In August 2016, an ex Detective from the Metropolitan Police gave an interview to Brian Gerrish at UK Column about his experiences of cover ups involving paedophiles and the apathy within the police when dealing with children who are vulnerable and victims of sexual crimes. It also raises the issue of police whistleblowers and the lengths those higher up will go to, to protect fellow ranks and the damage caused. It is an excellent listen. Although it is an hour long, it is worth listening to. You can find it here:
I have transcribed it to the best of my ability as it raises some very important issues. I have tried to keep track of intermittent times for easier reference (in brackets) and I have put titles throughout so it’s easier to track different elements of the story. Please be aware that this is a very graphic account of a policeman’s experience and so I must highlight a possible trigger warning.
This runs from early 1990s to present day.
- BG = Brian Gerrish (Interviewer, UK Column)
- JW = John (Metropolitan Police Detective whistleblower)
BG: Welcome to Dispatches from the Front, and my guest today is Detective Constable John W of the Metropolitan Police, and John has been a specialist in child abuse matters and er, for our audience, I have to say he has some really incredible things to say, erm, about what he’s experienced and the procedures he has encountered in the Met Police. So John, welcome.
JW: Thank you.
BG: Er, It’s good to have you here in the UK Column studio after all this time. Erm, just start somewhere at the beginning. Just tell us a little bit about yourself and, just, when did you become a policeman and er, what sort of things have you done before you got near the child protection issues.
Background of JW
JW: Well, I joined the police at the beginning of the 1990s. Erm, my early career was just as a uniformed officer and, erm, I sort of progressed quickly in to the CID department and, er, all was going well without incident and then I moved on to a specialist operation which was tracking down transient paedophiles because the Sex Offenders Registry Act had been brought in, in 1997 and they were finding that a lot of sex offenders were going off the radar – were going missing.
So, erm, I was asked to er, front part of, er, the Met’s effort to tracking down some of the transient paedophiles. Erm, that was, you know, an honour to do it and it was a good little role but things started to, sort of erm, go awry with it because there was, erm, two sex offenders which, er, my remit was the inland waterways of London but it soon spread to a national basis and they, they, had information that, erm, sex offenders were, er, coming out of prison after conviction, caution or serving a sentence for a, what they call a schedule 1 sexual offence were required to sign, er, the sex offenders register and they would go missing but they were going to live on canal boats. Er, so they said “we’ve got two, we think there’s probably a couple more, you’re on it for the next few months, see if you can, you know, double the figures and find two more”. Well what happened was, within a few months I had found 90 and, with that, sort of exposed that there was a loop hole in the law that allowed paedophiles to live on canal boats, avoid registry and just act with impunity.
BG: So these people could have anonymous lives effectively… they’re there living in an area but because they are on a boat they don’t have to identify themselves, they’re not on the, er, erm, council register?….
JW: No, nothing…
BG: electoral register?…
JW: No, they were, you know, basically living like a free life and erm, no one knew who they were or what they were doing, but there’s quite a few factors that were involved. One is it was quite like, back then, a hippy alternative community. There was a bit of an anti police vibe to it and if you were fellow boaters, as it were, you was instantly liked and welcomed by this community but the community, actually some of them didn’t realise who they had living next door to them, and on a few ocassions, er, erm, some of these people were, were, pulling up in to a boating community and there was children there and they were offering to act as babysitters and things like that, you know, and there was some dangerous sex offenders there and, erm, the canal system back then, you know, no one ever went there, you know, it was basically out of the remit. Canals are so old that they sort of, erm, transgressed boundary borders so the Registry Act said that you had to register as a sex offender with the police district where you resided within 28 days, but some of these canals, they straddled police districts and on some occasions three or four districts would merge at one area so you could be living on a canal boat and on your 27th day you could move to the other side of the bank and you get another 28 days and, not only that, kids are attracted to canals and also, back then, there was a programme called ‘Rosie & Jim‘…. (4:35)
BG: Just remind me when you’re talking – what date?
JW: I’m talking about, sort of, late 90s now…
JW: …. late 90s now/early 2000s and there was a children’s programme ‘Rosie & Jim‘ and it was, sort of like, glamourising life on a canal and it’s not a bad life but, you know, these people were living on there and no one knew what they were or what they were doing, and what happened then was that highlighted what was going on and we started getting a lot of national interest from national crime agencies and started getting a lot of help from, what used to be, the National Crime Squad, and, er, also the Scotland Yard’s Paedophile Unit. We were working jointly because of the successes I was having (5:14).
Politicians, Leon Brittan & those in higher echelons of society
And I can always remember, er, a corridor conversation as we call it, by a very seasoned, experienced, er, Paedophile Unit detective – a real good man – and he drags me to one side and he said “You know, it’s a bizarre world because in any form of policing, when you get too good at your job you get promoted and you get looked after. In this game, when it involves those high up…” (and by that he was meaning politicians, people in the upper echelons of society), he said, “it’s a problem“. I said “what do you mean?“, so he said “I’m hearing your name mentioned in a lot of places now…” he said, “you’re getting a bit too good at what you do…” he said, “you’ve got to be very, very careful son“. So I said “Why? Why is it like that?” and he turned round to me and said, like, “That on two occasions we had Leon Brittan the MP, the Tory MP, we had him bang to rights and on both occasions the funding was pulled“. He said, “they will do the same to you“. (6:14)
Well, the odd thing happened was that I knew who Leon Brittan was but I, I, I had no interest in politics or anything like that back in them days and, erm, I can even remember asking, like, my mum and I said, “You know, Leon Brittan – is he a man of any note?” and she said “Well I know he’s an MP” and I said “oh right“, I didn’t really say much and literally two weeks after that I get called in to a senior officer’s, er, room. He said “come and see me, come and see me….“
BG: What sort of rank officer would that be?
Shutting the case down – Part one
JW: That was, we’re talking, Chief Inspector (6:46) at the time. Erm, but it was a small unit so a Chief Inspector was quite senior really, you know. Erm, and he said “Look, I’m sorry to say it but, erm, we… we’re withdrawing you from the operation“. So I said “But why?“. He said “Look, I can’t tell you but its come from high up. It’s being shut down“. (7:05) And I thought, well I was a bit confused and I said “But that’s unfair, you know, this is really going places“. He said “Look, you’re going to be commended, and you can have any job you want, don’t worry about it, we’ve been told to look after you but unfortunately it’s out of my hands, its been pulled“.
BG: So they were shutting down all of the work in relation to paedophiles living in this canal network?
