Archive | February 2019

The Importance of Free Speech

Thursday, February 28, 2019

The Importance of Free Speech; everyone is entitled to free speech, silencing people creates martyrs and martyrs create movements, Tommy Robinson’s Panodrama documentary should be shown on the BBC alongside their documentary, de-platforming is always the wrong tactic, the truth will always out

Dear All

Before I get started on today’s post, which is about #panodrama, I want to say something about Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh. It seems that Ms. Shiekh has taken the Alex Salmond line on timing of indyref 2. To that end she seems to playing the game as Alex Salmond. Salmond and Shiekh are ‘joined at the hip’ producing his TV show on RT.

At the last General Election, Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh was dumped by the people of Ochil and South Perthshire, and to quote Yoda style, ‘her reign, not short enough that was’. Now as Brexit swirls about, she is criticising  the party’s leadership for failing to take action on a future independence referendum.

So, what failure is she talking about?

Failure of Nicola Sturgeon’s government.

Collapse of indy support?

One thing she did get right, is when she said Nicola Sturgeon’s imminent announcements on another vote “have been trailed so often that no-one is taking them seriously now”.

Nicola Sturgeon won’t get a section 30 order from this Westminster parliament currently running, she can only ask. Sturgeon knows that when or if she ever gets one, that is the clock ticking down to the end of her career.

Nicola Sturgeon won’t lead Scotland to independence.

Reading in The National, the Newsquest sop paper for the Nationalists, she took a swipe at the continual delays in her column. Why she has a column in The National is anyone’s guess, but then you could say the same of Mhairi Black or Ian Blackford as well, these people add nothing to the debate on Scotland’s future.

Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh is no oracle, having watched her in the Commons, it was said she had the nickname ‘tedious’, continually standing up to be called by the Speaker to spout inane drivel.

Sheikh said:

“To paraphrase Theresa May ‘now IS the time’ to be presenting coherent plans and campaigning for change”.

Presumably coherent plans aren’t forthcoming from Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh, nor Sturgeon or the rest of the cabal in Edinburgh.

Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh is out of politics, no loss there.

Now, back to the main issue, you will have seen on the news, and media sites, the undercover operation and sting of Tommy Robertson. His documentary is called Panodrama and I would like you to view, all the way through. In our democracy, it is important to defend free speech, but the problem is that organisations exist attempt to restrict it by threats, violence, intimidation and blackmail. Although politics is seen by many as a dirty business, you simply cannot just focus on them, you have to look at who operates on the fringe, and in the shadows.

I have done a skim of Tommy Robinson’s doc to get a sense of it, to me, the most interesting part wasn’t the exchange between Robinson and John Sweeney. The most important part was the look on the face of the BBC staff as the exchanges continued.

Especially one man who sat in a chair with his head down.

Everyone is entitled to free speech, and the attempts to silence Tommy Robinson have backfired, rather badly, what is better in the boat pissing out, or out the boat pissing in?  At present, Tommy Robinson is moving to new media platforms which won’t get shut down. You may look at Tommy Robinson’s previous history and not feel sympathy for the man, but like anyone else, we expect he is treated fairly. His Court case was a sham, his imprisonment made him a martyr and his expose of the BBC Panorama made him as an investigative journalist.

The attempts to deplatform him were wrong, utterly wrong, you could make the argument if left to his own devices and where he was, he might have hung himself. One thing that John Sweeney appears to suggest is that the entire British system is run by middle class people. He said that the Labour Party hadn’t done their job properly, which I take to mean not enough working class voices in the MP ranks and elsewhere.

Just as you can’t nail jelly to the ceiling, you will never stop free speech, once you recognise that you also recognise that you don’t have to listen to it either.

Finally, if someone would like to do guest posts on the video above on what they thought of the situation presented, then I would like to hear from you. I am basically Looking for two articles, one for the defence (BBC) and one for the prosecution (Tommy Robinson).

