Top private schools Scottish child abuse inquiry, Archbishop admits Church ‘failed terribly’ over abuse revelations

February 2, 2017 Comments Off on Top private schools Scottish child abuse inquiry, Archbishop admits Church ‘failed terribly’ over abuse revelations


Top private schools included as part of Scottish child abuse inquiry


Inquiry chair Lady Smith has said more than 100 locations so far have been identified for investigation, including current and former boarding schools

Tuesday 31 January 2017
More than 60 residential care establishments including several top private schools are being investigated by Scotland’s national child abuse inquiry.

They are among more than 100 locations where the abuse of children is said to have taken place, chair Anne Smith confirmed.

Six boarding schools or former boarding schools, including Fettes college and Gordonstoun, are being investigated. Several faith-based organisations, other major care providers and local authority institutions are also being looked at by inquiry staff.

Lady Smith, a senior judge who was appointed to the role in July, named a list of places being investigated as she provided an update on the inquiry’s progress at a preliminary hearing.

The inquiry is examining historical allegations of the abuse of children in care and has been taking statements from witnesses since last spring….
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jan/31/top-private-schools-included-as-part-of-scottish-child-abuse-inquiry


Archbishop admits Church ‘failed terribly’ over abuse revelations
Cathy Newman Presenter 1 Feb 2017 UK

The Church of England has tonight apologised unreservedly after a Channel 4 News investigation revealed that a prominent Anglican evangelical and former colleague of the Archbishop of Canterbury is alleged to have severely assaulted boys and young men for decades.

The alleged abuse was carried out by prominent QC and part time judge called John Smyth, who was chairman of the Iwerne Trust, a charity closely linked to the church which ran Christian holiday camps for public school students.

The Church admitted that it had “failed terribly”, after this programme learned that the Trust had discovered the alleged abuse in 1982, but failed to report it to the police.

Winchester College, where some of the young men met Smyth, was made aware of the alleged abuse, but also failed to report it to the police at the time. There is no suggestion that any abuse took place at the College or with the knowledge of its staff.

The Archbishop’s apology comes after a six month investigation by Channel 4 News, in which we tracked down and spoke with many of Smyth’s alleged victims. One man told us that he and other boys were beaten so violently by Smyth that they had to wear nappies to staunch the bleeding….

It described what it called the “beatings” of 22 young men.

“The scale and severity of the practice was horrific…8 received about 14 thousand strokes: 2 of them having some 8000 strokes over three years,” the document, written in 1982, noted.

Despite the findings of the report, the Iwerne Trust did not inform the police. Instead, a senior figure in the Iwerne Trust wrote to John Smyth, telling him to leave the country. He went on to live in Zimbabwe, and then South Africa….
https://www.channel4.com/news/archbishop-admits-church-failed-terribly-over-abuse-revelations

Former students call for inquiry into assault claims, Zambia police arrest four suspects for ritual murders that sparked riots

May 11, 2016 Comments Off on Former students call for inquiry into assault claims, Zambia police arrest four suspects for ritual murders that sparked riots

Former students call for inquiry into assault claims
By Jonathan Saltzman and Jenn Abelson Globe Staff  May 10, 2016

Two former students of the Fessenden School in Newton on Monday demanded a federal inquiry into alleged sexual assaults by staffers there in the 1960s and 1970s, saying they believe the suspected abuse extends far beyond the 17 individuals the school says have come forward.

Adrian Hooper and John Sweeney, two former Fessenden students who allege they were sexually assaulted, spoke at an emotional news conference at the Boston office of their lawyer, Mitchell Garabedian….

The news conference came a day after the Globe Spotlight team reported that at least 67 private schools in New England have since 1991 faced allegations that at least 200 students were abused or harassed by staffers. Separately, Phillips Academy in Andover confirmed Monday a new claim of misconduct toward a student by a former English teacher….

Only recently, Hooper added, he realized that one of two teachers who had him and several other boys masturbate each other in what they were told was a “Mayan ritual” at Fessenden was Clarridge. He recognized Clarridge in a photograph from an online Harvard publication provided by a Globe reporter, he said, and nearly threw up.

The Fessenden School, whose famous alumni include Senator Edward M. Kennedy and Howard Hughes, has not disputed any specific allegations of abuse documented in the Globe article on Sunday. The school says that at least 12 former students have come forward since Fessenden sent a letter to the school community in 2011 reporting claims of abuse there since the 1960s. All told, the school says, 17 victims have alleged abuse by at least five former staffers.

The school reiterated an apology in a statement Monday….

The two former students called on the school to provide all records about at least four cases that Fessenden says it settled with alleged victims since the 1990s.

