Cardinal George Pell: Vatican treasurer sexual offences trial, Cyril Smith and Knowl View predators free rein in Rochdale, ‘Satanic Christian’ couple
May 2, 2018 § Leave a comment
– Cardinal George Pell: Vatican treasurer faces historical sexual offences trial
– ‘Three Girls’, Cyril Smith and Knowl View – why did predators have free rein in Rochdale?
– ‘Satanic Christian’ couple in child porn case caught by FBI Cincinnati task force
Cardinal George Pell: Vatican treasurer faces historical sexual offences trial
Australia’s most senior Catholic has said he will plead not guilty to all charges
Tue 1 May 2018
Cardinal George Pell, Australia’s most senior Catholic and the controller of the Vatican’s finances in Rome, has pleaded not guilty after he was ordered to stand trial over historical sexual offence allegations.
Pell has always denied the allegations against him, but it was the first time he had been required to enter a formal plea.
Many of the most serious allegations were dismissed in the Melbourne magistrates’ court on Tuesday, with witnesses described as unreliable and lacking credibility. But a number of charges were ordered to go to trial. Further details of the nature of the charges are unable to be reported for legal reasons….
‘Three Girls’, Cyril Smith and Knowl View – why did predators have free rein in Rochdale?
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse made a damning assessment of institutional attitudes in the town, going back decades.
By Damon Wilkinson 15 APR 2018
….But over the last forty years, the close-knit communities that make up Rochdale have been rocked by a string of child sexual abuse scandals.
‘Three Girls’. Satanic Abuse. Cyril Smith and Knowl View.
At times it seems abusers have had free rein in the town. Why? Has there been a series of conspiracies and cover-ups as some believe?
Or merely a perfect storm of disregard – the toxic mix of paedophile networks, self-serving politicians, small-town poverty and government neglect?
On Thursday a long-awaited report lifted the lid on the widespread sexual abuse carried out by former Rochdale MP Cyril Smith and several other predatory paedophiles.
….Monsters loomed in places where children were supposed to be protected – at Cambridge House, a boys’ hostel, and Knowl View, a residential school for boys with learning and behavioural difficulties, from the 1960s to the 1990s.
Public places became playgrounds for perverts too; the bus station, the Smith Street public toilet – in view of council’s offices – where lads of primary school age were prostituted for just a few pence.
It’s a chilling precedent of the the town’s most recent abuse scandal – in which young girls were molested by much older men under the nose of the authorities.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse did not look at that most recent child grooming scandal. But it made a damning assessment of institutional attitudes in the town, going back decades.
Based on the harrowing testimony of dozens of victims of abuse at Knowl View, Cambridge House and Smith Street toilets, plus evidence from social workers, teachers, politicians and council officers, the IICSA’s findings lay bare how young, often vulnerable victims were let down time and time again by the very people who were supposed to be protecting them.
But how was this allowed to happen?
Certainly Cyril Smith has cast a shadow over the town. 29 stone at his heaviest, he was long celebrated as a political giant.
How distressing must that reputation have been to his victims, who knew what he was really capable of?
Stories have abounded in Rochdale that Smith had local police ‘in his pocket’ – using political influence to quash investigations that he was a serial molester of boys.
In 1970 a Lancashire constabulary probe into Smith was dropped on the advice of the Director of Public Prosecutions, who felt the allegations concerned – which dated from Cambridge House in the mid 60s – were ‘stale’, lacked corroboration, and the ‘character of the complainants would likely render their evidence suspect’.
….But what is abundantly clear from the report is that allegations of sexual assault were simply not taken seriously by those in authority, a culture that permeated the council from top to bottom for years, and allowed Smith and others to repeatedly get away with their sickening crimes.
From social workers and education workers to former council leaders Richard Farnell – suspended by the Labour Party after the report concluded he lied about what he knew about Knowl View – and Paul Rowen, who has been accused of having ‘turned a blind eye’ to the problems at Knowl View, there was a ‘careless and wholly inadequate response’ to the issue.
In regards to Knowl View the inquiry found there was a ‘total lack of urgency on the part of the authorities to address the problem and treat the matters involved for what they were – serious sexual assaults’….
‘Satanic Christian’ couple in child porn case caught by FBI Cincinnati task force
Kevin Grasha April 20, 2018
A special agent and police officer working for an FBI Cincinnati task force helped uncover “systematic” sexual abuse of children by a woman and man who claimed they were a “Satanic Christian” couple, court documents show.
