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Audio: Stuart Syvret on Jersey Child Abuse
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atm



Joined: 16 Apr 2006
Posts: 3861

PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 12:57 am    Post subject: Audio: Stuart Syvret on Jersey Child Abuse Reply with quote

Quote:


The Next Level Show - 10th April, 2009

Guest: Senator Stuart Syvret http://stuartsyvret.blogspot.com/

Audio Interview in this thread HERE



Quote:



Bricked-up cellar found at Jersey care home


Discovery supports claims of punishment room
NSPCC receives more than 100 calls alleging abuse


Helen Pidd
The Guardian
Thursday February 28 2008

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2008/feb/28/ukcrime.childprotection




Lenny Harper (right), the deputy chief officer of the States of Jersey police, emerges from a forensics tent at the Haut De La Garenne youth hostel. Photograph: Leon Neal/AFP

Police excavating the Jersey care home where a child's remains were found discovered a subterranean chamber yesterday which tallied with victims' accounts of an underground punishment room.

Forensic examiners who broke in to the bricked-up cellar beneath Haut de la Garenne found a room which is not featured on any architectural plans and was hidden beneath two concrete floors - one more than the blueprints showed. It measures around 3.5 by 3.5 metres and is about 2.5 metres high.

The sniffer dog which guided police to the child's remains found under a corridor in the home on Saturday showed an "extremely strong reaction" to one area within the rubble-filled cellar, said Lenny Harper, the police officer in charge.

The next step was to excavate the area, which would be a slow process because access was blocked by earth and debris.

Three victims had told police there may well be human remains buried under and around the home.

Also found in the room was what Harper described as "at least one item of interest - something that witnesses have told us about", which he said had been mentioned by victims as always having been in the room where they were put in solitary confinement and abused. He refused to elaborate for operational reasons.

Harper said that in addition to the new "hot spot" identified by the dog, there were a further five areas of interest which would be dug up within the Victorian building, which was converted into a youth hostel after the home was closed in 1986. He said that police had received more than 70 calls from people offering information about life at the home since the skull was found at the weekend. More than 160 victims had reported their abuse and there were around 40 suspects.

The NSPCC said it had received more than 100 calls reporting allegations of abuse on the island, with more than a third coming in the past two days.

This week one victim, who did not want to be named, said she had a "vivid memory" of being put in a punishment room for the tiniest transgression when she was sent to the home aged 13 in 1972.

The woman, now 49, said: "I was sent there if I slipped up in any way - not eating all of my dinner, looking at one of the staff in a funny way, basically any excuse they could find.


"On one occasion when I ran away from the home I was caught and thrown into the punishment room by two male staff. They ripped the clothes from my body, threw me to the floor and pulled my hair. When I fought back a female staff member gave me a huge dose of Valium that knocked me out and sexually assaulted me."


A picture was starting to emerge yesterday of the wide range of high-level suspects in the case.

Graham Power, the chief officer of states of Jersey police, said: "From inquiries so far it appears that some of the possible suspects were in positions of authority in the public sector at the time of the alleged abuse. The focus of the inquiry is into historical allegations.

"We are not at this time dealing with any allegations relating to persons currently in elected office. So far as other suspects are concerned, some are retired and some are still employed in various capacities."



Quote:


Police fear abuse horror

CHARLES MIRANDA in London

February 28, 2008 12:40pm

http://www.news.com.au/mercury/story/0,22884,23290110-921,00.html

A SUSPECTED torture chamber has been found below an old children's home [sic] on the British [sic] isle of Jersey where police expect to find a mass grave.

Dozens of detectives descended on the British [sic] isle of Jersey in the English Channel earlier this week after they found the skeleton of a young girl.

Officers were led to the children's home of Haut de la Garenne during a probe into reports of a paedophile ring operating on the island.

After they appealed for help late last year they were inundated with 140 potential victims, some living now as far away as Australia, detailing horror stories of sexual abuse, depravation and torture from the 1950s through to the 1980s.


Yesterday, police gained access to a subterranean room described as a "chamber" that did not appear on any site plans.

A police cadaver dog [sic], that made the discovery of the girl's skeleton buried under a corridor, gave his handlers a strong reaction suggesting he had found human remains or blood.

