Yesterday’s post ‘This Is What Happened To Nicola, Niclas, Merfyn, Joan and Kathryn’ mentioned that Tower Hamlets Council thought it worth their while to send a solicitor and counsel to the Waterhouse Inquiry to represent them, which suggested that they believed that they might have something to worry about. I also speculated on possible links between Tower Hamlets and north Wales but I didn’t know of any for certain. My co-researcher has come up trumps again and has sent me a few useful links and pieces of information. There is a direct connection between Tower Hamlets Council and north Wales and that is a man called Roger Saint. Roger Saint features in the Waterhouse Report, indeed there is a chapter devoted entirely to his activities, but of course it had to be one of the chapters that I had not read. I hadn’t read it because it was a chapter entirely concerned with one foster carer, that is Roger Saint, rather than a chapter with information about the children’s homes or Gwynedd and Clwyd Councils. However it is a chapter full of treasures for those of us who are interested in networks, connections and fuckwittery so great that it surpasses all expectations.
Roger Saint was a man originally from Somerset but who had passed through many other places. He was educated in south Wales and gained employment in residential care in 1968 in a boys’ remand home in Winchester. After working there for a year he moved onto a children’s home in Wednesfield, then one in Wiltshire, then one near Salisbury. Whilst he was employed at Salisbury, in June 1972 he pleaded guilty at Neath Magistrates Court to indecently assaulting a 12 year old boy. Saint did not know the boy, but he saw the boy who was walking a dog as Saint drove past. He stopped his car, got out, grabbed the boy and indecently assaulted him. This conviction was reported to the Home Office Police Department by letter by the Chief Constable in June 1972 and the letter noted Saint’s appointment. Saint had resigned from his job before he was convicted and then secured another job in Manchester at a children’s home run by the Boys and Girls Welfare Society. His next job was at a children’s home in Barry, south Wales, but they found out about his conviction and he was asked to leave.
In Dec 1976 Saint purchased a house in Holywell, Clwyd, with his wife Carol whom he’d married in March 1976. Carol had a number of children from her previous marriage and in 1997 Saint pleaded guilty to a specimen charge of indecently assaulting one of those children. In 1975 Saint had acquired a job at the West Kirby Residential School – he stayed there for ten years. In 1997 he pleaded guilty at Mold Crown Court to offences of indecent assault on two pupils from West Kirby Residential School between 1975 and 1979. Three other counts against two other pupils were not proceeded with.
In 1977 Carol Saint responded to an advert from Clwyd Social Services for foster parents. A social worker from the Delyn Area Office dealt with her inquiry. In April 1978 the Saints approached Clwyd Social Services again, stating their interest in offering a placement to a baby or very young child. The same social worker processed their application and carried out home visits. Roger Saint did not disclose his 1972 conviction but the Saints did authorise Clwyd to check for convictions with the North Wales Police. Saint’s conviction did not of course show up on the records held by the North Wales Police because it had been incurred in south Wales and although New Scotland Yard had a record of it, the North Wales Police didn’t. The social worker provided a positive report about the Saints to the Local Authority’s Adoption Panel and in Dec 1978 the Saints were approved as adoptive parents. Documents submitted to the Waterhouse Inquiry showed that Saint had not mentioned his employment at Barry being terminated and he had falsified other details relating to his employment record as well. It was also revealed by Waterhouse that two references supplied by Saint during the process of his vetting by Clwyd in 1978 hadn’t been received yet this was never followed up, although West Glamorgan Social Services informed Clwyd that they had not been able to make contact with the names that Saint had supplied.