Entries to be sent to my hotmail account,  titled ‘Panodrama’.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University


Westminster hearings at also due to hear from Don Hale during first week on how “Sir” Cyril Smith made his presence felt after Barbara Castle tipped off the reporter that various were manoeuvring to pass law to cut age of consent. 9/10


Brave toddler survives alone in flat for two weeks

Last updated at 13:42 19 October 2005

A three-year-old toddler survived on scraps of food for two weeks as his mother lay dead beside him.The body of Anne-Marie McGarrity, 33, was found in her home with her distraught son Michael nearby. The emaciated youngster was suffering from malnutrition.

The little boy had managed to feed himself by

scavenging food from the fridge, miraculously keeping himself alive for a fortnight.

The badly dehydrated and soiled toddler is even believed to have covered his mother’s body after she died in the tower block flat in Leith, Edinburgh.

Last night the child was being treated at the city’s Royal Hospital for Sick Children where medics said his condition was poor, although he is expected to survive.

Neighbours said the boy had failed to turn up at nursery for the last three weeks, prompting managers to contact a relative, believed to be the child’s maternal grandmother.

She rang police who forced the door of the third-storey flat in rundown North Fort Street last Saturday afternoon.

It is believed the mother was a heroin addict who died from an overdose, leaving her terrified son to fend for himself.

Locals said the authorities failed to check on the little boy’s absence from nursery for around three weeks – even though he is believed to attend the council-run establishment directly opposite his home.


Last night it was unclear whether the boy or his mother had been under the care of social workers.

One neighbour said the nursery had initially got in touch with the block’s caretaker before alerting the grandmother.

The 19-year-old, who herself has a three-year-old son and declined to be named, claimed another male addict had died in the same flat a year ago.

She told the Scottish Daily Mail: “McGarrity had lived there for a few years. She always had her son with her and would say hello to me, but it was obvious she was on drugs.

“I heard her little boy had not been to nursery for three weeks – it is shocking to think of the little boy sitting there in the dark while I was here with my own son.”

The neighbour said other tenants living in the flat next door to Anne-Marie McGarrity had moved out recently without notifying the local authority, forcing council staff to break down the door.

She added: “They were making a terrible noise so I went out to ask them what was going on. It’s ironic that was going on while the little boy was in there, helpless.”

It is believed the child attended the nursery in

the grounds of Fort Primary School, opposite his mother’s flat.

A Lothian and Borders police spokesman said: “Police attended an address in North Fort Street in Leith on the late afternoon of October 15 after concern was raised for the householder.

“A body of a 33-year-old woman was found but there appear to be no suspicious circumstances.

“A report will be submitted to the procurator fiscal in relation to this death.

“A three-year-old child was also found at the house and taken to the Royal Hospital for Sick Children.

“A post-mortem has taken place but there are no results as yet.”

Council bosses under fire

Edinburgh City Council has undergone major social work reforms in recent years.

In October, 2003 council bosses faced intense

criticism when social workers who sent a baby home to die at the hands of his violent father kept their jobs after a ‘whitewash’ inquiry left them in the clear.

Eleven-week-old Caleb Ness was placed on an ‘at risk’ register within days of his birth, with a recommendation that he should never be left alone with his parents – a former heroin addict mother and a brain-damaged father.

But on his release from hospital, his mother was allowed to take him back to her home where, a few weeks later, he was shaken to death by his father.

A report, compiled by leading QC Susan O’Brien, found that “no single individual should be held


But the scandal led to the resignation of social work director Les McEwan.

In April this year, a health chief appointed after a shake-up at Edinburgh’s under-fire social work department pledged to “drive forward even better services”.

Peter Gabbitas was hired in the newly-created role of Health and Social Care Director following a study published under the direction of council chief executive Tom Aitchison.

It recommended abolishing the social work department and creating two new departments in its place.