The school issued a statement Monday saying: “We are deeply saddened, and we apologize on behalf of the school to those who were harmed. In 2011, The Fessenden School acknowledged and apologized for abuses that took place decades ago and offered counseling to anyone who was harmed. We have acted with compassion and concern for the victims.’’….
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2016/05/09/former-fessenden-school-students-call-for-federal-inquiry-into-alleged-assaults-staffers-decades-ago/xiNzJcq7OhkmlYgIHLfG7K/story.html


Zambia police arrest four suspects for ritual murders that sparked riots

Reuters World May 10, 2016

LUSAKA (Reuters) – Zambia police said on Tuesday four suspects have been arrested in connection with a string of grisly ritual murders in the southern African nation’s capital that triggered anti-foreign riots targeting mostly Rwandan migrants in April.

The arrested suspects are two army soldiers, a civilian employee of the Zambian Air Force and a traditional doctor, police said. They were to appear in court Tuesday afternoon charged with seven counts of murder.

“All the murders which the accused have been charged with were committed in a similar manner by crushing the left side of the head, removing body parts and later dumping the deceased near their homes,” police said in a statement.

Police said in April that the victims had ears, hearts and genitals removed, raising suspicion of ritual killings.

Human body parts are sometimes used in traditional remedies and concoctions in southern Africa. The practice is linked to witchcraft beliefs…. http://www.investing.com/news/world-news/zambia-police-arrest-four-suspects-for-ritual-murders-that-sparked-riots-401105

Accused Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour sexually abused by uncle, Sexual Abuse Allegations for Private Boys’ Schools in Britain, Resources to end internet child abuse

March 19, 2014 Comments Off on Accused Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour sexually abused by uncle, Sexual Abuse Allegations for Private Boys’ Schools in Britain, Resources to end internet child abuse

– Accused Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour had traumatic start in life
– Childhood sexual abuse may have contributed to Miranda Barbour’s issues later in life
– Wave of Sexual Abuse Allegations for Private Boys’ Schools in Britain
– Resources to end internet child abuse ‘may be woefully insufficient’

Accused Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour had traumatic start in life Jill Burke March 16, 2014

The sensational headlines surrounding accused Craigslist killer Miranda Barbour portray a deeply troubled young woman. Her claims to be a practicing Satanist and that she killed not just once, but upwards of 22 times, gained immediate attention as people in four states where the supposed victims resided — including Alaska — began to question whether the newlywed teen mom’s story could be true.

Is Barbour seeking attention? Aiming for an insanity defense? Or is she earnestly using her confession and incarceration to protect the public from her self-declared murderous proclivities? Only time will tell.

Yet for all of Barbour’s grandiose claims, there is one aspect of her life story that is not in dispute — the sexual abuse she suffered as a toddler by an uncle….

Miranda often spent weekends at her aunt and uncle’s house. “Uncle Rick” encouraged the sleepovers. Only later would young Miranda’s frequent complaints that her anus hurt, and once that her “pee pee” hurt, come to be understood for what they were — the aftermath and evidence of multiple attacks in which she had been subject to anal and vaginal sexual penetration and fellatio. She had, in the words of the prosecutor, been “sodomized in every way imaginable.” It was one of the most physically extreme abuse cases the trial judge had ever seen, and it happened to a girl whom the judge described as “hardly more than” a baby….

In Richard Fernandez’s personal belongings, investigators found pornography and a sexual abuse “how-to” manual titled “Fun With My Sister’s Kids.” The book “encouraged uncles, fathers and grandfathers to engage in unclassified felony sex acts with their young nieces, daughters and granddaughters,” according to a prosecutor’s description of it contained in court records.

This book described and recommended the very abuse of which Fernandez was accused of and for which he later accepted punishment. He pleaded no contest, a plea that allowed him to avoid trial and do time but without admitting he’d actually done anything wrong….

Fernandez seemed destined for a revolving door experience between incarceration and free society. According to court records, he wasn’t adequately participating in a sex offender treatment program, had visited a “porn store,” viewed pornography on the internet and failed to find full-time employment. More than once, he’d found ways to get online. He’d used computers at his church and in his room at his halfway house to seek out prohibited material….

By May 2011 he was back in again with more time to serve, and two months later he faced a new case altogether, this time for possession of child pornography. Investigators had found hundreds of images of child pornography on his computer, after probation and parole officers seized and turned Fernandez’s computers over to Alaska State Troopers.

Fernandez is now serving out a 40 year prison term in the pornography case — 20 years to serve with 20 suspended.  He’s scheduled for release in 2035. He must also remain registered as a sex offender for the rest of his life….
http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/20140316/accused-craigslist-killer-miranda-barbour-had-traumatic-start-life

Childhood sexual abuse may have contributed to Miranda Barbour’s issues later in life Jill Burke March 17, 2014

Much about the life and recent arrest of former Alaskan Miranda Barbour is discomforting. The troubled young woman, a teen runaway who turned to Satanism, heroin, and has since given birth to a child, stands accused of murder for the stabbing death of a man police say she lured through an ad on the online  bulletin board Craigslist. But one unnerving detail of her bizarre and traumatic story may resonate more profoundly with Alaskans than others: the childhood sexual abuse she suffered as a toddler….