Between Dec 1978 and Feb 1988, eleven children were placed with the Saints, although only two of these were from Clwyd Social Services. The first placement was arranged two days after Clwyd approved the Saints. It was a result of a private arrangement between the Saints and the child’s mother, although a Clwyd social worker did carry out welfare checks and home visits between Dec 1978 and June 1979. The adoption went ahead in July 1979. Two more boys were placed with the Saints by Clwyd in April 1979, but things went wrong very quickly and although the social worker involved – who was from the Wrexham Area Office, although the boy already placed with the Saints was the responsibility of the Delyn Area Office – took no action. In Oct 1979 the boys ran away, were picked up by the police and taken to Holywell Police Station where the Social Services were called. The boys made allegations that they had been physically abused by both Carol and Roger Saint. Nevertheless they were returned to the Saints’ care. They ran away again in Jan 1980 and were found in St Asaph. The social worker had her reservations about returning them to the Saints and both boys were openly expressing a dislike of Roger Saint. Yet at this time the Saints were pressing for yet another child to be placed with them. By March 1980 it was acknowledged by everyone involved that one of the two boys was in a very bad emotional state. Roger Saint continued to request that a third child be placed with them, although three social workers did not think that this would be a good idea. The boy in a bad way was removed from the Saints’ care in March 1980. He gave evidence at Waterhouse that Roger Saint had physically and sexually abused him, as did the other boy, who himself was removed from the Saints’ care in July 1981. The ‘End Of Foster Placement Report’ compiled in Oct 1981 by the social worker in respect of this child was critical of the Saints but did not mention the physical abuse from Roger Saint, although she had been told about it previously by the boy. This boy was so frightened of the Saints that he had asked to be removed from their care without them being warned first, presumably because he feared retribution. The social services did indeed comply with his request.
From 1981 the Saints sought fostering and adoption opportunities outside of Clwyd. Saint maintained that they were encouraged in this by the Clwyd Adoptions Officer, who introduced him to a publication from BAAF (British Association for Adoption and Fostering), which led to him contacting the London Borough of Ealing. Saint also came across PPIAS, a national self-help group of mainly adoptive parents and through PPIAS he approached other authorities, including Tower Hamlets. He was making these approaches at the time that the second boy was being removed from the Saints care. The Saints were considered by Ealing but failed to bond with the two teenaged boys involved. Ealing were warned by the social worker of the second boy who had been removed from the Saints that Roger Saint subjected children to enormous pressure, but she didn’t tell Ealing about the physical danger from Saint. In July 1981 the London Borough of Greenwich considered a placement with the Saints and held two conversations with the aforementioned social worker who did mention the physical abuse. In August 1981 Greenwich turned down the Saints, as did Brent and Nottinghamshire in 1982.
In March 1982 Cheshire Social Services placed a one year old boy with the Saints, whom they later adopted via Clwyd’s Adoption Agency which was part of the Local Authority. Waterhouse notes that this boy stayed with the Saints and made no complaints about them. However as he had cerebral palsy and ‘special educational needs’, he may have been in no position to make complaints about them – Waterhouse does not detail the severity of his disabilities.
In Nov 1982 Tower Hamlets Social Services told Clwyd that the Saints were being presented to their adoption panel in Dec 1982 as prospective parents for two brothers in their early teens. Tower Hamlets asked Clwyd to carry out a police check on the Saints, which Clwyd didn’t do. Tower Hamlets failed to follow up the lack of a police check. From 1982, the Saints’ main involvement with new placements was with Tower Hamlets. At the end of 1984 they moved from Holywell to a village between Mold and Ruthin and then in Sept 1990 they moved near to Bala in Gwynedd. In Oct 1987 Roger was appointed a member of the Statutory Adoption and Foster Care Panel for Clwyd South, after Clwyd’s Adoption Officer had nominated him in Sept 1987. By then Saint was also the local representative of PPIAS. Within four months of approving the nomination from the Adoption Officer, Gledwyn Jones, Clwyd’s Director of Social Services, had found out about Saint’s 1972 conviction and in Feb 1988 wrote to Roger Davies, the County Secretary and Solicitor for advice. Davies did not reply, despite being sent a reminder 18 months later. Saint remained on the panel until Clwyd County Council was abolished in March 1996. In August 1992 Roger Davies became Chief Exec of Clwyd County Council.
Between Feb 1983 and Sept 1985, Tower Hamlets placed seven children with the Saints, five of whom they adopted. After their initial period of being boarded out with the Saints, all five boys complained of being sexually abused by Roger Saint. Four of the boys were adopted in Jan 1989, which was after Saint’s 1972 conviction had been revealed. Waterhouse makes reference to a letter that was written by the Metropolitan Police to Tower Hamlets in March 1988 confirming the conviction. In March 1997 Saint pleaded guilty at Mold Crown Court to indecently assaulting all five of the boys. Waterhouse notes that Saint’s 1972 conviction did not seem to have been revealed to Mold County Court in Jan 1989 when adoption orders were issued for the four boys.
At one point there was a change of social workers from Tower Hamlets who were dealing with the Saints. By the time that this happened, the Saints house was piled high with ‘looked after’ children but the new social worker recorded that the Saints were ‘parental’ and in no way was their place a mini children’s home. She also referred to the very sound relationship between Tower Hamlets and the Saints. Events in 1985 provide a clue as to why the Saints filled their home with kids whom they didn’t seem to like and yet requested more when some were removed from them as a result of their violence. Roger Saint had given up his job – on the advice of Tower Hamlets no less – and in 1985 an arrangement was made to pay the Saints double the going rate for looking after the children. In addition, Tower Hamlets enlisted the help of a charity to help finance the Saints’ smallholding. The Saints received a further rise in pay in May 1986. The Waterhouse Report states that one of the Tower Hamlets social workers had become ‘an advocate for the Saints’ even after she had discovered that Roger Saint had not disclosed his conviction. At much the same time that the Tower Hamlets social worker formed her view of the Saints, a social worker from Southall who had been involved with them was highly critical and so concerned that she rang Tower Hamlets in July 1987.
In the late summer of 1985 a girl of twelve from Tower Hamlets was boarded out with the Saints and remained with them until Sept 1989. The girl was driven to a local school by taxi and Roger Saint had told the taxi driver that she was ‘schizophrenic’. At a later date the girl told this taxi driver that Roger Saint was repeatedly asking her to remove he knickers so he could look at her. The taxi driver contacted Clwyd’s Head of School Transport who said that she’d notify Clwyd’s Social Services Dept. Within an hour, Saint had phoned the taxi driver threatening retribution through his solicitors, alleging that it was the girl’s condition that caused her to say such things. The taxi driver confirmed that he was never approached by Clwyd Education Dept or Social Services. Waterhouse notes in his Report that the girl later left the Saint’s care after she had run down the drive at their home saying that she’d had sex with a man three times. The police interviewed her with Roger sitting in on the interview. This girl was not called to give evidence to Waterhouse and old Ronnie concluded that ‘it seems quite possible that they [the incidents of sexual interference] were imagined by her’ and ‘were attributable as Saint said to her condition’. One can only wonder why at the time north Wales was populated by so many people who were suffering from a type of schizophrenia that caused them to allege that they were being abused whilst they were in care or in the clutches of the local psychiatrists! It can’t be attributed to the genetic inferiority of the locals and their putative inbreeding because a lot of these schizophrenics weren’t from north Wales. The symptoms did however only manifest themselves when they encountered the children’s services or mental health services…
In Feb 1988 the Saints applied to adopt two children from Devon and Devon Social Services discovered Saint’s conviction (in 1981, the national database of computerised police records had been established) and the Director of Social Services of Devon informed Clwyd. Clwyd asked the North Wales Police to check Saint’s record and they confirmed his conviction. North Yorkshire Council placed a boy with the Saints in Sept 1991 and he was adopted by them in 1995, becoming their eighth adopted child. North Yorkshire placed a further two children with them, in Dec 1993 and April 1995. Two other children from North Tyneside Metropolitan Borough Council and Greenwich were placed with the Saints in May 1994 and Aug 1995 and remained with the Saints until Roger Saint’s arrest before his 1997 trial. Ronnie Waterhouse didn’t seek evidence from North Tyneside or Greenwich because there had been no complaints. Nothing to worry about there then.
