With all the hullabaloo over the Tory leadership contest, government rebellions, Brexit and the election of that fatuous little lass to the Lib Dem leadership, one particular national disgrace has almost slipped from public view.
Yesterday, a fantasist called Carl Beech – a.k.a. Nick – was found guilty on numerous accounts of perverting the course of justice. He will be sentenced in due course but if there is any real justice in this country, should spend the rest of his life in prison for the lives he has ruined. However I am not holding my breath.
In 2014 Beech approached the Metropolitan Police with lurid tales of paedophile rings in the upper echelons of British society. He claimed to have been abused, to have witnessed others being abused and even to have seen three boys being murdered. During hours of questioning, he broke down on numerous occasions and one would have thought that experienced coppers would have seen through his story. After all, anybody who has been in The Job for any length of time will have come across many fantasists seeking a bit of public attention and Beech could not produce any evidence – not a shred of it.
Yet despite the lack of evidence, the police swallowed his tale hook, line and sinker. They launched Operation Midland to investigate Beech’s claims and sixteen months later, the operation was wound up without having made a single arrest and having cost we poor taxpayers in excess of a cool two million pounds.
It’s still hard to believe Beech was taken so seriously for so long and by experienced coppers.
The irony is that the Beech was himself a danger to children. At the time he was ‘helping’ detectives, he was viewing child pornography, making him a paedophile and a dangerous fantasist.
Money was one motivating factor in all this. Beech was awarded £22,000 in criminal injuries compensation by falsely claiming he had suffered serious injuries as a result of having been sexually and physically abused as a child.
In his devastating critique of Operation Midland, published in November 2016, former High Court judge Richard Henriques identified forty-three basic failings in the police investigation. But the most fundamental of these was ‘believing Nick at the outset.’
Yet not a single officer has been disciplined by the Met. In fact, three officers involved in Operation Midland were allowed to retire before the official enquiry had ended.
How on earth are we meant to trust the ruddy police any more?
Ironically bur sadly, we would never have heard of Carl Beech had it not been for Labour’s deputy leader Tom Watson, who a number of newspapers at the time christened the Nonce Finder General. Although he has slimmed down and smartened himself up as Deputy Leader of a major party, in those days he was a corpulent, vociferous parliamentarian intent on discrediting his political opponents.
Seven years ago he embarked on a vicious vendetta, smearing Conservative politicians and other Establishment figures as paedophiles and serial rapists, without any evidence whatsoever. And he was allowed to get away with it!
Watson was Beech’s main supporter, using this evil man’s lies as a weapon in his personal mission to defame leading Tories by accusing them of some of the most disgusting crimes imaginable.
His disgraceful behaviour has ruined the lives of distinguished public servants and their families. Watson’s victims included not just former Tory treasurer Lord McAlpine but ex-Home Secretary Leon Brittan and war hero Lord Bramall, a former head of the Armed Forces and a far better man than Beech or Watson could ever be. In 2012, two years before he discovered Carl Beech, Watson used Parliamentary privilege to claim there was a ‘powerful paedophile network linked to Parliament and No 10’. He then made allegations of sex abuse at a North Wales children’s home, which sparked a media frenzy and emboldened Sally Bercow, the Squeaker’s publicity-loving wife, to name Lord McAlpine on Twitter as one of the guilty men.
McAlpine was completely innocent and successfully brought a case for defamation against Bercow and broadcasters stupid enough to repeat and the false allegations. He was not a well man when the accusations surfaced and died just over a year later. Did the assault on his reputation hasten his death? We will never know.
The McAlpine scandal however didn’t deter Watson from his crusade against prominent Tories. He wrote to Prime Minister David Cameron, suggesting that organised abuse of children may have taken place in Downing Street during the Thatcher years.
He also charged that anyone counselling caution about these claims was a ‘friend of the paedophile.’ Well that included me I’m afraid. The entire story stank to high heaven from the start. Edward Heath was named as one of the so-called abusers when he was prime minister and that scenario was manifestly impossible. Prime Ministers have close bodyguards and it would not have been feasible for Heath to get away with any such criminal shenanigans.
When Carl Beech first made his allegations, Watson worked closely with a so-called news agency, one of whose reporters showed Beech pictures of prominent figures to help him identify his ‘abusers.’ That news agency has since been discredited and dissolved – I wonder why. Watson then badgered the police and the Crown Prosecution Service to investigate the false allegations made by Beech. Leon Brittan and others had their homes raided and were interviewed under caution, although they were never charged.
According to the Labour-supporting Sunday Mirror, Watson said he had been in contact with someone who alleged a former ‘top minister in Margaret Thatcher’s government’ had ‘regularly abused boys.’ After Brittan died, without his name having been cleared (even though Scotland Yard had concluded months earlier that he was innocent) Watson continued to repeat allegations that the former Home Secretary was guilty of multiple child rapes.
He also claimed to have spoken to a man and a woman who said they had been raped by Brittan. It turned out that the woman in question was a Labour activist with mental health problems!
At one stage the Met appeared to be taking their orders directly from Watson. Under then Home Secretary Theresa Maybe’s favourite cop, Bernard Hyphen-Howe, the police set up the ruinously expensive Operation Midland, which mounted dawn raids, dragged the reputations of innocent men through the mud and left their families distraught.
Midland was eventually wound up without a single arrest being made. Yet the relevant cops still declared that Beech’s ludicrous allegations were ‘credible and true.’
All this from experienced coppers? No wonder violent criminals prosper in this country!
And why hasn’t Watson been prosecuted for his own fabrications?
It doesn’t give one a great deal of faith in British justice I’m afraid.