JW: Yeah, and I was the only, sort of, national steer, it was me, I was the focal point and I was getting enquiries from all over the world – coming from the Falkland Islands, the Channel Islands, a lot of the islands, funnily enough – erm, but everywhere they were coming in, you know reports of sex offenders on boats. It was… it was just getting… it was getting stupid. It was ? me and I just couldn’t get it but then this fella’s words resonated with me and I was a bit… I was disgusted with it, to be honest, and I couldn’t get any answers, no answers at all. The fellas that were working on the support side of it, they were really apologetic and upset and they said “Look, there’s nothing we can do about it“. So I said “well I’m not staying, I’m leaving“.
Clubs & Vice Squad, London & the kids
So I left and I got a job with, it was, er, you know, quite an elite little unit. It was the police’s Clubs & Vice Unit, and, er, Clubs & Vice they had governance from anything to do with vice, whether it be prostitution or gambling, but also a lot of them, the main licences for the big (8:30) nightclubs, ’cause London is like the clubbing central, you know, for Europe. Erm, so I went on to this job and I was, er, I got a job with, what they call the Street Offences Unit and street offences relates to the old Street Offences Act of the last century which refers to prostitution – street prostitution – and our job was to go and, sort of, arrest street prostitutes really, but also we had governance for juveniles. If a juvenile was found on the street in a red area late at night and believed involved in it, they were to be, sort of, brought in and taken in to protective custody and every now and then, erm, a child would be found – usually a girl – and our job was to then bring her in, inform social services, the kid would then be placed in to protective police custody whilst social services work out Emergency Protection Orders (EPOs).
BG: What sort of age for the girls then?
JW: Fourteen, you know, it was… it tended to be under 17. The law was a bit… the law prior to the implementation of the Amended Sex Offe… erm, I forget what it’s called now, it’s not sex offenders, it’s to do with, er, child sexual offences… but… it will come to me. (9:45) It’s the Sexual Offences Act, I think, it got amended in 2003 and it was quite complicated, you know, and it was going back to… it was gender specific as well, so offences against boys were different against offences against girls. So, anyway, we would… we would find these kids and take them in to custody and everything else, but the problem then was that it was a competitive environment so it was number-crunching. So you were given a target of… each car that was put out – three cars were put out per night – and you would have a competition who could arrest as many prostitutes as you can, and 10 would be a good figure and if you did that every day of the week you was the top team. So there was competitions, and you could process a prostitute very quickly via the custody and it was pointless because all of them were drug addicts, all of them had come from the care system and, if you brought a kids in, that was your night finished. The car was taken off the road, er, and that was it… so that you wouldn’t get the figures so you were encouraged not to deal with them.
BG: Right, that is a very interesting comment, isn’t it, for people who look to the police to be, er, protecting the weak and vulnerable in society and you’re saying that the regime to get the targets for the prostitutes means that vulnerable children were… we don’t want… we don’t want to take them? (11:06)
JW: Well, it is… I mean, it’s shocking because if you think about it, if a man has sex with a prostitute, it’s the woman who commits the offence, right? But that’s a woman of consenting age. If someone has sex with a child, that’s rape and you’re talking a major crime offence. You’re talking an offence that carries… carries a life tariff. Yet, they’re committing major crime and you… you, you’re sort of dissuaded from dealing with it. And I remember bringing one little girl in. She was 14, or round about 14 (11:38) and a lot of these kids were undernourished and they were heavily infected with diseases like Hepatitis C, some with HIV and things like that, you know, and so they looked younger than their age, and one young girl brought in had scabies due to her lifestyle and the moaning that they gave for bringing the girl in, because they said “the car will now… will now need to be cleaned, the room you’ve taken her to will now have to be fumigated, the girl’s a pain in the arse because she’s always shouting and screaming and, you know, and it’s pointless anyway because she will be back out tomorrow“. So it was… it was appalling really… it was… and, you know, what they said “if you see her again, just tell her to do one – to get out of here“.
BG: Right, and… and this was being told to all the police – it wasn’t just yourself – anybody who was involved in this type of work was told this?
JW: Yeah. That was told… that was… that was the rule – the unwritten rule. (12:31)
JW: And erm, so they dealt with it. So what happened was, there was information from the moment I came in regarding one particular woman and her name was Foxy – her street name was Foxy – and she was a larger than life character and she was a street prostitute but she was rumoured to be pimping out young girls, and I’d heard the rumours from the moment I’d walked in the office but nothing was ever done about this woman. Anyway, I sort of got moved on merit – I did very well on the street – and, erm, I…
BG: What was your rank then? (13:06)
Return to vice & juggling family life
JW: You know, erm, and I was chosen to go on to quite an elite little unit – not dealing with vice – it was dealing with other stuff – more organised crime. And I went on to that and I did incredibly well but then I was asked to come back to vice and to, er, be the Senior Investigating Officer in allegations of child prostitution. So, erm, but by that time I think what we need to establish as well is that, from 2000 I had been a lone parent of four children. I’d been left bringing up four children. (13:41) And the relevance will become apparent, you know, shortly. So not only was I then asked to work again back with the children, I was now looking after children of my own and, you know, they were all at that time, under 10. One was an infant, so it was a bit hard going for me and the hours were irregular, you know, and child care was a bit of a nightmare – especially if your dealing with kids – bringing them in, taking in care orders, you know, your day could be a long one. But, you know, I was, sort of told “Look, you know, we’d like you to go on it“, so I did it. (14:12)
And it was a young girl called Zoe and Zoe had, erm… She was, I think, about 14 or something like that. Again, very young looking for her age. Zoe looked about 12 and she’d made an allegation that this woman, Foxy, had been pimping her out and she’d made a couple of allegations and they hadn’t gone anywhere. So what I was told was that “Look, can you look into it. She’s made allegations before. She’s a bit of a nightmare. She might be lying, she might not, but she’s a bit persistent. See what you can do”. So I went “OK“. So I, er, I went to see the girl – made an appointment – and was told “She’s very anti-police, you know, and she is a bit of a handful”. So, I went with a colleague – they made the introduction – introduced me to this girl and, you know, and what I used to do is, I was good with the kids so we’d sit down and I’d just start doodling or drawing or something like that – engaging them and then… icebreaking stuff… and then the conversation… the narrative begins.
Anyway, erm, we started chatting and everything else, and she turned round to me and she said “You know, you’re different to all the others“. I said “That’s alright, you know, I don’t mean to….” and, you know, I wouldn’t even dress like the coppers, I’d just dress like a scruffbag really, you know, I hated wearing a suit, you know, and I liked the street. I was good on the street. And, er, and she said, you know, “I like you, I’m like happy to talk to you“. So I said “OK well lets do it properly then“. She said “Yeah, alright” so we had an agreement, shook hands (15:39) and we made an appointment to do a proper – what they call – an ABE interview, which is like a video recorded interview – and, erm, we sat down, we had a chat and we… we interviewed her and she told me the story, start to finish.