At least six "hotspots" had been identified and ground radar and digging tools have been brought in.


Authorities expect to reveal the worst case of child abuse in British history.

The room was about 3.6m square, bricked up from the front, and filled with rock, clay and soil.

A second room, about the same size, was still blocked off but police said the way it had been bricked up appeared suspicious.

Four years ago workmen renovating the 1860s orphanage and prison for delinquent children found shackles, leg irons and wooden stocks. They also found bones and cothing but at the time, both finds were dismissed by police and the evidence destroyed. The Government has now ordered an inquiry into claims the abuse had been covered up for years. Police have confirmed at least 40 suspects, some of whom had worked at the stone mansion, were under investigation.

The story has captivated the UK with numerous former victims now coming forward with sickening stories of having been drug and abused by adults who visited the home late at night and chose children at random for abuse. Others told of being locked in solitary confinement in a windowless pit for weeks on end.

"The cellar is exactly as some of the witnesses who made statements described, there is some corroboration for the features that they described in there," Deputy police chief Lenny Harper said yesterday.

Archeaologists [sic] are expected to go into the hidden rooms first to follows the dog's lead [sic] before police move in [sic].

"The staff knew how to pick the weak ones," 49-year-old Pamela said yesterday. "The things that happened there are indescribable - the most cruel, sadistic and evil acts you could think of."

Peter Hannaford was orphaned at birth and spent 12 years at the home. The now 59-year old head of a workers union said he was abused in the 1950s and 1960s.

"The abuse was anything from rape and torture. It happened every night and it happened to everyone. I was scared to go to bed."







Quote:



The 'dungeon of torture' in Jersey begins to give up its secrets

By REBECCA CAMBER and ARTHUR MARTIN
updated at 23:10pm on 27th February 2008

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=521531&in_page_id=1770

The full horror of what may lie beneath the "Colditz" care home began to emerge last night as police uncovered a double dungeon where children were said to be taken for torture.

Detectives feared more bodies would be found after a dog trained to pinpoint human remains went berserk as officers smashed into the bricked-up cellar.



Police continue to search the Haut de la Garenne children's home where they have already discovered a child's remains and a double dungeon

The full horror of what may lie beneath the "Colditz" care home began to emerge last night as police uncovered a double dungeon where children were said to be taken for torture.

Detectives feared more bodies would be found after a dog trained to pinpoint human remains went berserk as officers smashed into the bricked-up cellar.

When they ripped up the floor of Haut de la Garenne, detectives were stunned to find not one, but two sealed underground chambers under a double layer of concrete.

Sources said a bathtub secured to the dungeon floor was of "significant Interest" to the sniffer dog.

Some victims have described the bathtub during accounts of abuse and part of the torture children were allegedly subjected to.

Police are looking for torture instruments after builders who worked at the home in 2003 when it was redeveloped into a youth hostel said they found ankle shackles.





The grim development came as Jersey's chief of police revealed that leading figures in the island's public sector are suspected of carrying out child abuse at the home over half a decade.

More than 160 victims have come forward to report abuse at the former children's home. Many told police they were taken to a dark place underground, claiming they were locked up, drugged, raped and beaten.

The secrets of Haut de la Garenne, known locally as Colditz, could emerge as one of the worst child-abuse scandals on British soil.

A skull and the remains of a child were found in the grounds at the weekend following an inquiry into abuse at the home.



Yesterday when officers broke into the cellar buried under two floors, a sniffer dog registered an "extremely strong reaction", identical to the one he gave when the child's remains were found.

Adjacent to the 12ft square and 7ft high cell, police found a chamber the same size that had also been filled with rocks and soil.

Forensic experts will trawl through the debris for human remains in an operation likely to take weeks. They say the bathtub backs up many victims' accounts.

Deputy police chief Lenny Harper said: "We put the dog into the cellar. The reaction was evident. Some of the bricking-up appears suspicious but there could be an innocent explanation for it.

"The initial look at what is in there certainly corroborates some of the victims. But there is a lot of rock, soil and clay down there."

Yesterday police said members of Jersey's establishment are being investigated over the abuse.

Allegations have also been made against a "wide spectrum" of staff including carers, health workers and members of children services.

Police chief Graham Power said: "Possible suspects were in positions of authority in the public sector at the time of the alleged abuse.

