Child abuse inquiry to probe claims involving politicians and churches
The head of an independent inquiry into historic child sex abuse in the UK says the committee will investigate allegations involving politicians as well as churches, councils and schools.
New Zealand judge Lowell Goddard who took over the inquiry back in July said former and current MPs, senior civil servants, government advisers and members of the intelligence and security agencies as well as Catholic and Anglican Churches in England and Wales will be examined as part of 12 separate investigations.
The committee has also launched a helpline for those wishing to contact the inquiry with relevant information.
Goddard acknowledged that the scale of the inquiry is unprecedented but said she is determined to reach to the successful conclusion. “The range of investigations into people of public prominence would give a voice to victims and survivors”, she added.
The inquiry, which will last at least five years and cost about 18 million pounds, was set up in mid-2014 after a series of scandals. Some of the cases go back to the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s and involving churches, media personalities and politicians.
The British police have also recently investigated claims of a Westminster pedophile ring. According to media reports, the police have a list of about 40 alleged child abusers including several current and former politicians.
Various institutions have been accused of failing to deal with abuse allegations and, in some cases, of actively covering them up at the behest of powerful establishment figures including lawmakers, spies and police officers.