The Battle Of The Cowshed

A few days ago a news item on the Radio 4 Today programme discussed how children’s services in Rotherham have been ‘turned around’ since the scandal concerning the en masse sexual abuse of children in care blew up. It was admitted that ‘we’re still not quite there yet’ and that there are still areas needing improvement, but it was stressed that things were very much better. Although things could hardly have got worse.

I have no idea whether anything has really got better in Rotherham’s Children’s Services – people did eventually resign over the scandal (although they all clung on for as long as they possibly could, they certainly weren’t willing to admit that they had wilfully ignored criminal gangs raping kids in care for years) and it might well be true that a clean up has happened and that people who actually know what they are doing are now running the services.

I am not however entirely convinced by the reassurances that all is now well in Rotherham. Rotherham’s Children’s Services were not taken over by organised criminal gangs  because of the fuckwittery of just those few people who resigned. A problem as big as Rotherham will have evolved over many years and virtually everyone involved in the ‘service’ will have been complicit. It was also admitted that in Rotherham, the police had completely ignored what was going on and in some cases had actively colluded – teenagers who had been raped and threatened with immolation by their rapists were told to piss off by the police when they tried to report the serious offences that had been committed against them. The region’s NHS services will also have been fully aware of what was happening to those teenagers, but as usual no-one has mentioned that. The education authorities will have known as well and the Third sector organisations.

As with the activities of the paedophiles and their friends in north Wales, most of Rotherham will have known.

I am also not reassured just because external inspections of Rotherham Children’s Services are now resulting in glowing reports. Inspections of health and social services can provide a fair and accurate reflection, but inspections are equally capable of maintaining that all is well in very troubled, even dangerous, services. When Sharon Shoesmith appeared on the Radio 4 PM programme immediately after the Baby P disaster, one of the first things that she did in her interview with Eddie Mair was to tell him that the shambles over which she presided was a three star service (or it may even have been a four star service). People working in the mental health services in north Wales in the 1990s were telling people that Dafydd and his cellar and the thugs in the Arfon Community Mental Health Team were among ‘the best in Europe’.

These people are not only mad and dishonest but they often personally know the people ‘independently’ inspecting their services.

The Lazarus-like recovery of the Rotherham Children’s Services has been attributed to Ian Thomas, who took up the post of Strategic Director, Children’s and Young Person’s Service in Rotherham Borough Council in Jan 2015. It was Ian Thomas who was interviewed on the Today programme and he was faced with the inevitable questions about the gangs who abused the children being South Asian, the children being white British and why hasn’t he been more vocal about this. Thomas emphasised that the common characteristic of the people who abused the children in Rotherham was that they were abusers. Whilst I was glad to hear him stress this, there is of course another common theme throughout ALL the big UK child care scandals – that the abuse happened to kids in care and social workers knew about it but ignored it. No-one dares mention this. There weren’t any South Asian gangs in north Wales – but there was  a gang of social workers working in collaboration with other professional people…

Who Chaired the Inquiry into the Rotherham Child Abuse Scandal and wrote the subsequent damning Report? Alexis Jay – the social worker who is now Chairing the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse, which is falling apart after lawyers and survivors have walked out. The survivors’ rationale for exiting was that Jay is a social worker, it was social workers who abused them and rather than trying to achieve anything worthwhile Jay has turned the Inquiry into a ‘social workers talking shop’. She’s probably holding regular breaks for Mindfulness sessions. Alexis Jay might gave good reason to preside over a social workers talking shop rather than an Inquiry exposing the criminality and fuckwittery of those employed within the UK Social Services Depts – Jay was the social work senior manager who was responsible for the Orkney Satanic Abuse Scandal (see post ‘The Most Dangerous Man In The World – The Scottish Play’).

Thomas had spent the previous years as Deputy Chief Executive and Strategic Director of Children’s Services with Derbyshire County Council. Derbyshire Social Services had a problem with child abuse in its child care service in the 1970s and 80s at least and there were connections between some of those who abused children in north Wales and paedophiles in Derbyshire. John Jillings, who carried out in the investigation into child abuse in Clwyd, was the former Director of Derbyshire Social Services. Jillings’s 1996 Report was so damning that Michael Beloff QC, the legal advisor to Clwyd County Council’s insurers, recommended that the Jillings Report should never be released to anyone and that if it was the Council’s insurance should be withdrawn. Councillors were told that if the insurance was withdrawn they would be personally liable for damages if any former kids in care sued, would be bankrupted and lose their homes. Beloff advised that Malcolm King – a Labour Councillor from Wrexham who had asked some very difficult questions about the paedophile gang in north Wales – should be sacked if he ever discovered the contents of the Report and disclosed them. Just for good measure, Clwyd County Council was abolished at the same time as the Jillings Report was submitted. The Jillings Report was pulped but just a few years ago someone actually turned up with a copy and it was made available. It was very, very heavily redacted but the conclusion was that horrific abuse had taken place in north Wales since 1974, had almost certainly dated back well before then as well and that what had happened to children in care was indefensible. However Jillings refused to say whether there was evidence of a paedophile ring at work. For details of the horrors that led to the Jillings Report, the idiots who ran the ‘services’ and the aftermath, see post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’.

Jillings began his inquiry in 1994. In 1992 five witnesses to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal were killed in a firebombing. The man who allegedly confessed to starting the fire was hit by a lorry and killed days later. One man who survived the fire and claimed that witnesses to the abuse in north Wales were being murdered was subsequently found dead shortly after giving evidence at the 1995 trial of John Allen – the owner and manager of the Bryn Alyn Community and a key figure in the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal – days before he was due to receive a payment from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme. For details of the firebombing attack, see post ‘The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs’.

So perhaps we can understand why no-one could bring themselves to admit that a paedophile ring with links to serious organised crime was in operation in north Wales.

In Nov 2014, whilst Ian Thomas was still working for Derbyshire County Council, he was described as described as having ‘almost 30 years experience in private, voluntary and public sectors including 25 years in local government’ and had ‘worked for Derbyshire County Council since 2006 in a number of senior roles’. The world was told that Ian had presided over a great improvement in Derbyshire Children’s Services, which was reflected in Oftsed reports.

If Ian’s career is as described, he will definitely have come across the sort of criminality in children’s services and local authorities described on this blog. He may well not have participated in it, but he will have known that it was happening. Perhaps Ian is  a real star who is going into corrupt abusive children’s services and cleaning up – but we only have those ‘independent inspections’ to tell us that.

Before working for Derbyshire, Ian was a member of the senior leadership team at Trafford Council – he joined Trafford in 1999. You’ve guessed it – some of those involved in the abuse in north Wales had links with Trafford. It’s OK though – whilst at Trafford, Ian ‘helped transform the performance of social care and housing’ and the ‘social care performance went from weak to excellent’.

Ian is described as a ‘national leader’ within the Association of Directors of Children’s Services – he Chairs their National Resources and Sustainability Committee. My alarm bells are ringing – I know the sort of people who make up the Association of Directors of Children’s Services. They are members of the Mafia of Drips who have spent their careers watching children in their care being abused. If they had identified Ian as being any different from themselves they would not be telling people that he’s a national leader and letting him Chair committees.

Ian has a Masters from Lancaster University in Professional Practice (Children’s Services).  He is a ‘level 7 qualified executive coach and mentor’, which sounds seriously worrying.

Ian’s appointment to Rotherham was ‘welcomed’ by Paul Larkin, leader of Rotherham Borough Council. I very much doubt that was true – between 1997-03, Rotherham Councillors had allowed at least 1,400 teenagers in their care to be plied with alcohol and drugs and then battered and gang raped by serious criminals. The Council will not have been welcoming anyone who looked as though they might get to the bottom of that. Jo Clegg, Chair of the College of Social Work, stated that the ‘College work look forward to supporting Ian and his team in Rotherham’. The College of Social Work is endemically hopeless, if it were anything but endemically hopeless social work would not be in its current sorry state. They will not have looked forward to supporting Ian if he was going to ‘turn around’ the services, they’ll have looked forward to undermining him, blaming him for their own incompetence and negligence and getting him out of there.

In an interview with the Guardian in Dec 2014, Ian Thomas stated that the root of the problems in Rotherham were ‘weak leadership’. I rather gained the impression that it was serious organised crime and corruption in the Council, the police force and just about every other body in Rotherham. Ian goes on to say that  he knew ‘the last person and she’s a lovely woman’ so ‘I have to be careful what I say here’.

That is the crux of the problem. Everyone knows each other and they’ve all got to be careful what they say. I am not suggesting that colleagues should not be friends and I am certainly not suggesting that one should gratuitously kick one’s colleagues in the groin and then insult them in the national press, but if they are allowing a sex trafficking gang to take over the children’s services, one really does have to prioritise the welfare of the children over being careful what one says.