"It's certain a small number of people who are being named did have some official connection with the Jersey establishment. It would be astonishing if there were not.


"Children were held in a dark place – we think that's the cellar. Children talk about being kept locked in a deep dark place and being brought out from time to time for the purpose of abuse.



"They were subjected to serious physical and sexual abuse. If the allegations are true, that's torture enough."


Police believe paedophiles visited and worked there over a period of up to 30 years until it closed in 1986.

But Mr Power does not think there was a paedophile ring.

He added: "People unconnected with the home may have been involved in the abuse.

"We are getting a lot of similar episodes of people with a similar inclination.

I don't think we are talking about an organised conspiracy."

More than 1,000 children may [sic] have lived [sic] in the 60-bed home from the early Fifties.


The Victorian building was formerly a centre for children in care or with behaviour problems.




Strange how this gets no traction on the Fake sites either.

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atm



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 3:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A town called malice.

Quote:



Haut de la Garenne: Your experiences

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/talking_point/7267267.stm

Police in Jersey are continuing their search at the children's home Haut de la Garenne, where a child's remains were found.
Here, two BBC News website readers reflect on their experiences of the home.

Both wish to remain anonymous. The first had a couple of brief stays in Haut de la Garenne when he lived in Jersey in the seventies. He now lives abroad. The second website reader used to visit the children's home regularly, and witnessed the cruelty and abuse of the children who were sent there. Here are their stories:



ANONYMOUS
There were two dreadful places for me - school and home. I spent two brief periods at Haut de la Garenne, and thought it was going to be a relief for me. But it wasn't.


The culture of the place was hostile, deliberately creating a climate of fear. The only way to survive was to try and stay unseen


It felt unsafe. At Haut de la Garenne, physical abuse was a regular occurrence. It was common currency to be hit about the head.
School was the same - corporal punishment was the routine for those who, like myself, were not 'compliant' or willingly following rigid rules.

For myself, there was no-one or nowhere to go to, and it seemed that the entire adult population were doing all that they could to beat me down, physically, mentally and emotionally.

Jersey is an island - there is nowhere to run to, and I ran away several times, but the reality was there was nowhere to go. There was no escape.

ALL the institutions failed me. The school, which should have been a sanctuary from home, was a place I dreaded to go.

The local hospital, where I received attention on more than one occasion, never reported anything untoward to the local police or the equivalent of social services. The local police, and in particular the local 'honorary' police, ever keen to ensure that these matters were resolved behind closed doors, never raised an alarm.

Everything that could be done by those in authority to normalise a terrible situation was done, and more than once I was given a thick ear for trying to stand up and make complaints about actions that today would be described as assault.

Life was very hierarchical in Jersey in the seventies. Like the famous milk - as long as the double cream on the surface wasn't disturbed, no-one cared what troubles there were going on underneath.

I was very upset when I heard the recent news. I can't remember the faces of any of the children from Haut de la Garenne. But I can clearly remember some faces of those 'responsible.'

I miss aspects of a very beautiful island, but sadly, memories of the wonderful nature of Jersey are overshadowed by the dreadful memories of the awful nature of some human beings.





ANONYMOUS, Jersey

"We thought we were living through hell when we were living at home, but that was nothing compared to what we were living up there".

That was something I heard about Haut de la Garenne, and just about sums it all up.

I used to visit that home in the seventies on an almost daily basis. What I saw was cruel. Haut de la Garrene at the time I knew it was not an orphanage and I never knew it to be. Children were placed there because they were not wanted and they amalgamated remand children with children who had been removed from a home through no fault of their own.

My best friend was in there because her mother had tried to gas herself and the children. Once the home had them they were separated within the home. There were huge families, up to 11 children from one family.

Many of these children are around today and many are not. The cruelty they suffered - mental abuse, hunger and now we know in some cases sexual abuse has affected so many lives. Some took their own lives.


Many islanders say it should be forgotten, it was a long time ago. Maybe for them, but the memories and damage that home did has lived on with hundreds of children on this island


Haut de la Garrene was divided into separate homes inside. Each unit had a house parent - these house parents in some cases were little more than children themselves, some being as young as 17.
There was no cuddles, no love shown towards these children. They were names and numbers and society didn't care. If a child ran away they were rarely looked for - the consensus of opinion was that they will come back when they are hungry.

