he had been abused by Anglesea was found hanging from the stairwell of his block of flats in Wrexham. A verdict of suicide was returned. If one was going to hang oneself it would be more usual to do so in one’s own flat, not in the stairwell. In 1992 five witnesses to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal were killed in an arson attack on a building after being invited to a party there. One survivor who publicly stated that witnesses were being murdered was found dead himself shortly afterwards. (For the full story regarding this mass murder, see post ‘The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs’). In 2016 Gordon Anglesea was imprisoned for the historical sexual abuse of boys in care in north Wales. HTV, Private Eye or the Indie On Sunday did not take a case to appeal, although they were forced to pay Anglesea huge damages in 1994.

Dominic mentions in his article that after the Coronation Street actor Peter Adamson aka Len Fairclough had used Carman to get him off an indecent assault charge, no action was taken even when some years later Adamson sold a story to the Sun admitting that he had been guilty exactly as charged.

Carman had that effect on people. They were very, very frightened of him.

 

He Knows Where The Bodies Are Buried

My post ‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’ named a number of those close to Jeremy Thorpe as well as a few others who weren’t necessarily very fond of him but who concealed his wrongdoing, even that which was involved with allegedly trying to have his former gay lover Norman Scott assassinated. I mentioned that I suspected that some of those who covered for Jeremy were the same people who probably covered for Dafydd and Gwynne when they were younger. I’ve been doing a bit more research – it looks as though my suspicions were correct. Those around Jeremy had some very close links to members of the shithouse already named on this blog. So here’s a few details.

The Top Doctor at St George’s Hospital who treated Norman, Dr Brian O’Connell, will have been a key player – I covered him and his network in my post ‘The Case Of The King’s Sperm’. But many more people and networks supported and protected Jeremy.

Not a word appeared in the media about Thorpe’s activities until Andrew Newton, the man who maintained at Thorpe’s trial that he had been hired to kill Norman, shot Norman’s Great Dane Rinka dead on Exmoor and then tried to murder Norman. Yet Jeremy’s activities with Norman as well as others were widely known and discussed.

As described in ‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’, some builders carrying out work on the former office of Jeremy’s friend Peter Bessell discovered a briefcase concealed in a false ceiling. The briefcase was full of incriminating material relating to Jeremy, including documents concerning Norman. The builders took it to the Sunday Mirror. Not only did the Sunday Mirror not publish a word but the Editor Bob Edwards personally returned the documents to Jeremy at Westminster.

Bob Edwards edited the Sunday Mirror between 1972-84. He knew how to keep powerful people onside.

Edwards joined the Labour Party when he was young and knew Ian Mikardo when Mikardo was the Labour MP for Reading. Mikardo alerted Edwards to a vacancy on Tribune and sent him along to meet the Editor, Michael Foot. Edwards edited Tribune between 1951-54. He then became the leader writer for the Evening Standard 1954-57. In 1955 Edwards stood as the Labour candidate for Merton and Morden. He became the Deputy Editor of the Sunday Express 1957-59, the Managing Editor of the Sunday Express 1959-61 and the Editor of the Daily Express in 1961.

Edwards’s move from working on the left-supporting Tribune to the Express prompted accusations that he was no more than a paid hack without principles. Edwards was sacked from the Express and (mistakenly) believing that his son was worried about him reassured his son by telling him that a ‘mysterious freemasonry’ existed known as the Editors Club and that famille Edwards wouldn’t even lose their yacht because he would soon get another job.

Edwards purchased Christine Keeler’s memoirs for 2k in 1963 – but not material relating to Jeremy some ten years later…

Between 1966-72, Edwards edited the People. By this time he was seriously wealthy and was living in a castle in Oxfordshire.

In the case of the People, Edwards ‘inherited a fiercely campaigning newspaper…[which] largely cleaned up the protection rackets and brothels of Soho’. It is claimed that under Edwards the People ‘continued in much the same spirit, exposing bent detectives on the take from pornographers and ‘vice-kings’.

Edwards was considered a fearless man who had crossed so many nasty characters that he worked behind bullet proof glass after alleged threats to his life.

Although Edwards wouldn’t touch Jeremy Thorpe, in 1980 he had a go at the Royal Family. He discovered that the Royal Train with Charles on board had been shunted into a siding in Wiltshire where it stayed for several hours – whilst a young woman called Diana Spencer boarded it to spend time with Prince Charles… Edwards published the story and later maintained that it cost him a knighthood.

Edwards was Director of Mirror Group Newspapers 1976-88. Maxwell acquired the Mirror Group in July 1984 and under him Edwards became Deputy Chair.

Joe Haines, Harold Wilson’s Press Secretary who maintained that it wasn’t known whether Wilson had blackmailed Thorpe over Norman, also worked for Maxwell. Haines was a Mirror journalist who was initially completely hostile to Maxwell when Maxwell acquired the Mirror Group, but soon came under his influence and ended up writing the authorised biography of Maxwell.

Edwards wasn’t the only person involved with the Sunday Mirror who wielded influence at the time that the documents discovered by the builders were returned to Jeremy. The Chairman of IPC, the company which owned the Mirror at that time, was Sydney Jacobson. He was made a life peer a couple of years or so after Jeremy’s documents were returned to him. In 1974 – when the Mirror supported Labour in the General Election and at about the time that the documents were given to the Sunday Mirror – Jacobson was the Deputy Chair of IPC, working under his friend and colleague Hugh Cudlipp.

Cudlipp was Welsh, from Cardiff and was Chair of Mirror Group Newspapers between 1963-67. Cudlipp was given a peerage in 1974.

Cudlipp was a very big figure and in 2005 dear old Michael Grade – who excels at grovelling to powerful people – stated in a lecture that Cudlipp was ‘one of the giants of British journalism and one of it’s greatest editors’.

After Thorpe resigned following the media reporting the whole dreadful mess including Andrew Newton killing Norman Scott’s dog, then trying to shoot Norman and subsequently being charged with possession of a firearm with intent to danger life, Sir Harold Evans, the Editor of the Sunday Times, showed a considerable degree of sympathy towards Jeremy, met him and subsequently published supportive articles.

Evans edited the Sunday Times between 1967-81. In 1984 he moved to the US. Since 2005 he has contributed to the Guardian and Radio 4 and in 2011 he was appointed Editor at large of Rueters.

Like Edwards, Harold Evans was considered a fearless journalist who was not afraid to expose the truth. He was responsible for the crusading style of investigative journalism for which the Sunday Times was known at one point and it was under his editorship that Marjorie Wallace – see previous blog posts for the dirt on Marjorie and the horrors of psychiatry and child abuse that she kept her mouth firmly shut about – revealed the Thalidomide scandal. It was also Harold Evans who exposed Kim Philby.

In 1981 when Murdoch acquired Times Newspapers Ltd, Evans was appointed as Editor of the Times. He only stayed for one year. Fifty journalists resigned within the first six months of Murdoch’s take-over – some of those journos disliked Evans. In March 1982 a group of journos called upon Evans to resign as a result of the ‘erosion of editorial standards’.

In 1981 Evans married yet another journalist who was constructed as scary and fearless – Tina Brown. I’ve always just considered Tina Brown to be someone who writes vacuous rubbish about Diana and other celebs, but I’ve discovered that when she was younger Brown did write intelligent material and she knew some capable people who also wrote intelligent material critiquing powerful vested interests.

So no-one among this network of journos who would take on anyone and any topic, who rooted out injustice and who struck fear into the heart of everyone ever challenged Jeremy…

‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’ described how two BBC reporters who began researching for a book about the Jeremy and Norman story after everything became public and Jeremy had stood down as leader, were ‘supported’ in this by Sir Charles Curran, the Director-General of the BBC between 1969-77. However the reporters then found that they were issued with new contracts from the BBC that ensured that they would lose control over their own material. They resigned from the BBC as a result.

