Monday, 22 June 2015

Concerns regarding Greville Janner and Keith Vaz MP - Report to the Metropolitan Police

There is huge public concern regarding the alleged multiple instances of child abuse carried out by Lord Greville Janner.

There is also much concern about how that alleged child abuse came to be covered up.

For many of those who have been told about Lord Janner's "dementia" something doesn't add up.

Below is a letter sent today to Assistant Commissioner Helen King of the Metropolitan Police Service trying, as best as I reasonably can, to identify the facts that suggest that "something doesn't add up" about the story about Lord Janner's dementia.

In 1991 Keith Vaz, presently Chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, tried to change the Law to conceal allegations of child abuse.

In my letter to Assistant Commissioner King I ask her to consider whether Mr. Vaz's actions (or failures to act) in the 1980s and in 1991 may constitute the common law offence of misconduct in public office, as set out in the Crown Prosecution Service Guidelines for that offence.

Here is the text of my letter to Assistant Commissioner King:



22nd  June 2015

To:
Assistant Commissioner Helen King,
Metropolitan Police Service
[By email]

Dear Assistant Commissioner King,
  1. Possible theft / fraud by Lord Janner of Braunstone
  2. Possible conspiracy re the foregoing
  3. Possible conspiracy to pervert the course of justice
  4. Possible misconduct in public office by Keith Vaz MP and others
  5. Possible concealment of child abuse by Keith Vaz MP
  6. Possible conspiracy to defraud H.M. Revenue & Customs
I write to report to you as a constable suspected criminal offences with respect to reported actions by Lord Janner of Braunstone and/or by others some of whose identity I do not presently know.

Given the possibility that one or more criminal offences may have been committed I report these suspected offences to you for careful consideration and investigation.

As you will readily appreciate matters relating to Lord Janner, given that they relate directly or indirectly to multiple instances of alleged serious child abuse and/or the cover-up of such alleged child abuse, are of considerable public interest and concern.

The matters I raise with you are potentially of great seriousness, including the possibility of a conspiracy to pervert the course of justice with respect to allegations of serious child abuse by Lord Janner.

These matters are of great complexity and/or subtlety since proper investigation of these matters may, of necessity, involve very careful consideration by counsel and medical expert witnesses with respect to whether or not any criminal offence has been committed.

The reported facts raise in my mind the suspicion that one or more criminal offences may have been committed as described in this letter.

The contrary possibility exists in that some or all of the actions which I consider might constitute criminal offences are, when fully investigated, fairly attributable to some unfortunate coincidence or some other set of circumstances whose characteristic(s) are not of a criminal nature.

Uncertainty regarding the facts

Currently, it seems to me to be impossible for any member of the public to establish with certainty key facts relating to the suspected criminal offences.

It seems to me that establishing the facts is properly a matter for the Metropolitan Police Service,

Hence my reporting to you these potentially serious suspected crimes.

However, as explained later in this letter, certain aspects of the matters which this letter covers may be properly considered only by a Police force external to England and Wales.

Longstanding “Dementia”

Reports suggest that Lord Janner of Braunstone was diagnosed with dementia in 2009.

It is reported that in April 2014 Lord Janner’s “dementia” was so severe that he could not be interviewed by Leicestershire Police with respect to the widely publicised allegations of multiple instances of serious child abuse by Lord Janner.

One question in the public mind, or in the mind of at least some members of the public, is whether Lord Janner’s “dementia” is a convenient fiction or is an embellishment of the facts with a view to Lord Janner escaping prosecution for the alleged child sexual offences.

Events of 2nd and 3rd June 2014

In yesterday’s Mail on Sunday it is reported that on 2nd and 3rd June 2014 Lord Janner claimed parking expenses seemingly in the sum of £64.80 on the basis that Lord Janner was on Parliamentary business.

A House of Lords spokesman is reported as saying that Lord Janner confirmed to them that on those dates he had been on Parliamentary business. It is unclear whether the clarification by Lord Janner was verbal or written.

It is further reported that “a representative of Lord Janner” confirmed that he (Lord Janner) had been “doing parliamentary work” on 2nd and 3rd June.