It was thought that some ran away and jumped on the mail boats which left from St Helier. Did they? No-one knew any different. These children were not wanted. No-one bothered to look for them.

Many children never spoke out because it was accepted that this was the life for them. Those who spoke out weren't listened to.

Many islanders say it should be forgotten, it was a long time ago. Maybe for them, but the memories and the damage that home did had lived on with hundreds of children on this island. Some still, some not.



Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/1/hi/talking_point/7267267.stm

Published: 2008/02/27 17:12:20 GMT

© BBC MMVIII


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More work in progress.

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Rumpl4skn



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PostPosted: Thu Feb 28, 2008 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good stuff, atm.

Interesting parallels to the McMartin Preschool case in Los Angeles in the 90's. Stories of torture in underground tunnels that were later proven by excavations, and still denied to this day in the MSM.

The McMartin case was supposedly about child prostitution and ritualistic abuse, and children who testified gave alarmingly realistic accounts of having dealt with severed limbs of other children, and described human viscera in detail no child should be aware of.

As in most ops, 2 "lead parents" stepped to the fore to become the group spokesmen, and those 2 then proceeded to damage the case beyond repair, with wild, unsubstantiated claims. This left the actual claims in the dustbin.

Results of the excavation under the (by then) leveled building, paid for by one of the parents who refused to give up, from Dave McGowan's "The Politics of Serial Murder":

Dave McGowan wrote:
The project unearthed not one but two tunnel complexes as well as previously unrecognized structural features which defied logical explanation. Both tunnel complexes conformed to locations and functional descriptions established by children's reports. One had been described as providing undetected access to an adjacent building on the east. The other provided outside access under the west wall of the building and contained within it an enlarged, cavernous artifact corresponding to children's descriptions of a 'secret room.'
Both the contour signature of the walls and the nature of recovered artifacts indicated that the tunnels had been dug by hand under the concrete slab floor after the construction of the building... Not only did the discovered features fulfill the research pre-qualifications as tunnels designed for human traffic, there was also no alternative or natural explanation for the presence of such features...
If the stories of the children were bogus fantasies, there is no excuse for the tunnels discovered under the school. If there really were tunnels, there is no excuse for the glib dismissal of any and all of the complaints of the children and their parents.
This investigation was completed before the McMartin trials concluded, and yet this devastating evidence was never presented in court by the prosecution team. The existence of this detailed report—complete with photographs and maps of the tunnel complex—was known to the local and national press, but it was never reported. To this day, it is denied that any tunnels ever existed under the McMartin Preschool.

Yes... only conspiracy nutters fall for such critically detailed, unreported evidence. Confused

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"No matter what happens, ever... there's ALWAYS at least one reason. And the top reason is ALWAYS money."
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atm



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 7:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More to come.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

atm wrote:
Quote:




Jersey police make 'significant finds' in cellar

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/jersey-police-make-significant-finds-in-cellar-789337.html

By Jerome Taylor in Jersey

Friday, 29 February 2008

Police digging in the cellar of the former children's home in Jersey at the centre of a major child abuse and possible murder investigation said they have made two "significant finds" since excavations began two days ago.

The island's deputy police chief, Lenny Harper, confirmed that both the items have been described by some of the victims who claim they were abused in the chamber underneath the Haut de la Garenne.

"They are significant because they are items that victims told us were there in the cellar... when the offences were committed," he told reporters. "They certainly help corroborate accounts given by victims."

Police have been searching the rambling care home since a child's skull was discovered under a concrete floor almost a week ago.

Mr Harper declined to elaborate on what the items were, but he did confirm that neither was thought to have been actively used to abuse victims.

He refused to be drawn on reports that the second item was a set of shackles which builders said they had also discovered while renovating the home five years ago. It is believed the first item, which was found on Wednesday, is a bath bolted to the floor.

Police also confirmed that former employees at the care home have claimed there is a third cellar somewhere on the property. A police spokesperson said: "We have been contacted by people who used to work here who have told us there may be a third chamber." It is understood that employees may be asked to help police locate it.

Police forensic experts also spent much of yesterday afternoon using a digger to excavate a large section of earth at the back of the house. Mr Harper said the area measured approximately 15 yards by 20 yards and was one of at least six areas in which a sniffer dog, specially trained to locate human remains, had shown interest.