Charles Curran was someone whom it seems could be pressurised. After complaints from Mary Whitehouse that Dr Who contained far too much sex n violence or something similar, Curran replaced the series producer in 1976. The BBC online site ‘History of the BBC’ aka Pravda, profiles Charles Curran and boasts about his Huge Contribution to the Golden Years of TV. I remember that Golden Age well – utter rubbish, ‘light entertainment’ involving sitcoms dependent upon crude stereotyping. I think that Curran must have been responsible for ‘It Ain’t Half Racist Mum’ actually, but that’s not mentioned on ‘The History of the BBC’, probably because it’s indefensible. What is boasted about however is Curran’s tenure overseeing ‘Parkinson’. So Curran was the person who thought that Parkinson’s crude sexual harassment of the young Helen Mirren was OK – Helen obviously thought that Parkinson was a sad old git but was far too polite to knee him in the groin, although that episode still became infamous.

‘The History of the BBC’ also intriguingly tells us that Curran was ‘somewhat in the shadow of Huw Wheldon’. So Huw Wheldon who – as detailed in the comments after ‘Wheels Within Wheels Or Flies Drawn To The Same Incestuously Corrupt Shithouse?’ – had a hotline to the paedophiles’ friends in north Wales, was obviously Mr Big at the BBC.

Jeremy Thorpe was a member of two London clubs, the Reform Club and the National Liberal Club. Thorpe spent a lot of time in these places and was obviously not unwelcome.

Charles and Camilla are honorary members of the Reform Club and in 2011 guest speakers there included Nick Clegg and Theresa May. Members include: Ruth Lea, Martin Sorrell, Stella Rimmington, Charlie Falconer, Menzies Campbell, former Tory MP Michael Brown, Betty Boothroyd, Roy Hattersley and Michael Howard.

The National Liberal Club’s current President is Alan Beith, a man who was much mentioned in Michael Bloch’s biography of Thorpe. In the 1970s Cyril Smith actually lived at the National Liberal Club. David Belloti, the MP who tried to help Mary Wynch and who within two years of doing so was finished in national politics, was a member of the Club. In 2006, Chris Huhne – the Liberal MP who was later jailed, along with his former wife Vicky Pryce and her mate the barrister Constance Briscoe – launched his leadership campaign from the club, as did Nick Clegg in 2007. The Club played a crucial part in Thorpe’s own election campaign in 1974, by which time the scandal involving him and Norman was common knowledge among the Liberal Party as well as their political opponents, as were the fears that Norman and his friends had for his life.

Presumably Thorpe held a key position in the National Liberal Club, because it was Thorpe who in 1976 handed the Club over to be managed by George Marks, a Canadian ‘businessman’ who was in reality a confidence trickster – he also used the name George de Chabris. Thorpe maintained that he knew nothing about Chabris being dodgy. Chabris and his family lived rent free at the Club, he ran fraudulent businesses from there, he embezzled and fleeced thousands from the Club and flogged the Club’s library to Bristol University at a knock-down price. Chabris was given the boot in 1977 and the Club was rescued by a generous donor.

From a young age Thorpe was good friends with Jeremy Fry, a member of the famous chocolate-making family – it was Fry’s conviction for ‘importuning for immoral purposes’ that prompted an investigation by the police into Thorpe’s suitability for a role at the wedding of Princess Margaret. Fry had been considered for the role of best man but that idea went out of the window after his conviction. Fry’s excesses were well-known but there seems to have been a great deal of hypocrisy over the business of banning him from the Royal Wedding. He was on such good terms with Princess Margaret and Anthony Armstrong-Jones that there were allegations of a menage a trois. Fry continued his friendship with the Royal couple after his own marriage and Princess Margaret and Armstrong-Jones stayed at the Fry’s house near Bath.

In recent years the biological father of Polly Fry, Jeremy’s daughter, has been revealed to be Armstrong-Jones aka Lord Snowdon. Like the Jeremys Fry and Thorpe, it is now admitted that Lord Snowdon put himself about a bit. He was bisexual and fathered Polly shortly before he married Princess Margaret. Marjorie Wallace was one of Snowdon’s mistresses (see post ‘One Dangerous Fucker’). Now that both Princess Margaret and Snowdon are dead, more and more is being revealed about the boozing, the drugs and the shagging and I suspect that there is yet more to come. I cannot help noticing how often people very close to Lord Snowdon have popped up among people who had connections to or concealed the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal/Paedophile Ring and the associated wrongdoing in the mental health services. It took me a while to realise the significance of this because I never thought that Snowdon had much to do with north Wales. In recent years he didn’t. But when he was younger he did. Snowdon was born in Belgravia but the family also had a country house in north Wales. Snowdon’s father was a barrister, his paternal grandfather was a psychiatrist and physician and his paternal grandmother was the daughter of Sir Owen Roberts, the famous Welsh educationalist. Snowdon used to visit north Wales with Princess Margaret and interestingly enough although he died in London, he is buried at Llanfaglan near Caernarfon in the family plot of the ‘celebrities graveyard’.

During my battles with Dafydd and the paedophiles’ friends, again and again people sympathetic to – but feaful for – me mentioned ‘very powerful people’ having connections with Dafydd. Other people seemed to be grossly affronted by me having the temerity to ask questions. The dreadful Dr Cathy Wilson at St George’s once yelled intriguingly at me that I needed to understand about ‘important people’. I now know that St George’s knew all about Dafydd et al and were also involved in concealing their wrongdoing. My post ‘I Want Serious Money Now Please’ explained how the Duke of Westminster knew about Sir Peter Morrison abusing under-aged boys. Morrison preyed on boys in care in north Wales. ‘Running The Country – And All That Jazz’ detailed the links between the Duke of Westminster and St George’s Hospital.

Snowdon was bisexual, promiscuous, had strong connections to north Wales and indeed Top Doctors and lawyers in north Wales, visited the region and was directly connected to the Royal Family. As the years pass, it becomes increasingly obvious that much about the activities of Princess Margaret and Snowdon were actively concealed. Are you thinking what I’m thinking as Michael Howard used to ask.

As for ‘important people’ – I am not a vacuous social climber and the difference between Cathy Wilson and me is that although I really don’t mind with whom Lord Snowdon and others like him had sex and took drugs if everyone involved was consenting adults, Dafydd et al were facilitating and concealing the abuse of kids in care. Many of whom were found dead, as were other witnesses. As very nearly was Norman Scott. It’s not very nice is it Wilson, even if you do think that the people involved are worth toadying to. Is it really worth colluding with such matters just to get oneself invited to yet another dinner party? Were you perhaps hoping to hit the jackpot and receive an invite to the Athenaeum to join Marjorie, Snowdon and Savile?

Jeremy Fry is also noted for having been James Dyson’s mentor and is credited with being responsible for Dyson starting out on his own.

 

Even after the rest of the Liberal Party finally decided that Jeremy Thorpe had become far too embarrassing to be seen with in public, Thorpe remained good friends with Clement Freud. Eric Lubbock (Lord Avebury) and David Steel remained supportive of Thorpe long after everyone else had given up on him, although even Steel wanted him to go after Andrew Newton tried to kill Norman.

Clement Freud has in recent years been revealed to have been a sexual predator who raped at least one person and molested many other girls and young women.

Eric Lubbock was the Liberal MP for Orpington between 1962-70. In 1971 he inherited the title of Lord Avebury and remained in the Lords until his death in 2016 – after Blair abolished the right of many hereditary peers to sit in the Lords, the Lib Dems elected Lubbock as being one of the Lords to remain.

Lubbock was Chief Whip for the Liberals between 1963-70.

It was Lubbock who stood bail for Thorpe when he was charged in 1978 with conspiracy to kill and incitement to murder Norman. Norman’s allegation that Andrew Newton had tried to shoot him after shooting Rinka was made in Oct 1975 – Newton was subsequently charged. Lubbock sat on the Royal Commission for Standards of Conduct in Public Life 1974-76. In 1976 Lubbock founded the Parliamentary Human Rights Group, which he chaired for the next 21 years – he then became the Vice-Chair.

Lubbock was a patron of the British Humanist Association, an honorary associate of the National Secular Society, a patron of Prisoners Abroad and a member of the All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group.

In Sept 2010 Lubbock signed an open letter for the British Humanist Association to the Guardian, opposing the state visit to the UK by Benedict XVI.

Lubbock became a Buddhist in the 1970s and in a June 2012 interview published on the website Liberal Democrat Voice, he states that he is a patron of a Buddhist chaplaincy and is contemplating ordination in a Buddhist monastery.