The couple sexually abused six children who were in their care and produced multiple images of child pornography, officials said. Federal prosecutors in a news release called the couple’s behavior “depraved” and said it “represented ongoing, systematic and horrific abuse of multiple children.”
The victims ranged in age from 6 months to 14 years.
Sherri Smith, of Osceola, Indiana, and her boyfriend, Joseph Williams, of Watervliet, Michigan, were sentenced this week in federal court in Michigan. Smith was sentenced to 60 years in prison; Williams was sentenced to 80 years.
According to court documents, Williams contacted members of the FBI Cincinnati task force through the website, Motherless.com. Communications then continued through messaging apps.
In a February 2017 message, according to court documents, the person “stated that ‘they’ were a ‘Satanic Christian’ couple and were into ‘older/younger (very younger) and incest.’”
Williams’ home was described as a “child pornography house of horrors.” Among items seized was a reproduction of a young girl’s buttocks and genitals, court documents say.
Both Smith, 48, and Williams, 53, pleaded guilty to federal child pornography charges.
Cyril Smith ‘protected by a high-level Westminster paedophile ring’ claims MP, Police told of ‘at least’ 11 more suspects, New Pa. laws redefine who must report child abuse
April 17, 2014 Comments Off on Cyril Smith ‘protected by a high-level Westminster paedophile ring’ claims MP, Police told of ‘at least’ 11 more suspects, New Pa. laws redefine who must report child abuse
– Cyril Smith ‘protected by a high-level Westminster paedophile ring’ claims MP
– Children as young as EIGHT were abused at school linked to paedophile MP Cyril Smith
– Cyril Smith sex abuse scandal: Police told of ‘at least’ 11 more suspects
– New Pa. laws redefine who must report child abuse
Cyril Smith ‘protected by a high-level Westminster paedophile ring’ claims MP
Apr 16, 2014 By James Lyons
Labour’s Simon Danzcuk – who exposed Smith – claimed the Liberal grandee was part of an “informal” network of perverts who stalked the corridors of power
Child abuser Cyril Smith was protected by a high-level Westminster paedophile ring, the MP who exposed him claimed. Labour’s Simon Danzcuk said the Liberal grandee was part of an “informal” network of perverts who stalked the corridors of power. He said: “Had he been prosecuted, then the house of cards would have fallen, in terms of that paedophile network, and it could have brought the government down.
“Once he became a member of Parliament in 1972, I think he joined an, obviously informal, network of paedophiles that existed in and around Westminster.” The claims came as fresh doubt was cast in Nick Clegg’s instance that no Liberal Democrats knew about Smith’s activities. Police have said Smith attended Elm Guest House in South West London, where underage rent boys and youngsters from a children’s home were reportedly brought to have sex with adult men.
Other high profile figures are said to have been visitors including senior MPs, a high-ranking policeman and an MI5 officer….
Children as young as EIGHT were abused at school linked to paedophile MP Cyril Smith
Apr 14, 2014 By Paul Byrne, Luke Traynor
Martin Digan, ex-head of care at the residential school at the centre of the revelations, said it became ‘a sweet shop for abusers’
Children as young as eight were abused at a school linked to paedophile Lib Dem MP Cyril Smith, the Mirror can reveal today. Whistleblower Martin Digan, ex-head of care at the residential school at the centre of the revelations, told the Mirror it was a “sweet shop” for abusers. Secret files have been found that detail appalling depravity at the Knowl View unit for disturbed youngsters in Rochdale, where Smith was a governor. Police have identified 11 other suspects.
Mr Digan said: “It is about time his sordid past was fully exposed, together with the shocking events that happened at Knowl View. I’m glad it is out but I’m sickened it has taken so long.” The shocking details have come to light as the Liberal Democrats are threatened with legal action by Smith’s victims. They will seek damages if it can be proved senior party officials knew of his crimes – but failed to stop him….
Cyril Smith sex abuse scandal: Police told of ‘at least’ 11 more suspects
Apr 12, 2014 By Neal Keeling
Police investigating the sexual abuse of children by former MP Cyril Smith have been told of ‘at least’ 11 other suspects, the Manchester Evening News has revealed.
Seven alleged victims have given officers the names of men they say were behind the abuse linked to Knowl View School in Rochdale where Smith was chairman of the governors in its final year. Next month a report is due to be published by barrister, Andrew Warnock QC, who was instructed by Rochdale council in January to ‘independently review all council decision-making’ related to the former special school in Bamford from the late 80s to mid 90s.
At least a dozen boys are said to have been victims of sexual abuse during that time and police are now sifting through 33 boxes of previously undiscovered archive material relating to the school. Some of the suspects named by the victims may have died, but all had links to Knowl View. Det Insp Caroline Ward said: “Following the publicity surrounding Sir Cyril Smith last year, seven people came forward to report physical and sexual abuse which occurred at Knowl View from the 1970s onwards….
Knowl View was shut in 1994 after a dossier detailing abuse was handed to police. Whistleblower, and former head of care at the school, Martin Digan, said he feared Smith was among those abusing boys and he verbally reported his suspicions to police and the council. Smith was investigated twice in the 70s and 90s but never prosecuted and it wasn’t until 2012 that police admitted he had abused children….
New Pa. laws redefine who must report child abuse
By MOLLIE DURKIN 04/16/2014
Pennsylvania has clarified its definition of who is required to report suspected child abuse.
Gov. Tom Corbett Tuesday signed into law four pieces of legislation that, in short, expand the definition of mandatory reporters, streamline the reporting process, increase penalties for mandatory reporters who fail to do so and provide protections from employment discrimination for filing a report in good faith. The legislation happened to be signed in April, which is Child Abuse Prevention Month. The new law: Effective Dec. 31, the new definition of a mandatory reporter includes anyone who comes in contact, or interacts, with a child or is directly responsible for the care, supervision, guidance or training of a child.
November 2, 2012 Comments Off on Jimmy Savile, Gary Glitter, Rochdale child sex ring
– Jimmy Savile, Gary Glitter and the politics of paedophile rings
– Rochdale police and council ‘repeatedly warned’ about sex abuse risk in town
– Rochdale child sex ring: council head to be questioned by MPs
Leader to be asked why social workers ‘missed opportunities’, as lawyer for victims considers legal action against authority
– Rochdale abuse scandal: Victims likely to sue
Jimmy Savile, Gary Glitter and the politics of paedophile rings 2 November 2012 Michael Salter
In Britain, the sexual abuse allegations against television personality Jimmy Savile have now implicated glam rocker Gary Glitter and comedian Freddie Starr. Police have intimated that other high-profile arrests are forthcoming.
These developments have finally given credence to the accounts of many victims – who over the years have maintained that Savile was part of an organised group of men who shared his sexual interest in minors….
Victims can find it very difficult finding someone to take them seriously. An independent 2010 report into child protection in Britain, which was not made public but was quoted in the UK print media, found child victims of sexually abusive groups were often ignored by the authorities. One victim complained:
The authorities did not understand what was happening to us, either because they did not believe us or because they could not comprehend that something as serious as this was possible.
Until his death in 2011, Savile was a much-loved British media personality. Now, he is the subject of allegations of sexual abuse from at least 300 victims dating back decades. Questions have been raised about how much friends and colleagues knew about, and potentially colluded in, these crimes….
Accounts of organised abuse have circled around Savile for some years. They have not been acted upon until now. Investigations into Savile’s involvement in the abuse of children at the Haut de la Garenne children’s home in Jersey, dismissed in 2008 for “lack of evidence”, have now been reopened. New evidence has not emerged. Simply put, there is new pressure on the relevant authorities to be seen to be taking these allegations seriously….
Rochdale police and council ‘repeatedly warned’ about sex abuse risk in town
NHS team made 83 referrals to borough council from 2004-10 in town harbouring gang of nine finally jailed over child sex ring Rachel Williams The Guardian, Wednesday 26 September 2012
Social workers and police in a town where nine men were found guilty of running a child sexual exploitation ring had been warned dozens of times that local girls were at risk of abuse in the years before charges were brought in that case, the Guardian can reveal.
Figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show that an NHS team providing sexual health services to vulnerable young people made 83 referrals to Rochdale borough council about girls they thought were either being sexually exploited, or were at risk of exploitation, between 2004 and the end of 2010.
Staff on the crisis intervention team (CIT) also made 44 referrals to Greater Manchester police in the same period.
The revelations come as Rochdale’s safeguarding children board (SCB) publishes a review concluding there were “many missed opportunities” over the past five years to safeguard children and young people affected by sexual exploitation. A working group set up by the SCB in 2007 identified in its first year 50 young people affected by, or at risk of, exploitation, the report reveals.