If it is genuinely the case that Lord Janner had dementia so severe that he could not be interviewed in April 2014 by the Police, it seems, at a minimum, very strange that he could genuinely have been on Parliamentary business almost two months later.

It seems to me that the way in which the situation is viewed could be clarified to a significant extent by the simple expedient of establishing the facts with respect to these two questions:

  1. Did Lord Janner drive himself to the House of Lord on 2nd June 2014, on 3rd June 2014, on both or neither?
  2. Were Lord Janner’s visits to the House of Lords on 2nd June 2014 and 3rd June 2014 genuinely on Parliamentary business or not?

Once those facts have been ascertained, other necessary investigation may follow.

Possible theft/fraud

If, on examination of the facts, it proves to be the case that Lord Janner was not, in fact, on Parliamentary business it seems to me that the sum of £64.80 was obtained by deception.

Once you are in possession of the full facts with respect to the events of 2nd and 3rd June 2014 I ask you carefully to consider whether a criminal offence was committed by Lord Janner and/or by some person or persons close to Lord Janner and/or acting on behalf of Lord Janner.

Whether or not a “conspiracy” may have existed would depend on the facts following appropriate investigation.

Possible conspiracy to pervert the course of justice

If it is the case that Lord Janner was on 2nd June 2014 and/or 3rd June 2014 able to drive himself across London to the House of Lords it seems to me to raise very serious doubts about the severity of any “dementia” suffered by Lord Janner, at least with respect to the early days of June 2014.

It would be remarkable if Lord Janner’s mental function in June 2014 was such as to allow him to drive across London while, allegedly, being so severely mentally impaired that he was unfit to be interviewed by Police two months earlier.

It raises the possibility that, at least in April 2014, the severity of Lord Janner’s dementia had been exaggerated so as to avoid him being questioned by the Police.

The question of whether or not any such “conspiracy” existed (to exaggerate the severity of Lord Janner’s supposed “dementia”) must depend on carefully establishing the facts, not least with respect to the sequence of events.

Possible misconduct in public office by Keith Vaz MP and others

The cover-up of alleged child abuse by Lord Janner goes back at least as far as 1991.

One element of that cover-up is the behaviour of Mr. Justice Jowitt.

My letter of 17th November 2014 to Chief Constable Simon Cole summarises my concerns regarding suspected perversion of the course of justice by Mr. Justice Jowitt.

See

for a copy of my letter to Chief Constable Cole.

In 1991 a number of Members of Parliament acted in such a way so as to facilitate the cover-up of or the discrediting of alleged child abuse by Lord Janner.

Among Members of Parliament who made seemingly unsubstantiated statements of support for the then Greville Janner MP in the House of Commons were Keith Vaz MP, Alex Carlile MP and David Ashby MP.

I have looked at the statements made by MPs in the context of the Crown Prosecution Service guidelines with respect to the common law offence of Misconduct in Public Office.

It seems to me that, at least arguably, all of the four criteria with respect to Misconduct in Public Office are satisfied:

  1. Is the person concerned holder of a public office? Yes the Guidelines includes Member of Parliament as a public office.
  2. Were the actions / failures done as a holder of a public office? Yes, Mr. Vaz and others made statements of support for the then Greville Janner MP in the House of Commons
  3. Was the neglect or misconduct wilful? It seems to me that it was. It seems to me to be a nonsense to postulate that Mr. Vaz and others made statements, in effect, exonerating the then Mr. Janner without intending to do so. It seems to me that none of the MPS who made statements supporting the then Greville Janner MP had sufficient knowledge of the facts to support him unequivocally in the way that they did.
  4. Is there reasonable explanation or excuse? It seems to me to be doubtful that there is.

I can find no legal precedent for considering statements of Members of Parliament in the context of the common law offence of Misconduct in Public Office.

It occurs to me that, in the absence of precedent, your reflex response might be to reject the proposition.

However I ask you carefully to consider whether the facts justify the charging of Mr. Vaz and others with a count of misconduct in public office. I refer you to the Crown Prosecution Guidance on the matter.

