Former child-abuse inquiry panellist Sharon Evans has been in the news in the last few days over a radio interview in which she claimed that she was sidelined – and briefed against – in order to prevent any disruption to Theresa May’s procession to Downing Street:
Ms Evans – herself a survivor of child sexual abuse – believes the treatment of the inquiry, which was instituted by May when she was Home Secretary and which has seen several Chairs sacked with little if any progress apparent, has been tightly controlled and has seemed more suited to facilitating a cover-up than to exposing perpetrators.
Ms Evans, who runs a charity to help child-abuse survivors, has not let her departure from the inquiry panel stop her efforts to gain justice for victims. Nor has she let it curtail either her evidence-gathering or her outspokenness.
And the SKWAWKBOX has seen evidence that the Chief Constable of a UK police force has been accused of complicity in child sexual abuse.
The SKWAWKBOX has also spoken to a serving MP who was one of several witnesses present at the time that a positive identification was made by a young adult who had suffered sexual abuse since childhood. The MP told this blog,
We were all in the Strangers’ Bar [in the Houses of Parliament]. The young victim was holding a phone and looking through pictures online, looking for someone else. Suddenly s/he screamed, dropped the phone and stood there shaking and crying, saying ‘it’s him, it’s him!’ The picture on the screen was that of a serving Chief Constable. It was a very real and spontaneous reaction.
A retired Metropolitan Police officer was also among the witnesses.
After they reported the allegations, the MP and Ms Evans were both interviewed at length by the police force – not that of the accused senior officer – to which the accusation was reported, but in the roughly nine months since the report was made, neither have received any word of any action taken.
The Chief Constable is still in post.
The young victim has given around one hundred hours of evidence – not limited to the involvement of the police officer – to police investigators about the abuse suffered, which suggests that officers consider the victim’s claims to be highly credible for them to spend so much time interviewing.
And yet there has still been no apparent action taken, nor any steps or progress communicated. The CPS initially promised a fast response but has made excuses to keep delaying a few more weeks each time and has still not provided any response. In spite of a promise to do so by the end of last month, it also broke that deadline and has so far failed to provide any new timescale.
All of this suggests that Ms Evans’ claims – which are matched by those of the MP and the retired police officer – that the government’s child-abuse inquiry is intended to cover up rather than to expose need to be taken seriously and examined properly.
More to follow.
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