In the mid-1990s,
a supermarket carrier bag full of correspondence and news cuttings was handed to the editor, Robert Edwards. The purpose of
which was for Mr Edwards to write a booklet on the subject of the contents, ultimately to be printed by the late South Coast
printer, Tony Hancock.
The correspondence consisted largely of letters exchanged between Frank Beck and Sid Chaney while the former
was detained at Her Majesty’s Pleasure, convicted for the sexual abuse of young boys. During this time, a vast amount
of statements had been collected, including the testimony from one 15 year old boy who had been regularly abused by Greville
Janner MP, including buggery in the swimming pool of a plush hotel.
Frank Beck had been a manager at a number of boys homes in
and around Leicester and became acquainted with Greville Janner, a Labour MP, whose constituency, Leicester West, was in the
area. Janner was predatory and got what he wanted. He believed himself to be above the law.
Beck claimed his innocence all along,
protesting that it was Janner who abused several boys in the homes managed by Beck. He had become the fall guy or patsy, he
said in these letters. The persecution of Frank Beck was to be a diversionary means of throwing everyone off the scent leading
to the real perpetrator, Greville Janner. This was the basis of Beck’s defence. Statements from abused boys backed up
Sid Chaney was active in the National Front in the 1970s and a notorious pederast himself. A Searchlight
booklet described Chaney as “unfit to be near any young boys”, which Chaney considered to be potentially
libellous. He had befriended Beck and wrote to him often.
An attempt by some of Chaney’s friends (also ex-far
right activists) at initiating litigation against Searchlight was met with a response from
Sonia Gable and her lawyers. Chaney’s friends were no match for this as they had opted to represent themselves, believing
it would save them the considerable cost of employing trained lawyers.
Chaney lost and was ordered by the judge
to pay costs, including those of the Searchlight Educational Trust of which Sonia Gable was a director. But I digress.
The contents of this
carrier bag revealed so much detail regarding Janner’s serial sexual abuse, with dates, places and the nature of the
sexual acts, that a case against him indicated irrefutable guilt. Letters to Chaney, included.
Mr Edwards got down
to writing the narrative of what was thought to be potential political dynamite.
Janner was also director of the Holocaust
Educational Trust and therefore in a position of eminence within the Jewish community. This is also of considerable
significance, given the powerful influence of Jewish organisations like the Board of Deputies. They always protect their own.
The booklet was eventually
printed by Tony Hancock in large quantities. Boxes of them were then placed into the hands of a team in East Kent prepared
to travel to Leicester and distribute them in nearly every address of social agencies, police stations, political parties,
religious groups and so on.
This was met with a virtual wall of silence, the police investigating in 1991 then dropping it soon after.
The exception was a scene in the House of Commons where a large number of MPs expressed solidarity with the dishonourable
pederast member and decided to draw a line under it.
The police were then very reluctant to pursue the matter further. This
was at a time when such matters were often brushed under the carpet. Jimmy Savile and a den of other predatory DJs had nothing
to fear, either.
It is only recently that the nature of police investigation into child sex abuse has taken a different and
more positive course.
When the Labour MP and well-known actor, Andrew Faulds died, among his possessions was a copy of the booklet.
This was to be handed over to the police on the strength of the nature of its contents.
The police investigations was launched
this time with more victims of Janner coming forward. Frank Beck had long since died in prison. The booklet was now taken
more seriously by the police, as are all sex cases.
No one came to Janner’s defence this time round apart from members
of his own family who claimed he did none of the filthy things he was accused of back in the 1990s. Well, they would say that,
The strength of the evidence against him meant the police were to go for Janner, now 86, but the Director
of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, pulled the rug under the police with the excuse that Janner was not fit to stand
trial owing to an illness, Alzheimer’s disease.This is how the DPP described reasons for letting Janner off the hook: “Lord Janner would not
be tried over child sex allegations as he was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease that
he could not understand any charges against him, let alone answer them”.
There is enough
evidence to charge him with 22 offences against children from 1969 to 1988. This is sexual abuse on a grand scale.
The claim by the DPP
that Janner is not all there does not hold water when we consider several recent actions taken by him. First of all, he transferred
ownership of a £2 million home near Hampstead Heath to his children, Laura Janner-Klausner, along with Marion Janner
and Daniel Janner. This strongly suggests that Janner anticipated being found guilty after a trial and thus he wanted to avoid
paying out hefty compensation to his many victims.
Now here’s the rub. According to a Land Registry official involved
in the transfer, the transfer document clearly stated the transfer was not for money with the conveyancing process requiring
Janner to be of sound mind. If this is the case then the DPP has made a whopping mistake. In other words a whitewash of a
man who holds a high position within the Jewish community who knows exactly what he is doing.Janner was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease
in 2009, six years ago. It is a degenerative disease but the sufferer’s condition can be stabilised with medication.
I would suggest he was sufficiently stabilised in
medication in the early
stages, sufficiently stabilised to perform other highly responsible tasks. For example, claiming more than £100,000
in parliamentary expenses and, very recently in April of this year, signing a letter to state he wished to continue in the
House of Lords.
All of these activities require a man to be of sound mind, even with the onset of Alzheimer’s disease
controlled by medication. Transferring a valuable property, incidentally the same property that was raided by the police in
2013, claiming inflated expenses from the House of Commons and signing a document to remain in the House of Lords require
an awareness of all that is going on around him.
His victims deserve a lot better, Alison Saunders.
A solicitor from Slater
and Gordon representing many of the victims of Janner’s perversion stated, “They will be asking how a man who
lacks the mental capacity to stand trial has sufficient capacity to give valid instructions to transfer his assets. It will
be of great concern to them to see what may be their last opportunity to achieve any sort of justice deliberately obstructed.
The court would be asked to look at any transactions undertaken in recent months which could constitute efforts to defraud
Further, another solicitor, Peter Garsden, representing other victims claimed, “Obviously, it puts
obstacles in the way. There must be suspicions about the intention of the transfer [the deeds of the £2 million home].
It would be looked on very critically by a court of law”.
There is a different culture now than that which prevailed,
say, in the 1970s and 1980s. Gone is this misplaced deference that protected the high and mighty, misnamed “the great
and the good”.
The Crown Prosecution Service should have cleaned up its act but suspicion and doubt is now rife again due
entirely to this decision to let Janner off the hook.
The victims are now suffering a different kind of pain through
this denial of justice.
Now, Members of Parliament are demanding answers to some awkward questions in contrast to the disgraceful
scenes when some rallied round the pervert in the House of Commons. Both police and victims are united in seeking a redress
with Janner in the dock.
This may still happen. Civil cases are being prepared now, with the object of the victims receiving
Land Registry files reveal that Janner’s £2 million home was owned by him since 1988 and has
not been sold. Transferring ownership to his children may prove to be his undoing in this case. It is almost an admission
Director of Public Prosecutions, Alison Saunders, should think again or resign.
Published in ESA No 56 - Spring 2015