She’s the product of, erm, a broken family. The mother was a drug addict, the father was absent and the mother was buying drugs off this girl, Foxy, and Foxy then started to groom her because her mother was unable to look after her. She then ended up living with the grandparents, but the grandparents lived in a red light area, and so Foxy would go and pick this young girl up and… a basic grooming… look after her, show her some attention, a bit of love, do her hair for her, give her make up, but then introduced her to cannabis. She got smoking cannabis and then… would then take her to hotels – these were bottom-end hotels – these were the sort of places where a lot of the builders would go to, you know, so they’d be like converted, er, Victorian houses or whatever. In one area of London there’s a big row of them and a lot of them were… were maintenance and building workers from the North would come down and stay in these hotels.
Low-end hotels & Class A drugs
So Foxy had an agreement the night porters and the night porters would make a room available for her, so she would take her clients in there. So she’d go in there with her client, start having sex and have this young girl there, watching, and encourage the young girl to get involved and then from there she would then start giving the young girl the bigger drugs – so the Class A drugs is what they want the kids on. Once they’ve got them on the Class A drugs – especially for crack cocaine – it’s got a real grip on them, you know, and this girl had no way of getting these drugs so she relied on Foxy as her medicine lady, you know. So she got her on crack cocaine and then she started then pimping the young girl out, getting the young girl involved. And then she would then get the girl to introduce her friends to it, so she was then introducing her friends. Also come from families that the parents were drug addicts or absent or whatever… and, so… or in the care system. In fact, all the kids we dealt with were subject to care orders, whether they were residential care orders or… or just normal care orders, but they’re all known to social services and from ‘At Risk’ backgrounds. (17:53)
The Judge & 9 year old girls
And so she gave me the name of another kid. So I went to see that girl and her story was identical, and the other thing was, I used to say “Well, what about the police? Do the police ever get involved?” and both girls said “Well, we would get hidden in a bush. If we was put on the street, the police came and Foxy would hide us in a bush but she… she knew the coppers anyway. She’d just flirt with them and they would just let her go“. (18:19) And she said “But also there’s a judge… there’s a judge involved“. I said “What do you mean?” and she went “The judge at the magistrate’s court. So when Foxy’s brought before the judge, the judge is a client of hers anyway, so the judge just lets her off“. So I checked this out. I went through the… the… the disposal history – the criminal history of this girl – and found she keeps getting bind-overs, this Foxy, so I thought there’s something in this. So all of a sudden these girls then started to introduce me to other girls, who introduced me to other girls and these ages went down to 9 years old… (18:53)
JW: … And, you know, some of them came from traveller sites, some actually came from the residential care homes and there was no one looking out for them, and these kids were known to the police but, because, they were regular absconders from care and, er, they were regularly found in red light areas and no one had actually pieced any of this together. So I started to, er, put it all together. The intelligence was just flowing and information was coming in from drug dealers on the street – they were also concerned about it – and also other prostitutes were coming forward and talking to us, you know, and saying, you know, this is what’s happening.
I then got approached by a social worker – a senior social worker – and at the time this… this operation… this line of work was mainly in Westminster and it started spiralling out in to the outer boroughs of London and in to the provinces, and this was from Croydon, and the social worker said “Look, we’ve got a big problem down in Croydon” and my inquiries did start to then lead to Croydon.
BG: And… and the significance of this is that, it’s now moving in to areas of a better class of person. Is that what it means?
JW: Well… well… what… what it’s saying is that, first it’s Central London but there is a transient population and people don’t tend to live there, they just work there, and when they’re working away from home – a bit like someone going to Thailand – they will commit a crime of, you know, like soliciting, prostitute or whatever, because they’ve got the anonymity of being a tourist but when they live in an area there is a different mindset. So it’s going to an area that is more residential or… and… yeah, I would say some of the areas were bad areas… they were bad areas, and I think most of them had their own social problems, but there was a lot of residential kids homes in these outer boroughs and a lot of kids would be farmed out. And I think the kids would network, you know, so if a kid was taken… taken in to a secure unit, for whatever reason, they would go in there, they would network with other kids and the main way of earning money was either through violent crime, robbery or with girls it was prostitution. (20:57) So these networks were all set up, you know, and no one was looking… there was no one looking in to them at all.
Anyway, a social worker from Croydon said, “You know, we’ve got a problem” and I said “OK” and he said “Look, we have meetings regularly about certain girls“. She said “I’ll give you a list of these girls and they are in trouble“. And one girl, she had such infection inside her, that she would regularly pass blood and all sorts of, you know, nastiness would come out because she had active cysts inside her through… through prostitution and she was a young kid, you know. She said “If something’s not done, this girl is gonna die. She’s being pimped out, she’s on her knees, this girl, you know“. She said, “But we invite the police along. We have been doing it for nearly 10 years and each time they refuse“. I said “Well, who are you inviting?” and they said “Well, you’re unit – the Vice Unit. We’ve invited them so many times. They know about this“. So I then went back in to the records and I went back 10 years and I went back through all the records of kids found in red light areas over the last 10 years and, yeah… there… they was right. And I was contacting some of these kids who were now adults and they… and I said “Well what’s happening?” and they said “Well, the police found us, they told us… tell us to do one, get out of here or, erm, they just ignore us. They knew we were being pimped out“. I said “Did anyone get taken in for it?” and they said “No… no we were doing it all the time“. (22:19) So it had been going on historically and the unit had known about it. So…
BG: So, how long had it been going on for?
JW: From the time I was on there I had gone back 10 years and it had gone back further than that.
Kings Cross, Islington, Westminster, Croydon & Missing Persons Unit
JW: And these were… these were in select red light areas. Er, Kings Cross, Islington, erm, Westminster, all Inner London and they were the main ones where the kids were being worked, but now Croydon was coming to note but the police knew about Croydon as well, you know. So these areas – it wasn’t any… any news, you know. But then what you’ve also got is Missing Persons Unit so, erm, if someone goes missing, Missing Persons Unit would be appointed to look in to it, you know, erm, what’s happened to them, where they are – investigate it. But every time a child comes back late, or… or fails to attend, er, er, a kids home curfew, which would be an unreasonable hour – say, like, nine o’clock/eight o’clock – they don’t turn up, the police are called, a form’s filled out and it’s just a process ’cause these kids do come back. And, er, so these Missing Persons they knew about them – they knew about these kids and they were just seen as a nuisance. It was just a routine ‘Oh, so and so has gone missing again. They’ll be back tomorrow‘. But they fill out the form – they call it ACE – Arse Covering Exercise. It’s the only reason they do it. No one looks the… the… the reasons why these kids are going missing.