At a Liverpool crown court trial this year, nine men were found to have “shared” five girls in Rochdale, plying them with fast food, drink and drugs so they could “pass them around” and use them for sex.
The victims, were raped, physically assaulted and forced to have sex with several men in a day, several times a week….
Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk said: “The Guardian’s investigation shows without any doubt that police and social services ignored an endemic problem of abuse.
“Time and again, the local authority were alerted to the fact these girls were being abused and they failed to do anything. We now need to know what action is being taken against these people that turned a blind eye to abuse and ignored numerous cries for help from young, vulnerable girls.”
The father of the victim referred to in the review said he believed that social workers were incompetent: “Case files show that social workers in Rochdale believed girls who were being systematically abused were ‘making their own choices’. By their neglect, they were complicit in prolonging the abuse. If they had being doing their job, they could have stopped this abuse years ago.”….
Rochdale child sex ring: council head to be questioned by MPs
Leader to be asked why social workers ‘missed opportunities’, as lawyer for victims considers legal action against authority
Lizzy Davies The Guardian, Thursday 27 September 2012
The head of Rochdale council will be questioned by MPs over why his social workers “missed opportunities” to stop the sexual exploitation of young girls, it has emerged, as a lawyer for some of the victims said it was “very likely” they would take legal action against the local authority….
It revealed that, in 2007, a working group set up by the RBSCB had identified 50 young people – most aged between 10 and 17 – whom it believed to be affected by or at risk of exploitation.
Figures obtained separately by the Guardian showed social workers and police had made dozens of referrals concerning girls considered either to be victims or potential victims…..
Rochdale abuse scandal: Victims likely to sue
Paul Keaveny Thursday 27 September 2012
Victims of a child sex ring may take legal action against the authorities for failing to protect them after a damning report laid bare the extent of their failings.
Social workers, police and prosecutors “missed opportunities” to stop a child exploitation ring abusing young girls, a report into the scandal revealed today.
“Deficiencies” in the way children’s social care responded to the victims’ needs in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, were caused by “patchy” training of frontline staff, the Rochdale Borough Safeguarding Children Board (RBSCB) said in its 29-page report into child sexual exploitation (CSE)….
The picture which emerges from the report is one of vulnerable young girls, some as young as 10, who were being targeted for sexual abuse, being written off by those in authority who believed the girls were “making their own choices” and “engaging in consensual sexual activity”.
In reality, girls were being raped and often violently beaten.
The judge who sentenced the nine men said they treated their victims “as though they were worthless and beyond any respect”.
Richard Scorer, a solicitor for some of the abused girls, said it was “very likely” they would be taking legal action against the authorities for failing to protect them….
The gang of nine men received jail sentences of between four and 19 years in May.
The offences happened in and around Rochdale in 2008 and 2009.
The five girls – aged between 13 and 15 – were given alcohol, food and money in return for sex but there were times when violence was used.
Police said the victims were from “chaotic”, “council estate” backgrounds and as many as 50 girls could have been victims of the gang.
A chance to stop the gang was missed in 2008 and both the police and the CPS were forced to apologise for their failings….
January 14, 2011 Comments Off on Babies often tortured by fundamentalist polygamists: Witness
By Daphne Bramham, Postmedia News January 13, 2011 Water torture of babies is one way some members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints instil fear of authority, a former member testified Wednesday.
“It’s quite common,” Carolyn Blackmore Jessop said. She was a witness for the B.C. government in the constitutional reference case to determine whether Canada’s polygamy law is valid….
Jessop talked about the practice during her testimony in B.C. Supreme Court.
Her assertions about water torture were not challenged by FLDS lawyer Robert Wickett during cross-examination.
Outside the courthouse, Jessop said water torture is common enough that there doesn’t seem to be any shame attached to the practice.
In her cousin’s baby book, there’s a handwritten note by her mother noting that when her daughter was 18 months old, she was becoming quite a handful and, as a result, was being held under the tap on a regular basis….
Nine arrested in child sex abuse investigation – Rochdale arrests made after a police inquiry into the sexual exploitation of teenage girls – Helen Carter guardian.co.uk 11 January 2011
Police investigating a group of men who allegedly groomed young girls for sex in Rochdale have made a series of arrests.
Greater Manchester police said nine men had been arrested on suspicion of causing or inciting child prostitution, sexual activity with a child and paying for the sexual services of a child. The men, aged between 20 and 40 from Rochdale and Heywood, were arrested on 21 December.