Trawling: further update

There has been a considerable response to the child sex abuse/trawling article referred to here on February 8 and published in Inside Time.
I understand the piece has been reproduced by campaigners in Scotland (where there is a great deal of controversy surrounding a former approved school) and presented to members of Glasgow City Council, Scottish MPs and MSPs.
I have been contacted by two prisoners claiming to have information about cases. This is being passed to lawyers working on the Historic Abuse Appeals Panel.
A friend of a man serving his time in Usk Prison also contacted me. I haven’t seen the details of his case but it appears he was supported by some schools at which he had worked. “I have known few, if any, more professional and decent people during my career in education,” said the friend. “There are so many things that just do not add up in his case.”
I also received the following from Gail Stack, of North West FACT, who described the article as “a well illustrated and documented review”.
She said it was “unquestionably right” that every effort was made to “eliminate any opportunity for evil and sinister people to gain access to children”.
But she claimed there were questions about the quality of evidence in historic cases, saying that by their nature they required “the jury to perform mental gymnastics”.
It is a case of “guilty until proven innocent”, she concluded.
I’ve said before that these cases are exceptionally difficult to investigate. They are also difficult to review, discuss and write about.
Our initial feeling is one of revulsion at the alleged crime and we understandably feel sympathy for the victim and admiration for the investigating detectives.
But so many who have looked closer at these cases feel something quite different now: a deep sense of concern that justice might not have been done.
That is why it is so important to ask questions.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: