POLITICS

Tory MP 'Escaped Prosecution Over Child Porn'

04/07/2014 10:31 BST | Updated 04/07/2014 12:59 BST
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The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has been urged to look at claims that a former Tory MP was found with child pornography videos but escaped without any action being taken.

The politician was allegedly stopped by Customs while driving back to the UK via Dover and found to have explicit videos of children "clearly under 12".

The Daily Telegraph reported that the politician was not arrested or charged following the incident in the 1980s and the videos and paperwork have subsequently gone missing

The Customs officer has spoken to detectives on Operation Fernbridge, an investigation into allegations of sexual abuse by people including high-profile figures at the Elm Guest House in Barnes, south west London.

Labour MP Tom Watson, who has led calls for a comprehensive inquiry into historic child abuse, said he was writing to DPP Alison Saunders to ask her to examine the evidence relating to the unnamed Tory politician.

He said: "It's a remarkable revelation. If true, it shows that a crime was not investigated but also is shocking because it's yet another example of intelligence going missing.

"I hope the DPP will share the concern of many MPs about this.

"It has got to be fully investigated and also shows why there are a growing number of calls from people for a wider overarching inquiry into historic allegations of abuse."

Former Home Secretary Was Given Westminster Paedophile Dossier — Which Then Disappeared

The Metropolitan Police said: "We are not prepared to give a running commentary on Operation Fernbridge, which is an ongoing operation."

The Daily Telegraph reported that the senior Tory's name was included in a dossier handed to then-home secretary Lord Brittan by Conservative MP Geoffrey Dickens.

Lord Brittan was forced to defend his handling of the 1980s dossier alleging paedophile activity in Westminster - after the Government admitted it appeared to have been destroyed.

Meanwhile, it emerged that four more cases of historic sex abuse have been referred to the police by Home Office officials in recent months, following a review ordered last year covering the period 1979 and 1999.

A review of a database containing details of more than 746,000 files identified 13 items of information about alleged child abuse, including four cases involving Home Office staff.

Nine of these items of information, including all of the cases involving Home Office officials, were either already known to the police or were reported to them by the Home Office at the time.

The remaining four have now been passed to the police for a "proper assessment", although the investigator who carried out the review said the information was likely to be of "limited value".

A Home Office spokesman said: "In response to concerns raised in Parliament and the media relating to the handling by the department of historical allegations of abuse, the permanent secretary commissioned an independent review of all relevant papers received by the department between 1979 to 1999 to identify any information received and the outcome.

"The review concluded the Home Office acted appropriately, referring information received during this period to the relevant authorities."

Home Affairs Select Committee chairman Keith Vaz has asked the department for further information and the Home Office said: "It would be inappropriate to comment further until we have responded to the chair's request."

A spokeswoman for the Prime Minister said the police were the "right authorities" to investigate the historic allegations, as Downing Street continued to resist calls for a wider inquiry.

"What matters here are that allegations are properly investigated, the people to do that are the police and that's why it's important that any evidence that is uncovered is alerted to the police," she said.