Following years of speculation, the Cabinet office has finally confirmed that high-ranking figures within Westminster from the 1970s and 1980s, have been named in a series of government files relating to child abuse allegations.
After months of requests from Sky News it has finally been revealed that Sir Leon Brittan, Former Home Secretary, diplomat Sir Peter Hayman, minister Sir William van Straubenzee and Margaret Thatcher aide Sir Peter Morrison were all named in the confidential child abuse files….and all four are now, conveniently, deceased.
The contents of the files have not been released, but one is believed to relate to Kincora children’s home in Belfast.
Amnesty International’s Northern Ireland Programme Director Patrick Corrigan, reacted:
“If Theresa May knew these papers existed, how could she exclude Kincora from the Goddard Inquiry?
The latest revelations will only fuel public disquiet that Kincora has been excluded from the one inquiry which has a chance of getting at the truth. Kincora should be investigated alongside claims of establishment involvement in child abuse rings in other parts of the UK.
Nothing less than a full public inquiry – with all the powers of compulsion which that brings – can finally reveal what happened at Kincora. It is not too late for the government to reconsider its position.”
Sky News reports:
In January Sky News forced the Government to release the details of a file prepared for Mrs Thatcher’s office on the ‘unnatural sexual’ behaviours of one of the men Sir Peter Hayman.
The new batch of file names reveal there were further Government papers relating to the former MI6 man and career diplomat.
The revelation comes after the Wanless and Whittam review was prevented from finding the relevant Government papers during searches of Westminster departments last year.
Permanent Secretary Richard Heaton wrote to Whittam and Wanless in May saying: “I deeply regret that the Cabinet Office failed to identify the papers in question when you first asked for them.”
NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless told Sky News: “We were concerned and disappointed that the Cabinet Office was aware of this separate store of papers and yet informed us that they weren’t.”
The papers also reveal that the Kincora children’s home in Northern Ireland was at the heart of further correspondence involving the security services.
Allegations of abuse and trafficking of children to England have centred on the home in Belfast.
The papers reveal former intelligence officer Colin Wallace raised concerns about abuse at Kincora – the papers had been stored by the Cabinet Office.
The contents of the papers have still not been revealed but have been shared with the police and will be passed to the Child Abuse Inquiry led by Justice Lowell Goddard.