At Saint’s trial at Chester Crown Court in 1997 – where he was found guilty and sentenced to six and a half years in prison – North Tyneside Council stated that ‘the  conviction was not so big and that he had successfully cared for so many children in the past and no person had made a complaint against him’. As mitigation, before sentence was passed on Saint, Ronnie Waterhouse noted that ‘Counsel…emphasised the positive aspects of Saint’s record as a carer of children, including the continuing allegiance of many of the adopted children’. The allegiance of children who no doubt knew that they would be violently assaulted or called schizophrenic and mysteriously disappear if they did complain…
So those were the practices which Tower Hamlets needed to defend when it dispatched Bryan McGuire the lawyer who was ‘instrumental in many of the changes and developments in public law in recent years, particularly in the field of…children’s services’ and who ‘sought to improve Local Authority services for the vulnerable’ to the Waterhouse Inquiry.
Much as Ronnie Waterhouse, Tower Hamlets/North Tyneside/ Greenwich/ Cheshire/North Yorkshire Councils took a rather relaxed view of placing children in the care of a man who had a track record of violently assaulting them, molesting them and then demanding enhanced payment from Local Authorities in return for providing this service, the rest of the world didn’t and there was quite a hoo hah in the press following Roger Saint’s conviction and imprisonment. There was such a fuss that Blair’s newly elected Gov’t made a point of Taking Action. The man who Spoke Out was Paul Boateng, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health. Boateng had responsibility for social services and mental health and said regarding Saint: ‘…a truly horrific case. This new Gov’t will not tolerate a loophole in the law that allows Local Authorities to place children for foster care or adoption with convicted child abusers which happened in this case’.
‘A truly horrific case’ was Boateng’s opinion in 1997. But Boateng knew that something was very wrong in north Wales many, many years before he said that. Because before he was elected as MP for Brent South in 1987, Paul Boateng was a civil rights solicitor for Birnberg and Co and became a partner in the company. So he will definitely have known about a case that made legal history which was handled by Birnberg and Co whilst Boateng worked there – the case of Miss Mary Wynch. But let’s give Boateng the benefit of the doubt and accept that although he will have known that a lady from north Wales was illegally arrested, imprisoned and detained in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh for a year by Dr Dafydd Alun Jones after she complained about being swindled out of her inheritance by a ring of crooked solicitors, he may not have known that the North Wales Hospital was also being used to illegally bang up people who complained that they had been molested whilst in care in north Wales. (Although one wonders why Paul, a civil rights lawyer and Champ of the Common Man, committed to equality and diversity, never breathed a word about Mary’s case once he became an MP, never commented when the stuffing over of Mary received much media coverage and was the subject of an Early Day Motion in Parliament in the early 1990s and still remained silent when Mary was sent off into the sunset by Michael Howard’s Home Office, ruined, in 1995.) It is highly probable however that Paul knew that all was not well in terms of children in care in north Wales – and he most definitely knew that all was not well with children in care in London, some of whom were being sent to north Wales to live with people like Roger Saint.
In March 2016 the BBC revealed that a London police officer, Detective Inspector Clive Driscoll, in 1998 had been removed from an investigation that he was working on regarding the sexual abuse of children on an enormous scale whilst in the care of Lambeth Council. Driscoll was particularly interested in the activities of a paedophile called Michael John Carroll – usually known as John Carroll. Carroll had been the manager of Angell Road Children’s Home in Lambeth and was eventually jailed for ten years for sexual offences against children. Driscoll had identified five people whom he wanted to talk about regarding Carroll and one was Paul Boateng, who was then the Minister for Police in the Home Office. Driscoll made the mistake of attending a meeting with a group of social workers from Lambeth and named Boateng as someone whom he wanted to talk to. An internal Scotland Yard document that ‘Newsnight’ managed to obtain accused Driscoll of ‘serious indiscretions’ and referred to the ‘political sensitivities’ that resulted in his removal from Lambeth. Two people who gave information to Driscoll spoke to ‘Newsnight’ and suggested that Carroll and Boateng knew each other. Social worker Teresa Johnson who worked with Carroll at Angell Road said that she’d seen Boateng at the home on up to six occasions during the mid 80s. Another witness claimed to have seen Boateng during caravan holidays for children run by ACYC (Association of Combined Youth Clubs), of which Carroll was a member. The witness claimed that Carroll had boasted of his friendship with Boateng, believing that Boateng could ‘open doors’ for him. Boateng himself told the BBC that he had no recollection of going to Angell Road or meeting Carroll or visiting the ACYC during caravan holidays. Boateng stated that ‘as a campaigning youth justice lawyer in the 70s and 80s, I acted for many young people in care, met many of their social workers and visited many youth facilities…’ Ah, so he’ll have met the social workers who placed those children in north Wales and other settings where they were abused. Paul Boateng knew one social worker from Lambeth very well indeed – she was a lady called Janet and he married her in 1980. Janet appeared in the Telegraph in 2009 when it was claimed that the Foreign Office were investigating claims that she had bullied black members of domestic staff at the High Commissioner’s residence in South Africa – Boateng was appointed High Commissioner to South Africa in 2005 after he stood down as an MP.
All this surfaced in the media in 2016 because Judge Lowell Goddard, who had been appointed to Chair the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse, had stated that she was particularly interested in getting to the bottom of what had happened in Lambeth and wanted to examine ‘allegations that there was inappropriate interference in law enforcement investigations into the sexual abuse of children in the care of the Council’. Since then of course Lowell Goddard has resigned from her role as Chair of that Inquiry, stating that the Home Office were trying to force their own team of officials on her, which would not make it an independent inquiry. A group of former residents of children’s homes in Lambeth, the Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, walked out of the Inquiry for the same reason.
John Carroll is central to the child abuse investigation in Lambeth. At one point he said that he wanted to turn the Angell Road home into a centre to provide therapy for victims of child abuse – the police even sought advice from him when they investigated abuse in another home. In 1998 Carroll was arrested and one year later was convicted of 35 offences, including buggering young boys. There were 40 charges left on file. The offences were committed in Merseyside and London. Carroll was sentenced to ten years in prison and served five. But Carroll had been first convicted of indecent assault in 1966, against a 12 year old girl in his care at St Edmonds Orphanage, Wirral. He took up his post at Angell Road in 1978. In 1986 Carroll and his wife applied to Croydon Council in order to foster with a view to adopting two boys who’d holidayed with them in north Wales – his earlier conviction for indecent assault was uncovered, yet he was allowed to keep his job at Angell Road. In 1990 he was sacked by Lambeth Council after spending £300 on cigarettes and alcohol whilst the children ate out of date food. In Jan 1991 Carroll purchased the Hand Hotel in Chirk for £725,000 and also ran a small antique shop near Wrexham. I wonder how a jobbing paedophile working in a council run children’s home acquired that sort of money. (I also remember that one of the witnesses at the Waterhouse Tribunal told of how he was taken to Chirk and assaulted in a truly grim ordeal. Ronnie Waterhouse didn’t believe him.) Lambeth was one of the authorities sending children in their care to north Wales.
Boateng’s wife is not the only member of Boateng’s immediate family to attract bad media coverage. In 2011 his son Benjamin was found guilty of sexual assault and was sentenced to three years and ten months in prison and was put on the sex offenders register. It was then revealed that not long before he had been cautioned for sending a hostile text message to his former girlfriend and whilst the family were living in South Africa in 2006 Benjamin was cleared of accusations of the double rape of a teenager.