I spent 30 years watching drip after drip respond in an Ian-like way when I told people what was going on in north Wales. Some years ago I met two retired Gwynedd social workers socially through a chapel without realising at first that they had literally worked with the paedophile gang. They did of course know all about Dafydd and made no attempt to defend him at all – they remembered him as a monster whom everybody would have very much liked to have seen the back of. Yet when I named one of those who had attempted to have me arrested by lying to the police, I was met with ‘oh I worked  with her, I liked her’. The woman whom we were discussing was known to be a highly abusive person – her colleague to whom I was talking must have known about the mountain of serious complaints. I was then told that Keith Fearns was ‘decisive’. Keith Fearns was the leader of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team who threatened and abused the clients and perjured themselves in attempts to have people imprisoned. One female social worker who blew the whistle on them alleged that she’d been sexually assaulted by a male colleague in that team. A male nurse alleged that Fearns had physically assaulted him. Another social worker who gave up and left in despair described Fearns as ‘the most abusive professional that I have ever met’.  The decisive Fearns was a very nasty piece of work who was assisting a vicious paedophile gang.

Problems like this cannot be remedied by a mutual cup of Fairtrade coffee and a bit more continuing professional development in mindfulness-based practice. Furthermore, because the professions of health and social care have been allowed to become this dysfunctional, nearly everybody within is part of the Mafia of Drips. A number of people were honest enough to admit to me ‘I know he/she is dreadful, but I’ve got to work with him/her.’ They know that there will be absolutely no support from colleagues if they blow the whistle. Which is why all anybody dares do is describe a criminal sociopath as being ‘decisive’.

The nurse who blew the whistle on the biggest mental healthcare scandal in the UK in recent years has just been sacked and struck off the nursing register for having sex with her own husband. Not one colleague has stuck their head up above the parapet to declare that this is bonkers and dangerous. They’re far too frightened that they’ll be sacked for having sex with their own partners as well.

Let us look at the rest of Ian Thomas’s CV:

Accounts assistant, NSPCC, 1986-87. Finance Officer, London Borough of Newham, 1988-89. Senior Finance Officer(Social Services), London Borough of Tower Hamlets, 1989-92. Finance and Project Officer, Base 51 (health info for Nottingham teenagers), 1992-94. Senior Finance Officer, Derby City Council, 1997-99.

So Ian witnessed the financial transactions of the NSPCC, as well as the London Borough Councils of Newham and Tower Hamlets when they were doing business with John Allen and the Bryn Alyn Community and continued to send children in care into the arms of Allen and his paedophile gang even after complaints and deaths. Ian dispensed health information to teenagers in Nottinghamshire shortly after the Satanic Panic in that city and then he ran the finances of the paedophiles of Derbyshire.

Ian is either Of Them or he is a Master of Disguise.

When Ian was appointed to the post at Rotherham, two of his senior colleagues from Derbyshire County Council went with him. One of those was Mel Meggs, who was appointed Deputy Strategic Director for Children’s and Young Person’s Services for Rotherham Borough Council. Mel joined Rotherham in May 2016.

Mel had been Service Director, Early Help and Safeguarding at Derbyshire County Council (Children’s Services). Mel has ’30 years experience’ in ‘early help and social work’. So she’s been ignoring organised child abuse for a very long while then. At some point Mel was Head of Prevention at Leicester City Council. The Leicester City Council which ignored the paedophile gang numbering Frank Beck and Greville Janner among its members (see posts ‘Radical Leicester And Some Other Free Radicals’). The Leicester City Council which funded a law centre in which a lawyer called Keith Vaz worked – after he had worked as a lawyer for Richmond-Upon-Thames Council and Islington Council, whilst both of those Councils had huge problems with organised paedophile rings operating within their social services (see post ‘Always On The Side Of The Children’).

Keith’s mum was a Councillor on Leicester City Council.

Mel is a member of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services Families, Communities and Young Persons Policy Committee.

Ian Thomas was head hunted for the Rotherham post by Malcolm Newsam, the Children’s Social Care Commissioner who oversees children’s services for Rotherham. Newsam was appointed by Education Secretary Nicky Morgan in 2014 in the wake of the Jay Report.

Yet in 2011 Malcolm Newsam was at the centre of a spat himself. Mail Online reported that Newsam was one of a number of temporary Directors who had been brought in by Kent County Council’s Conservative leader Katherine Kerswell as the Council cut services and oversaw the loss of 1500 jobs. Newsam was being paid 1250k per day.

That is a great deal of money. But – there was a ding dong in north Wales some years ago when it was revealed that a ‘troubleshooter’ sent in to Anglesey County Council by the Welsh Gov’t was being paid a great deal of money. Anglesey County Council was a nightmare, one Councillor had gone to prison, come out again and gone straight back onto the Council, corruption was endemic and had been for decades, local democracy did not exist and neither did any functioning ‘services’. The Welsh Gov’t probably thought that it was worth paying to try to get it sorted out and no sane person would ever work with Anglesey County Council unless they were paid danger money. The troubleshooter deserved the danger money as well, they gave him hell.

Kent is yet another place that has a history of child abuse stretching  years.

Newsam was also sent into the children’s services of Essex and Peterborough to ‘turn them around’.

In the face of all this turning around of services by troubleshooters, one wonders why there are currently police investigations into most local authority children’s services re the abuse of children in care and why so many of the UK’s children’s services are in special measures.

But then again, even the best troubleshooter has an enormous task on their hands if the whole region has colluded with organised crime for years and some of the officials who did so are now sitting in Parliament.

Whether Ian Thomas is a member of the Mafia of Drips or not, there was someone who did do something worthwhile in Rotherham and that was the lawyer who successfully prosecuted many members of the Rotherham gang who terrorised and abused so many underaged girls. This lawyer has recently been retained by the Welsh Gov’t and has stated that he wants Wales to be the safest country in Europe for women. He has a mountain to climb. Should anyone wish to draw his attention to this blog, he’ll find the names of the culprits, the accessories and details of some of the crimes here.

I continue to uncover more members of the Mafia of Drips. Let me introduce Nia Griffith, Labour MP for Llanelli since 2005.

Nia has featured on this blog before, when she was a member of the Welsh Affairs Committee who in 2012 ‘took oral evidence’ from Dafydd’s right hand man Clive Wolfendale, Chief Exec of CAIS, regarding Dafydd and Lucille’s need for many more millions of pounds of pubic money (see post ‘The Evolution Of A Drugs Baron?’). Before hearing the ‘evidence’ from Clive and others, Nia mentioned that she had just enjoyed ‘hospitality’, ie a lovely free lunch – or it may have been a dinner – from one of the Third sector organisations who were asking her for money, whom Nia noted provided a ‘superb’ quality of care. And superb nosh-ups for politicians as well presumably.

Nia went to Somerville College, Oxford and then did her PGCE at Bangor University (then called UCNW). Nia finished her PGCE in 1980, the year before I began my degree at Bangor.

So Nia will have known about everything that I found out about. She will have known that children in north Wales from poor and disadvantaged backgrounds were being abandoned by both Gwynedd Social Services and the schools and that there were a small number of near destitute quite young children who would actually visit the students halls of residences to go begging. She will have known that Friars School favoured some children from the more middle class families in Bangor and that those kids went on to occupy influential positions in the region, became paedophiles’ friends and formed an influential old boys network which they used to assist each other. Members included Elfed Roberts, former Assistant Chief Constable of North Wales Police and corrupt Chair of the North West Wales NHS Trust and Keith Thomson, former corrupt CEO of the North West Wales NHS Trust (see post ‘Former NHS Managers Of Notoriety Now Keeping A Low(er) Profile’). A member of the Friars network from a previous generation who ably assisted the paedophiles’ friends was Huw Wheldon, Mr Big of the BBC for many years during the 60s and 70s (see post ‘The Creme de la Creme’).

Yet Friars School also served the Maesgeirchan estate on the outskirts of Bangor, where many of those being shafted by the paedophiles’ friends lived. The Ty’r Felin children’s home was located on Maesgeirchan, where serious abuse occurred and where children were trafficked for sex, including down to Dolphin Square in London (see post ‘Are You Local?’). Friars School did not like the kids from families in difficulty, did not want them in the school and did nothing even when the staff knew that the kids were being ill treated or had even been abandoned by their parents. When the kids stopped coming to school no questions were asked.

Whilst I lived in north Wales I spoke to many people from different generations who went to Friars and this two tier system seemed to have operated for decades. Some men over the age of about 50 also described incredibly brutal practices, even in comparison to the education of boys in an era when it was routine to hit them. People have told me of how they were so mercilessly beaten at Friars that they couldn’t learn because they were emotional wrecks. One Jewish man from Anglesey who came to north Wales as a refugee from the Nazis told of how at Friars one particular teacher constantly assaulted him, told him in front of the class that he ought to be sent back to Germany because Mr Hitler knew how to deal with Jews and on one occasion threw him down a fire escape, causing injury. I heard about all this in a public lecture in Bangor and there were a number of other elderly former Friars pupils who all remembered this teacher and testified to his brutality. They told me that his nickname had simply been ‘Mochyn’ (Welsh for ‘pig’).