Police have made no attempt yet to access the second room adjacent to the cellar that was discovered on Wednesday. A specialist archaeologist and anthropologist continued sifting through the rubble inside the first cellar, where the sniffer dog has also indicated human remains may lie. Mr Harper described the search as a "slow and methodical process" that is likely to take weeks.

Mr Harper said he was in "no hurry" to arrest any of the more than 40 suspects identified by police, but said there was no doubt that arrests would be made.

Only one person, Gordon Wateridge, aged 76, a former warden at the home, has been charged in connection with the investigation so far.



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 6:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:


Jersey police discover trapdoor at Haut de la Garenne home

From Times Online
February 29, 2008

David Brown of the Times in Jersey, and Fran Yeoman

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article3461344.ece



Police investigating claims of sexual abuse and possible murders at a Jersey children’s home today found a trapdoor above what appears to be an underground torture chamber.

The improvised entrance was discovered this morning in the floorboards above the two-roomed cellar where police had earlier found a pair of shackles and a large concrete bath.

Lenny Harper, deputy chief officer of Jersey Police, said that the trapdoor matched the description given by abuse victims who claim they had been taken down into a “dark pit” at the Haut de la Garenne home.

Two more former residents have given police details of “serious sexual practices” at the home. Police are investigating allegations of abuse from more than 160 victims involving 40 suspects from the 1960s to the home's closure in 1986.

Detectives are also investigating reports that bones have been found in the field behind the home, which is now used as a youth hostel.


Mr Harper said that they had begun removing topsoil from the field were members of the public had reported finding bones.

“The bones are still in the ground,” he said. “This is an agricultural community and they could be animal bones but we can’t be sure until we find them.”

Searches have also started at another adjoining field where a police sniffer dog indicated the presence of possible human remains last week.

Recently discovered plans of the home show that the current cellars were in fact the original ground floor of the building when it was constructed in the 1860s. It appears the building was changed about 90 years ago.


Vicky Coupland, the crime scene manager, said that the search teams were unable to stand upright in the cellar: "Not being able to work at a standing position makes life more uncomfortable," she said.

The trap door is in a bedroom off a corridor where a part of a human skull was discovered below several inches of concrete on Saturday.

Speaking outside Haut de la Garenne, Mr Harper said that police are "hoping to recruit 12 more investigators" to assist with the ever-expanding inquiry.

Asked about the mounting costs of the investigation, he said that Frank Walker, Jersey's Chief Minister, had assured him that "whatever resources are necessary to carry out this investigation will be granted".

Mr Harper also said that police officers from Jersey have travelled to the UK "on numerous occasions" over the last six months to interview victims and witnesses, including people who have themselves since been convicted of paedophilia.

Police are excavating seven sites at the former children’s home at Haut de la Garenne in the east of the island in an abuse inquiry intensified by the discovery last Saturday of a child’s skull.

The excavation has revealed two bricked-up chambers underground chambers. Work has started to clear one and officers have found “significant” items which they said corroborate victims’ claims of being abused and locked in solitary confinement.

Police are also searching for a third chamber after being contacted by a former member of the care home staff and have started a new dig in a field behind the main building.


Victims have claimed the rooms were used for abuse and have described being raped, drugged and flogged.

Last night, a couple who were employed at the home from 1971 to 1984 said they had “nothing to hide” and would help police with their inquiries.

Tony and Morag Jordan, of Kirriemuir, in Angus, Scotland, worked as house parents at Haut de la Garenne. The couple released a statement through their lawyer, Ken Glass, of solicitors

Blackadders in Dundee, which read: “Tony and Morag Jordan were employed between 1971 and 1984 at Haut de la Garenne children’s home as house parents.

“The home at the time housed approximately 60 children with physical, emotional and mental difficulties. During their time, Mr and Mrs Jordan found their stay to be a rewarding experience in helping disadvantaged children to overcome their problems.

“They noticed nothing untoward in relation to the care of the children in their charge. They will be making contact with the authorities to offer any assistance that they might give to these investigations.

“They do no wish to say anything further at this time in case it might compromise the police investigations. They look forward to giving such assistance as they can to the police. They have nothing to hide and will co-operate fully with the authorities.”