His knowledge of Mary Wynch’s case and his putative knowledge of John Carroll notwithstanding, I think that Boateng knew exactly how grim children’s services in London in the 80s were and I think that he has a very good reason for pretending that he knew nuzzling until Roger Saint was waved under his nose – apart from his wife being a social worker from Lambeth of course. Before he became an MP, Boateng was a Councillor with the GLC under Ken Livingstone – Boateng was Chair of the GLC’s Police Committee. Ken’s GLC did of course have it’s HQ and it’s powerbase in Lambeth. So Boateng was a Councillor in the organisation that was overseeing the bodies responsible for the kids who were being abused. Boateng was always considered to be on the hard left of the Labour Party until Kinnock became leader – and then Boateng’s political hue started changing… By the time he was a Minister in the Home Office under Home Secretary Jack Straw, Boateng took quite a firm line on law n order – after keeping quiet about all that wrongdoing in the children’s services and mental health services previously. Like many of his contemporaries in the GLC, Boateng was also involved with the NCCL, the National Council for Civil Liberties, which at one point allowed PIE to become affiliated to it – PIE being the organisation that campaigned to legalise sex between children and adults. Boateng was an executive member of the NCCL. Many other leading lights in New Labour were involved with NCCL, including Harriet Harman, Patricia Hewitt, Jack Dromey and Henry Hodge. When the NCCL’s links with PIE received media coverage some three years ago, Harriet et al became very vexed and tried to deny the connections. They couldn’t – PIE were affiliated to the NCCL and successfully managed to dupe idiots like Harriet into conflating homosexuality and paedophilia. (Some members of the Chester branch of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality, CHE, walked away because so many of the members were actually paedophiles, some of whom were employed in children’s homes in north Wales.) Recently, Shami Chakrabarti, who for years led ‘Liberty’, the name that NCCL later adopted, publicly spoke about paedophiles ‘infiltrating’ the NCCL. They didn’t infiltrate anywhere, they were quite open about their activities, it was just that Harriet et al were too thick and too busy playing identity politics to realise what PIE actually was all about. Interestingly enough, I have discovered that on one occasion when Peter Hain was still in the Young Liberals and was honorary Vice-President of CHE, he stated that ‘paedophilia is not a condition to be given a nod and a wink as a healthy fringe activity in society – it is a wholly undesirable abnormality requiring sensitive treatment’. If Peter Hain managed to work that out I wonder what was wrong with the rest of them. For more info on the NCCL and those who were involved in it, see post ‘The London Connection’.
Not that Boateng’s link with PIE hampered him – in 2000 Boateng was appointed Minister for Young People by Blair. But then Margaret Hodge was Minister for Children and she was leader of Islington Council when their children’s homes had been host to paedophile gangs.
On account of Paul being the first mixed race cabinet minister, his portrait hangs in that Hall of Lame – or indeed Shame – the collection of portraits of 21st century Parliamentarians.
Boateng was elevated to the House of Lords in 2010. When he was introduced to the House he was supported by Lord Ouseley and Lord Greville Janner. Greville is best known to me as the father of the dreadful Marion, who believes that she is a mental health campaigner and in this capacity travels around the UK visiting abusive facilities and complimenting the staff on their excellent work. Marion is sufficiently delicate as to need to be accompanied everywhere by her emotional support dog Buddy, even when she arrives in the Radio 4 studio to a toadying welcome from Claudia Hammond presenting the ‘All In The Mind’ programme. I know a lot of people who have suffered very badly at the hands of some whom Marion has supplied with free PR, but none of them have the luxury of an emotional support dog. However, most of the nation know Greville for something else – for being accused again and again of molesting children who were in care in the Leicester area. Despite the robust denials of Greville – and indeed his offspring (please see post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’), it has now been admitted by the police and the CPS that there was enough evidence for Greville to have been charged years ago and were it not for inexplicable slip ups on the part of the DPP, he would have been. Sadly the slip ups continued at the hands of Alison Saunders, the latest occupier of that office. Greville was supposed to be at least facing a trial of the facts after some Top Doctors gave evidence that he wasn’t fit to stand trial, but more mysterious delays ensured that Greville was safely dead and buried before anyone ever got near a trial of the facts.