Nia Griffith trained as a teacher many years after the Jewish refugee was treated so badly, but I knew people who did teacher training in Bangor shortly after Nia – they told me the horror stories of the children who were being mistreated by social workers and of certain schools and teachers who were not conducting themselves as they should. It was like the stories about the North Wales Hospital Denbigh – if you lived in Bangor in the 1980s you heard about it. Of course there were many people who weren’t actually that bothered about what was happening to the plebs, including some trainee teachers.

Nia did not grow up on Maesgeirchan herself. Her father was Professor T. Gwynfor Griffith, a linguist who taught Italian Studies at Manchester University and her mother was Dr Rhiannon Howell. So Nia is from the Welsh speaking middle classes herself and went into teaching, a popular career choice for girls from that section of Welsh society in the 1970s. Some of those people made a substantial contribution to society as well.

Did Nia?

Well she was a language teacher who taught at Queen Elizabeth Cambria School, Carmarthen, as well as at Gowerton Comprehensive in Swansea and was then Head of Languages at Morriston Comprehensive School. She has been an education advisor and worked as an Estyn advisor from 1992. (Estyn is Wales’s equivalent of Ofsted and like Ofsted is deeply unpopular with many teachers, who perceive Estyn inspections to be box ticking exercises with unfairness built in and no reflection of how well a school is really performing.)

Nia was Chair of the Carmarthenshire Youth Project in the 1990s and is a founding member of a local Women’s Aid organisation.

Nia definitely knows about the neglect and abuse of disadvantaged people by the statutory services.

Nia publicly declared herself to be lesbian in a media interview in 2016. However, back at the dawn of time, Nia was married. Her then husband was a social worker. Presumably he lived and worked in west Wales like she did. The west Wales where a paedophile ring operated in the social services. The west Wales where Mark Drakeford also worked as a social worker. The west Wales which is just by Pembrokeshire, where the Gibbons twins grew up who were banged up for years in Broadmoor as teenagers on the grounds that they wouldn’t speak to anyone but each other and then claimed to be prostitutes (see post ‘One Dangerous Fucker’). The twin whom the Top Doctors hated most died ‘from the effects of her medication’ days before she was due to be finally released.

Nia, would you like to tell us the real reason why those girls were incarcerated and give your ex-husband a nudge to encourage him to speak up as well? Perhaps old Drakeford would like to tell all too.

Nia joined the Labour Party in 1981 and is a member of the NUT and USDAW (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers). She has been the Secretary of the Carmarthenshire County Labour Party, was elected as a Councillor for Carmarthen Town Council in 1987, became Sheriff in 1997 and then Mayor in 1998.

Corruption in Carmarthenshire County Council has spawned a great deal of citizen blogging in west Wales.

So Nia has been in a position for years to raise concerns about those kids in west Wales. She hasn’t said a thing and didn’t even back in the mid-80s when the story of the Gibbons’ twins became known internationally and the paedophiles’ friend Marjorie Wallace built herself a whole new career at their expense.

When Nia became an MP, she found yet another friend with whom she could have raised the matter of June and Jennifer Gibbons or indeed the other kids who suffered at the hands of Nia’s husband’s and Drakeford’s colleagues – Harriet Harman! Nia was Harman’s PPS when Harman was Minister for Women and Equalities. But some Wimmin are of course more equal than others.

And I looked from pig to man and from man to pig and from pig to man again and from Nia to Harriet and from Harriet to Drakeford and from Drakeford to Lesley Griffiths and from Lesley Griffiths to Jane Hutt and then to Brian Gibbons and to Julie Morgan and even to dear departed old Rhodri himself and it was impossible to tell the difference in so far as the whole bloody lot of them had concealed and/or ignored a paedophile gang who murdered witnesses.

Nia was part of the mass shadow front bench resignation in June 2016 in an attempt to bring Jeremy Corbyn down because the resigners thought that he wasn’t going to win a General Election and none of them would ever be in Gov’t. If you’ve got the sort of talents that Nia has obviously you don’t just want to waste time merely serving your constituents, particularly if they’re living with the legacy of a paedophile gang that you’re keeping quiet about. Nia was one of many who changed her mind about Jeremy when it looked as though he was rather more popular than they thought and by Oct 2016 she was back on the shadow front bench as Defence Spokesperson, entertaining the nation because it was obvious that she didn’t have a clue what she was talking about and disagreed with Jeremy over defence policy anyway.

Nia was named and shamed in the 2009 Parliamentary election expenses scandal and was ordered to repay over 4k in wrongly claimed mortgage interest relief. Then she ended up in trouble again for breaching Parliamentary rules regarding the use of Commons stationery for political campaigning.

Nia owns a property in Llanelli, has a home in London and a smallholding in Carmarthenshire – for which she has received Welsh Gov’t funding under the Tir Gofal scheme.

Nia’s official website is currently plastered in NHS campaigning material. One notice urges people to write to NHS Wales to insist that the South Wales Major Trauma Centre is established at Swansea not Cardiff, for the benefit of her constituents. Nia – I know that everyone gets pissed off with everything being in Cardiff, but that probably is the best place for a Major Trauma Centre serving south Wales, just on the basis of demography, transport links and geography. It might be more convenient for your constituents to have the Centre near them, but it isn’t convenient for anyone else.

There are major problems at the University Hospital in Cardiff, but there are at Swansea as well, so Nia would be doing everyone a favour if she spoke up about the dire state of the NHS rather than demanding machines that go ping near her constituency.

Not that Nia shows any indication at all of raising  concerns about the serious problems in the NHS – her website also explains how she is ‘fighting for Prince Philip Hospital’. Nia wants assurances that services will remain at Prince Philip Hospital. Prince Philip Hospital has been the site of a number of very serious scandals involving patient harm and deaths and was also the centre of the very sad business involving Sian Caiach.

Sian Caiach was an orthopaedic surgeon who worked at the Prince Philip Hospital and reported fraudulent activity on the part of some of her colleagues to the Welsh Audit Office – Top Doctors at the Prince Philip were using NHS resources for private patients. Although the Welsh Audit Office found Sian’s allegations to be correct, she was suspended, remained suspended for many years and was eventually sacked and struck off. One of the Top Doctors committing the fraud was promoted, the other continued to practice.

Where were all the people who ‘love the NHS’, who bang on about strong women or their admiration of women who succeed in male dominated professions when Sian was targeted? They were nowhere to be seen.

In 2015 Sian asked the then Health Minister Mark Drakeford to address the issue of NHS Top Doctors exploiting the NHS and its patients in order to personally benefit from private practice. Left-leaning Drakeford who loves the NHS and state-provided welfare services more than anyone else on the planet didn’t ever quite get to grips with that one.

Nia’s local Health Board Hywel Dda is another that is on its knees after years of mismanagement. Nia tells us that ‘I will be keeping a close eye on the situation’. If Nia really wanted advice about the NHS all she needs to do is ask for the opinion of a fellow smallholder in Camarthenshire, Sian Caiach.

The Welsh political blog Jac O The North has recently asked questions about one of Nia’s proteges, Tonia Antoniazzi. Tonia campaigned for Nia and is now MP for the Gower, having been elected in 2017. As Jac’s blog mentioned, Tonia only joined the Labour Party in 2014, so that is rapid progression.

Tonia is from Burry Port, the territory of corrupt Top Doctor Prof Linford Rees who used his medical and film/TV network in south Wales and London to keep the lid on the wrongdoing of Dafydd and the paedophiles (see post ‘A Galaxy Of Talent’). Tonia went to Gorseinon College, then to Exeter University and then to Cardiff University to do her PGCE. Like Nia, she was a language teacher and before her election she was Head of Languages at Bryngwyn School, Llanelli. Which is somewhat inconsistent with Tonia’s claim to have been reliant on the foodbank. Foodbanks will be running out of food for people who’ve had their benefits unlawfully stopped with all these nurses and teachers raiding the supplies.

Tonia’s USP in media interviews is that she used to play for Wales in the Women’s Rugby team.

Tonia seems quite well connected re Welsh politics – one of her brothers is married to Helen Bradley who was formerly Head of News and Research for Plaid Cymru and is now Strategic Communications Lead at Chwarae Teg, the ‘equalities charity’ established by paedophiles’ friend Jane Hutt.

There are two other Antoniazzis who wield a great deal of power in Wales, but I do not know if they are relatives of Tonia – there are a number of families called Antoniazzi in south Wales. Whether they are relatives of Tonia or not, they are worth a mention.

