Day 8 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry: three officers who worked on ‘Operation Magnolia’, Leicestershire Police’s investigation into Lord Janner between 2000 and 2002...

James Wynne, Kevin Yates, Richard Keenan.

Each witness partly in open – and partly in closed – session.
Junior counsel to #CSAinquiry says that Kevin Yates has been taken ill is unfit to give evidence today. He will be rescheduled for next Wednesday.

We are hearing from James Wynne, initially in open session.
James Wynne was a detective sergeant during ‘Operation Magnolia’, which ran from 2000 to 2002, investigating allegations of physical and sexual abuse of children at two Leicestershire children’s homes, including allegations against Lord Janner.
Jacqueline Carey, junior counsel to #CSAinquiry, is questioning James Wynne. She notes that the SIO for Operation Magnolia, Det Supt Thomas, has died, and so inquiry will not be hearing evidence from him.

Wynne confirms that he was “enquiry team supervisor” on operation.
James Wynne, who is now retired, says that it was a “constant struggle” for the SIO on Operation Magnolia to maintain the resources high enough to keep the investigation going, with officers being taken away for urgent priorities.
Jacqueline Carey asks whether the resources for Operation Magnolia were too low.

James Wynne responds, carefully and slowly: “On reflection, it probably was.”
James Wynne confirms that Operation Magnolia was initially to investigate allegations of abuse at two children’s homes, The Holt and Ratcliffe Road, between 1986 and 1987.

He says that the timeframe was subsequently widened to 1980-1900.
James Wynne says that any allegation that came into the operation that was outside the set parameters of the investigation had to be reported up to the SIO or deputy SIO for one of them to decide what to do with it.
Jacqueline Carey asks James Wynne to “just deal with the generalities” of Operation Magnolia before the hearing will go into closed session.

He confirms that two ex-residents of the homes made allegations of child sexual abuse against Lord Janner as well as staff.
James Wynne says that he only recalled that one ex-resident of a children’s home had made allegations of sexual abuse against Lord Janner, but he became aware of the other one during the course of the IOPC investigation.
James Wynne confirms that he took the allegations from one of the complainants, and that the allegations against Lord Janner were put into a separate one from those against staff of the children’s home. There was no set policy to do that, he adds.
James Wynne confirms that police did not arrest or interview Lord Janner in relation to the allegations against him.

He says that the decision to take no action was made “in conjunction with the CPS”.
James Wynne: the investigation was “never at a stage” where it would have been “appropriate” to interview Lord Janner because other necessary enquiries had not been carried out.
Asked why further enquiries were not carried out, James Wynne, who had interviewed one of the complainants, tells #CSAinquiry: “The witness’s allegations were largely discounted because of credibility.”

In relation to care staff or Lord Janner? “Both, in my view.”
James Wynne does not accept the proposition that police did not tell the CPS about any of the allegations against Lord Janner in Operation Magnolia.

Did police investigate the allegations against Lord Janner properly? “We investigated them as fully as we could,” he says.
Hearing adjourns for a break, but it seems likely that when it resumes it will go quickly into closed session.
The hearing appears to have gone into closed session, having dealt only with “the generalities” of Operation Magnolia with James Wynne.

We are due to hear from Richard Keenan, who was a DI and deputy SIO on Operation Magnolia later today – but only partly in open session.
Today’s hearing may have adjourned for lunch. If it did, it did so behind closed doors.

The hearing is due to resume this afternoon, partly in open session, partly in closed session.

Whether it resumes initially in open session is anyone’s guess. #SecretCSAinquiry
As this hearing continues behind closed doors, it is known that not only did police not refer allegations in Operation Magnolia, in 2000-2002, against Lord Janner to the CPS, but it also decided that no further action should be taken re any staff of the two children’s homes.
Statement from Richard Keenan, deputy SIO on Operation Magnolia, read to #CSAinquiry.

He says that his duties on the investigation was a “steep learning curve” for him, and that he was stretched because of a lack of resources for the nature of the operation.
Addressing the question as to why police did not refer allegations against Lord Janner to the CPS, Richard Keenan said: “I was not involved in the discussion surrounding this decision.”
Richard Keenan cannot recall that allegations against Lord Janner came into Operation Magnolia, but he does not reject a suggestion by a former colleague, Kevin Yates, that he was told about them.