Boateng used his maiden speech in the Lords to highlight the needs of poor and disadvantaged children in both rural and urban areas. Like the kids from inner London who were shipped out to rural north Wales to join the kids there in being abused – shipped out by colleagues of Paul’s wife…
Paul is a Methodist lay preacher and in 1988 received the Dr Martin Luther King Jr Award from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference for his contribution to the field of civil rights. His contribution continues – he is a non-executive director of Aegis Defence Services, a ‘private security, military and risk management company’. Judging from it’s website, this is one of those companies that employs ‘security men’ who shoot poor people who have the misfortune to be living in dangerous parts of the world under oppressive regimes (the sort of regimes that Boateng’s former boss Blair now sells his ‘advice’ to). The Chairman of Aegis is Nicholas Soames (or as ‘Private Eye’ always calls him, Fatty Soames), former Tory Defence Minister, friend of Prince Charles, who told the media that Diana was mentally ill and in an advanced state of paranoia when she accused Charles of having an affair with Camilla. Fatty Soames has denied threatening Diana in the months before she died, telling her that accidents happen. I do hope that Fatty doesn’t own a white Fiat Uno, although if he does I doubt that he’d actually fit inside of it.
I have good friends who are Methodists and I don’t think that they would believe that being involved with Ageis would be a particularly Christian or neighbourly thing to be doing. But as Brown observed ‘people with an interest in human rights tend to end up giving advice to the violators rather than the victims, presumably because the former have most money’. Brown then claimed that Sylvester Stallone once said ‘ain’t nothing clean’. Perhaps I should incorporate that phrase into the title of this blog.
One of Paul’s former colleagues in Blair’s Gov’t could probably have helped Judge Lowell Goddard with her inquiries into the child abuse at Lambeth Council, if only Goddard hadn’t had a bellyful of the Home Office and returned to New Zealand. That is a former star of this blog, Tessa Jowell. Tessa has paddled in some very unpleasant ponds in her time. She was a child care officer in Lambeth between 1969-71 and a psychiatric social worker at the Maudsley Hospital between 1972-74. That’s the Maudsley where Dr Dafydd Alun Jones did a stint of ‘training’ under Dr Bob Hobson, before returning to north Wales to illegally imprison people who dared try to complain about the paedophile gang. The Maudsley that was still protecting Dafydd from the consequences of his criminal activities in 1991 (please see post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…’). Tessa was a Councillor in Camden between 1971-86 and was Chair of Camden’s Social Services Committee when she was 25 years old. I don’t think that meant she was Wonder Woman, I think it meant that someone was daft enough to appoint someone as Chair of the Committee who in no way had sufficient life experience for such as position. Between 1978-86 Tessa was Chairwoman of the Social Services Committee of the Association of Metropolitan Authorities. Those will have been the Metropolitan Authorities whose Social Service Depts were placing children in establishments staffed and run by paedophiles.