The report on child prostitution
So I drafted up a report. It was factually based, it was concise, erm, and it… and it had a evidence… and it had evidence backing it. (23:56) And it was a small… it was a ? of a report which was highlighting the extent… the sheer extent of the problem, the history behind the problem, er, the results of the problem – the fact that the kids are suffering and they’re also grooming other kids in to it – it’s a self-perpetuating monster and… and I just put a few opinions, you know, the factual opinions of the social workers. (24:20)
BG: And… and in that report, were you also… were you also highlighting the fact that the police were not acting as they should? Or police cons… police officers hadn’t acted?
JW: I mean, what… what I did was, I… I was always mindful of the fact that I will never reinvent the wheel and I’m no better than anyone else, so I don’t want to criticise a colleague, but what I put in was these kids were known to the police, these investigations were never followed up for whatever rationale, so I didn’t criticise anyone but it has to be noted that this isn’t a new thing.
The BBC, the Judge & the police
This has been known about but I also mentioned the fact that there are allegations involving a judge and that… and that other police officers are aware and there was also, erm, someone connected to the music department of the BBC was involved. (25:06) Er, a manager of that. So, you know, and…
Shutting the case down – Part two
Anyway, that went in and I thought, right, well they’ve been made aware now and I would always put report on for whatever reason, reports would go on – intelligence reports. Police worked on intelligence. And I then get a phone call within about an hour of the report going through and it’s from the governing Detective Inspector and he said to me “John, er… er… about this report you put on…” and I was thinking ‘good, brilliant, you know, I’ve now shown ’em the goose that is giving the golden eggs and hopefully this will move forwards‘, you know. I had really thought I was gonna get praise for it. And then what happened was, he said that “We need to talk now. Get in my office now“. So I went “OK” and I went down to see him. I was in a different building and I travelled down, went in his office and it was like someone had set a Pitbull on me. He started swearing and shouting and “What have you done? You can’t do things like this. I’m taking it… I’m shutting it down. I’m taking you off“. So he withdrew me straight away from the operation and that really upset me, you know, because I was moving forwards, you know. And I thought ‘well if I go who else is gonna… you know, no one can ever do the job as good as (26:18) you do it, do you know what I mean? And looking back on it, I did a good job and I don’t want to be conceited but that’s what happened, you know. And, erm, I was mortified, absolutely mortified.
BG: What was in your head about why you’d got this response? You thought you were going to be praised for it. You get attacked by a Pitbull…
BG: Why do you think it was?
JW: Well, I mean it wa… it was… it was some sort of weird sort of cognitive distortion because he turned round and said that “we’d known about this and the reason the kids are talking to you now was because they were dealt with properly 10 years ago and they are now happy to come forward and talk to you“. It was nothing to do with my good work, it was due to the good work of other officers before me, and it was just absolute dire nonsense and I was just confused. I was… I was literally, totally confused. (27:11) But it was done with such aggression and what we used to call it in the police was a ‘hairdryer’ – an old-skool shouting thing, you know – screaming and shouting. And I walked away really licking my wounds and scratching my head.
Extended summer holiday & 2004
So, erm, and then I thought… so I, so I didn’t go back to work. I thought ‘what the hell’s going on’? Never went back to work the next day. Anyway, I get a phone call, erm, and it was from the… the high up boss – the Detective Chief Superintendent of the unit (27:39) and he said, erm “John, what’s gone on?“, so I said “Well, I don’t know. I’m a bit confused” and he went “We need to have a chat“, so I said “OK“. So he said “Well don’t rush back to work. Have the summer on me” – and it was the summer – “Take your kids away“…
BG: What… what date is this now?
JW: This was about… this was… this was… we’re talking about, I think, about 2004, around that time (28:01) and this was in the summer, the beginning of the summer. And he said “Well have the summer on me, you know. Go away with your kids… take your kids away“. So he’s aware of my family situation, and he said “I know, you know, it’s tough for you. Go away and when you get back, when you’re ready, lets sort all this out. It’s not going to be a problem.“. And, I’m gonna be honest with you, I like the fella. He’s a nice bloke… he was a nice bloke. And so I said “Really?” and he said “Yeah, yeah, yeah don’t worry about it“. He trivialised everything.
Return to work
So anyway, I came back and… but it was on my mind all of the time because, you know, it… these kids weren’t… they… they weren’t getting served anymore. There was no one there for these kids, you know. And they relied on you. They relied on you for protection and… and they wanted to win. They wanted… because also behind this was organised criminality. The girl that was running it, she was backed up by some very serious gangsters and it… it resulted in me getting credible death threats, and everything. These, you know… there was money at stake here, there was a load of these people and they were connected gangsters, you know, and these kids were scared and these kids… some of these kids, if they went back home, they went back to the ghettos where these people were operating and they were petrified.
The meeting & threats
So, erm, I, er, I came back to work (29:16) and sure enough the… the boss calls me in and I said to him “No, I’m not talking to you on my own, I want someone with me“. So I got, er, a representative from the Human Resources Department – Personnel came and sat down and he said to me “John, what… what… what’s gone on?“, made me a cup of tea. So I said, “Well, I’ll only talk to you if I can be honest“. He said “Well, yeah, that goes both ways“. I said “OK“. I said “So what have I done?“. I said, “You know I really thought I’d done well, I’d exposed this, I’d done this, I’d done thi…” and he turned round to me and he said “Well that’s the problem. You’ve exposed it“. He said “We knew you could dig but we never knew you could dig that deep“. He then said “What you’ve exposed is gonna eff us past, present and future. This cannot and will not ever get out“. He said “If you mention a word of this, you will be thrown to the wolves“. He then said “You will lose everything, and that means your job, your home, your kids – you’ll lose it all. You need to shut your effing mouth” and I was just dumbstruck. I was like “For real?” and he said “We never thought you would dig this deep. You have no understanding how deep this goes“. (30:26)
BG: So, you… *cough*… excuse me, so you were a Detective Constable, so one would have thought, in your job, somebody who was professionally good at their job would be good at digging. You dig, you absolutely start to see what what’s going on and then – I’m just gonna use the phrase ‘these people’ – these people are so confident that they threaten you point blank in a room…
JW: With a witness…
BG: With a witness?