Whilst he was in the Commons, Lubbock had been the Secretary and Chair of the Parliamentary Group on Civil Liberties, which was serviced by the NCCL – the Secretary of the NCCL at the time was Martin Ennals (he acted as Secretary until 1966).

Ennals features on my post ‘MIND Are Out For Mental Health – Never For Themselves Of Course…’. After leaving NCCL he worked for the Commission for Racial Equality and was Secretary of Amnesty International, 1968-80. During Ennals’s time at Amnesty he was awarded the Nobel Peace prize.

Martin Ennals was a founding member of the Anti-Apartheid Movement in 1959. Thorpe was active in that movement.

Martin Ennals’s older brother David was the Secretary of State for Social Security when in 1969 Norman Scott rang Ennals’s Private Secretary and told him about Thorpe’s activities (see post ‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’).

David Ennals was heavily involved with MIND for years and his son Paul is the former Chief Exec of the National Children’s Bureau and Chair of a number of a number of Safeguarding Boards, including in Haringey (see post ‘MIND Are Out For Mental Health – Never For Themselves Of Course…’ for full details of the Ennals’s clan’s connections to MIND and other organisations).

David Steel was Liberal MP for Ross & Cromarty between 1965-97 and then an MSP between 1999-2003. He was also Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament. In 1997 Steel was given a life peerage.

Steel became leader of the Liberal Party in 1976 when Thorpe stepped down and remained leader until 1988 when the Party merged with the SDP. Between 1970-76 he was the Liberals Chief Whip. It was Steel who led the Liberals into the Lib-Lab pact in March 1977. It lasted until 1978 but was widely perceived to have been a very poor deal for the Liberals – in the light of the weakness of the Labour Party at that time, there was a degree of confusion over why Steel couldn’t land a better deal.

Steel was Thorpe’s protégé, became his PPS and was campaign manager when Thorpe ran for the leadership. Like Thorpe, Steel was in the Anti-Apartheid Movement and was it’s President between 1966-70.

When the Liberal activist from Wales who was so concerned at what had happened to Norman Scott at the hands of Jeremy Thorpe contacted Emlyn Hooson and asked for a meeting (see post ‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’), it was actually Steel that she met initially, because Hooson (who also worked as a barrister) had been called away to a murder trial. Steel was also shown documentary evidence of Thorpe’s payments to Norman and was given a frank account of what had gone on.

Before Steel was elected he worked for the BBC.

David Steel also knew about Cyril Smith of course…

 

Jeremy Thorpe was known to have taken a leaf out of the book of his hero David Lloyd George – the father of Gwilym and Megan, two friends of Thorpe – and offered people peerages in return for various favours. Thorpe came up with the goods for Gerran Lloyd, a Liberal Party donor who received a peerage in 1973 and became Lord Lloyd of Kilgerran. After Thorpe was charged with conspiracy to murder and incitement to kill in 1978, Lord Kilgerran set up a Defence Fund to pay Thorpe’s legal costs.

Gerran Lloyd was a barrister who stood for the Liberals on Anglesey in the 1959 General Election. He was President of the Welsh Liberal Party, 1971-74 and President of the British Liberal Party, 1973-74.

 

Megan Lloyd George was older than Jeremy, but they were very close. As a boy Jeremy used to visit Megan in the Commons for tea and Megan encouraged his political ambitions.

Megan was the first female MP for a Welsh constituency – she was the Liberal MP for Anglesey between 1929-51 and became Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party. In 1955 Megan defected to the Labour Party. In 1957 she was elected as the Labour MP for Carmarthen and held the seat until her death in 1966.

Between 1936-56 Megan was the mistress of the Labour politician Philip Noel-Baker, a campaigner for disarmament who won the Nobel Peace prize in 1959 and who’s wife was a friend of Virginia Woolf.

 

My post ‘My How Things Haven’t Changed’ described how in 1971 a Liberal Party secret inquiry into Thorpe’s conduct invited Norman Scott to speak, but ended with Lord Frank Byers, a member of the inquiry, shouting and hurling insults at Norman. It was Byers’s behaviour that motivated Norman to contact the police yet again about Thorpe and make a 33 page statement.

Byers was the Liberal MP for north Dorset between 1945-50. He was made a life peer in 1964 and became the Liberals Leader in the Lords in 1967.

Byers was a Director of Rio Tinto Zinc, 1962-73.

Although Byers was a Liberal, he knew Harold Wilson from their time at Oxford, when they were both members of the Oxford Liberal Club.

 

Lord Byers has a famous granddaughter who has followed him into politics – Lisa Nandy, who has been the Labour MP for Wigan since 2010. Lisa’s friends were keen for her to challenge Jeremy Corbyn for the Labour Party leadership. She hasn’t yet done this – although her supporters such as Owen Jones live in hope that the day will come when she does. Lisa herself supported Andy Burnham for the leadership, he who concealed the thousands of deaths at Mid-Staffs for so long.

Lisa worked as a researcher for Centrepoint, the homeless charity between 2003-05. She was a senior policy advisor to the Children’s Society from 2005 and an advisor to the Children’s Commissioner for England.

So Lisa will be one of the many people who will have known about the endemic abuse and trafficking of children in care but who has been strangely silent on this topic. Lisa also found one of those people at a senior level to work for once she entered Parliament – Lisa was PPS to Tessa Jowell.

Is Lisa a bit like her granddad perhaps, knowing about truly appalling matters but keeping them under wraps?

Lisa and her followers like to describe her as being on the ‘soft left’ of the Labour Party. Lisa has been inexplicably vigorously promoted as a wonder and potential leader virtually from the day that she was elected. I cannot help wondering if Lisa’s partner Andy Collis might have had something to do with this – he’s a PR consultant.

In fact Lisa’s supporters were so busy touting her around that some four years ago even I was invited to hear her speak. I was a member of the Compass group at the time and I used to receive notification of various events, but as they were always in London and I was in north Wales I didn’t take much notice. But on one occasion, an e mail virtually begged me to go to an event at a well-known location in London with a radical history, where a certain Lisa Nandy was going to be speaking. The event was promoted as being the one to attend even if you were unable to attend others and I had been bombarded with e mails telling me that Compass were keen to enlist the help and support of folk outside London. So for once I made the effort and went to London for the event. Because of the timing of Lisa’s lecture I was assured that I didn’t need to arrange to stay in London overnight, I could get there in time for the lecture, meet people and then get an evening train back to north Wales. So off I went.

What a surprise I had. Although maybe I shouldn’t have actually been that surprised, what with Lisa being a descendant of Frank, but I didn’t know that then.

Until about three years ago I suffered from very serious migraines – not just bad headaches, these were real bastards, when I got one I couldn’t see properly or balance. They were related to a neck injury that I suffered when I was young and of course because I’d dared complain about the paedophiles’ friends I was effectively refused all treatment for them (I have detailed all this elsewhere on the blog). For years I went without effective medication and the only thing that I could do if I developed a migraine was to lie flat in the dark – to take any physical strain off my neck and to minimise the amount of light that I was exposed to. When this happened I used to explain to people around me what was going on. When I was around sane normal people I was always met with a great deal of understanding – unfortunately however I wasn’t always around sane normal people.

About half an hour after arriving at the venue to hear Lisa speak, I developed a migraine. A real killer. Compass had BEGGED me to go to Lisa’s lecture. Not only did not one person even bother to speak to me – although there were only about ten people at the event and Lisa herself stuck like glue to the three stooges who seemed to be at her side throughout – but when I started to feel very, very bad and tried to tell the people sitting immediately next to me, I was completely blanked. I could feel myself losing my balance so I thought that I’d better get out of the audience quick before I fell on the floor. I was about three rows away from the front. Lisa SAW ME almost keeling over. She SAW ME trying to ask for help. Lisa did not bat an eye-lid. On and on she droned, ploughing through her speech – which even I could hear wasn’t very good and she was having to read it pretty much word for word. In the end I managed to make my way to the back of the hall and escaped through a door, which led to a cloakroom place outside of the entrance to the bogs. I did the only thing that I could and I lay down flat with my eyes shielded. Some 45 mins later a load of people came through on their way to the bogs – Lisa’s lecture had ended and they were having a break before the Q and A session. They walked over me. Every one of those nice middle class London radicals who had come to hear Lisa – some of whom obviously knew her – walked over me. No-one even asked me what I was doing and if I was OK. One woman gave me a frosty look so I explained that I was experiencing a very bad migraine. She then walked out of the door.