Between 1974-1986 Tessa was Assistant Director of MIND. So she will have worked with the Legal Director of MIND William Bingley. Who in the summer of 1987, told me that he knew all about Dafydd Alun Jones, that Jones was a ‘very charming psychopath’, that there had been five complaints about Jones to the GMC in one month including one involving a death and that the Mental Health Act Commission knew all about Jones as well but was ‘toothless’. When I contacted Bingley again a few weeks later and told him that Jones had now tried to bribe me and when that hadn’t worked had threatened to have me arrested and imprisoned unless I dropped my complaints about him, Bingley told me that such behaviour was ‘entirely characteristic’ of Jones. Bingley clearly wasn’t going to spring into action regarding Jones though, despite all the radical talk that was emanating from MIND at the time. A few days later I received a letter from William advising me not to go to north Wales at all. After leaving his post at MIND Bingley then took a job as Chief Exec of the Mental Health Act Commission. Which did of course continue to fail to challenge the abuses of the mental health services in north Wales. Guess who else was a member of the ‘toothless’ Mental Health Act Commission which colluded with Jones et al between 1985-90? Tessa! The MHA Commission may have been shite, it may have colluded with a man who was illegally imprisoning and sexually abusing his patients and concealing a paedophile ring that was operating in the social services dept of whom his mistress was Director, but it looked great on your CV!
MIND did something else interesting whilst Tessa was Assistant Director. In 1975 MIND organised a conference which was attended by a man called Keith Hose. Keith was Chairman of PIE and was busy campaigning to legalise sex between children and adults. Between 1975-76 Hose actively sought to increase the membership of PIE as much as possible and gain mass publicity to ensure that paedophilia ‘became a public issue’. It was suggested at the MIND conference in 1975 that PIE should submit evidence to the Home Office’s Criminal Law Revision Committee on the age of consent. PIE submitted a 17 page document in which it proposed that there should be no age of consent.
Tessa was a Governor of the National Institute of Social Work between 1985-97. That’s the National Institute of Social Work who’s Director of Education was Peter Righton, a convicted paedophile and founding member of PIE who used his position to publish material advocating sexual relationships between adults and children (see post ‘The Waterhouse Tribunal – Who Was Involved And What Happened To Them Subsequently?’).
Tessa was elected as Labour MP for Dulwich and West Norwood in 1992 and of course hit the big time under Blair’s Govt, becoming a member of the cabinet – she was also a member of Gordon Brown’s cabinet. She encountered a bit of difficulty when her husband David Mills, a friend of Silvio Berlusconi, was prosecuted in the Italian Courts for accepting a bribe from Berlusconi to give false evidence in corruption trials. At that point Tessa publicly announced that they had split up, although people continued to spot them together looking like they were very good friends in places where Tessa thought that there might not be a media presence. Happily the relationship healed rapidly when David escaped prison on a technicality. You can read more about Tessa and David’s difficulties in my post ‘The London Connection’.
In 2012 Tessa became a Dame!
Tessa stood down from the Commons in 2015 and was elevated to the peerage in the 2015 dissolution honours. Luckily working in a vile institution with corrupt abusive psychiatrists or spending many years being involved with a number of other organisations that are colluding with, facilitating or concealing child sexual abuse is no barrier to a seat in the Lords. Tessa famously said on one occasion that she would jump under a bus for Tony Blair. With a CV like hers I’m surprised that no-one’s given her a push.
Just to finish, a brief word about a former colleague of both Tessa and Paul, dear old Diane Abbott. Diane has trodden a fairly similar path to that trodden by Tessa and Paul although she’s never actually aligned herself to the right of the Labour Party, simply remaining a hypocrite instead. Remember all that business of sending her son to a fee paying school after spending years maintaining that she completely opposed private education? Diane was also involved in a leadership contest at one point and stated that she was the outside candidate. She did claim that this was because she was a black, female, single parent, but a friend of mine observed cynically that it must have been because Diane had been to Cambridge whereas the others had been to Oxford. She did a stint at the NCCL between 1978-80 when PIE was affiliated to it and between 1985-86 was press officer at the GLC under Ken Livingstone. Between 1986-87 she was head of press and public relations at Lambeth Council – considering the slurry that is now pouring out in relation to that Council during that time, she either did a really brilliant job or there were so many of them involved that no-one was ever going to leak anything. Having watched and heard Diane in action many times on the TV and radio, I suspect that the latter was the case.