Bullying & ‘Fairness at Work’ Form
JW: With a witness, yeah. (30:55) Erm, at the time my youngest boy was still quite young and I was petrified I’d have my kids taken off me. I’d really thought I’d crossed the mafia and, you’re right, it was the confidence, the way it was portrayed against me. And the other thing what was bizarre, he said “How do you think you’ve been treated? Do you think you’ve been bullied?” I went “You’re damn right I’ve been bullied“. He said “You have. You’ve been bullied“. He said “There’s a form to fill out – a Fairness at Work form. I’m instructing you to get it now and fill it out“. And… and the police is absolutely awash with these forms. There’s forms for everything. And he told me the number of the form. He said “You fill it out, you put exactly what’s gone on. You’ve got to do that, son“. I said “I will, I will“. And he said… he said “And then do you know what will happen to it?“. (31:39) I went “Well, it will go somewhere and get investigated” and he said “I’ll tell you what will happen…“. He said “All those you’ve mentioned will be brought in and they will be interviewed“. I said “Right, OK, good, that’s brilliant“. He said “… and then it will come to me to be ratified“. He said “And do you know what I’ll do with it?“. I said “Will you pass it on, you know, to Corruption Command or something, I don’t know?“. He said “Not really” and he points to a bin. He goes “It’ll go in that bin and it’ll stay in that bin“. He said “I will never betr… betray a fellow rank and nor will they. You’ve no idea what you’re up against so shut your effing mouth“. And he got my hand and he said “You’ve gotta give me your… a gentleman’s agreement now you never, ever look in to child prostitution ever again“.
Now, what happened then Brian was I left there totally, totally, er, frightened. Really frightened. And that was a… a bit of a spiral downhill for me and then over the coming years I left that unit – I left straight away and I said to them “I can’t work under you”.
BG: So the… these are colleagues that you doing a difficult and you were doing a dangerous job out on the ground and you would rely on the backing of your police colleagues (32:51) to actually protect you against people who are, er, organised crime. Why don’t they go for you? Because they know if they go for you, you are going to be protected by the police and here are your police colleagues simply turning round and threaten you in the same way, which is vicious.
JW: Vicious – and it is a conspiracy and, I mean, a conspiracy… conspiracies exist in law. You can conspire to commit murder, you… you… it’s in statute law…
BG: It’s a criminal offence.
JW: It’s a criminal offence. Conspiracy is and you see people go and bandy conspiracy theorists. There’s no theorists about it, this is conspiracy reality (33:24) and I was in the centre of a very horrible conspiracy and so frightened, I couldn’t tell anyone. I genuinely thought they would come for me and come for my children.
There’s nothing caring about the care system…
And the other thing is, I’ve seen first hand what the care system is and there’s nothing ‘caring’ about it. (33:41) You know, it… it is a paedophile’s playground. These kids get… The other thing is, I was working with informants and a lot of these informants had been in the care system and one of them turned round to me and said “Whatever you do, you never let your children go in to care ’cause what’ll happen is, if you ain’t there, they…“. One of my kids was a little bit… he was a little bit behind with things and I used to tell this bloke and he said “They’ll go for him straight away. They will get it. Don’t ever lay in bed thinking they won’t get it, they will get it“. And by “get it”, you know, you know what I mean. And, er…
BG: So… so what happens now then? So you’ve been threatened…
Child Abuse Unit & children’s homes
JW: So… so what happens now is, I say “I can’t work under you“, so I leave and I go on to a Child Abuse Unit (34:22) and I end up in North London – a very busy part of North London – and I start on this unit and we’re investigating child abuse, and I’m in there and I get approached by a Detective Sergeant. He said “Look, as well as being an investigator, do you want to take on a new additional role?“. So I said “Like what?“, so he said “Well, there’s all sorts of things you can do“. I said “Is there one to do with the, erm, the liaison with children’s homes?“. (34:46) He went “Yeah, yeah, yeah there is. The girl left two years ago“. I said “Was there any issues with… with it?” and she said “No, no, no, no, no issues. It’s an easy number. You’ll get given a day here and there to go and deal with it. There’ll be the odd meeting but over two years she never had any issues at all“. I said “Did child prostitution ever crop up?“. “Oh no, no, no. We don’t get any of that“. I went “OK“.
Now this was a borough… the London Borough of Haringey. Now Haringey (35:10) has the most amount of kids homes of any, sort of, local authority in the country. I think it was about 22-26 care homes for a small London borough.
Anyway, so I was given assurances that it wasn’t a problem. So I picked up the phone and I asked for a list of all the care homes from social services, so they faxed it through – ’cause the police didn’t have a copy of it – and it come through and it had the phone numbers, so I rang… I rang them up. First… first and I said “This is so and so care home?“. I said “Look…”. I told them who I was (35:42). I said “There’s nothing to worry about but this is what I’m looking in to“. The bloke went “Oh, right“. So I said “So, how many children have you got then?“. He said “About five“. I said “How many do you lose at a weekend to crime and, I’m on about prostitution and things like that?” and he went “Oh, three“. I went “You what?“, I said. He said “Yeah, they usually go missing on a Thursday and come back on a Monday“. I said “Do you… do you think they’re involved in prostitution?“. “Oh, w… we know they are“. I went “Right, well has the police ever been to speak to you about it?“. He said “No. The police come and pick up the ‘Missing Persons’ form but the kids come back“. I said “Well what are the kids like?“. She said “Oh they’re in a right state, some of them. Some of them are bleeding. Some of them are so high on drugs, we know that come Wednesday they’re gonna be kicking off because they’ve not had their drugs. They’ve all got money on them, you know“. And I was like “Oh my god“. So that was like real time. So all of a sudden I’ve got three kids within six minutes. By the end of three days I’d found 50 children. 50 children!
So I held a strategy meeting and I brought in the social services. I brought in, er…
BG: This is Haringey Social…
JW: Haringey Social Services. I think Hackney might have turned up, neighbouring boroughs, you know. Erm, and then, because you get an overspill sometimes, and then I had a representative for… who dealt with child trafficking for Banardo’s, I had connections… a lot of these youth NGO groups came – there was a lot of people there. (37:06) And, er, and I laid out my… my, er, plan and I… I worked out a formula of how to deal with it using a simple Act and a Children’s Act… the Sexual Children’s Act relating to taking a child out of care at an unreasonable hour. (37:22) And I’d done my research and I was just attacked. Firstly by the Head of Social Services, who started screaming at me, saying “What have you done to us? That’s 50 care plans we’ve now got to implement because of you”. I said, “But you must have known about these kids?“. And they went “Yeah, but they didn’t come to notice, so we weren’t bothered“. And I said “Well, they’re making money there and, you know, and erm…“. He said “Well, we’ve got so much work to do you’ve created an absolute nightmare for us. You’re a headache“. Er, so that was made clear that I wasn’t gonna get much help from them. (37:52) And then Barnardo’s… the… the woman in charge of that unit from Barnardo’s, she then, erm, turned round and said “You’re treading on toes. You know for a fact a child will never betray their pimp“. And I said “What do you mean?“. And I said “What do you mean?” and she said “Well, you’ll never prove it ’cause the kids won’t… you know… that source of money”. So I said “Well, I know that. That’s why I’m going on this other Statute Law that will give me a power to search and seize property and everything”. And she went “Well, you can’t just do that. There’s a protocol here. There is an officer – a senior officer – who I’ll be reporting you to ’cause they’re already dealing with it“. I went “Well, who’s that?“. They mention this name and I…
BG: And by ‘senior officer’ she meant a senior police officer?