I remained on the floor shielded from the light throughout Lisa’s Q and A session. When the event ended everyone buggered off. As did Lisa. They all knew that I was crashed out in the back room with a migraine. I stayed there for the next couple of hours until I was just about able to walk without keeling over. By this time I realised that I’d not be able to catch the train from Euston back to Bangor. Because I was in London rather than on the doorstep of the Top Doctors in north Wales, I decided that I’d try and make my way to a London hospital for help – I ended up at UCL. Christ that was not a good idea, but that is another story. I failed to elicit any help at UCL and was ‘discharged’ ie. chucked out, into the middle of London at 3am. By this time my migraine was gradually beginning to pass. I spent the next few hours dossing outside Euston station waiting for it to open (I didn’t realise that Euston shuts for the small hours). I got the first train back to Bangor – which meant buying another ticket, because the one that I’d purchased was no longer valid.

The whole trip cost me a bloody fortune but it taught me a lot about Lisa Nandy and her supporters.

I continue to receive e mails from Compass asking me for dosh, asking me if I’d like to start up a local Compass group and inviting me to more events in London. I’m never giving them another penny and I’ll never risk my neck at another Lisa Nandy related event in my life.

Lisa is on record as saying that she has received ‘abuse’ from Corbyn’s supporters and that she was ‘genuinely frightened’. So was I Lisa, I was in the middle of London where I knew no-one, in agony, unable to walk or see properly and worried that I was going to start throwing up. But at least you got to read – literally – your speech. What I find even more ‘genuinely frightening’ Lisa is that your grandfather ignored the witness testimony and the pleas for help from someone who had already been by that time the target of a murder plot, according to evidence given at the Old Bailey many years later.

Lisa was selected as a Labour party candidate on an all women shortlist. Her wiki entry boasts that she is the fist female MP for the constituency – as there was an all-women shortlist imposed that is not really much of an achievement – and that she was born into a ‘Bengali family’ no less and that she was ‘one of the first six Asian MPs elected’.

As far as I understand, Lisa’s mother – Frank Byers’s daughter – was not Bengali. It was only Lisa’s father who was Bengali. So in terms of ethnicity, Lisa is as much white (presumably British) as she is Bengali. Is Lisa perhaps being somewhat selective in which boxes she chooses to tick?

The one box that Lisa does tick however is ‘one quarter composed of the genetic material of Lord Frank Byers’.

How about that for your wife’s next election campaign slogan then Andy?

 

Emlyn Hooson sat on the secret inquiry into Thorpe, alongside Lisa’s granddad and David Steel.

Emlyn Hooson was the Liberal MP for Montgomeryshire, between 1962-79. He was then elevated to the Lords where he sat until his death in 2012. Hooson sat as a Liberal and then as a Liberal Democrat.

Hooson was born in 1925, the son of a Denbighshire hill farmer and attended Denbigh Grammar School – like a few others we know and love. After that, Hooson read law at Aberystwyth University….He served in the Royal Navy – just like Gwynne the lobotomist…

Hooson became a barrister in 1949. He was Chairman of the Flint Quarter Sessions from 1960 and the Merioneth Quarter Sessions from 1962. He was a member of the Bar Council from 1965.

Like so many of the paedophiles’ friends, Hooson played a role in the trial of the Moors Murderers – he was Ian Brady’s QC.

Emlyn was appointed Recorder at Methyr Tydfil and Swansea in 1971 and was Leader of the Chester and Wales Circuit when the corruption on that Circuit was in full swing between 1971-74. He was appointed Recorder of Crown Courts 1972-91. Hooson also became a Deputy High Court judge. He was President of the Cambrian Law Review and an honorary professorial fellow at Aberystwyth University.

Hooson stood as the Liberal candidate for Conwy in the 1950 General Election and again in 1951.

Emlyn Hooson was Chair of the Liberal Party of Wales in 1955 and appointed to the Liberal Party Executive in 1965.

As Chair of the Liberal Party of Wales, he led it’s merger with the North and South Wales Liberal Federation, forming the Welsh Liberal Party.

Hooson introduced the Government of Wales Bill  1967 which eventually led to the establishment of the National Assembly for Wales.

In 1979 Hooson became a life peer. The year that his mates ignored the activities of Dafydd, as he unlawfully had Mary Wynch arrested, imprisoned and relieved of her property.

Emlyn Hooson’s biography tells us that in the Lords he was active in ‘improving the Mental Health Act’. Would he perhaps have made a contribution to the 1983 Act, which was drafted by Robert Bluglass and accompanied by a Code of Practice drafted by William Bingley, whilst both of them covered-up for Dafydd? Not that Emlyn needed to have even bothered – Dafydd just broke the law under the new Act as he had done so under the old one. Emlyn also spoke in the Lords on the necessity for police reform and drugs trafficking. He’ll have known an awful lot about both…

In 1980 Lord Hooson became a member of the ITV advisory council and in 1985 he was appointed a non-executive director of Laura Ashley. He became Chair of Laura Ashley in 1995. So Emlyn could have told everyone why that company went seriously pear-shaped after the death of Laura Ashley and whether the allegations about Bernard Ashley were true…

In 1980 Hooson also Chaired the consortium that bid for the Wales and West TV franchise.

Between 1991-2000 Lord Hooson was Chair of Severn River Crossing PLC.

In 1966 Hooson was President of the National Eisteddfod of Wales. In 1967 he was made an honorary White Bard of the Gorsedd. Between 1987-93 he was President of the International Eisteddfod at Llangollen.

Hooson has two daughters, the Hon Sioned and the Hon Lowri. They both attended the London Welsh School, where Emlyn was Chair of the Governors.

So Hooson had a foot firmly planted in the London Welsh contingent. Hooson died in 2012 which is a great pity, because I would have liked to have asked him why for no good reason some years ago the fraternity of twats in high society in London all wanted to join the London Welsh Society – David Frost was hammering at the door so hard that he nearly broke it down and was most irate when he wasn’t accepted. Lots of fatuous jokes were being made about how being Welsh had suddenly become the height of cool among the London elite. Nonsense -Frost et al had no interest in anything that did not personally advance them, they had no interest in Wales, if they had they’d have gone to live there. Something else was going on. It was nearly as odd as when David Frost died unexpectedly of a heart-attack on a cruise ship when most unusually he wasn’t accompanied by his wife, just as the ship was too far away from the shore to have summoned the help needed. And then Frost’s son was found dead after he’d gone out jogging – from heart problems that were ‘undiagnosed’. I seem to remember all this happened as Operation Pallial got underway. Which was when Dafydd’s partner in crime Tony Francis (Dr X) killed himself – in the light of the documents that I now possess I can understand why Francis might have felt like doing that…

Emlyn’s dad Hugh farmed in the Vale of Clwyd. After Emlyn died, Ieuan Wyn Jones, former leader of Plaid and former Deputy First Minister, commented that he had known Emlyn from Clwyd, where Ieuan Wyn Jones had also lived and that Emlyn ‘was extremely knowledgeable about the politics, history and culture of the Vale’. He certainly was and he knew Dafydd and Gwynne the lobotomist too – and I bet that he knew about the long standing paedophile activity towards the children in care.

Kirsty Williams waxed lyrical about Emlyn when he died, explaining that he was the founding father of the Welsh Liberal Party. Kirsty, I think that your foundations might be a little bit rotten…

In 1970, after the jailing of some Welsh students for invading the High Court in London, Hooson stated that ‘the Welsh were fed up with people who broke the law then whined about the consequences’. Indeed – after Mary Wynch sued Dafydd, everyone was fucking furious to see him given air time on the TV to maintain that ‘I found myself in this bizarre situation when I was only trying to help’. Ten years later when Dafydd was asked to explain why I had complained about him unlawfully arresting and detaining me, he came out with exactly the same phrase.

Emlyn was a close friend of Lord Alex Carlile, who succeeded him as Liberal MP for Montgomeryshire. Carlile had known him previously, he’d met Hooson when Carlile was training to be a barrister.

Even Emlyn Hooson’s most loyal fans agree that the path in life of this son of a Denbighshire hill farmer had been helped by his marriage to the daughter of Sir George Hamer, the Lord Lieutenant of Montgomeryshire.

 

Emlyn Hooson was not called as a witness at Thorpe’s Old Bailey trial. Peter Bessell, Thorpe’s friend and Liberal Party colleague, did give evidence and testified that Hooson knew of Thorpe’s payments to Norman Scott. The Court heard a recording of David Holmes, Thorpe’s friend and co-defendant, telling Bessell that Hooson had been ‘firmly sat on’ for trying to force Thorpe out. Someone somewhere will know who sat on Hooson, but they weren’t called to give evidence either.

 

David Freeman, Harold Wilson’s Press Solicitor, was someone who offered a helping hand to Thorpe’s friend and co-defendant, David Holmes.  When The Mirror revealed that it was Holmes who had purchased incriminating material about Jeremy which according to Norman Scott had been sold without his authorisation by Scott’s GP Roger Gleadle, Holmes met with the DPP and David Freeman subsequently prepared a statement on Holmes’s behalf. The statement was allegedly personally vetted by Harold Wilson.

Freeman was born in Cardiff and was involved in the Robert Maxwell DTI inquiry in 1970.

In 1974 Freeman advised Wilson on libel.

Freeman was a Trustee of Ravenswood (now Norwood) Children’s Home. In 2007 he built a children’s centre, The Freeman Family Centre, for Barnardos in Brent.

Freeman’s wife was an educational psychologist who then became a partner in his law firm in 1967 after she qualified as a solicitor. She wrote the authorised biography of Lord Denning.

 

Another character whose name appeared repeatedly in Michael Bloch’s book about Thorpe who seemed to be highly influential in the Liberal Party during the Jeremy Years was Trevor Jones – who in 1981 became Sir Trevor Jones.

Trevor Jones was for many years the Lib Dem leader of Liverpool City Council. Although he was constructed very much as Welsh and was nicknamed ‘Jones the Vote’, he grew up in Bootle. However his parents were Welsh – they were from Dyserth in Denbighshire and Jones was born in north Wales.

Trevor Jones was elected to Liverpool City Council in 1968 and to Liverpool Metropolitan District Council in 1973. He led his party to control Liverpool in 1973, was Council leader again between 1981-83 and then again in 1987. He remained a member of the Council until 1991. In 2003 he returned to the council when he was re-elected to Liverpool City Council and remained there until 2010. Jones also stood as the Liberal candidate for Liverpool Toxteth in the Feb 1974 General Election. In the General Election in the October of 1974, Jones was Liberal Candidate for Gillingham. Jones was President of the Liberal Party in 1972 for one year and in the early 70s campaigned for the Liberal Party in the south east of England.

Trevor Jones was heavily involved with David Alton’s election victory in 1979. Alton’s result was breath-taking, there was an enormous swing in his favour – which was a bit strange, because David Alton is really only a one-track pony. He is anti-abortion and that’s about it. Whilst there are many people who are quite genuine in their opposition to abortion – it’s rather ironic that in the past couple of weeks there have been howls of outrage about Jacob Rees-Mogg declaring himself to be anti-abortion because there are many more offensive indefensible things about Rees-Mogg than that – the tactics used by some MPs and their associates who have stood on an anti-abortion platform have been very unpleasant. One wonders what Trevor Jones and co did to achieve that impressive result.

Trevor Jones’s wife Doreen was a Liverpool City Councillor for 30 years and was Lord Mayor of Liverpool twice – Jones himself was also Lord Mayor of Liverpool.

Although flattering profiles of Trevor Jones stress his ‘public service’ and ‘success’, Liverpool local politics during his years were very fraught indeed. Derek Hatton was causing havoc – I was told in the 80s by someone who’s family were involved in local politics in Liverpool that Hatton was actually far worse than was ever publicly admitted and was no more than a thug – and Trevor Jones was one of those who opposed Militant. It was as a result of the expulsion of 47 Militant Councillors in March 1987 that Jones became Council leader. However I imagine that Jones has numerous skeletons in his own cupboard – he was leader of the Council at the time of the Toxteth riots and ‘worked in partnership with Heseltine’. Many interesting things were going on in Liverpool – this blog has already detailed some of the corruption in the NHS and medical school in Liverpool, but a number of people have told me that ‘community politics’ were absolutely poisonous and that some genuine people were very badly damaged and withdrew from such activities.

Trevor Jones’s style and contribution to politics can perhaps be assessed by the nature of his protégé – in Nov 2008, the Liverpool Echo mentioned a Chris Rennard, described as Jones’s ‘younger Lieutenant’.

Readers may recognise the name – Rennard, now Lord Rennard, became infamous a few years ago after numerous allegations surfaced that Rennard was attempting to extract sexual favours from women in return for their progress in the Party.

Chris Rennard was a Liberal Party activist in Liverpool in the late 70s – whilst at university he had Chaired the Liverpool University Liberals. Rennard is described as one of the ‘early pioneers of community politics in Liverpool’…. Rennard himself maintains that Trevor Jones was a ‘major influence’ on him.

Whilst Deputy Chair of Liverpool Labour Party, Rennard organised many campaigns in the 80s when the Liberals controlled the City Council. Rennard was David Alton’s agent in 1983 when Alton stood for the newly created seat of Liverpool Mossley Hill. In 1984 Rennard was one of the Party’s national Area Agents in Leicester. He’ll have heard about a Lord Greville Janner of the Labour Party then. Chris Rennard also assisted in the Eastbourne campaign in 1990 – so he’ll have known David Bellotti, the Liberal MP who tried to help Mary Wynch and disappeared from national politics afterwards never to resurface.

In 2011 ‘Total Politics’ described Rennard as ‘the most formidable and feared political campaigner of the last twenty years.

Rennard stood down as Chief Exec of the Lib Dems in 2009, after a number of truly hair-raising accounts from female Lib Dems regarding their experiences with him. There were allegations of serious sexual harassment and people were alleging that sexual favours were expected in return for advancement in the Lib Dems. There was an enormous hoo ha, with some Lib Dems maintaining that Rennard was the loveliest man that they had ever met (which was what the corrupt occupational health physician at St George’s, Nicky Mitchell-Heggs, said about Professor Tom Burns), whilst others claimed that he was a ruthless sexual predator who ruled by fear. Cleggy and the usual suspects all maintained that bullying wasn’t tolerated in the Lib Dems, neither sexual harassment etc etc. But then Cleggy dispensed kind words at Cyril Smith’s funeral. And probably at Jeremy Thorpe’s as well.

The aggro concerning Chris Rennard did not go away – the allegations of sexual harassment returned with a vengeance in 2013 after a number of women complainants were furious that so little action had been taken against him, although at one point there was a Metropolitan Police investigation as well as a Lib Dem investigation.

In 2014 after Rennard was suspended from the party, the Times reported that ‘friends’ of Rennards claimed that he would reveal two decades of sex scandal in the Party if he were to be expelled – it was overtly stated that ‘he knows where the bodies are buried’. I suspect that Rennard also knows about two decades of sex scandal in the Tory Party, in the Labour Party and in Plaid Cymru. Because I do as well.

I too suspect that I know where at least some bodies are buried. I think that some bodies are buried within the grounds of the now derelict North Wales Hospital Denbigh. Anyone want to start the excavations a la the Catholic institutions for the unfortunate?

 

Chris Rennard is a friend and legal advisor of Alex Carlile.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘One Of The Safest Pairs Of Hands At The Criminal Bar’

The title of this post is a quote that can be found on the online profile of Timothy Cray. Who he? Timothy Cray is the barrister who acted for Henry Hendron – a barrister himself – who ended up receiving much media coverage in 2016 as a result of the ‘chemsex trial’. Hendron is a barrister in his mid-thirties who was arrested and charged after his 18 year old Columbian boyfriend was found dead at their flat after Hendron had supplied him with chemsex drugs. I will return to this case later. But first I want to discuss a friend of Hendron’s, whom Hendron himself had previously provided with legal advice – Nigel Evans.

