‘Several failures’ in responses to child sexual abuse allegations made against Lord Janner, report says

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‘Several failures’ in responses to child sexual abuse allegations made against Lord Janner, report says


Children who claimed to have been abused by the late Labor peer Lord Janner have been “abandoned by institutional failures”, according to a report.

The Independent Child Sexual Abuse Inquiry (IICSA) found that children in the care of Leicestershire County Council had “not received the attention they deserved” and that there had been ” multiple failures ”in responses to allegations of child sexual abuse against the politician.

The police appeared “reluctant” to investigate the allegations and “close the investigations” without continuing all ongoing investigations, according to Professor Alexis Jay.

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Lord Janner was a Labor MP from 1970 to 1997

The report states that the Leicestershire Police Operation Magnolia, which examined the allegations against Lord Janner in 1999, was “insufficient” and apparently involved a “deliberate decision” to withhold statements from key Crown Prosecution Service (CPS ).

He said children in care were ignored because they were “mistrusted”, that failure to deliver statements was “serious and inexcusable” and crucial information was “slipped under the rug”.

However, the report says there is “no evidence” that the police were “unduly influenced or put under inappropriate pressure not to pursue Lord Janner’s allegations”.

The inquest heard from 33 alleged victims, with allegations against Lord Janner spanning three decades.

He said the Leicestershire Country Council had a ‘dismal record of failures’ with regard to the sexual abuse of children in its care in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, and a number of council staff were concerned about Lord Janner’s association with a dependent child. .

The council told the inquiry it “accepts that it has not taken adequate action in response to these concerns.”

The investigation does not focus on whether Lord Janner is innocent or guilty, but on institutional responses to the allegations against him and whether he has been treated differently because of his public profile.

Lord Janner died in 2015, after being found unfit to stand trial for a series of sexual offenses against boys dating back 50 years.

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Lord Greville Janner died in 2015, aged 87

The former Leicester MP, who was suspended from the Labor Party, faced 22 child sex abuse charges against nine different boys, which were said to have taken place between the 1960s and 1980s.

He has consistently denied the allegations made against him.

Lord Janner’s son Daniel Janner QC previously said: “The innocence of my late father is not disputed in this report. He offers no proof of guilt.

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Lord Janner’s daughter says accusations caused “irreversible damage” to her father’s health

“He himself suffered from institutional failures because he was denied the opportunity (in court) before his dementia to defend himself and challenge false allegations.

“The fact that all civil claims against his estate have been withdrawn or abandoned speaks for itself. “

The report makes no specific recommendations, but says the investigation raises questions about “deference to powerful individuals” and the “need for institutions to have clear policies and procedures on how to respond to allegations of abuse. sex on children ”.

A spokesperson for the PSC said: “The PSC has acknowledged past failings in the way the allegations against Lord Janner have been handled.

“There remains a sincere regret that opportunities were missed to bring these allegations to a jury.

“We have fully cooperated with the investigation and will carefully review its findings. “

Simon Cole, Leicestershire Police Chief, said: ‘On behalf of the Leicestershire Police, first of all, I would like to reiterate the sincere apologies I offered in February 2020 to any complainant whose allegations during Previous police inquiries into Lord Janner have not been answered. as they should have been.

Lord Greville Janner leaves the Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, Great Britain, August 14, 2015. An aging member of the UK House of Lords has been ordered to appear in court on charges of serious sex crimes on children, despite defense lawyers claiming he was too ill to attend.  Janner, 87, a former Labor MP and former chairman of the Council of British Jewish Members of Parliament, is charged with 22 offenses in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. He denies the charges.  REUTERS / Toby Melville
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Lord Janner leaves Westminster Magistrates’ Court on August 14, 2015

“It is fair and correct to say that the allegations could and should have been investigated further, and Lord Janner could and should have been prosecuted before 2015.”

He said Operation Enamel, which ultimately resulted in the indictment of Lord Janner, “then demonstrated, over six years ago, a clear commitment and determination to pursue allegations of current or historical abuse. against children ”.

He added: “This unwavering commitment continues today. Reports of abuse are taken very seriously by the Leicestershire Police.

“I would like to once again underline the bravery and frankness of the complainants who contributed to this long and difficult investigation which must have caused a lot of anxiety and suffering.

“With them in mind, the Leicestershire Police will carefully study the report and consider it for any action or improvement. ”

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