With respect to Mr. Vaz (but not the other named MPs) there is evidence suggestive of a further count of misconduct in public office. At least that is my view.

Mr. Vaz attempted in 1991 to change the Law so as to conceal allegations of child abuse made in open court.

Mr. Vaz is an intelligent man and could not have been unaware that the effect of such concealment of child abuse allegations would be to protect those gulity of such offences (as well as those who might be innocent).

It seems to me that Mr. Vaz’s proposal was a serious breach of public trust.

I would expect a Member of Parliament to seek to expose child abusers.

In 1991 Mr. Vaz sought to protect child abusers by making it a requirement of the Law to conceal allegations of child abuse.

I ask you carefully to consider the facts and, with the benefit of counsel’s opinion. To come to a judgement as to whether papers on Mr. Vaz’s conduct should be passed to the Crown Prosecution Service for consideration.

Possible concealment of child abuse by Keith Vaz MP

In the preceding section I have raised the question of possible misconduct in public office in 1991 by Mr. Vaz as if it had no context.

However, there are reasons for potential concern regarding Mr. Vaz’s past which may, following thorough investigation, be indicative of a much more serious pattern of misconduct on the part of Mr. Vaz.

Let me explain.

In the early 1980s Mr. Vaz was employed successively as a solicitor for Richmond Council and as a senior solicitor for Islington Council.

I understand that Mr. Vaz’s responsibilities included child protection.

You will, I imagine, be aware of allegations that children were supplied from a Richmond Council children’s home to the notorious Elm Guest House and that children were trafficked from Islington Council children’s homes to Jersey and other locations to be abused.

I contacted Mr. Vaz in July 2014 and subsequently to ask him to answer questions which naturally arise with respect to his past roles as solicitor for Richmond Council and senior solicitor for Islington Council.

To the best of my knowledge Mr. Vaz has maintained a stony silence on these matters.

One way of summarising some of the areas of concern regarding Mr. Vaz’s conduct is to pose the following two questions:

  1. Did Mr. Vaz, while a public servant (in his roles as solicitor for Richmond Council and Islington Council), at any time act in such a way as would have concealed from public knowledge of trafficking of children for those children to be abused?
  2. Were the actions or failures to act by Mr. Vaz such as to impede or obstruct in the 1980s allegations of chld abuse with respect to children in homes run by Richmond Council and Islington Council?

I ask you carefully to consider whether the circumstantial evidence regarding Mr. Vaz’s conduct is sufficient to justify and/or require formal investigation by the Police.

If there were failures on the part of Mr. Vaz it seems to me that the question of misconduct in public office arises.

If Mr. Vaz acted in such a way as to impede criminal investigation of alleged child abuse then the question of perversion of the course of justice and/or conspiracy to pervert the course of justice arises.

Jurisdiction would normally lie with the Metropolitan Police Service, given the location of Richmond and islington.

I ask you carefully to consider whether this is properly a matter for investigation by the Metropolitan Police Service or by Operation Hydrant, headed by Chief Constable Simon Bailey or, probably better, investigation by a Police force external to England and Wales (see later in this letter).

Possible conspiracy to defraud H.M. Revenue & Customs

In this section I return to questions which relate to Lord Janner’s “dementia”.

Media reports refer to arrangements having been made after Lord Janner’s diagnosis of “dementia” to, if reports are correct, transfer property or other assets belonging to Lord Janner to other parties.

If Lord Janner was demented the question arises as to whether at the time he signed the relevant document(s) he did so with sufficient mental capacity for any such transfer to be lawful.

The possibility arises, at least in my mind, that there has been a conspiracy to defraud H.M. Revenue and Customs.

As mentioned earlier in this letter clarification of the facts regarding the sequence and nature of reported events is not possible for a concerned member of the public.

I ask you carefully to consider whether such matters are properly a matter for investigation by the Metropolitan Police Service.

If not, I ask you to consider whether you should draw these questions to the attention of an appropriate person in H.M. Revenue and Customs for assessment and possible investigation.

