In spite of his name written in bold letters under ‘Pedophile Criminal’ list, British Police system helped cover BBC’s ‘Saville’s’ criminal Child Sex abuse even as early as 1955.
The chief constable of Manchester’s claim comes as a new report finds Jimmy Savile’s offences dated back to 1955. The failings identified in the Jimmy Savile sex abuse investigation “could happen all over again”, one of Britain’s top policemen has warned.
Sir Peter Fahy, the chief constable of Greater Manchester Police, said officers are “cautious in taking cases to court” because they fear victims will be put under too much pressure when giving evidence.
He added that the lack of a “national headquarters for policing makes achieving consistent national standards all the more difficult”.
It comes after a damning report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) found Savile was first named in connection with a sexual abuse investigation in 1964.
A separate report by the Metropolitan Police and the NSPCC said his offending spanned from 1955 to 2009, meaning his reign of abuse could have been cut short by 45 years. Sir Peter said: “Police forces have significantly improved the way that victims are treated but the fact is many, many victims do not come forward or if they do are reluctant to support a prosecution.
“This highlights another issue in the way our adversarial court system treats victims.
“Whatever other evidence is collected, prosecutions for sexual offences rely hugely on the evidence of the victim.
“In a case of burglary, the victim will not be blamed for leaving the front door unlocked. In sexual offences, the behaviour of the victim – whether they had been drinking, any weaknesses of character, how they were dressed – may well be picked over at great length in the court room. “Where the details are particularly salacious or the case involves a celebrity, then these very intimate details will receive full publicity in the media.”
Just five allegations and two pieces of intelligence were recorded against Savile during his lifetime, HMIC found.
This is in stark contrast to the 450 claims made against the former Top Of The Pops presenter after Operation Yewtree was launched by the Metropolitan Police in October.
Alan Collins, a solicitor from law firm Pannone who is representing more than 40 of Savile’s victims, said many opportunities to investigate Savile had been lost. Consequently, Savile was able to carry on regardless, duping the country in the process, and the price was paid by his many victims,” he said.
“There is a definite risk that unless policies and attitudes change, Savile will happen again.”
As well as the 1964 Metropolitan Police ledger, a record of an anonymous letter was found that was received by the Met in 1998, alleging that Savile was a paedophile.
In addition, five victims made complaints against the presenter – one to the Met in 2003, three to Surrey in 2007 and one to Sussex in 2008.
HMIC expressed concern that other police forces did not deal with complaints properly with eight victims claiming that they tried, unsuccessfully, to report crimes.
These include four who approached the Met and one each who went to police in Cheshire, Merseyside, West Yorkshire and the then Royal Ulster Constabulary.
One man who came forward in 1963 in Cheshire to make an allegation of rape against Savile was told to “forget about it” and “move on”, HMIC said. HM Inspector of Constabulary Drusilla Sharpling said: “The findings in this report are of deep concern, and clearly there were mistakes in how the police handled the allegations made against Savile during his lifetime.”
The letter received by the Metropolitan Police Service in 1998 claiming the DJ was a paedophile was classed as “sensitive”, meaning other investigators could not find it.
“The 1998 MPS anonymous letter was marked as ‘sensitive’ because of Savile’s celebrity status and because there were allegations of blackmail and paedophilia,” the inspectors said.
“This categorisation meant that the intelligence was not readily available to be searched by later investigating officers.”