I feel a chill.

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kathy



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 7:15 pm    Post subject: Suspects Are Establishment Figures Reply with quote

Nice work ATM, thanks for keeping us up to date on this story.

Quote:
Suspects Are Establishment Figures

Suspects in Jersey's child abuse scandal come from the very highest echelons of the tax haven's society.


Home at centre of abuse scandal

They include high-profile Government officials working at the time of the alleged sex attacks and torture at Haut de la Garenne care home.

Jersey news station Channel TV has revealed 13 names - but police would not confirm whether any of them were being interviewed as suspects or witnesses.

Lenny Harper, the Deputy Chief Officer of Jersey Police, would only say the 40 suspects in the scandal "come from all areas of island life".

He again stressed: "There is no evidence of any government cover-up."

But Sky News crime correspondent Martin Brunt said: "The question is how many are from high up in the Jersey establishment."

Jersey's former minister for health and social services, Senator Stuart Syvret, says there has been a "systemic failure in child care" on the island.

He has produced a "top-secret report" he claimed was evidence of senior government figures covering up sexual abuse at a school on the island.

Further details cannot be reported for legal reasons.

Mr Harper has said there are no plans to stop any suspects leaving the island.

But he added: "If they do leave the island then we will find them in due course."


Police chief Lenny Harper

The care home inquiry involves allegations dating back to the 1960s - with the majority of allegations taking place in the 1970s and 1980s.

Frank Walker, the island's Chief Minister, says no current government employees are the "subject of any police recommendation".

A couple who were employed at the home say they have "nothing to hide" and would help police with their inquiries.

Tony and Morag Jordan, now of Kirriemuir, in Angus, Scotland, worked as house parents at Haut de la Garenne from 1971 to 1984.

Notorious Jersey paedophile Edward Paisnel used to visit the home dressed as Father Christmas to give the children toys and sweets.

Paisnel, dubbed the Beast of Jersey, was jailed in 1971 after being convicted of 13 counts of assault, rape and sodomy. He died in 1994.
LINK


Links of interest:

HAUT DE LA GARENNE: INCORPORATION OF TRUST, APPOINTMENT OF ORIGINAL TRUSTEES, AND LEASE OF PROPERTY TO THE TRUST
LINK

Haut de la Garenne discovery - Counselling services available
http://www.gov.je/Health/HautdelaGarenneCounselling.htm
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atm



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Kathy. I fear this will go from bad to worse.

The World's a sad place nowadays.

Quote:


http://www.statesassembly.gov.je/documents/propositions/23901-10803.htm

The sad loss of Brian Le Feuvre, who died last year, and the resignation of Simon Cross for personal reasons, has resulted in the nomination of only seven of the original members as proposed Trustees of Haut de la Garenne.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 8:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

atm wrote:
Quote:


Cellar police sift through the past for abuse secrets

Island can no longer shrug off the horrifying disclosures from Haut de la Garenne

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2008/mar/01/childabuse.jersey/print

Ian Cobain in St Helier
The Guardian,
Saturday March 1 2008

Each morning this week, after pulling on boots, boiler suits and face masks, a handful of police officers descended into a small cellar with an eight-foot high ceiling and thick, foetid air. Sweating in the heat of their arc lights and trying to avoid kicking up clouds of dust, the officers picked their way through debris, examined the concrete floor and delicately removed bricks from an interior wall. Although they worked in teams, the officers' toils left them utterly drained.

Above ground correspondents and camera crews from as far as Washington and Berlin told their readers and viewers that the officers were attempting to discover whether more human remains had been concealed within Haut de la Garenne, the former children's home on Jersey where a sniffer dog had helped police locate the skull of a child.

As police burrowed deeper by the day, there was a growing realisation among Jersey men and women that they could unearth not only the remains of more children, but the truth about a genuinely horrific secret that has lain only half-hidden for decades.

Around the island there have long been whispered claims that children taken into care have suffered serious physical and sexual abuse at the hands of social services staff, and that other people, including government officials and police officers, have turned a blind eye. In the cellar at Haut de la Garenne this week the searching officers were clearly determined that a blind eye would be turned no longer.

Jersey has one of the highest per-capita incomes on earth, yet, to the outsider, few commodities appear to have greater value on the island than discretion.