He denied saying that such allegations were to be confined to “a bottom drawer”.
Richard Keenan was “dumb-founded” that CPS decided to press no charges against any of the suspects in Operation Magnolia, according to his statement read out in open session to Janner hearing of #CSAinquiry.
Richard Keenan says in statement that while specific instances of alleged physical or sexual abuse at the children’s homes investigated were not corroborated, there was a “consistent picture of potential offending”.
Referring to a meeting between police and CPS, Richard Keenan says in statement: “I cannot remember whether Greville Janner was mentioned as a potential suspect.”
CPS took the view that the allegations were undermined by the fact that they were not made during the investigation into Frank Beck or subsequent Kirkwood inquiry, says Richard Keenan.

However, he rejected that view because such disclosures can indeed take a life-time.
Feed for Janner hearing of #CSAinquiry suddently cut.

Not clear why since junior counsel was simply reading a statement by Richard Keenan, meaning that inquiry lawyers had the opportunity to vet it before reading in open session.
We were expecting that some of Richard Keenan’s statement was to be read in closed session. However, there was no explanation for the sudden cut in feed.

Farce at #SecretCSAinquiry continues.
Following the cutting off of the feed of the Janner hearing at #CSAinquiry today, Richard Keenan went on to say that the abuse of children uncovered by Operation Magnolia “became a source of potential embarrassment to a number of public bodies, not least the CPS itself.”
Operation Magnolia uncovered abuse that was “a seamless continuation of the abuse initiated by Frank Beck”, and possibly should have been exposed by previous investigation, said Richard Keenan, according to transcript of hearing in open session but cut off from streaming feed.
Richard Keenan said that several junior officers/managers had risen to senior posts at various agenices.

“There was potential personal and organisational embarrassment if it had emerged that opportunities to prevent a further eight to ten years of child abuse had been missed.”
Richard Keenan said in statement read out to #CSAinquiry: “It was my impression that the CPS decision not to prosecute any of the suspects [in Operation Magnolia] was a relief to a number of individuals and to the organisations as a whole.”
Richard Keenan: “I do not feel that there was any organised or systematic conspiracy to protect Greville Janner.

“I did, however, sense a hesitancy to proceed against such a high-profile individual solely on the evidence we had to hand during Operation Magnolia.”
“Summary” by #CSAinquiry of evidence in closed session for Day 8 says that James Wynne confirmed interviewing two witnesses in Operation Magnolia who alleged that Lord Janner had sexually abused them as boys.
James Wynne suggested that the SIO should have created a policy on whether Lord Janner was to be investigated or arrested and should have informed the assistant chief constable (operations), according to “summary” by #CSAinquiry of closed session.
James Wynne said that he did not disagree with the outcome of the investigation and did not think that there should have been further enquiries into the allegations against Lord Janner, according to #CSAinquiry “summary” of closed session.
“Summary” by #CSAinquiry of closed session for Day 8 says that an unnamed former Leicestershire DC – but who was identified in published timetable as Nigel Baraclough – said that the SIO told a briefing that Operation Magnolia would not be investigating Lord Janner.
Nigel Baraclough said that Operation Magnolia was a low priority investigation allocated to an inexperienced SIO and deputy SIO and was poorly staffed, adding that it needed a bigger team when the investigation grew, according to #CSAinquiry “summary” of closed session.
Nigel Baraclough: Operation Magnolia did not enable a proper police investigation into abuse allegations against Lord Janner, as recorded by to #CSAinquiry “summary” of closed session.

Linked summary:…
NB James Wynne did not confirm, as my slip of the keyboard suggested in an earlier tweet, that Operation Magnolia was widened in scope to cover allegations from 1986-1987 to 1980-1900, but in fact to 1980-1990.

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22 Oct
Day 9 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry behind closed doors ALL DAY again:

Three witnesses, all officers who worked on ‘Operation Dauntless’ in 2006, Leicestershire Police’s third investigation into Lord Janner…

David Swift-Rollinson, Kevin Barrs, Christopher Thomas.
I will start my coverage of this behind-closed door hearing that started at 10.15am shortly.