Nigel Evans is the Tory MP for Ribble Valley who in 2014 stood trial for a series of assaults on seven men. Evans was acquitted of all charges – one rape, five sexual assaults, one attempted sexual assault and two indecent assaults. So Nigel Evans was somehow either accused quite wrongly by a series of people independently of each other of very serious offences – or he had a very good barrister, obviously yet another safe pair of hands at the Criminal Bar. The circumstances of the alleged offences were all rather similar – they were committed by Evans, a senior Tory in his mid-50s, against much younger men who were working in Westminster or aspiring to do so, after sessions of very heavy drinking by Evans. Following Evans’s acquittal there was an enormous outpouring of support and sympathy for Evans from his fellow politicians and not just from Tories. Evans waxed lyrical about his ordeal and described in detail his distress at being charged and his colleagues rallied round stressing what a lovely bloke he was. Stephen Crabb, the Conservative MP for Preseli in Pembrokeshire, tweeted that his ‘friend’ Evans was ‘a good man’ and Ann Widdecombe – not known for her sympathy towards promiscuous gay sex when blind drunk – described Evans as a ‘truthful, considerate and kind individual’.

Now when Evans was arrested he was known as an MP representing a constituency in the north of England. But I knew of Evans as a rather unusual man, a Thatcherite Tory who actually came from Wales. Evans grew up in Swansea where his family ran a small business, went to Swansea University and only became the MP for Ribble Valley in 1992 after unsuccessfully contesting seats in south Wales. Before he was an MP Evans was a County Councillor in West Glamorgan (elected in 1985) and in 1990 became deputy Tory leader of that Council. He stood down as a Councillor in 1991.

In 1993 Evans became PPS to David Hunt, the Secretary of State for Employment and he remained Hunt’s PPS when Hunt was appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in 1994. Readers will remember that David Hunt was Secretary of State for Wales on two occasions, between 1990-93 and again for just one month in the summer of 1995. Hunt was in that post when there was a total failure by the Welsh Office to respond to the serious abuse that was rife in children’s homes in north Wales or to the abuses that were happening in the north Wales mental health services. The Welsh Office knew about these matters and actively concealed everything. In 1995 Evans became PPS to Tony Baldry, Minister of State at the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. Then in 1996 Evans was appointed PPS to William Hague when he was appointed Secretary of State for Wales by John Major. William Hague’s biggest task in that post was of course arranging the public inquiry into child abuse in north Wales. Previous posts have detailed the many reasons why I think someone worked very hard at selecting those who were involved with the Waterhouse Inquiry. As Hague’s PPS, Evans will have been deeply involved in the leg work relating to that Inquiry – and Evans knew Wales very well indeed, even if Hague didn’t. Hague is a very able man and would soon have been able to research everything that is officially on record about Wales, but Evans will have known what it is really important to know and what you only find out by living and working in Wales – the gossip and the lowdown.

So Evans was involved in the most enormous cover-up of organised child abuse in Wales – child abuse that involved under-aged boys ‘in care’ being sexually molested by older men, including it would seem at least one senior Tory, Sir Peter Morrison, Thatcher’s PPS and deputy Chairman of the Party. Some of the boys giving evidence to Waterhouse maintained that they were taken to other locations where they had sex with multiple older men unknown to them. John Allen, who owned and managed the Bryn Alyn Community, a collection of children’s homes where some of the worst abuse took place, is currently serving a life sentence for abusing boys in his care. Waterhouse described John Allen as ‘kind’ and ‘generous’ as a result of John Allen buying presents and giving money to boys whom he was having sex with. Allen owned what Waterhouse called ‘unsuitable accommodation’ in London and Brighton in which some boys lived after they left children’s homes in north Wales. The boys themselves claimed that Allen owned brothels in London and Brighton and some of them worked in those brothels after they left ‘care’.

Evans could well have heard about some of this before he worked for Hague as a result of coming from Wales and being involved in local politics there, although he never mentioned it. But Evans didn’t mention something else either and he didn’t mention it until 2010. That he was gay. Not only did Evans not mention that he was gay, but he actively concealed it and states himself that he pretended to be a ‘red blooded’ heterosexual lest being openly gay damaged his political prospects in a party that was perceived as being highly homophobic in the wake of passing Section 28 in the late 1980s. Evans even voted against reducing the age of consent for gay men in 1994 and again on two following occasions. (I also seem to remember Evans appearing on a TV show arguing against reducing the age of consent for gays in 1994.) Evans also ensured that he was absent from the Commons vote on civil partnerships, he missed three votes on gay adoption and in one vote he opposed the move. In 1993 a piece appeared in ‘Private Eye’ claiming that Evans had been seen ‘canoodling’ with a young man. Evans personally phoned Ian Hislop to deny the story, although the Eye never published a retraction or an apology.

Evans came out as gay to the press in 2010 claiming that he was sick of living a lie. But he only did so after a Labour MP threatened to out him. After he came out as gay Evans constructed himself as some sort of gay rights champ for Westminster and stressed how many gay politicians there were, many of whom had not yet publicly admitted it. He also said that when he first entered Parliament he had known of loads of gay politicians who were concealing it. Evans formed an LGBT networking group in Westminster, Parliout. In the light of what was revealed during and after Evans’s trial, I would have thought that it was fairly obvious that there wasn’t any need for Parliout, Evans and others seemed to have already established a gay network at Westminster.

Young male parliamentary workers who gave evidence at Evans’s trial described how they were groped or kissed by Evans after getting completely bladdered with him in bars at the House of Commons or in Soho. Allegations then emerged in the press of a heavy drinking culture at Westminster – I had heard that from a friend years ago. But the revelations in the media became increasingly more sordid. It wasn’t just excessive drinking that was commonplace – it was alleged that there was a big problem with senior politicians expecting sexual favours from wannabes and if wannabes were unhappy with this there was no effective redress. Supplying sexual favours would ensure that your career advanced but complaining would bring it to a rapid halt. After Evans was acquitted, much was made of some of the witnesses saying in court that they had not wanted the case against Evans to go ahead, that they didn’t feel like victims and one of them claimed that after getting pissed with Evans and finding Evans’s hand down his trousers it was just a case of ‘crazy crazy Westminster’. (Why don’t women want to be politicians? Ooh it’s because they all have low self esteem and need role models like Harriet! It cannot possibly be because they do not regularly get bladdered and participate in mutual groping sessions with tosspots. Except to be fair, some of them do, a Lib Dem who believes that she’s broken the glass ceiling in Wales comes to mind.) Evans’s defence was considered to have been given a considerable boost when the judge, Justice Timothy King, instructed the jury to find Evans not guilty on one alleged offence. There was a major attempt to construct Nigel Evans’s activities as the high drunken jinks of a harmless gregarious man who had been hung out to dry by the police and the CPS. His excessive drinking was explained as the result of him having difficulty ‘coming to terms with his sexuality’ and of course the death of his dear old mum who had no idea that he was gay. Evans continued the misery memoir by explaining that the one sadness in his life was that he had never had a regular boyfriend. One suspects that Nigel Evans’s lifestyle would mitigate against a regular relationship.

There was however one witness at the trial who did not claim that he had no problem with Evans’s harmless drunken groping. That was the 22 year old man who claimed that Evans had raped him. Evans’s account was that he and this young man had participated in consensual sex ‘in a number of different positions’. The young man – who gave evidence from behind a screen and was described as ‘nervous’ and ‘whispering’ – had been a university student at the time of the incident, had stayed at Evans’s house and had maintained that he woke up to find Evans on top of him. Media accounts stressed how this young man ‘wasn’t believed’. He’s not going to have a career in politics now is he – but those spoke fondly of Evans in court and who never wanted the case against him to go ahead will still be in with a chance.