One of these people is Dr Manon Antoniazzi who from Jan 2017 has been Chief Exec and Clerk to the National Assembly, the most senior Assembly Commission employee ie the Principal Accounting Officer. When Manon was appointed she stated that she would ‘champion the Assembly’s reputation within Wales and beyond’. Before Manon was appointed Chief Exec and Clerk, she was Director of Culture, Sport and Tourism for the Welsh Gov’t. In 2016, Sport Wales, a Welsh Gov’t-sponsored body that advises Ministers on sporting matters and also distributes National Lottery funding in Wales, found itself in meltdown. Allegations of conflict of interest and nepotism regarding the awarding of contracts were made – although an investigation by Deloitte later cleared them of wrongdoing. However the Board was accepted to be dysfunctional and the Chairman and Vice-Chair were suspended.

Manon has also been Chief Exec of Visit Wales and before that she had worked for the BBC, S4C and Prince Charles.

Before she  married, Manon was Manon Williams – her sister Ffion is married to William Hague, the man who orchestrated the cover-up of the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal which was the Waterhouse Inquiry. Ffion met Hague when she was working as a civil servant in the Welsh Office, along with all the other civil servants in the Welsh Office who had spent years concealing the abuse and deaths of kids in care and psych patients in north Wales.

Manon was said to have secured the post of Chief Exec and Clerk to the Assembly following a ‘rigorous recruitment process’.

In 2014 Wales Online covered Manon’s wedding to John Antoniazzi. The ceremony was quite exclusive, there were just 18 guests there including Ffion and William Hague, who was at the time Foreign Secretary. So Manon hasn’t disowned them for concealing a paedophile ring who murdered their victims and witnesses.

Manon and John were married at Lake Como in Italy, one of the most expensive destinations in Europe – Wales Online explained that they were regulars at Lake Como. The romance of it all! A world away from being battered, raped, declared insane and illegally imprisoned in Dafydd’s dungeon…

Manon and John held a wedding party at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff. Linford Rees’s famous daughter actress Angharad Rees held an honorary position at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

I have heard a little bit about Ffion and William’s wedding as well. I was told that the man who conducted the ceremony was the father of a truly loathed theologian who used to work at Bangor University, Catrin Haf Williams. The person who told me this had been a theology student at Bangor and had achieved popularity and fame by successfully suing Catrin Haf. Catrin Haf had organised a field trip to the Middle East and told the students that it was obligatory but she would keep the cost as low as possible. She then booked everyone into a very expensive hotel because she wanted to stay there herself and had been offered a substantial discount on her own room if she booked all the students in there as well. The students were forced into penury because of this and they had all had such a bellyful of her intimidation and unpleasantness that the person I knew made a stand and sued her.

Catrin Haf’s partner in crime was her boss Prof Densil Morgan. Shortly after the student won his case against Catrin, Densil brought ridiculous disciplinary charges against the student which was very obviously a revenge attack. The student transferred to Aber to finish his degree – he was not the only person who claimed to have been targeted by Catrin Haf and Densil and forced out of the dept. There were also allegations that Densil was having words in the ears of influential people to prevent students to whom he had taken a dislike from being ordained – Densil is a Nonconformist Minister.

It was Densil who wrote a glowing tribute to J.E. Daniel online. J.E. Daniel was a theologian, Minister and Chairman of Plaid Cymru, 1939-43. He was the father of Huw Daniel, the corrupt judge who was involved in an attempt by the Hergest Unit to frame and imprison me for a serious offence (see post ‘Interesting Happenings In The Legal System’). J.E. Daniel went to Friars School of course.

Perhaps Catrin Haf’s finest hour was the occasion on which she was faced with a distressed student who wanted no more involvement with the thugs of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team – Catrin told the student that if she didn’t accept an appointment with the CMHT, she’d call security and have the student thrown out of the building. Catrin Haf was fully aware of the many serious complaints that students had made about Keith Fearns and co, including threats of violence towards students.

Catrin and Densil had a colleague, Prof Eryl Davies, whom they treated very badly. Eryl never conducted himself in the way that they did, but back in the 1980s Eryl knew some of what was happening in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and he also knew about the drunken lecherous Gordon Farley from the Agriculture Dept sexually harassing the students (see post ‘Not Seen Since The 80s – Carwyn’).

Catrin Haf announced at one point that Bangor wasn’t good enough for her and she was off to Oxford, but unfortunately she returned after less than two years on the grounds that Oxford was full of gits. A mole maintained that Catrin Haf had simply got back what she had given out.

Bangor was mercifully relieved of Catrin and Densil when they relocated to Trinity St David’s University Lampeter, although everybody certainly felt for those in peril at Lampeter. After a few months we heard that Densil and Catrin were up to their usual tricks and there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth at Lampeter.

 

To return to Manon and John Antoniazzi. John Antoniazzi spent 25 years as a senior partner for Deloitte, heading audit for Wales. When he married Manon, John was Chairman of Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone. Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone was established in 2011 and John was Chairman for three years. Edwina Hart, the then Economy Minister, described the Enterprise Zone as aiming to attract ‘financial and professional services firms’. John was advising the Welsh Gov’t on the matter.

Regular readers of this blog will know that I have rather more respect for Edwina than for the other Health Ministers in the Welsh Gov’t because she did try very hard to challenge the paedophiles’ friends in the NHS in north Wales. She was subjected to an all out hate campaign co-ordinated by the BMA and eventually stepped down as Health Minister, although I had provided her with enough info to have Martin Jones and Elfed Roberts, the former CEO and Chair of the North West Wales NHS Trust, arrested. I am fairly sure that Edwina was compromised by her previous trade union activism. She is a member of both TGWU and AMICUS and was Chair of the Wales TUC, as was her husband Bob Hart. The union movement has concealed criminal activity and wrongdoing in the NHS and social services on a grand scale for many years. I know how the paedophiles’ friends operate – they blackmail, bribe and smear people and they’ll do it to anyone under all circumstances, including to those who have previously extracted them from the slurry. I very much suspect that Edwina was faced with this, which was why she eventually backed down in the face of the loud squealing from the paedophiles’ friends. I remain grateful that Edwina did at least try.

However, Edwina does seem to have been involved in some less than fair and transparent activities re the Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone when she was Economy Minister. The successes of the Enterprise Zone included the revamping of parts of Cardiff and it was boasted that prestigious companies had ‘been attracted’ to the Tiger economy that was central Cardiff and were ‘bringing jobs’ and ‘investing’. One such success was the arrival of the Business Operations Centre of Deloitte – the former company of John Antoniazzi, the Chairman of the Enterprise Zone.

Among all the talk of investing and bringing jobs, there are clues that the Welsh Gov’t itself was giving these ‘investors’ a lot of money in return for their ‘investment’. I know that this is how Govt’s often tempt businesses to locate to various regions, but there were allegations that Edwina was making decisions regarding as to whom to give dosh on rather questionable grounds.

Edwina utilised the talents of an unpaid advisor, David Goldstone. Goldstone is a very rich man but reassured everyone that he was a selfless old boy at heart and just wanted to help the taxpayer. How one does that by giving large amounts of their money to very rich businesspeople he did not explain. Goldstone made serious money back in the 1970s and has been Chairman of both Cardiff and Swansea City football clubs. Among other things he was founder and Chief Exec of the property firm Regalian, the owner of Lands End and a Board member of Cardiff Airport, which was famously purchased by the Welsh Gov’t in 2013. The Chair of the Board of Cardiff Airport was Lord David Rowe-Beddoe, the ‘Monaco-based businessman’ who was Chair of the famously disreputable WDA and who was involved in the transfer of many millions of taxpayers money into the pockets of a small number of already wealthy people as  result of the development of Cardiff Bay (see post ‘Corruption Bay Special’). Goldstone is also the hon Vice-President of the Royal Albert Hall. Goldstone is an elderly man now and although press interviews with him provide much info about his early life, wax lyrical about his days as Mr Big in Welsh football, talk about how he lives in Mayfair but when he’s in Cardiff he crashes out in the Hilton and how people still flock to him because he’s a lovely old bugger who’s such good company, there is a veil drawn over his career before he became an ‘entrepreneur’. We are simply told that Goldstone was a London based ‘commercial lawyer’.

Football is best known at present for massive levels of corruption at national and international levels and the recent revelations regarding the sexual abuse of boys, sometimes by well known coaches.

Martin Jones has spent years involving himself with junior football clubs in north Wales and I never understood why, because he doesn’t have an altruistic bone in his body. Keith Fearns has for years managed a ladies football team in Gwynedd and no-one has ever believed this to be a benign activity.

 

People do not make the sort of dosh that David Goldstone has made by prioritising the needs of the taxpayer.

One of Goldstones’s triumphs was his organising a £15 million deal in 2013 through which the Welsh Gov’t acquired offices owned by property developer J.R. Smart in the Capital Quarter scheme. J.R. Smart’s son now works for J.R. Smart, but before he did so, he worked for the Bank of Wales, which was not a bank but an organisation run by a spiv who sold poor people things at high rates of interest. That high profile paedophile the now disgraced former Speaker of the House George Thomas, aka Lord Tonypandy, was involved with the Bank of Wales.