The most cursory of conversations with islanders will reveal how much they cherish their privacy. When the Dean of Jersey, the Very Rev Robert Key, held a service after the skull was found his litany included the words: "From over-inquisitiveness, false sensationalism and prurient curiosity, Good Lord, deliver us."

The desire for discretion may be deeply embedded, but there are some who believe it contributed to the failure to halt the abuses at Haut de la Garenne.

Stuart Syvret, a Jersey senator, had been the health minister until last August when, shortly after voicing his concerns about the harsh punishment regime at another children's home, Greenfields, he lost a vote of confidence in the island's parliament.

He was not alone in losing his position: Simon Bellwood, a social worker at Greenfields, says he was sacked after expressing his concerns and is claiming unfair dismissal.

The following December, as the longest-serving senator, Syvret was entitled to give the traditional Christmas address to parliament. He attempted to offer a public apology to abused children. His microphone was switched off and his opponents walked out.

Unknown to Syvret and Bellwood, however, Jersey police were already investigating the island's whispers about abuse.

Senior officers accept that in the past too many complaints from abused children fell on deaf ears. But by 2006 the force's chief officer was a Yorkshireman, Graham Power, his deputy was an Ulsterman, Lenny Harper, and the head of child protection was a Glaswegian detective, Alison Fossey. All are outsiders, resolved to bring child abusers to justice.

Jersey is a tiny state, 12 miles long and six miles wide, with a population of around 90,000 and a police force of little more than 240. Power says some of the suspects are influential figures within Jersey society. "It's certain a small number of people who are being named did have some official connection with the Jersey establishment," he said this week. He quickly added: "It would be astonishing if there were not - this is a small island where many people are in the establishment."

Power, Harper and Fossey selected a small team of officers and support staff, including some from England and Scotland. Few people were informed, and the investigation was kept secret for more than a year.

Police had become concerned at the number of sexual crimes committed by volunteers at the sea cadet unit in the island's capital, St Helier. While re-examining those crimes detectives realised that a number of victims had also been assaulted elsewhere. Soon they were investigating events at Haut de la Garenne, Greenfields and another home, La Preference.

They are also thought to have looked at the island's leading independent school, Victoria College, whose head of mathematics was jailed for four years in April 1999 after admitting a series of indecent assaults.

Before police revealed the existence of the investigation last November they set up telephone helplines for victims, staffed - in England - by police and officials from the NSPCC. The investigation took police to Australia and Thailand.

Before long there was a list of 40 suspects.

Not every victim is coming forward, however. This week the Guardian met a man who spent several years in Haut de la Garenne during the 1980s after being taken from his abusive parents. Gerry - not his real name - said that after the home closed in 1986 he went to the education authority's offices to confront a man who he believes raped his sister while she was at a different institution. "When I saw him and warned him not to touch her again the police were called. They moved me on but they did nothing about the rape."

Harper concedes that abused children were not treated well by police and social services on Jersey but says this was a problem of the times.

Gerry has no intention of contacting police. "I don't want anything to do with them, with social workers, with anyone in authority. Growing up, people in authority were the people who abused you."

Other victims have not only contacted police, they are telling fellow islanders about their ordeals. Peter Hannaford, 59, one of Jersey's leading trade union officials, who was sent to Haut de la Garenne as an orphaned infant, waived his right to anonymity to tell the Jersey Evening Post how his earliest memories were of abuse. "Boys and girls were raped when I was there," he said. "The abuse was anything from rape and torture. It happened every night. And it happened to everyone. I was scared to go to bed."

Events of the past week brought back memories on Jersey of predatory paedophile Edward Paisnel, who raped and assaulted two dozen boys, girls and young women. Over a 13-year period from 1957 Paisnel broke into the children's family homes wearing a mask and wristbands studded with nails, and dragged them outside to be assaulted. One victim bore his child; police believe he was responsible for at least one unsolved murder.

After Paisnel's capture police realised he had had access to a number of children's homes on the island. His second wife was the daughter of the couple who ran the home at La Preference, and the Guardian has found photographs of him dressed in a santa suit and dangling children on his knee at Haut de la Garenne.

