Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Former Salesian Provincial 'house bound' after police investigation.

A former Provincial Superior of the UK Province of the Salesians of Don Bosco, has been investigated by Greater Manchester Police following allegations of sexual abuse spanning decades. The investigating officer, Detective Sergeant Keith Isherwood, explained the outcome of a year long investigation into Fr George Williams thus:


Regarding your allegation of sexual abuse at the hands of Fr George WILLIAMS.
The matter was jointly investigated by the Child Protection Unit at Bolton and Bolton Social Services.
All the information raised in your complaint has been passed to DC Mike HOBBS from Surrey Police, by DC PARKER of our unit.
The reason for this was that the historical offences you outlined in your complaint were committed in the Surrey area.
The Salesian College has been visited and Fr Michael WINSTANLEY is aware of the allegations.
Fr WILLIAMS is now house bound and has no contact with any vulnerable persons, and he is deemed currently not to be a danger to children.
In respect of the Police at Bolton there are no further lines of enquiry to pursue.

Keith Isherwood
Detective Sergeant
Child Protection Unit

The primary reason why the investigation has not resulted in a prosecution is that the victims who came forward, following the publication of my book Conspiracy of Faith, in which I tell the story of how Fr Williams protected my abuser, Hugh Madley, were not willing to make a formal complaint to the police. Such is the power of the Catholic Order on vulnerable children and vulnerable adults.

It's not over yet, though!

Monday, 29 December 2008

Picking Up The Pieces

Picking Up The Pieces - A survival guide for all victims of childhood sexual abuse

Written by Graham Wilmer and fellow survivors, this book will be of real help to survivors, counsellors and all other professionals working with victims of child abuse.

'Picking up the pieces' answers all those difficult questions - like how to tell someone that you have been sexually abused; who to tell; what will happen next; where to get help and what type of help is available. It includes first hand information on how sexual abuse affects children and their development, and unique insights into the mental health problems that often occur later in life, resulting from abuse.

It also includes an up-to-date, comprehensive review of the criminal and civil law in England in relation to victims of abuse, and the moving and disturbing accounts of more than fifty survivors of child abuse - voices of courage, who have told their stories here, many for the first time ever, to help other victims understand that they are not alone and they can recover.

Monday, 1 December 2008

I haven't 'gone away'.

28 November 2008

Hugh Madley
52 Hale Lane
Mill Hill

Dear Hugh

I am writing to advise you that I have decided not to proceed with the civil action for damages against you that I have been preparing. My barrister (a leading specialist in child sexual abuse claims) has advised me, after looking at my case, and based on all of the evidence available (which includes the statements you made to Surrey police after your second arrest in October 2004) that, while I have a 70% chance of wining a claim against you in the High Court, the amount of damages I could expect, if I won, would not be that great, probably in the order of between £15,000 and £30,000 maximum.

Against this, I have had to weight the prospect of taking the claim through to trial, if you were to decide to fight the claim rather than make a part 36 offer, something that my barrister said is possible, given your previous decision to fight the criminal charges against you, despite you having admitted to the police everything you did to me.

I have also taken into account the fact that any judgement of damages I might obtain from the court would then have to be extracted from you, which would involve me placing a charging order on your house, which could take years to realise.

Then there is the psychological cost of having this hanging over me for perhaps several more years, as against the more palatable prospect of being able to draw a line under it all now by accepting that we are where we are and leaving things at that.

I think even you would understand that, when everything has been taken into consideration, there is more likely to be a better overall outcome for me, in terms of my recovery, in not proceeding with a claim for damages than there is in me proceeding, so that is my decision.

While this decision, I am sure, will be good news for you, I want you to know that I still carry the same level of cold hatred towards you as I did after the trial collapsed in September 2005, which I accept was partly due to the errors made by the police, but only happened because you chose to plead not guilty, when, of course, we all know you clearly are guilty, as you have admitted publicly on at least two occasions since.

You should also know that your decision to ignore the subsequent letters both I and David Williams have written to you has not helped matters in respect of where we go from here, as, my decision not to proceed with a civil claim for damages against you does not mean that I have forgiven you, as I have not.

Since my book Conspiracy of Faith was published, numerous other victims have made contact with me and revealed allegations of child abuse against the Salesians, which are now the subject of ongoing police and child protection team investigations and civil actions as well. You will no doubt have seen the recent criminal trial (September 22nd) of Fr Peter Carr, who is now in prison, this being just one of them, and others will follow.

I can tell you now that at least one of these allegations involves you and a Battersea boy called Andrew, whose mother has told me about the events that occurred when you took Andrew (a vulnerable boy whom I am told was diagnosed with a mild form of ‘Ausberger’s Syndrome) away on a camping holiday. She told you subsequently, when you tried to arrange a further holiday with Andrew, several months after he had actually left the school, that she did not ever want you make contact with her or Andrew again.

Her version of events was also confirmed to me independently by a former teaching colleague of yours, Kevin Boyle, who was also a close friend of Andrew’s family, and who taught Andrew for a while at some stage. This particular allegation emerged after my story was published in the Guardian in August last year, in which you admitted to Frances Beckett that you had abused me, although you tried to temper the account by claiming that it was all my fault - we all had a good laugh at that as it was such a pathetic claim to have made and so typical of you.

So, I will continue to investigate the allegations against the Salesians, which continue to grow, passing what information I have to the relevant authorities as the evidence emerges, which, hopefully will lead to more prosecutions in time, including yours, as the police, and myself of course, have never accepted that I was the only child you abused. It is simply a matter of time before sufficient evidence emerges to enable the police to prosecute you again, hopefully next time with a more positive outcome.

I am not expecting you to reply to me, although I would would like to hear your views on all of the above, but I want you to understand one thing - I will never give up until I have seen you prosecuted, so don’t think that ignoring me will make me go away - it won’t. I will pursue you to the end, wherever, whenever and however that occurs.

Yours sincerely

Graham Wilmer