So there was obviously a great deal of money sloshing about in the coffers of the Welsh Gov’t which was available for thrashing out deals with some very rich people.

In 2015 BBC News Wales ran stories regarding the collapse of a hi-tech company called Ideoba. Ideoba was run by Adam Price – now a Plaid AM – and a US finance expert, Andrew Auerbach. Ideoba’s collapse was attributed to the refusal of the Welsh Gov’t to provide it with a loan of just 150k. This is not to suggest that Ideoba was an unsustainable ramshackle affair – information available suggests that it had a sound basis, that it was a small but expanding company and that other investors had come forward and were prepared to invest if the Welsh Gov’t would provide the loan of 150k. The Welsh Gov’t refused, Ideoba collapsed, employees were made redundant and Adam Price personally lost 70k.

Ideoba was the sort of business that the Welsh Gov’t was telling people that it wanted to encourage and support. Instead it allowed the company to collapse for the sake of a 150k loan – whilst Deloitte, who just happened to have connections with the Chairman of the Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone and Economy Minister so close that the phrase ‘conflict of interest’ screams loudly at us all, picked up massive quantities of Gov’t money for doing the Welsh Gov’t the favour of opening a business operations centre, which would no doubt be highly profitable for Deloitte. Deloitte picks up numerous Gov’t contracts and whilst researching for this blog I have constantly come across people formerly of Deloitte who have been given given senior roles in public services for which they are very obviously not qualified.

Andrew R.T. Davies, the leader of the Welsh Conservatives, alleged that Edwina Hart had broken the Ministerial code with regard to the consideration of the loan to Ideabo. It was David Goldstone who advised against a loan being made to Ideabo, yet Goldstone was employed to advise only on property. It was revealed that Goldstone had been involved in discussions about the loan with Edwina and her officials and that he had been given commercially sensitive information that should not have been made available to him. Most damningly, Adam Price’s business partner Andrew Auerbach alleged that he had been told by Goldstone himself that Ideabo had been refused the loan because Price had announced his intentions to stand as  Plaid candidate in the forthcoming Assembly election. Goldstone is a member of the Labour Party.

Improper conduct was strongly denied by the Welsh Gov’t and Goldstone but it was noticed that Goldstone’s contract with the Welsh Gov’t was not renewed in April 2015. Ideabo collapsed in April 2015.

There were constant accusations that Edwina and Goldstone were members of a ‘Swansea Mafia’ – Goldstone was orginally from Swansea, although he made his fortune in London. Goldstone maintained that allegations of being part of a Swansea Mafia were all nonsense and that he hadn’t known Edwina until he found himself sitting opposite her when they were both on the Board of the Wales Millennium Centre. Goldstone explained that she told him that she was from Swansea so he made a point of getting to know her.

Which rather suggests that influential people with connections to Swansea make a point of networking with each other.

Some years ago I did hear of an allegation that Edwina had facilitated Welsh Gov’t funding for someone based on Anglesey in a deal so sordid that even I am not going to give details here – it involved the sort of thing that I need to have witnessed myself or at least have correlated before I publish it. The info came from a community activist who, like many others, were tearing their hair out at the levels of corruption that they were encountering.

The thing that intrigues but worries me is that David Goldstone was appointed a ‘property advisor’ to Edwina whilst she was Health Minister.

Goldstone has also been and might still be a property advisor to the Wales Rugby Union. Tasker Watkins, the one time ‘Greatest Living Welshman’, Presiding Judge of the corrupt Wales and Chester Circuit and great friend to paedophiles and criminal Top Doctors (see post ‘Corruption Bay Special’) was President of the Welsh Rugby Union, 1993-04.

Goldstone has been Chairman of the children’s charity the Thomas Coram Foundation. Many of those who concealed organised child abuse in north Wales and elsewhere have been/are involved with Coram.

It was David Goldstone who built the MI6 HQ in Vauxhall. One would have thought that MI6 would have chosen a property developer with rather less questionable contacts to build their house. But then they knew all about Dafydd and the paedophiles anyway and were key to ensuring that they were neither stopped or prosecuted.

 

To return to John Antoniazzi. He stepped down from the role of Chair of Central Cardiff Enterprise Zone in 2015 and stated that he would be ‘pursuing new business interests and charitable commitments’.

John Antoniazzi is Chairman of Premier Forest Ltd and a former non-executive Board member of Go Compare. He is a Trustee and Treasurer of the Catholic Archdiocese of Cardiff and Chairman of their Cornerstone Project. John was the founder Chairman of Fareshare Cymru.

John Antoniazzi has ‘supported the work of the NSPCC in Wales’. The NSPCC provided the ‘Helpline’ that was set up at the end of 1991 to ‘support’ the by then adults who had been victims of the north Wales paedophile gang when some of them were eventually put on trial. The Helpline was staffed and managed by the colleagues of the paedophiles (see post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’). Not many people sought support from the Helpline, but one person who did was found dead.

John is a Trustee of London Music Masters, which provides music tuition for children.

John is also involved with the cancer charity Maggie’s.

John Antoniazzi is the Independent Board Member for Estates on the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board. The Independent Board Member for the Third sector is a frequent star of this blog, Sara Moseley, Director of MIND Cymru. Professor Elizabeth Treasure is the Independent Board Member for Universities. Treasure caused havoc among the Top Doctors when she was a senior manager at Cardiff Medical School but so many of the Top Doctors there were completely corrupt that I never worked out if she was sinner or sinned against. She is now VC of Aberystwyth University, another institution which has provided a home for many a paedophiles’ friend (see post ‘A Bit More Paleontology’).

Associate Board Members include Tony Young, Director of Social Services for Cardiff Council and Phil Evans, Director of Social Services for Vale of Glamorgan Council.

Cardiff and Vale University Health Board employ Richard Penketh as a consultant gynaecologist. Penketh worked at St George’s Hospital Medical School and was a pathological sexual harasser who managed to have sex with another member of staff in a lab during working hours. Then he failed some professional exams and St George’s stated that they would do what they did with all really bad doctors – they’d ‘send him to Wales’. And they did – and then paedophiles’ friend Brian Gibbons gave Penketh an award for excellence.

 

Another Antoniazzi also works for the Assembly, Jon Antoniazzi, the Director of Policy, Legislation and Innovation at the Office of Future Generations Commissioner for Wales. That Commissioner is one Sophie Howe.

When I was researching Tonia Antoniazzi, I noticed that the MP for the Gower who preceded her was a Tory, Byron Davies, who did originally come from the Gower but he had spent his adult life in London – futhermore he had been a senior detective in the Met. Davies was in the Met when they all behaved like something out of the TV programme Life On Mars – whilst there was rampant corruption and the organised sexual abuse of children was ignored and actively concealed if complaints involved public figures. Davies only returned to the Gower in 2011 after he retired – where he successfully stood for election to the Welsh Assembly. He remained an AM until 2017. Police officers often do interesting things after they retire, but nonetheless this did seem a bit odd. Then I read a Wales Online article from 2011 profiling the new AMs and something so obvious had happened that it must have been visible from outer space. In 2011 the Assembly received an influx of AMs who had concealed the abuse of children in care. Before readers hurl accusations of conspiracy theories, just bear with me.

By spring 2011, questions about the possible existence of a Westminster Paedophile Ring would not go away. There was also much discontent in north Wales – I had written to a number of people stating that I intended to publish now that I had possession of the most incriminating documents and that I would be calling for a Pubic Inquiry into the conduct of the mental health services. The Top Doctors and paedophiles’ friends were going apeshit with regard to the arrival at the Betsi Board of a CEO and a number of other senior managers who were challenging their reign of terror. Furthermore, the biggest sex offender and Top Doctors’ friend of the lot, Jimmy Savile, was very obviously on his last legs. Once he was dead, it was inevitable that someone would go public on what he had done, because in UK law one cannot libel the dead. Savile had visited Bryn Estyn and been involved with abuse there.

Now just consider some of the new faces in the Assembly in 2011, along with the senior officer from the Met:

Julie Morgan. Former social worker and Deputy Director of Barnardo’s who kept quiet about child abuse. Wife of Rhodri, whose whole career was predicated on concealing the paedophiles – and who had by now left the Assembly himself.

Antoinette Sandbach – a London barrister who’s father was a key figure in covering up the activities of Dafydd and the paedophiles and whose grandmother also knew what was going on (see post ‘News Round Up, 19 January 2018). Sandbach – like the man from the Met – took the opportunity to bag a seat at Westminster before too long.

Mick Antinow. A lawyer and senior partner in Thompsons, a company that represents trade unions. Antinow began training in 1980. He worked at Thompsons throughout the years that trade unions afforded full protection to abusers. In north Wales some of the abusers were union reps. David Williams, who ‘trained’ at the North Wales Hospital and its dungeon, became the General Secretary for COHSE (see post ‘A Very COHSE Relationship With Some Very Nasty People’).