The way in which the police came to hear about the allegations against Evans is significant. One young man, a politics student, had been befriended by Evans in 2008 on Facebook. This student was later described as ‘ruthlessly ambitious’. (Just like Evans had been when he was a young man.) This man alleged that he had stayed at Evans’s house overnight in 2009 and that Evans had ‘groped his penis’. The young man told of his encounter with Evans to Adam Price (Plaid), Michael Fabricant (Conservative) and Iain Corby (a Tory policy boss). A few days later he recounted the story to the then Tory Chief Whip Patrick McLoughlin and his deputy John Randall. The student had wanted Evans to resign, which was described by McLoughlin as a ‘big ask’. Patrick McLoughlin is now Sir Patrick and in July 2016 was appointed Chairman of the Conservative Party. Randall is an MP for Derbyshire – he was elected to Matthew Parris’s seat when Parris stood down in 1986. The Matthew Parris who wrote about having sex with boys who ‘were always willing’ along with his political friends when on holiday. McLoughlin is also Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. John Randall has also been knighted but stood down from Parliament in 2015. He is now a Trustee and Vice-Chair of the Human Trafficking Foundation – a man who was unable to respond when he was told of an allegation of sexual assault perpetrated by someone who had previously been involved in a cover-up of the sexual abuse and trafficking into prostitution of children in care. The allegations against Evans went no further – until the student told Dr Sarah Woolaston, Tory MP for Totnes. A friend of this student then revealed to him that he too had been assaulted by Evans and so he contacted Sara Woolaston. Woolaston contacted John Bercow the Speaker, who said that it was for the two young men to go to the police. But then after receiving legal advice from the Speaker’s Counsel, Michael Carpenter, Bercow’s secretary told Sarah Woolaston that the Speaker ‘cannot handle this’. Sarah Woolaston is a Top Doctor who claims experience in dealing with matters of sexual abuse and readers will guess that under most circumstances I would roll about laughing at the notion that a Top Doctor might actually know how to conduct themselves in such a situation, but to Sarah’s credit, she seems to have been the only person who had engaged her brain. Frustrated by the response from the Speaker’s office, she told the two young men that they had a responsibility to report Evans to the police because there was no telling whom he was going to do this to next and gave them a police number. Sarah also in 2013 brought the allegations to the attention of the Palace of Westminster Police. So that’s how the ball started rolling.

Yesterday’s post ‘A Future Leader Of The Labour Party’ described how over decades the CPS have worked very hard at not prosecuting people involved with the sexual abuse of young people, particularly if there are connections to political figures. It was of course the CPS who bit the bullet in the case of Nigel Evans and prosecuted. They certainly had a lot of shit thrown at them for daring to do this after his acquittal. Evans’s case was categorised with the cases of two Coronation Street actors, Michael Le Vell and Ken Roache, who had also been acquitted of sex offences. Although the cases of Le Vell and Roache were very different from Evans, Evans and his supporters discussed the three cases as if they were all very similar, ie. people making claims for which there was no evidence against public figures. Vicky Entwhistle, an actor from Coronation Street, appeared in public at Evans’s trial to support him. Not that the actors in Coronation Street have proved themselves to be particularly good judges of character – John Stalker’s book boasts of how he hung out with the Coronation Street crowd and William Roache is a former Patron of St David’s Hospice Llandudno, which seems to act a repository for disgraced NHS staff from north Wales who either left their jobs under a cloud or concealed the paedophile ring (see posts ‘The CEOs Of St David’s Hospice’ and ‘Don’t Be Silly, He’s Nice’). In the wake of all this, the Attorney General Dominic Grieve demanded an explanation from DPP Alison Saunders why Evans’s prosecution had gone ahead, even though Saunders hadn’t been DPP when the decision to prosecute had been made. Saunders track record suggests that she never would have prosecuted Evans. I note that when Evans was prosecuted Saunders was actually working for the CPS as the regional case manager in London. Which explains an awful lot – sex offences against young people aren’t only committed in north Wales and a lot of high profile and powerful people live in London. Jack Straw also had a go at the CPS, suggesting that the DPP might be more cautious in bringing high profile sex offence cases in the future – the Jack who was years ago a Councillor in Islington Council when it’s children’s homes had been infiltrated by paedophiles, the Jack who was a leading light in New Labour which was so hopelessly compromised because of ignoring the institutionalised sexual abuse of children (see post ‘The London Connection’).

Evans angrily told the media that he had spent his life savings – £130,000 – on his legal fees and he demanded that the CPS repay him. Which was deeply ironic because the legislation that caused Evans to cough up in his particular circumstances was passed by the Coalition Gov’t of whom the Tories were the leading partners. Evans also had the support of an incredibly powerful man in the Commons, who constantly ends up in scandals himself – dear old Keith Vaz, then Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee, who considered holding a separate inquiry into the prosecution of Evans. I have a friend who often expresses at length her amazement at what Keith Vaz has got away with – the expense scandals, the constant conflicts of interest or failure to declare interests, the failure to declare payments, the business of the passports and the Hinduja brothers, his narrow escape from being prosecuted by Leicestershire Police after making false allegations against a former police officer, his leading a march through Leicester demanding the banning of ‘The Satanic Verses’ after a fatwa had been issued against Salman Rushdie and much more. In Sept 2016 Vaz resigned as Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee after he was caught in a tabloid gay prostitution and cocaine expose. One month later he was appointed to the Justice Select Committee. My mate keeps asking me how he does it particularly as no-one seems to like him or trust him.

So how did Keith Vaz, a senior solicitor to Islington Council in the mid 80s (when Islington Council’s children’s homes were rife with paedophiles whilst the Council was stuffed full of Councillors who would later become some of the biggest figures in the New Labour Gov’t), then a solicitor in a Leicester Council funded law centre between 1985-87 (when Frank Beck, a Leicester social worker was abusing kids in care in Leicester along with it seems Greville Janner, Labour MP for Leicester West until he was elevated to the Lords in 1990) ever get himself so well thought of in the Labour Party that he was selected as candidate for Leicester East? Could it have been the support from his mother, who was a Labour Councillor on Leicester City Council for 14 years, from the point at which Keith was selected as a candidate? Or could it have been that a lot of people were very grateful to him for something? He continued to impress once he was elected to the Commons. By 1997 Vaz was PPs to the Attorney General John Morris – the John Morris who was Secretary of State for Wales when children in children’s homes in north Wales were being abused and trafficked by paedophiles, the John Morris whose constituency is in West Glamorgan, Nigel Evans’s old stomping ground – and between May-Oct 1999 Vaz was PPS to the Lord Chancellor’s Dept, the Lord Chancellor being Blair’s mate Lord Goldsmith. Vaz just went onwards and upwards. Surely there’s a clue somewhere in that CV as to the root of his Teflon qualities…

As in the case of Vaz, I suspect that the overwhelming ‘popularity’ of Nigel Evans is Parliament speak for ‘a lot of us are very grateful to him for something’. He was welcomed back into the Commons after his acquittal – although it transpired that a lot of his constituents in the Ribble Valley had been expressing concerns for some time about Nigel’s activities.

Whilst Evans and Hague were helping everyone out of a tight spot by employing the talents of Ronnie Waterhouse and co, there was of course a change of Gov’t. In 1997, during the Waterhouse Inquiry, Blair won the election. Blair chose to axe the post of Welsh Secretary from the Cabinet, a decision that Evans opposed. This morning I found a photo of Nigel carrying a spoof ‘Tony Blair Estate Agents’ placard, emblazoned with the slogan ‘Wales Office For Sale’. Indeed the Welsh Office had been for sale for years – the whole lot of them sold themselves to a paedophile gang and a bunch of criminals who worked in the health and welfare services as documents in my possession demonstrate. Although the Tories didn’t have any seats in Wales after the 97 General Election, John Major put Evans on his shadow frontbench as spokesman for Welsh Affairs. Evans was obviously a man who could be relied upon. When Duncan Smith became Tory leader, Evans was a member of the shadow cabinet and between 2001-2003 was shadow Secretary of State for Wales. Evans returned to the backbenches on principle (is this a man who has any principles?) when Michael Howard became leader and took the role of shadow Secretary of State for Wales outside of the shadow cabinet. Evans remained a member of the Trade and Industry and the Welsh Affairs Select Committees in 2003. In Nov 2004 he became Vice-Chair of the Conservative Party, with specific responsibility for overseeing Conservatives Abroad. With Cameron’s election in 2005 Evans returned to the backbenches. He was one of the Speaker’s three deputies until he resigned after being arrested in 2013. Although Nigel was very cross when his own party’s changes to legal aid hit him in his own pocket, Nigel isn’t too keen on other people keeping afloat financially. He voted against the introduction of the National Minimum Wage in 1999 and voted against every increase afterwards. In 2009 he was one of 11 MPs to back the Employment Opportunities Bill, which aimed to make the minimum wage optional. Presumably Nigel’s idea of employment opportunities is to sell one’s body to predatory older politicians and indeed many young people who were kids in care in north Wales in the 70s, 80s and 90s were trained or forced to do this. But what are they supposed to do for a living when they’re too old for politicians to be interested in them?