Barbour was preyed upon by a man her family should have been able to trust: her uncle.

That man, Richard Fernandez, has served time in jail, where he remains after unsuccessful releases on parole and getting slapped with a new criminal charge for possession of pornography.

How often child sexual abuse happens in Alaska is difficult to assess. The best estimates are flawed because not all agencies that respond to abuse share uniform data, and it’s widely held that many victims never report the abuse. Those that do come forward sometimes wait years before doing so.

Alaska’s rate of child sexual abuse is six times the national average, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence….

In 2013, a trio of university researchers from Canada published a summary of decades of study on the topic of child sexual abuse and its prevalence, outcomes and prevention strategies. They found that child sexual assault “… alters a child’s cognitive and emotional orientation to the world and causes trauma by distorting their self-concept and affective capacities.” Traumatic sexualization, betrayal, powerlessness, and stigmatization that occur during the abuse may have lasting impacts. Post traumatic stress, dissociation symptoms, mood disorders, depression, behavior problems, inappropriate sexualized behaviors, substance abuse, self harm and suicide are all possible effects on these young victims of abuse, researchers found.

Additionally, when very young children experience sexual abuse, it can be difficult for them to process the trauma. While turning into a killer isn’t a foretold consequence, aspects of Barbour’s personality and life story appear to parallel the known, lasting impacts on sexually abused children….
http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/20140317/childhood-sexual-abuse-may-have-contributed-miranda-barbours-issues-later-life

Wave of Sexual Abuse Allegations for Private Boys’ Schools in Britain
By STEPHEN CASTLE MARCH 16, 2014

LONDON — Prompted by publicity surrounding recent child abuse scandals involving well-known figures, dozens of British men are breaking decades of silence about molestation they say they suffered as boys at expensive private schools, forcing the schools to confront allegations that in the past might have been hushed up, ignored or treated derisively.

In one instance involving Aldwickbury School, which educates boys ages 4 to 13, a former student, who requested anonymity because of the intimate details of the case, said he suffered profound feelings of confusion and guilt after being abused by a teacher in the 1970s. He said the teacher molested him regularly during English lessons over a period of two years.

With the teacher dead, and in the absence of an apology from the school, the former student brought a civil case against Aldwickbury, which was settled with a payment.

Getting the school to face up to what happened more than three decades ago was, the former student said, like “knocking my head against a brick wall.”

Vernon Hales, the current headmaster at Aldwickbury — in Harpenden, about 30 miles north of London — said in a statement that the school had reported the allegations, which do not relate to any current staff members or pupils, to the relevant authorities and been told that no further action would be taken….

Britain’s fee-paying schools have a track record of brutality. These days, most have shed the strictness and austerity of previous eras, but many upper-class Britons remember childhoods of cold showers, inedible food and relentless corporal punishment.

The very nature of boarding schools — closed environments in which teachers can wield enormous power — can make them attractive to child abusers. But in previous decades, parents were often reluctant to challenge teachers’ authority, said Alan Collins, principal lawyer at Slater & Gordon, which represented the former Aldwickbury student. He has 30 to 40 more cases pending against schools across the country.

“You had deference and the attitude that ‘this sort of thing happens,’ ” Mr. Collins said, adding that when teachers were discovered abusing pupils, they tended to be moved on quietly to avoid public embarrassment and damage to the school’s reputation.

“Sexual abuse is a taboo subject,” Mr. Collins said. “People do not want to talk about it for the obvious reason that it’s really gruesome, and in this country there has been a tendency or a temptation to sweep it under the carpet.”….

Mr. Collins added that the victims had suffered significantly. “Child abuse has the potential to affect a person’s functioning, the ability to form and sustain relationships; it can affect the ability to hold down a job,” he said, noting that some of his clients in their 40s had held 30 positions because “they just can’t settle in a job.”….
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/17/world/europe/wave-of-sexual-abuse-allegations-for-private-boys-schools-in-britain.html

Resources to end internet child abuse ‘may be woefully insufficient’
Internet Watch Foundation recruit seven extra staff, but MPs warn that more may be required to improve online safety
Press Association  theguardian.com, Tuesday 18 March 2014

Efforts by the internet industry to eradicate images of child sex abuse may prove “woefully insufficient”, MPs have warned as they called for action to improve online safety. Members of the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) – including Google, which contributed £1m – have funded the recruitment of seven extra full-time staff to track down illegal images.

The move last year to more than double the existing staff came amid severe criticism of internet firms for inaction following a number of child murder cases with porn connections. David Cameron has led demands that they develop better protections to prevent such abuse and to prevent children accessing legal adult material….
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/mar/19/child-sex-abuse-online-insufficient-efforts

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