John Dixon. Had been a Cardiff Councillor for twelve years, whilst abuse had occurred in Cardiff and was a member of the Care Council for Wales – which was packed with paedophiles’ friends and completely failed to protect children and other clients (see post ‘Still Lost In Care’). Dixon was disqualified from office shortly after election because AMs are not permitted to sit on the Care Council for Wales.

Aled Roberts. A solicitor from Wrexham throughout the years that the children in care in Wrexham – primarily in Bryn Estyn and nearby Bryn Alyn – were horrifically abused and everyone in the legal profession and criminal justice system ignored it. Aled had also been a Wrexham Councillor, Leader of Wrexham Council and Mayor of Wrexham. Wrexham Council ran Bryn Estyn. One of my friends went to Aled after he had been unlawfully refused treatment by the mental health services and had ended up paying for private treatment abroad. Aled took three months to reply and said that there was nothing he could do.

Aled was also disqualified from office shortly after he was elected. The rest of the Assembly voted to reinstate him.

Gwyn Price. The former Deputy Leader of Caerphilly County Borough Council – he’d been in post throughout those glorious years when Ron Davies with his moments of madness and hobby of looking for badgers was MP and AM for Caerphilly.

Mike Hedges. Graduate of both Swansea and Cardiff Universities. Councillor on Swansea City Council from 1989 and Councillor on City and County of Swansea Council from 1995. Vice-Chair of Council’s Scrutiny Committee. WLGA spokesman for Social Services. Swansea Social Services were reputed to be dreadful for years but it was denied. Until baby Aaron Gilbert was murdered in 2005. Hedges was non-exec Director of Swansea NHS Trust, 1999-05.

Keith Davies. A teacher, schools inspector and Director of Education in Mid-Glamorgan and Carmarthenshire – paedophile rings operated in both areas. In May 2012, Davies was the centre of a scandal and was investigated for bringing the Assembly into disrepute. He had crawled into the St David’s Hotel at 4-45am pissed, in the company of his ‘female guest’ who was also pissed. Keith’s friend was described as ‘foul mouthed’ and hurled abuse at and threatened hotel staff. Keith attempted to scarper without paying the hotel bill. That was one hell of a night out for a 71 year old man who was married to someone else.

David Rees. Succeeded paedophiles’ friend and corrupt Top Doctor Brian Gibbons. Rees is a member of UNITE and convenor of the UNITE Group of AMs. The UNITE that supported and provided free legal advice to abusers.

Simon Thomas. Aber graduate and was Assistant Curator at the National Library of Wales – so well connected to the old fossils (see post ‘A Bit More Paleontology’). Simon’s father-in-law’s father was the Rev T. Alban Davies, a Welsh preacher and early member of Plaid, so he will have personally known the old fossils J.E. Daniel and Dafydd’s mate Saunders Lewis. Thomas was Policy and Research Officer for Taff-Ely Borough Council, 1992-94. So Thomas arrived there in the aftermath of the Ely Bread Riots.

Lindsay Whittle. Councillor on Caerphilly County Borough Council from 1976 and Council leader 1999-04 and 2008-11. He remained a Councillor after he became an AM. Well the more fingers in the more pies that Ron Davies’s mates have, the better. Caerphilly Council have recently been under investigation for financial misconduct dating back years.

Mark Drakeford. Need I say more?

Jenny Rathbone. Former Islington Councillor, journalist and member of the family who established a charity that supplied the paedophiles with help when some of them were actually caught (see post ‘The Mentor’).

Julie James. Barrister and former civil servant. Worked as a policy lawyer for the London Borough of Camden – Tessa Jowell’s manor and the site of much abuse and neglect of kids in care and psych patients. Also was Assistant Chief Exec of the City and County of Swansea Council.

Llyr Huws Gruffydd. Described one of Dafydd’s dodgy ‘nursing homes’ for people ‘with PTSD’ as a ‘beacon of excellence’. Stated that a psych patient complaining of mistreatment when in the Heddfan Unit was ‘in the right place’ after having a word with the abusive Angel on duty. Days later the patient was discharged and refused further care and support. He ended up suicidal and sleeping rough. Llyr stopped replying to e mails about this patient’s case.

Suzy Davies. Solicitor who had mentored young offenders and worked on children’s and community projects.

There were two other AMs in the 2011 intake who were too young to have been assisting the paedophile gang of north Wales in its hayday, but who definitely have worked with people who did help them – Vaughan Gething, another solicitor who worked for Thompsons and Ken Skates from Wrexham, who has spent his whole life and career surrounded by lying criminals and people in denial.

The arrival of that crew in the Assembly as the anxiety levels of the paedophiles’ friends was going through the roof and when another high level cover-up might have  been called for was not a coincidence.

 

 

 

 

Brief News Round-Up, April 11 2017

Two reports relevant to the material presented on this blog have appeared in the Welsh media today.

BBC News Wales is reporting on the inquest of Toni Robinson, 65, from Northampton who died in the sea at Moelfre in October 2016. Pathologist Mark Lord declared that the cause of death was drowning. The coroner at Mrs Robinson’s inquest was Dewi Pritchard Jones, who has featured on this blog regularly as a result of the extraordinary conclusions that he arrives at even in the face of deaths that are frankly suspicious. Dewi also works very hard to ensure that he doesn’t return verdicts of suicide, even in cases where the evidence overwhelmingly points to this. In Mrs Robinson’s case, he returned a verdict of accidental death. However, as usual, the inquest involved wild speculation. Dewi concluded that Mrs Robinson drowned after falling into the sea trying to rescue her pet dog. No evidence was mentioned at all that pointed to this, there wasn’t even a reference to a mildly damp dog being discovered, yet alone a dog in the sea anywhere near Mrs Robinson. However Dewi did admit that he didn’t have much evidence to suggest such a conclusion. He commented ‘my guess – you can’t put it any stronger – based on weak evidence…’ Judging from the BBC report Dewi didn’t have any evidence let alone weak evidence. But then Dewi very obviously resorts to guesswork at inquests. However, even Dewi’s guesswork at this inquest did not surpass his guesswork at the inquest of Merfyn Hughes, a retired social worker, who’s body was found in someone else’s garden concealed from view 30 feet below an embankment. Mr Hughes’s body had no injuries. Dewi concluded that Mr Hughes had fallen down the embankment into the hidden spot in the garden and decided to take a nap, subsequently dying of hypothermia. For full details of this mind-blowing inquest into Mr Hughes death – which a lot of people felt was so suspicious that foul play could have been involved – please see my post ‘A Particularly Worrying Death’.

The second relevant news item today is yet another huge spread in the Daily Post online concerning an ‘investigation’ into the problem of the use of synthetic cannabinoids in Wrexham, again centring on people – especially homeless people – using Black Mamba and Spice. I’m a little cynical about this particular moral panic, because much of the evidence seems a little shaky. Once more we are told about ‘users’ standing like ‘statues’ or walking around like ‘zombies’, there are tales of cigarette butts being found which ‘look as though’ they might have Mamba in them and of ‘daylight drug deals’ (the reality being that the Daily Post reporter saw money changing hands and ‘what looked like a wrap’ being passed between the two people involved. It could have been anything and money changes hands constantly in Wrexham town centre – it’s called shopping). Wrexham Council have commented that they are working with agencies to combat the problem. Well that will be CAIS, as featured many times before on this blog, who recently received £4.9 million for providing ‘substance misuse services’ in north Wales (please see post ‘So This Is What £4.9 Million Buys’). If Wrexham really is drowning in a sea of Black Mamba and Spice may I suggest that somebody stops giving CAIS millions of pounds of taxpayers money.

The Commissioning of ‘Parabl’ – and Yet More History

MPrevious posts on this blog have covered ‘Parabl’, a ‘talking therapies partnership’ operating across north Wales which is a joint enterprise between MIND and CAIS (please see ‘Newly Discovered – ‘Parabl’). Parabl’s remit is to provide ‘talking treatments’, including Mindfulness and Computerised CBT to people with ‘mild to moderate’ mental health difficulties. I have had a number of e mails from readers all telling me the same thing – that after being refused treatment from the mental health services in north Wales because they were not considered to be ill enough to warrant support, they then tried Parabl, only to be refused a service on the grounds that their difficulties were ‘too severe’. So there seems to be a lot of people falling between two stools who cannot get any care. One regular correspondent who is well networked is questioning to whom Parabl are actually offering a service – he has asked around and has not found anyone whom they have agreed to treat, everyone was subjected to the same tick-box ‘telephone assessment’ and was then turned down.

After reading my post ‘The Story Behind £1.5 Million’ which details the fix that was the ‘commissioning process’ by which the contract for ‘service user/carer involvement’ in north Wales was handed to CAIS/Hafal, a reader e mailed and asked me if I could find out anything about how ‘Parabl’ was offered a contract and what the sum of money involved was. I have today received a response to my FoI requests to the Betsi regarding these matters. I haven’t received enough information to build up a full picture – as ever crucial questions go unanswered – but I do have information which may be of interest to readers.