Paisnel was jailed for 30 years. But as harrowing as his crimes were, those at Haut de la Garenne may have been worse. The child's skull was discovered after three people told detectives that children's bodies had been buried at the home.

More bones were discovered in a field at the rear of the home yesterday, although it was unclear whether they were human or animal remains.

Pathologists are now re-examining bones, found in the building during renovation five years ago, which had been thought to have been from a dog. Identifying which children may have died is difficult, however, as the home's records are incomplete.

Shackles were found in the cellar, and Power says victims have spoken of "being kept locked in a deep, dark place and being brought out from time to time for the purpose of abuse". Asked whether the children spoke of torture, he replied: "It seems to me, if the allegations are true, that's torture enough."

Police were also digging in the grounds of the home yesterday, but their efforts remained concentrated upon the cellar, which victims say was divided into three rooms. Harper is convinced those rooms contain the evidence he needs to ensure the guilty are brought to justice, and is determined his officers will miss nothing, even if the search takes many days.

"After all," he says, "nothing in there is going to go away."



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PostPosted: Fri Feb 29, 2008 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

atm wrote:
atm wrote:
A too brief brief from the BBC. Curt, almost.

Quote:


BBC NEWS

Couple to help in Jersey inquiry


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/tayside_and_central/7270677.stm

A couple who worked at the former care home in Jersey at the centre of child abuse allegations have said they will help police with their inquiries.

Tom and Morag Jordan, from Kirriemuir in Angus, were house parents at Haut de la Garenne from 1971 to 1984.

They said they noticed nothing untoward during their time at the home and stressed they had "nothing to hide".

Officers are searching the property for human remains after the discovery of a child's skull on Saturday.

Some 160 people have now come forward claiming they were the victims of abuse at the home.

The inquiry into the allegations stretches over 40 years.

The Jordans have released a statement through their lawyer, Ken Glass.


It reads:

"Tony and Morag Jordan were employed between 1971 and 1984 at Haut de la Garenne children's home as house parents.

"The home at the time housed approximately 60 children with physical, emotional and mental difficulties.

They have nothing to hide and will cooperate fully with the authorities
Solicitor Ken Glass

"During their time, Mr and Mrs Jordan found their stay to be a rewarding experience in helping disadvantaged children to overcome their problems.

"They noticed nothing untoward in relation to the care of the children in their charge.

"They will be making contact with the authorities to offer any assistance that they might give to these investigations.

"They do no wish to say anything further at this time in case it might compromise the police investigations.

"They look forward to giving such assistance as they can to the police. They have nothing to hide and will cooperate fully with the authorities."

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/tayside_and_central/7270677.stm

Published: 2008/02/29 10:43:42 GMT

© BBC MMVIII


I need a new mouse so apologies for the weirdness of my posting protocol.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 01, 2008 7:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:



The Loving Grandad Who Seeks Justice For Jersey Home Kids


http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/2008/03/01/the-loving-grandad-who-seeks-justice-for-jersey-home-kids-86908-20336233/



DEPUTY police chief Lenny Harper has known tough times and tragedy in his personal life and his career.

But, as a proud grandad, he finds the horror of the unfolding scandal at Jersey's Haut de la Garenne childen's home particularly hard to bear.

Harper's son-in-law, Royal Military Police major Matthew Titchener, 32, was killed in Basra four years ago, as Harper's daughter, Raqual, was pregnant with the couple's second child.

Now four-year-old Angel is the apple of her grandfather's eye, highlighting even more how precious young lives are.

Mr Harper, 56, originally from Northern Ireland, served first with the RUC, then with the Met in London and for 12 years with Strathclyde, rising to the rank of superintendent.

His daughter Raqual is a serving officer in Strathclyde and has been a child protection officer.

Harper said: "What people forget is this is not a murder investigation at this stage. It is an investigation into alleged child abuse. It makes one wonder how adults can treat children as playthings.
"

There was a sadness in his eyes as he compared the lives of the victims with those of his own grandchildren, Angel and 11-year-old Mathieson.

Harper, who retires this year, has been told of a smear campaign against him because of his highprofile role in the Haut de la Garenne inquiry.

He said: "I have been told there is a smear campaign but there are always people with their own agenda."


His wife Christina said simply: "They should just get off my man.

Those people don't know how much of a caring person he is, trying to do his job the best he can."


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