JW: Senior police officer, yeah, who wasn’t vice. Now vice had governance for that. This was some other man. And they said “There is an operation running“. So I said “Well, I need to talk to this man” and she placed 28 actions on me to complete before I did any work and each action could take me days.
BG: S… sorry… who placed those actions on you?
JW: This was Banardo’s. This… this… ’cause it was a partnership working. When you deal with children, it’s all working together, you know. (38:58) And I was absolutely flabbergasted… what was going on and, erm, and so I spoke to my inspector and he said “Well just crack on. (38:07) Don’t worry about it, crack on and do what you’ve got to do“.
Chief Superintendant warning
So the next day I went out and I got a result straight away. I got a girl that was being pimped out and I got a pimp and it worked. So then I get a call from this high ranking officer. He was a Chief Superintendant. So I have to go up to one of the police buildings and he said “You’re treading on toes. You’re to back off. We’ve got an officer dealing with this“. So I said “Dealing with what?“. (39:29) “Prostitution of children in care homes for London. We’ve got it under wraps“. And I said “Well who is it?” so he gave me the name of this girl.
“I don’t even know where these kids homes are…” – Shutting it down – Part three
I called her and she said “It’s a load of crap“. She said “I’ve er, I’ve been to a meeting but I’ve never dealt with any victims and I… and, er, and how could I have nicked anyone? It’s just me. I don’t even know where these kids homes are. (39:49) I’ve not even visited one!“. I said to her “So you’re not even investigating?” and she said “No, how can I?“. She said it was a load of lies.
What happened to Zoe?
So that was shut down, right. Then lo and behold, I moved, and then I get a call that the girl that was at the… Zoe – the young girl that was at the centre of the other operation – was found dead on the street under suspicious drugs overdose. (40:10) Was found just dumped in the street, dead.
BG: How old? Just remind us…
JW: By this time I think she was getting on for 15/16, something in that area, you know. A year or so had passed.
BG: So a 15 year old girl is just found dead…
JW: A key witness to this case dumped on the street. Erm, and then it… it just absolutely, it destroyed me, you know, and they never investigated another case of child prostitution – the Vice Unit never did.
Jimmy Savile scandal
Erm, what happened then was that I left, erm, I’d got moved so I ended up having to deal with other sorts of crime involving children but was never dragged back in to that area. Erm, I shut my mouth for quite a while, erm, and then what happened was the Jimmy Savile (40:54) scandal broke and I thought ‘My god, it’s not just me, there’s others’.
Whistleblowers – Clive Driscoll, Lennie Harper
And then Clive Driscoll came forward and then, erm, Lennie Harper from, er, the State of Jersey Police, you know, and the senior officer there. He was running the care home inquiry in Haut de la Garenne in Jersey and it gave me a bit of hope but then that was shut down and I can remember him on telly saying that it’s now, er, a coconut…. er, the lab reports saying the bones they seized are coconut and not bone and I’m thinking ‘It’s been a cover up’. (41:32) Erm, so I then came forward.
2014 – Whistleblowing, Freemasonry & the Hillsborough Inquiry
About 2014 I went to the, er, I went to my Inspector first and said “Look, I need to talk to someone. I wanna make an allegation of… of serious corruption involving child prostitution cover ups” and he totally dismissed it. So I then went to the Corruption Command and I said “I need to speak to someone very, very senior. It has to be a Detective and it has to be a woman“. (41:59) He said “Well, what do you mean?” and I said “Well, I don’t know, women won’t roll their trouser legs up” (meaning a Masonic link) because, without entering in to the conspiracy realm again, Masonry does have a big, strong hold in the police. It has a hold in the police but then when you, er, become a Detective, it intensifies and when you’re a Detective on a specialist role it is almost like a stick of rock – with Masonry through it, you know. I’m not knocking it. I work with many of them – I’ve not got an issue with them – but it is another allegiance that you don’t need, you know.
BG: Just give a detached viewpoint. It has an impact?
JW: It does, without a doubt. (42:35) And anyone… and I tell you how much it has an impact – when I went to a job agency to try and get work as er, er, a civilian detective I was told by the agency, erm “Have you been or are you a Mason?“. I said “Well, why are you asking me that?“. He said “We cannot take anyone who is a, or has been, a Mason“. And I said “Well why is that?” and he said “Because it has ruined too many inquiries, namely the Hillsborough inquiry. It was deliberately frustrated by the Masons. Deliberately“.
BG: According to this security company? (43:11)
JW: According to this, er, yeah… a recruitment…
BG: Sorry, a recruitment company.
JW: That is their… their… one of the main ones to recruit civilian investigators and they… their baseline is… the first question they ask you is “Are you a Mason?“.
BG: OK. So, just sticking with what happened to you. So, you decided you were going to whistleblow…
Allegation against a Senior Officer & misconduct charges
JW: I whistleblew and I… I made an allegation against a senior Officer who, since then, had been promoted to one of the highest posts in the country. Erm, made the allegation and I was assured that this would be taken the most… in the utmost seriousness and “Don’t worry, we will investigate it“. So I said “OK“. (43:50) I then get informed by the Metropolitan Police Federation that I am to be served with gross misconduct pap… no, misconduct papers. I said “Well why, what have I done?“. They said “Er, you’ve, er, it’s data protection violations“. So I said “Well I haven’t violated anything“. They said “Well don’t worry, we’re assured it’ll be a management action“. Right, OK.
Then the police were dragging their heels over my allegations so I… I pushed forward and they wouldn’t reply to me. (44:21) So I made a complaint to the IPCC – the Independant Police Complaints Commission. Er, they said “We won’t get involved“. Then all of a sudden my misconduct allegations had been elevated to gross misconduct and I’m like “Really? Well, why?“. Well, I was told then “Don’t worry, we’re going to look in to it and it’ll be resolved“.