Parabl was commissioned directly by the ‘mental health service of the Health Board’ (ie. the Betsi)- so unlike the contract given to CAIS/Hafal for ‘service user/carer involvement’, Wrexham County Borough Council was not allowed to unilaterally make the decision as to who was commissioned. Only two organisations bid for the contract, that was Parabl and Cruse. Parabl are being paid £75,000 per quarter for their ‘service’ and during the first year of the contract they were paid an extra £15,000 pa on top of this. The FoI response describes the ‘services’ being provided as ‘including but not restricted to’: ‘comprehensive assessment and agreed planned interventions with an individual; self-help – bibliotherapy, mental health promotion and education; individual guided self-help programmes based on CBT principles; group based therapy- structured and evidence based, such as CBT; individual therapy – counselling, solution focussed therapy and support’.

I have also received a copy of the ‘Invitation To Tender’ document. It is mentioned that the ‘service must be of consistently high quality’ (well there’s a clause that will have been breached), driven by the Mental Health Measure (Wales) 2010, community based and provides an opportunity for integration between the statutory sector and the Third Sector. So the gravy train cometh – the Third Sector is dominated by people with close connections to the statutory sector or even people who have previously spent most of their careers in the statutory sector (eg. the Board of CAIS, which is nearly entirely comprised of people who worked in or still do work in the statutory sector, some of whom left under a very big cloud indeed; or people such as Robin Holden, a former Denbigh nurse who went on to work as a Hergest Unit manager who has now reconstructed himself as a ‘MIND executive’). So the ‘integration’ between the two sectors should be very easily achieved – there is substantial traffic between the two sectors and everyone will have a mate or a relative employed in the other sector. The ITT states that the service will ‘refer or signpost to specialist services’, such as CAIS for substance abuse services or Stepping Stones or RASA for survivors of sexual abuse. So whoever landed the contract was obliged to refer to dear old CAIS then. As for Stepping Stones and RASA – Stepping Stones is a Third Sector organisation based in Wrexham and RASA is based in Merseyside.

I know nothing about RASA, but Stepping Stones caught my attention some time ago, because they were offering a service to women and men who had experienced sexual abuse. I noticed this because it was a relatively recent development. For many, many years there was no service in north Wales for men who had been sexually abused. I knew this because I knew men with sexual problems who were being frozen out of all services when there was a suspicion that they had been sexually abused. There were services for women who had been sexually abused and there were actually two very good people who formerly worked at the Hergest Unit who were very skilled in helping women who had experienced sexual violence (not that either of them ever received any recognition – one was the nurse who ran the day centre that was closed down against patient’s wishes and the other was the Hergest whistleblower who was loathed and bullied by nearly everyone because he was making Public Interest Disclosures regarding the abuse and neglect of patients). Other people too offered ‘counselling’ for women and girls who had been or were thought to have been sexually abused, but these other people were doing something rather odd. I heard many reports that they were telling female patients that they ‘knew’ that they’d been sexually abused even when the patients insisted that they hadn’t. The more robust patients had stand-up rows with ‘therapists’ about this – but the more vulnerable patients ended up becoming very confused indeed and began to think that perhaps they had been sexually abused but had ‘repressed’ it. Indeed that’s what they were told had happened by the people who told them that they’d been sexually abused. Furthermore, I knew of situations where mental health professionals and ‘therapists’ were delighted when ‘disclosures’ were made and provided much encouragement and positive feedback. So in some instances there was a great deal of pressure on patients to ‘reveal’ sexual abuse and even to name ‘abusers’. I had been aware for many years that this was going on and my friend Brown and I had always suspected that it was a smokescreen for the sexual exploitation/abuse that was happening to patients at the hands of people employed by the health and social care services themselves. I have documentary evidence that patients who complained of inappropriate conduct on the part of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones were told that this was ‘transference’ and ‘projection’ as a result of sexual abuse in their earlier lives. This was also documented upon patient’s records without their knowledge. I had long since been aware of such fuckwittery happening, but about 15 years ago I came across a case that brought home the possible terrible consequences.

I got to know a family from Gwynedd with four teenaged daughters. The mum was effectively a single parent because her husband was in prison for sexually abusing the daughters. It was well-known locally that the mum had been horrified at events and ‘had no idea’ what her husband had been up to. All the daughters had been ‘counselled’ which is where they had ‘disclosed’ what their dad had done – the family had of course had extensive contact with Gwynedd Social Services and the mental health services. I then got to know the eldest daughter, who had suffered with bulimia and alcohol problems. I got to know her quite well and I never saw anything that suggested that she was deluded or a fantasist. She was bright, had trained as a teacher, but never spoke about her father at all and I never mentioned him to her. However I knew from a friend of her mother’s that the mental health services considered this young woman to be a very big problem indeed. Not because like so many of the rest of us that she had complained about them – she hadn’t. This young woman was a problem because she ‘wouldn’t admit’ that her father had abused her. It appeared that huge pressure had been put on her to make a witness statement against him but she consistently refused, maintaining that he had done no such thing. And this was taken as evidence of how unhinged she was. There was no other aspect of her life that indicated this – until after her dad went to prison, she began to develop eating problems and then hit the bottle. But when I knew her she was functioning very much better than an awful lot of other people that I knew who were suffering greatly – yet the mental health services weren’t coming near them, even when they were begging for a service. I do know however that she was under very great strain because of her job. She was working in a ‘nursing home’ for women who had been sexually abused and were serious self-harmers, a monstrous place where multiple abuses were occurring, an establishment that was part of a chain called Prestwood (please see previous post ‘A Convenient Arrangement With The Private Sector’ to read about the extensive horrors at Prestwood Homes).

This young woman was left to deal with very distressed other young women alone – she witnessed two of them try to kill themselves. But the managers of this home overseeing this regime of extreme abuse discovered that this young woman had bulimia and alcohol problems – they were threatening her that if she ever left their employment they would reveal her problems to future employers. I knew that she was very frightened of them because she told me. She was also being swindled by them – her mum couldn’t understand why she was working such long hours for such a pittance and was keen that she should leave this job. She did eventually escape their clutches but guess what – she never worked again. Her health then did start declining and her alcohol problem became very serious. She was a patient of Dr Richard Tranter’s at the Hergest Unit – she died of organ failure few years ago after being admitted to Ysbyty Gwynedd in a very bad way. I knew her closest friend who told me that Tranter had deemed her ‘untreatable’ – just like so many other patients who have died whilst in the care of the Hergest Unit! However what the ‘services’ don’t know is that this friend had received a letter from this young woman a few days before she died – it was a suicide note. I didn’t read this note, but I do know that everyone in this young woman’s circle of friends all noticed that what was being said about her by the mental health services was not consistent with what they knew of her. And they all speculate that perhaps her dad had been fitted up. But as so often is the case with controversies in the health and welfare services in north Wales, the key witness is dead.
So I’m aware of what can happen to those women on the receiving end of ‘counselling’ for sexual abuse. But as I mentioned, until recently there was no ‘service’ for men. I noticed from Stepping Stones’s website that they were established in 1986 – so presumably they too did not offer a service to men until more recently. It wasn’t only me who noticed that there was no service in north Wales for males who had been sexually abused. It was mentioned in the Jillings Report. The Jillings Report, written in 1996, was of course the first report into the activities of the north Wales paedophile ring – which targeted boys rather than girls. The Jillings Report maintained that the most dreadful abuses – physical, sexual and emotional – had been inflicted upon children in children’s homes in Clwyd in the 70s and 80s. It maintained that senior police officers and politicians may have been involved in perpetrating this abuse and that children who had complained about it were punished for making ‘false allegations’. By the time that Jillings reported, 12 children involved had died. Jillings’s team were subjected to so much aggro during their investigation that they considered resigning – the North Wales Police refused to co-operate with them. The Jillings Report was famously not made public in 1996 on the grounds that the local authorities insurers Municipal Mutual would withdraw cover so damning was the evidence. Some five years ago I had a shock when I realised that someone whom I knew through my academic work was the wife of the lawyer who had advised the local authorities in the wake of the Jillings Report – it was this man who advised them to make no comment on the grounds that what had happened was indefensible and to never release the Report. (He was also the lawyer who colluded with Lucille Hughes, Director of Gwynedd Social Services, over a number of years in a series of attempts to imprison me.) The local authorities had approached this man for advice because he was known to be a very sharp lawyer and they really needed someone to extract them from this barrel of shit. I was interested to learn though that this vile bunch showed no loyalty at all to the man who kept a lot of people out of prison – and who probably put a few innocent people in there as well if they dared challenge Lucille et al. Some years after saving their skins, he developed cancer. Ysbyty Gwynedd failed to diagnose it until he was very ill indeed. Following that he developed serious mental health problems – and was subjected to the same shite, negligent care that the rest of us were. I even recognised the name of one of the lacklustre CPNs that his wife mentioned – it was one of the women who had previously worked for the Arfon Community Mental Health Team and who had lied in Court in an attempt to have me imprisoned. She later went to work for the mental health team on Anglesey which was how she ended up being allocated to the team ‘caring’ for this man. This lawyer never worked again. I never told his wife that when I was young I too had been touched by the bunch of bastards that her husband had defended – and had nearly gone to prison because of the lies that her husband was coaching them all to tell about me. I really liked her and it was clear that she and her husband had been hung out to dry, although I’m not sure that she realised this. She was just baffled as to why the mental health services weren’t doing more for her husband. They were probably leaving him to top himself as was their ‘care plan’ for all the other people who had knowledge of what had been going on…