Meanwhile, I can reveal that a statement from Tony Blair is due to be read to Janner hearing BEHIND CLOSED DOORS next Tuesday.

See you next Tuesday.
Tony Blair, as prime minister, ennobled Greville Janner in 1997.

But #CSAinquiry is not calling him to answer questions at the Janner hearing.

It has, however, ordered Blair to prepare a statement, which will be read in closed session next Tuesday.
Read 56 tweets
20 Oct
Day 7 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry: three witnesses from Leicestershire county council...

John Sinnott, chief executive, due to begin at 10.30am in open session before going behind closed doors.

Then Robert Parker and Brian Waller – each behind closed doors.
John Sinnott, chief executive of Leicestershire county council since 1994, is first witness to testify in open (at least, partly) in FIVE days of Janner hearings at #CSAinquiry.
John Sinnott accepts that in the past there was no oversight by senior managers at Leicestershire county council’s social services department of complaints of sexual or physical abuse of children in the council’s “care” homes.
Read 33 tweets
19 Oct
Day 6 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry behind closed doors ALL DAY again for fourth day in a row:

James Coussey of CPS, Jeremy Naunton also of CPS, and evidence read from the late Barbara Fitt, manager of a children’s home in Leicester, and her widower, Ray.
James Coussey, retired senior prosecutor, made the newspapers in 1986 when he had to placate a furious magistrate who threatened to free a man on a murder charge because of prosecution blunders by DPP office.

Nothing compared to prosecution blunders over Greville Janner MP.
Jeremy Naunton, senior lawyer for DPP then CPS, faces qus this pm – behind closed doors – as to why Greville Janner, then Labour MP, was not prosecuted in 1991. Just as he had to explain why Peter Hayman was not prosecuted in 1978, as revealed @FOIACentre:…
Read 19 tweets
16 Oct
Day 5 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry behind closed doors ALL DAY again for third day in a row:

Peter Joyce, prosecutor in Frank Beck’s trial;

Iain Groundwell, retired from CPS;

Reading statement by the late Peter Hollingworth, former chief prosecutor for Leicestershire.
Peter Joyce was prosecuting counsel in Frank Beck’s trial in 1991.

At the request of police, he advised how to deal with allegations that arose at the time against Greville Janner, then Labour MP.

He is giving evidence in closed session at #CSAinquiry.

Peter Joyce made a late, successful application to become a “core participant” in #CSAinquiry investigation re Greville Janner after inquiry sent him a “detailed request” in May for a statement...
Read 25 tweets
15 Oct
Day 4 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry behind closed doors ALL DAY again:

Tony Butler, senior Leicestershire Police officer who oversaw investigation into Frank Beck in 1991 in which allegations against Greville Janner MP arose. And Mark Williams of CPS.

After I highlighted how #CSAinquiry had been seeking to keep secret even the operational name of the police investigation into Frank Beck, and then, Greville Janner MP in 1991, it has finally made public what it was called: Operation Intern.
Tony Butler was Leicestershire’s assistant chief constable when he oversaw Operation Intern, inv into Frank Beck and then Greville Janner MP. He later became deputy chief constable and has since retired. He is giving evidence behind closed doors at #CSAinquiry. #SecretCSAinquiry
Read 19 tweets
14 Oct
Day 3 of Janner hearings of #CSAinquiry behind closed doors ALL DAY: three Leicestershire officers who were on first police probe into Labour MP Greville Janner in 1991 as part of Frank Beck case... DCI Kelvyn Ashby, Ch Supt Graham Carr, Det Supt Tim Garner.

DCI Kelvyn Ashby was SIO on police probe into Frank Beck, who ran a Leicestershire children’s home.

He investigated allegations against Greville Janner, then a Labour MP, in 1991 as part of that case.

He is giving evidence behind closed doors at #CSAinquiry. #SecretCSAinquiry
Police in this first probe into Greville Janner passed a file to the CPS, which decided against pressing any charge against the then MP.

Janner was named as an abuser by a witness at Frank Beck’s trial.

Janner denied the claims in Parliament. Many MPs spoke in his support.
Read 32 tweets

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