Simon Danczuk, Rotherham, Greater Manchester Police. Peter Fahy & Maggie Oliver
I then, erm, get put in touch with an MP called Simon Danczuk who, at the time was championing the abuse cover ups and you’re seeing more and more cover ups coming out and one of the key ones was the Rotherham scandal and there was a Detective from Greater Manchester Police called Maggie Oliver and I was asked if I wouldn’t mind being put in charge with Maggie Oliver. Her story was very similar to mine. (45:15)
So, I met with Maggie Oliver and her story was strikingly similar and what she said to me was “John, watch it“. She said “Have they served you misconduct papers yet?“. I said “Yeah“. She said “You’ll get arrested next ’cause that’s what they did to me. You’ll be put before a tribunal. You’ll be found guilty and they will sack you. That’s exactly what they did to me and that’s what they will do to you. They’ll raid your house, they’ll do everything.“. (45:40)
BG: John, just tell us what just… really briefly… what was her story? You say it’s strikingly similar. Was she dealing with children?
JW: She was dealing with children from the care system in Rotherham, in, er, South Yorkshire I think and, erm, well Greater Manchester… it come under the Greater Manchester, you know, er, er, policing district and it was young girls being groomed and pimped out by Asian mini cab firms and everything else. Er, but these kids were also clients, er, were you know, the clientele of people that had a bit of money and everything else and she exposed it and she was bullied… bullied in to silence. Told to shut her mouth, it’s not a problem, forget about it and it was exactly the same as what I was dealing with but on a provincial level. And… she… and her bullying… she encountered was exactly the same as mine. (46:31) But she did get sacked. She got required to resign, erm, and she was stitched up. And she was stitched up by Peter Fahy, who was at the time the, er, the, you know… the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police. And it was… the… the… the similarities were striking.
Lenny Harper & Bill Maloney – the Jersey scandal
I then get put in touch with, erm, a man called Lenny Harper and Lenny Harper had, er, had exposed the, erm, child abuse, er, murder… and… and… and, you know, sexual abuse scandal in the Haut de la Garenne and the other thing was that it had been covered by, you know, erm, er, a really good friend and er, erm, a proper activist Bill Maloney, you know, (47:16) child abuse and it had been on his. So, erm, I got in touch with Lenny so Lenny said “Come… come and see me“.
So I went up to see Lenny and he told me his story and, again, the similarities were absolutely unbelievable. (47:32)
Bullying and suicide
BG: So there’s a template in operation here as to what happens to police officers that stand up and say “There’s a cover up of child abuse“?
JW: Yep, and also that they are bullied so monumentally that some of these coppers are committing suicide.
Whistleblower’s Forum in Parliament, Tom Lloyd & Isle of Wight
I then get asked to go to a Whistleblower’s Forum in Parliament and there’s a chief… a retired Chief Constable there called Tom Lloyd ? (48:00) and, er, he then hears my story and says “Well this is shocking, erm, but you’re not alone“. And from that I get put in touch with a Detective Sergeant from Hampshire who had exposed a kids home inquiry, er, child prostitution thing in… on the Isle of Wight and he had been bullied to the point of almost suicide and they’d arrested him again for minor data protection and other issues and bullied him to the point of almost suicide and he now campaigns for coppers that are suffering from Post Traumatic Stress & suicidal. He’s got a… a…
JW: He’s got an outreach group and he then says “You know, there’s so many coppers are topping themselves but this is what they will do. They will you, John“. So I’ve got three coppers – all of them that had uncovered child abuse, high level child abuse and all of them have been bullied monumentally to the point of suicide, you know, and, erm, and each one of them warned me… warned me what would happen. (48:58)
IPCC (Independent Police Complaints Commission)
So I thought ‘Well this is outrageous’. The public need to know and the police and the IPCC kept covering it up, refusing to progress my allegation. The IPCC even said if I wrote to them again they wouldn’t even open my letters. So I then took the matter to the Cabinet.
I got in touch with the Policing and Crime Minister – Mike Penning – and said “You need to sit down with me”. And he did.(49:22) Fair play to him, he did. He said he was “shocked and stunned” at what I’m saying. He afforded me privilege. I then informed the police that I’d spoken to him and then they tried to get me done again on discipline – gross misconduct for talking to a politician – and luckily that got overturned because it was just a vicious attack, you know.
Erm, he then said “Right, we will implement an independent inquiry in to what’s happened to you and to what’s happening to…” because I told… I said “there is an algorythm of bullying“. (49:57) And…
BG: Did… can you… sorry to interject. Did he, erm, er, did he acknowledge the extent of the child abuse which is the heart of this matter? You’d obviously told him what you had discovered. Did he actually register that there was this…
BG: … happening?
“The tentacles for this go right to the heart of the establishment”
JW: Well… well… I told him. I said “This is massive“. I said “the… the… the tentacles for this go right to the heart of the establishment. (50:22) And this was causing the whole detriment to society and it’s probably even influencing politics“. And I said “And I’ve got, erm, evidence of that” and then I explained to him about the thing with Leon Brittan. You know, and all the time it’s coming out in the press that this man is innocent and everything else.
Bernard Hogan Howe
But then Bernard Hogan Howe, the Commissioner of the Met Police turned round and refused to apologise to Lady Brittan so I’m thinking ‘Well, maybe he knows something that I know’.
Mike Penning mysteriously stops contact
So, Mike Penning, erm, then stopped all contact with me. Er, I was assured by his wife he’ll ring me, he’ll update me and I couldn’t get hold of him at all. (51:01)
So, erm, the police then…
BG: I… I just want to say, this is the man whose sole responsibility is policing.
JW: Yep. Policing.
BG: And you are telling him of the cover up of the major crime involving children, young girls…
BG: And what he does, is he completely cuts you off?
“What concerns me most is the public perception when this gets out”
JW: Well, what… what… what he said… I met him on quite a few occasions and I got brought to his parliament… parliamentary office… his ministerial office, you know, and he’s right next to Michael Gove – they share the same corridor. And I’m in there and he turns round to me and… this is… these are his exact words, he said “What concerns me most about this is the public perception when this gets out“. And that’s all he was worried about. (51:45) You know, how was it gonna look…
JW:… look on the establishment when this goes out. But at the end of the day I told him and to my opinion… I… er, things might have changed but as far as I am aware he found nothing. He might surprise me yet, I’m not sure, but I’ve asked repeatedly for the investigation team to get in touch with me and they haven’t. Erm, and it… and it… it’s absolute nonsense, you know, what he came out with. And, erm, then he said to me “I give you my assurances that Bernard Hogan Howe, who is a friend of mine, will be shocked when he finds out“. (52:19)
So I said “Well, look, are you gonna tell him?“. He said “I will tell him. He will be told“. And as far as I am aware he never told him so in the end I went… sort of carried on back to work and everything else and all of a sudden I found out that my allegations that were now, er, sort of being ignored… the police’s then, er, sort of investigation of me for data protection had gone from management action – minor misconduct, which I would have denied anyway ’cause I did bugger all wrong – it went from that to misconduct to gross misconduct and that now they’d sent the file to the CPS for an impending prosecution against me. (52:57)
Promoted with Royal ascent
So I thought ‘Well I’ve had enough of this. This is outrageous’ so I… I said… I got hold of the Commissioner and I said to the Commissioner – I wrote to him…
BG: This is Sir Bernard Hogan Howe?