There was an attempt to destroy all copies of the Jillings Report but readers might remember that some copies later resurfaced in the wake of a BBC FoI request and were finally made public, although the Report was extensively redacted. When I read the Report, not only did I notice that the Report noted that there were no services in north Wales for males who had been sexually abused, but there were references to someone working in the Third Sector who seemed to have had a role in ensuring this. Their name was of course redacted, but from contextual evidence in the Report I have a suspicion that this was the person who was for many years the manager of the MIND centre in Abbey Road, Bangor and who then became a mental health social worker. Throughout her long and glorious career this person was told by ‘clients’ many times of the flagrant abuse that they were experiencing at the hands of the mental health services. She never said a word. I believe that she has now retired – congratulations Alison Greenaway, you’ve lived a lot longer than so many of the people that you were so committed to ‘helping’, as you traipsed among Bethesda’s hippy community impressing your husband’s friends with your good works… As for Stepping Stones, who for so long didn’t provide a service for males who had been sexually abused – well Stepping Stones is based in Wrexham. The same Wrexham that housed the Bryn Estyn children’s home where so many boys were sexually abused  in the 70s and 80s – a number of staff at Bryn Estyn were eventually imprisoned for abusing children in their care.

Back to the ITT for the ‘Parabl’ contract. It states that any ‘queries about procurement’ should be sent to the contact for ‘NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership – Procurement Services’, although my copy has redacted the name and e mail address of this person. However it would appear that their PA/administrator is a Kate Johnston. As part of the commissioning process the organisations bidding were interviewed – I get the impression from the ITT that this was a crucial deciding factor as to who the lucky winners would be. The copy of the ITT that I have been sent redacts the names of the people on the interviewing panel (probably because the Betsi are aware that this blog has previously named the people who rigged a previous ‘procurement process’ in favour of CAIS – please see post ‘The Story Behind £1.5 Million’). However it does give their roles, so perhaps readers might be able to identify the culprits. They are: ‘Category Buyer, Procurement Services, NWSSP’, ‘Partnership Development and Improvement Manager, BCUHB’, ‘Health and Social Care Facilitator, Flintshire Local Voluntary Council, ‘Programme Manager, Primary Care And Psychological Therapies’ (I presume that this is one Sean Clarke, the man who has previously been listed as holding this title and who seems to be a key agent in deciding who lands these lucrative Third Sector contracts. Sean also appears in the literature produced by the very same people that he commissioned, providing ‘positive feedback’ about the service), ‘Manager of Primary Care Counselling Services BCUHB’. And there were of course ‘service users’ on the interviewing panel, just to tick that box. Which is of course the easiest category of all to rig – those vulnerable, powerless service users who are completely dependent upon the ‘service’ that they are alleged to be holding to account. And as in north Wales MIND and CAIS are two producers of tame service users en masse – other service users are elbowed out by MIND and CAIS and of course MIND and CAIS are now the two organisations providing ‘training’ for service users, so it’s pretty much a closed shop. So the service users on this interviewing panel will almost certainly have been supplied by MIND and/or CAIS.

There is also information in the ITT that states that the successful bidder must provide, as part of the ‘service’, mindfulness sessions as approved by NICE. Which Third Sector organisation on a UK wide basis has been instrumental in promoting and indeed lobbying for mindfulness to be approved by NICE? None other than MIND.

So poor old CRUSE didn’t stand a chance when they bid for this contract did they.

I note that amongst the spiel directed at the bidders, the ITT warns them that all the information that they submit as part of their bid is subject to FoI disclosures, even if it is classified as ‘commercially sensitive’. I have blogged about Parabl in response to readers who have e mailed me with concerns asking me to dig further. Those readers are much more au fait with Parabl than I am, because they have actually tried getting a service out of them. So if anyone has any further questions regarding Parabl’s activity that they think could be answered by further FoI requests, please do e mail me with your ideas and I’ll follow it up.

One further observation from the reader who first alerted me to the scam that is Parabl. I have recently had an e mail exchange with him regarding the many aspects of the con that is ‘service user/peer support’. We both concluded that it is a fantastic source of free labour provided by homeless people/people with mental health problems/drug problems for the likes of CAIS. They are all marginalised people trying to regain society’s acceptance, a class of people that sociologist Loic Wacquant described as ‘dishonoured’ – so they’re not going to be blowing the whistle on any wrongdoing at CAIS. My correspondent has drawn my attention to an article from the Daily Mail that must have been manna from heaven to a Daily Mail journalist – it has a headline referring to a ‘Millionaire Gypsy’ who kept ‘Homeless Drug Addicts As Slaves’. He has pointed out that this describes CAIS’s activities. It certainly does. Furthermore, Dr Dafydd Alun Jones, Chair of CAIS, is undoubtedly a millionaire by now but he did come from very humble origins in Bethesda. In a flattering profile of Jones’s early years in a local newspaper some time ago, it was stated that ‘the family originally came from Bethesda but travelled around a lot’. Yes Brown observed, probably every time that the bailiffs moved them on. Surely it is now time for Dafydd and his old sweetheart Lucille Hughes to tie the knot and celebrate with the ultimate Big Fat Gypsy Wedding. Lucille could even buy herself a decent wig for the occasion, along with a totally over the top dress studded with crystals and a 100 foot train. Dafydd was known for his parties at his place in Talwrn, parties to which some very dodgy people were invited, because no professional people wanted to be seen within a mile of him, even those who worked so hard to conceal his criminal activities. Dafydd could hold the biggest piss-up followed by a brawl in a tent that Talwrn has ever witnessed.

 

More Concerns Expressed Regarding Mental Health Services

Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg (for readers in England, this is the Welsh Language Society) have expressed concern regarding the limited availability of Welsh language mental health services http://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/serious-shortage-mental-health-services-12361094

The mental health services in north Wales are so bad that it’s frequently impossible to get any service at all – and the paucity of care is such that there is very little awareness anyway regarding someone’s socio-cultural and linguistic background.

Cymdeithas concerns have reminded me of an anecdote that I heard some years ago. An elderly man whose first language was Welsh and who felt uncomfortable speaking English was being assessed under the Mental Health Act in north west Wales by a psychiatrist whose first language was not Welsh or English. The social worker attending was fluent in Welsh and was concerned that the psychiatrist was not linguistically competent to assess the elderly man. She tried to raise concerns as to what was going on and telephoned someone (supposedly) in authority. She was simply told ‘there is no Welsh speaking psychiatrist on duty tonight’. The elderly man ended up being detained under the Mental Health Act.

Regarding the ability of mental health staff to speak Welsh, for decades there was a long-standing mystery in north Wales. Gwynedd Social Services had a policy that social workers had to be fluent in Welsh. Keith Fearns, the highly abusive ‘leader’ of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team (please see blog post ‘The Arfon Community Mental Health Team’) was a social worker employed by Gwynedd Social Services. Fearns did not speak Welsh and was not a Welsh learner. No-one worked out how Fearns was managing to evade the policy that Gwynedd Social Services insisted upon in all circumstances. In fact I was told by someone who worked in social work who was deeply concerned about the activities of the Arfon team that none of them could speak Welsh and that if anyone had really wanted to remove these grossly abusive people from their positions, that factor alone could have been used.

I carried out some research in 2005-07 along with a Welsh speaking colleague regarding democracy in ‘service user groups’. At that time it was very obvious that Welsh speakers were virtually unrepresented among ‘service user groups’ in north west Wales. A number of Welsh speakers told us that they had personally felt excluded from the MIND drop-in centre in Bangor (which I think had been renamed the Abbey Road Centre by then but seemed to be still dominated by the same small clique of people) and from the  local ‘service user groups’. I was also aware that two of the ‘Directors’ of the ‘Independent’ Advocacy Service in Gwynedd were actually very hostile to Welsh speakers. Considering that the Betsi’s present model of ‘service user involvement’ has involved a competitive tendering process led by Wrexham County Council that no-one knew about and which involved only four unidentified service users (please see blog post ‘A Total Lack of Transparency’), I very much doubt that much has changed regarding democratic representation in service user groups in the Betsi.