Category Archives: Child abuse

Supreme Court to consider Council role in protecting vulnerable children

The Supreme Court is to hear a landmark case which could have an impact on the rights of thousands of abuse victims.

It concerns two people, known as CN and GN, who allege that, between 2006 and 2011, Poole Borough Council did not do enough to protect them as children from “harassment and worse” from their neighbours.

They claim that before they and their mother were placed in housing, the authority was aware that a “delinquent” family lived nearby who engaged in persistently anti-social behaviour.

This family repeatedly subjected CN and GN to significant harassment and abuse, and CN – who has severe physical and learning difficulties – attempted suicide.

CN and GN brought claims against the council for breach of a common law duty of care derived from statutory duties under the Children Act 1989 but, in 2017, the Court of Appeal ruled against them.

Before the appeal on Monday, Emma Jones from the team at Leigh Day, who represent GN and CN, said: “We hope that the Supreme Court rectify the current ruling by the Court of Appeal which sees the protection of children returned to the ‘washing your hands’ approach to vulnerable children witnessed in the 1990s and which has been attributed to scandals such as occurred in Rotherham.

“Local authorities must be compelled by law to protect children for whom they have responsibility and the best way to ensure that they carry out these duties is for them to be held to account, through the law, if they fall short.”

Article 39, which fights for the rights of children and young people who live in children’s homes, prisons and other institutions, and the Care Leavers’ Association, which supports care leavers of all ages, have been given permission to make representations.

Peter Garsden, of law firm Simpson Millar, which is representing the charities, said: “This appeal raises issues of very great public importance, concerning whether a local authority is responsible for protecting young people and children who may not be in a care institution, but are known to be at risk – either from sexual, physical or emotional abuse.

“It affects some of the most vulnerable members of our society and will have far reaching ramifications, and it is absolutely vital that the law is clarified so that abuse survivors can get the answers and access to justice that they deserve, and that will allow them to start to move forward with their lives.”

Royal Met Cop Avoids Jail After Posing Online As 17 year Old Girl

A shamed royal police officer has avoided jail after he stole a dead woman’s pictures to pose online as a 17-year-old girl “for kicks”. Pc Adam Cox, 31, was working in Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection when he created an alter ego called Emily Whitehouse to exchange explicit chat with three men online. After being asked… Continue Reading

Watchdog reveals police force’s ‘poor supervision’ of child sex inquiries

Potentially crucial evidence was lost and a suspect was free to carry on offending because of “unacceptable” delays in child sex inquiries at a police force, a report by watchdogs has revealed. Inspectors examined Nottinghamshire Police’s handling of six cases relating to children aged between 10 and 14 years who were at high risk of… Continue Reading

Max Clifford to appear in court

Max Clifford is to appear in court charged with one count of indecent assault. The former publicist, who is accused of committing the offence in 1981, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London, the Crown Prosecution Service said. Baljit Ubhey, chief crown prosecutor for CPS London, said earlier this month when news of the… Continue Reading

Head teacher jailed for 8 years

A nationally-acclaimed headteacher has been jailed for eight years after she was convicted of taking two underage boys’ virginity in the 1980s. Anne Lakey, 55, from Stanley, County Durham, was once hailed as a visionary for turning around a failing school and making it one of the most improved in the country. But a jury… Continue Reading

Gary Glitter sentenced to 16 years

Depraved paedophile Gary Glitter, from central London, faces dying behind bars after being jailed for 16 years for sexually abusing three schoolgirls. The 70-year-old, real name Paul Gadd, was told there was no evidence he had atoned for his actions as he was sentenced for one count of attempted rape, one count of unlawful sexual… Continue Reading

Rolf Harris stripped of honours

Rolf Harris has been stripped of his Australian honours following his conviction for sexually assaulting four British girls. The disgraced television star, artist and songwriter was found guilty last year of indecently assaulting the girls, who included the childhood best friend of his daughter Bindi, between 1969 and 1986. The decision to take back his… Continue Reading

Rotherham – damning report published

A criminal investigation is to be started after a damning new report into Rotherham’s child sexual exploitation prompted the replacement of its entire political leadership with Government commissioners. Communities secretary Eric Pickles announced the measures to replace the council’s “wholly dysfunctional” political leadership just moments after the authority’s entire cabinet announced its intention to resign… Continue Reading

Council not fit for purpose

A damning new report into the failings at Rotherham Council commissioned following the child sexual exploitation scandal that engulfed the town has concluded that the authority is “not fit for purpose”. Louise Casey was asked by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles to inspect the council following the Jay Report last year which found that more than… Continue Reading