Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Margaret Thatcher knew about paedophile MP Cyril Smith, awarded a knighthood to him
- Cabinet office in child abuse cover-up: MoS beats attempt by No10 to gag VIP file that shows Thatcher knew about paedophile MP Cyril Smith
- British MP slams ex PM Thatcher for pedophile cover-up
- Cyril Smith: Cabinet Office denies cover-up over files showing Margaret Thatcher knew of sex abuse claims against late MP
Cabinet office in child abuse cover-up: MoS beats attempt by No10 to gag VIP file that shows Thatcher knew about paedophile MP Cyril Smith
Downing Street tried to block release of files exposing scale of cover-up
Cabinet Office only caved in after being threatened with High Court Action
Papers expose how much Establishment knew about Cyril Smith's abuse
Margaret Thatcher was told police had probed claims he abused teenagers
She was warned that handing him knighthood risked damaging 'integrity of the honours system' - but went ahead anyway
By Chris Hastings and Martin Beckford for The Mail on Sunday
8 March 2015
Downing Street cynically tried to prevent the release of damaging files exposing the scale of the cover-up over paedophile MP Cyril Smith.
The Cabinet Office repeatedly blocked The Mail on Sunday’s attempts to see the bombshell documents – and caved in only after being threatened with High Court action.
After the shocking year-long fight, we can reveal the content of the papers, which expose just how much the Establishment knew about the late politician’s sexual and physical abuse of young boys.
Nick Clegg and David Cameron, both Ministers in the Cabinet Office, have been accused of ‘colluding’ in the latest cover-up of evidence that could expose VIP paedophile rings.
The secrecy row will also focus attention on Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood, who has become known as ‘Sir Cover-Up’ after blocking the release of dozens of messages exchanged by Tony Blair and George W Bush ahead of the Iraq war.
Following The Mail on Sunday’s victory, it can be revealed for the first time that:
- Margaret Thatcher was personally told that police had investigated claims that Smith indecently assaulted teenage boys in the 1960s.
- Thatcher was explicitly warned that awarding a knighthood to the 29-stone Liberal MP risked damaging the ‘integrity of the honours system’, but went ahead anyway.
- A senior Whitehall mandarin took the ‘exceptional’ step of contacting the country’s top prosecutor and police to find out why Smith was never charged with abusing boys at a hostel he helped run....
Smith was knighted in 1988 as recognition of his service as a councillor, mayor and MP in Rochdale, Lancashire.
After his death at the age of 82 in 2010, Clegg said he was ‘deeply saddened’ by the loss and said everyone in Rochdale knew him ‘as a friend’.
But two years later claims emerged that he repeatedly spanked and sexually abused boys in care homes and hostels, but the authorities saw to it that he was never brought to justice....
British MP slams ex PM Thatcher for pedophile cover-up
March 08, 2015
Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was aware a Liberal MP was suspected of sexually abusing boys but “turned a blind eye” to it. She awarded a knighthood to Cyril Smith, secret documents, released after a yearlong fight for disclosure, reveal.
"There is no doubt about it now, from what we know, that she [Thatcher] turned a blind eye to people who were quite clearly pedophiles. That is absolutely clear,” said Labour MP Simon Danczuk, who exposed Cyril Smith’s abuse in Parliament.
Smith was investigated in 1970, 1988 and in 1999 on suspicion of "indecent assault against teenage boys" in the 1960s.
At the time, the authorities decided there was no reasonable prospect of conviction.
Later, Greater Manchester Police also admitted there had been “overwhelming evidence” Smith abused boys both physically and sexually.
This didn’t change Thatcher’s decision to knight Smith for his services as a counselor, mayor and MP in Rochdale, Lancashire....
Cyril Smith: Cabinet Office denies cover-up over files showing Margaret Thatcher knew of sex abuse claims against late MP
Dossier on Smith’s knighthood shows the then-PM was aware of paedophile allegations against him – but he went before the Queen regardless
Adam Withnall Sunday 08 March 2015
The Government has been accused of trying to suppress a dossier of secret files which reveal that Margaret Thatcher knew about child sex abuse allegations against the MP Cyril Smith – before he was knighted.
The documents, only made public this week after an intervention from the Information Commissioner, include an undated letter marked “secret” warning Ms Thatcher that there was “the risk that such an award could give rise to adverse criticism”.
Smith, who died in 2010, served as the Liberal and later Liberal Democrat MP for Rochdale between 1972 and 1992. He was accused of abusing eight boys in the late 1960s and, though he was not prosecuted at the time, police say procedural changes mean he would be today.
The Cabinet Office last night denied a “cover-up” after releasing the 19-page file following repeated demands from the Mail on Sunday, and said the case was “sensitive and complex”.
Among the letters relating to the decision to knight Smith in 1988, the warning letter from Political Honours Scrutiny Committee member Lord Shackleton spelled out to Ms Thatcher that police had investigated Smith in 1970 for “indecent assault against teenage boys”.
It said that that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) had decided “there was no reasonable prospect of conviction”....
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