JW: …Sir Bernard Hogan Howe. And I said “You know, the man that I’ve made a serious allegations against and for which there is witnesses to this has been promoted. And not only has he been promoted, he’s been promoted with Royal ascent and given the Quee… the Queen’s police medal (53:22) two years after I made allegations.
Now, the format is that if you’re under investigation for serious issues, you do not get promoted. Your career is on hold until it’s sorted out. And I wanted then to get out of the police force. They wouldn’t let me resign because I was placed under investigation. So I couldn’t do anything. I said “You’ve hounded me, you’ve destroyed me, you’ve ruined me, yet I’ve done nothing wrong. Now you want to prosecute me“. I said “I tell you what, you put me before a court and I will tell the world – because it’ll be public domain – that this is a vicious cover up of a whistleblower for, you now, hindering and covering up child prostitution“. And I told him everything, Bernard Hogan Howe. (54:01)
A letter to Bernard Hogan Howe – everything changed
I put everything in the letter but all of a sudden everything changed. All of a sudden the senior management, er, the Assistant Commissioners, the… they… they were behind me, they’re no longer prosecuting me, they’re… they’re… they’re trying to, erm, bring forward my early retirement and everything else. Erm, but other things they did was that they, erm, they halved my pay without even telling me. They cut my pay in half.
JW: This is all things I was told would happen, did happen.
BG: Right, John, you… you were saying there that they’re moving you towards, erm, early retirement…
BG: … which obviously is… is of some comfort to you because you still… still have to… you still have to live and… and… you’re entitled a pension and everything from your time serving in the police. What have they actually done to start to investigate the key thing of the massive cover up of the abuse of children?
Human Resources Witness
JW: Well… well… well… it was quite funny because in 2012 I was in Scotland Yard and the witness I had in the room at the time when the senior officer bullied me saw me in Scotland Yard and she came up to me and she burst in to tears. She grabbed me, she said “I’ve got quite a powerful job now” and she said “I’ve got my own office in the Yard. I need to talk to you, can you come and see me?“. (55:23) I said “Yeah, I’ll come, I’ll come“.
So I went to her office and she just burst in to tears and she grabbed hold of me, hugged me and she said “Can you ever forgive me for what happened?” and I said “Well, wha… what… what are you on about?” and she said “I watched them bully you and destroy you and everything you said happened. That little girl died“. I said “Yeah, I know about that” and she said “And since you did what you did they never investigated another case of child prostitution“. And that was 2004/2005. They never investigated another case and nearly 10 years of all those serious, serious crimes. I mean, you’re talking the raping of children just short of murder, really. In seriousness they never investigated another… another”… I mean they even had a Transgender Crime Unit and transgender crime it… it… it equates to like 0.001% of all crime. So there’s a team investigating that but child prostitution – there was nothing.
JW: Nothing! (56:22) And she said “Everything you said was right. I left the Unit because of how they treated you. Please, please forgive me?“.
JW: So…they never, never touched it after that.
BG: John, you… you are in, still in a delicate situation with the police so, er, I’ll say the… we’ll just end that bit there on your relationship and how… and how things are going for leaving the police…
BG: Just to finish, give us, erm, what is your opinion of… of what you’ve uncovered? What… what is going on?
Children’s help lines manned by insiders?
JW: Well, funnily enough I was asked this when I was interviewed as a witness and they said “Why do you think they did this?“ (57:01) and I said “Well, because they’re involved“. There is a cover up and these people are appointed in to key positions where they have total governance of all these allegations, so they can’t be dealt with by any other unit other than this specialist unit, so there’s like a filter that goes through and then internally in this unit they will be filtered again. What gets proceeded with and what doesn’t so that they have total autonomy over what they deal with and what they don’t deal with. So these people are put in place to make sure these allegations don’t get out.
And it’s not just that. All them years that I worked, erm, in… in this remit, we would get what they call ‘referrals’. Now, referrals could come from schools, referrals could come from playgroups, from wherever and all the years I worked on the… on the child abuse investigations, I was aware of only once, a referral coming through from NSPCC. Only once. Now bearing in mind they’ve got Childline and all them kids that would be ringing up Childline, especially when Jimmy Savile got nicked and everything else, why didn’t they ever come through? Why did it never come through?
And these people are filters and my opinion is they… they are filters that… that these people are deliberately put in there to protect those that are involved. Deliberately. (58:14)
BG: John, thank you very much for…
JW: That’s alright
BG:… for having the courage to, er, come and talk us through that and I’m… I’m very, very sure that, er, the people that listen in to this interview will not only be shocked at what you’ve said but they will also be pulling together in their minds because, of course, you’ve taken us through those experiences and what have we seen? We’ve seen more and more of this coming up to the surface in public, erm, press and media or then dismissed and then it’s all suppressed, it all drifts away in to the tall grass and you are one of, we now know, a number of officers who’ve had the courage to stand up and say “No. This is real. It’s going on” and you’ve paid a really heavy price for it. So I’m going to say I think this will really get people thinking and thank you very much for having the courage to talk.
JW: No that’s quite alright. I mean, all I will say is that people have come forward but they’ve always got retired before they’re named.
BG: Retired before they’re named. What a statement for John to come forward with. The police officers who dare to come foreward and expose the cover up of child abuse are bullied, harassed, and retired. Against the background of child abuse which we are seeing across the country, whether it’s Holly Greig in Scotland, whether it’s Rotherham, whether it is, er, Melanie Shaw with the Beechwood Nottingham abuse, Mickey Summers – another name there – across the country we are seeing time and time again child abuse survivors coming forward and telling their story and now, with the help of John there, we can really get to understand that the people covering up this abuse are the highest… are people in the highest echelons of society. They are the members of Parliament, they’re the Lords, they’re the Senior Police Officers, they are the establishment figures, and as we have heard, worse of all perhaps, they are some of the very charities that say they are there to protect children.
One current that, er, case that provides a background to all of the things John has been talking about must be the Brian and Janice Docherty case. Er, you can listen to the interviews with this mum and dad on the UK Column website but this is the story of parents whose only crime – if I can call it that – is to report that a man tried to buy their son for sex and when they report that incident to the police in Scotland, they become the criminals, they become the hunted by social services and ultimately they are the parents who have four children taken from them, er, by armed guarda police in Ireland. There can only be one explanation for how that was possible and that is, that there is, as John says, a conspiracy at the highest levels to protect those who abused children and in particular to protect those at the highest levels of society. (1:01:40)