Counsel’s opinion(s)

In seeking any opinion of counsel on these complex matters I ask that you give very careful consideration to the matter of conflicts of interest.

You may already be aware that Lord Janner, Lord Carlile, Mr. Vaz and Lord Janner’s son are all, so I understand, current or past members of the legal profession.

As a result there will be at least the appearance of a relationship with many individuals who could otherwise provide counsel’s opinion to the Metropolitan Police Service on this matter.

Conduct of Keith Vaz MP – Conflicts of interest

You may be aware that Keith Vaz MP has recently been re-elected as Chair of the House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee.

In that role Mr. Vaz has, among many other functions, an oversight role regarding the conduct of the Metropolitan Police Service.

It seems to me that the Metropolitan Police cannot credibly investigate Mr. Vaz given his present supervisory role with respect to the Metropolitan Police.

I ask you to give that matter very careful consideration so as to avoid any appearance of conflict of interest with respect to any action that you take or any decision you reach to take no action.

It seems to me that any Police force in England and Wales, including the National Crime Agency, would similar have a potential conflict of interest.

However, subject to any considerations unknown to me. it seems to me that Police Scotland and the Police Service of Northern Ireland are not under the supervision of Mr. Vaz’s committee.

My present preference would be that the Police Service for Northern Ireland investigates matters relating to Mr. Vaz given that Chief Constable Sir Stephen House of Police Scotland was formerly a senior officer in the Metropolitan Police.

Distribution

This letter is a public document.

A copy of it is on my UK Child Abuse Inquiry blog here:


I am copying the letter to the Child Abuse Inquiry so that the Inquiry may assess whether any or all of the matters raised in this letter fall within the Terms of Reference of the Child Abuse Inquiry and whether any of the matters raised require to be investigated by the Police team headed by Chief Constable Simon Bailey.

I also intend copying this letter to Keith Vaz MP. Should Mr. Vaz have a reasonable explanation with respect to the possible counts of misconduct in public office then, if I understand the Crown Prosecution Service guidelines correctly, any need for the Metropolitan Police Service (or another Police force) to investigate the enumerated counts of suspected misconduct in public office might be avoided.

I am copying this letter to Kathryn Hudson, Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, for information.

Actions requested of you

In the first instance I ask that you promptly acknowledge receipt of this letter. (Hard copy preferred)

Following careful consideration of the concerns that I raise in this letter I ask that you do the following:
  1. Give careful consideration as to whether any or all of the concerns that I raise with you should be recorded as crimes or crime-related incidents.
  2. Investigate the facts of the events of 2nd and 3rd June 2014 and, in the light of those facts, consider whether further investigation is required
  3. Give careful consideration as to whether any criminal offence may have been committed by Lord Janner or those closely associated with him of the nature described earlier in this letter
  4. Give careful consideration to the actions of David Ashby MP, Alex Carlile MP and Keith Vaz MP as to whether their seemingly unevidenced defence of Lord Janner in 1991 may constitute the common law offence of Misconduct in Public Office
  5. Investigate the actions and/or failures to act of Keith Vaz MP while employed successively by Richmond Council and Islington Council as a solicitor with responsibility for child protection  and/or consider whether that is a matter which should be referred by you to the team headed by Chief Constable Simon Bailey set up by the National Police Chiefs’ Council to assist the Child Abuse Inquiry.
  6. Consider whether all matters relating to Keith Vaz MP should, due to the potential appearance of conflicts of interest, be referred for assessment by a Police force external to England and Wales
  7. Carefully consider the circumstantial evidence relating to reported transfer of property by Lord Janner and consider whether the Metropolitan Police should investigate and/or whether it is a matter which you have a duty to refer to H.M. Revenue and Customs for assessment and/or investigation



Some aspects of this matter will take any honest Police officer a significant amount of time properly to assess and investigate.

I ask that as progess allows you keep me informed as to any decision you take and the basis for such decision(s).

Yours sincerely



(Dr) Andrew Watt

Cc
Child Abuse Inquiry
Chief Constable Simon Bailey
Keith Vaz MP
Kathryn Hudson, Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards

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