Although Parliament opened it’s heart to Nigel throughout the trial and afterwards, I would have thought that as in the case of Ken Dodd and the allegations of tax evasion, the evidence against Nigel was quite substantial. So I did what I enjoy doing in such cases, I did a bit of reading regarding the barristers and judge involved. The judge was Timothy King, who in 2006 had defended the BNP leader Nick Griffin against a charge of inciting racial hatred.

So who acted for Evans? There seems to have been two barristers involved. Evans’s friend the aforementioned Henry Hendron and Peter Wright QC. I’m not sure whether Hendron acted for Evans in a paid capacity, but he did boast about advising him during the trial – I will return to Hendron later. Peter Wright was the name that appeared in the media as Counsel for Evans.

Well Evans certainly didn’t take any risks when he sought advice, Peter Wright knows how to extract people from very deep slurry pits indeed. Wright boasts of having acted in cases of organised crime – including people who have accused of committing organised crime – and people who have been prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive. Peter successfully defended a gang of armed robbers who shot a policewoman dead, a company that ran a care home that was prosecuted by the HSE when an elderly resident died as a result of scalding and a nurse who managed to kill a three week old baby boy whilst performing a circumcision for cultural reasons. He successfully defended a Detective Chief Inspector who was accused of misconduct in public office after leaking the identity of an IRA bomber to a journalist and a senior officer at HM Customs and Excise who was accused of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and misconduct in public office which involved his links to organised crime. One case that must have really made Peter feel good about himself was his defence of someone who petrol bombed a family’s home leading to the death of eight members of the family. But Peter doesn’t just act for your everyday murderous scumbag. No, Peter was Counsel in the LIBOR scandal (now you know why bankers never go to prison even when they cause the global economy to collapse!) and in Operation Elveden (the police investigation into corrupt payments between journalists and public officials, which resulted in the prosecution of Cameron’s mates Rebekah Brooks and Andy Coulson as well as a few others).

In 2006 Wright was appointed as Senior Treasury Counsel by the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith. Wright boasts of being the first person to be directly appointed to this post – so presumably Goldsmith noticed his talents in defending petrol bombers, crooked bankers and Murdoch’s employees and decided that the Gov’t could utilise those talents. In 2010 Wright stood down again as Senior Treasury Counsel – well he had all those bent bankers and press barons to get out of trouble – but he continues to advise the CPS, the Attorney General and the Treasury Solicitor. Which sounds rather like multiple conflicts of interest to me.

So Evans hired the man who had worked for the Gov’t that Evans was part of. But what of Evans’s ‘friend and barrister’ Henry Hendron? We know that everyone loves Evans, even Ann Widdecombe and that poor old Evans only gets rat arsed and gropes people because he misses his mum and didn’t come out as gay when he should have. Evans’s mate Henry has fought personal demons too. Particularly after he was arrested for supplying the drugs that killed his teenaged boyfriend. The Torygraph online published a real tear jerker of an interview with Henry’s brother Richard who was also a barrister (and before that an Inspector with the Metropolitan Police) just before Henry’s trial in 2016. As well as being represented by Timothy Cray, Henry was also being advised by Richard. Richard gave the Torygraph full details of Henry’s downward spiral after his boyfriend had been found dead in his flat. How did Richard know that Henry was grieving? Because Henry ‘binged on drugs’ to mask his grief and attended chemsex parties on a non-stop basis. He collapsed at one such party after overdoing the drugs and was rushed to hospital – this was one week after his boyfriend Miguel’s death. The nation’s widows really don’t know how to grieve properly do they, all they do is rely on the cat for company.

At Henry’s trial he pleaded guilty to two counts of possession with intent to supply. The circumstances were that he purchased £1000 of goodies from a BBC producer called Andrew Parkin with the intention of flogging them to other people at chemsex parties. He gave some to his boyfriend and it killed him and when the police searched his house afterwards they found methodrone and GBL. Parkin was given 200 hours of community service and Hendron 140 hours. (That’s what I got when I was prosecuted for calling a corrupt NHS manager who was assisting in concealing a paedophile ring a fat idiot.) It was revealed at the trial that Hendron had three previous convictions – for drink driving.

Something else came to light among all the publicity around Hendron after his trial. That he had previously been fined £2000 by the Bar Council for professional misconduct. The particulars of the misconduct being that on the eve of the starting date of Nigel Evans’s trial Hendron had described the witnesses due to give evidence against Evans as ‘manipulative and duplicitous’ online. I cannot help wondering what other pressure may have been applied to those witnesses. The media hype concerning Hendron mentioned that his clients included Nadine Dorries and the Earl of Cardigan. A bit of history was dredged up as well – that as a teenager Hendron had appeared at the Tory Party Conference arguing for the reintroduction of corporal punishment. This appearance had resulted in him being tipped as a future leader. He’d be able to add S&M (or in his case probably just S) to his chemsex-drink driving-killing of teenaged boyfriends repertoire.

Prior to his trial Henry worked as a barrister at Strand Chambers and before that at 2 Kings Bench Walk. Between 2006-2008 he worked for the CPS ‘advising senior civil servants and ministerial teams’. Including the Department of Work and Pensions and the Department of Health.

After the trial the NHS and BMA made public statements regarding the major problem that is chemsex. Well if they’re not careful all the other lawyers that they use will be struck off by the Law Society as well after they’ve woken up next to a corpse resulting from the binge the previous night.

Henry himself commented after the trial that he did accept that perhaps he might not be able to work as a barrister again, although one day he hoped to. Meanwhile, he is comforting himself with regular trips to the family of his boyfriend who died – who live in Columbia. I cannot help but wonder whether with Henry’s track record Columbia might hold attractions other than the relatives of his boyfriend. Indeed I was surprised that there were no media comments at the time of Miguel’s death regarding the unlikely domestic set-up of Henry – a barrister with a passion for chemsex whose friends include a senior middle aged Tory who has faced multiple charges of sexual assault on young men, living with a teenager from Columbia who worked as a café assistant.

So how ever did this self-indulgent binging twat with so little regard for the safety of other people end up with community service after he’d managed to kill someone? Could it have been the skills of Timothy Cray, his barrister, one of the safest hands at the Criminal Bar? Cray’s online profile tells us that he has ‘unique knowledge of international organised crime’ and ‘extensive experience of defending in allegations of sexual misconduct with emphasis on sensitive and high profile cases’. Cray acts for the Serious Fraud Office – of course – and in Jan 2014 he was appointed by the Attorney General Dominic Grieve as Senior Treasury Counsel. Because he is of course used to defending criminals who work in the professions with links to Gov’t.

As for the judge who felt that a few boring but not too dreadful hours working in a charity shop or clearing footpaths was going to ensure that Henry mended his ways, that was Richard Marks QC who was appointed a circuit judge at the Old Bailey in 2012 by the Lord Chancellor Ken Clarke. Before this, one of Marks’s responsibilities was as a legal member of the restricted patients panel. Who will have been banged up for a lot less than overdosing their teenaged partners and in many cases won’t have committed any crime at all. In 2015 Marks precipitated a lot of media coverage after he was removed from a trial involving ‘Sun’ journalists who were alleged to have bribed public officials for information. The ‘Sun’ was very angry and maintained that Marks had been replaced with judge Charles Wide ‘in secret and against his will’ because Wide was perceived as being more likely to secure a conviction. This rationale was angrily denied by Sir Nigel Sweeney, the judge who was alleged to have had something to do with the decision. Sweeney had a fairly shameful history (see post ‘A Future Leader Of The Labour Party’) and I do wonder if he might have been worried what those ‘Sun’ journalists might dig up if they continued to bribe public officials for information.

There seems to be a great many safe pairs of hands at the Criminal Bar, protecting a great many people. I don’t really mind if politicians get ripped to the tits and participate in gay or indeed heterosexual orgies, but I do mind when they employ their extensive networks to protect people who have forced ‘looked after children’ to take part in such things with them. Or indeed protect people who perjure themselves repeatedly in an attempt to imprison the likes of me because we unwittingly walked into the whole sordid mess when we discovered what the Top Doctors were colluding with.

It is indeed a Criminal Bar.