Mr Gabbitas said in April that he wanted “to ensure that the important contribution of front-line health and social care staff is more widely recognised.”


MARK WATTSPlayland review:incriminating’ questions of ex-lover Mike Veale:

Playland review: evocative but troubling book testifies to scandal of abuse by VIPs
Bright lights: Piccadilly Circus at night in 1975 – infamous for the ‘meat rack’
Revealing: Playland from Mirror Books

That friend was Charles Hornby, a 35-year-old Old Etonian and a Lloyds underwriter. He had inherited a country estate in Gloucestershire and had been shooting with Prince Charles. Charming, with a distinct air of British sophistication, the ‘country gentleman’ had a peculiar bond with the rough-mannered and foul-mouthed Keith.

After dinner, Charles invited Tony to join him and Keith for a nightcap at his Knightsbridge flat, saying that he had cash there and could lend some to Tony.

There, Tony recounts, Charles raped him as Keith helped to pin him down.

The following morning, according to Tony, Charles told him that he knew what he was doing by agreeing to return to the flat. Charles realised that Tony was edgy, he said, so had drugged his drinks to relax him.

Charles said that Tony was not even his type because he was about five years too old.

But Charles knew some people who would love to meet Tony – “important people”. Tony could make a lot of his friends very happy and would be well rewarded.

Tony said, no.

Charles, though, was in the insurance business, he reminded Tony. He had taken pictures the night before, he said, and Tony’s mother back in Derry might never recover from the shock of opening an envelope full of them.

Trapped, Tony says that he was prostituted to an array of establishment figures. First up, Charles Irving, elected as a Conservative MP the previous year. He slipped £30 in Tony’s coat pocket for services rendered.

Irving invited Tony to a party that weekend organised by the Monday Club to celebrate Margaret Thatcher’s election as Conservative leader. Tony recalled what Irving said: “It’s a great opportunity for you to be presented.”

Irving, who was knighted in 1990, remained an MP until 1992.

The party was at a plush setting, within earshot of Big Ben, Tony recalls. Men in suits and formal evening wear mixed with teenage boys aged from about 16, some in flamboyant clothes and wearing rouge and eyeliner. There were no women.

One guest explained to Tony that some of the men were celebrating their first anniversaries as MPs, as well as toasting Thatcher’s election as leader. Members of the Monday Club had piggybacked on the bash, the guest added.

Tony was introduced to a few ‘First Years’, including Peter Morrison who later became Thatcher’s parliamentary private secretary (PPS) when she was prime minister and who was knighted in 1990.

Another man introduced himself to Tony as Sir Keith Joseph, who was later education secretary.

As the party wore on, Tony saw boys sitting on men’s knees. Boys started kissing some of the men in full view of the others, which turned into a “tableau of sexual frenzy”.

Tony describes how Joseph watched on excitedly and started to kiss and fondle him.

He noticed one man staring at him. He later identified him as Sir Michael Havers, who became Lord Chancellor – and a client of his.

Morrison then took Tony off to a room for sex, swearing as he dismissed protests from Joseph and others. “He’s booked. This one’s mine.”

Soon after this ‘party’, Charles Hornby arranged Tony’s next client, a member of the House of Lords. Tony says that he was picked up outside Westminster, where, in the back-seat of a chauffeur-driven car, he gave the Lord a blow-job.

Tony avoids naming him in the book, calling him Lord Back-Seat.

Tony accompanied Irving to a party at a house in Essex, where “elderly statesmen” mixed with “Dilly boys”. Among the attendees, according to Tony, were James Molyneaux, the late Ulster Unionist MP for South Antrim who would become UUP leader, and Sir Knox Cunningham, Molyneaux’s predecessor as Ulster Unionist MP for South Antrim.

When he was later led upstairs for sex, Tony says that he saw a man lead a boy no older than 12 into a room.

Keith pulled him back to the pimps who ran the ‘Dilly’ scene, renting out boys and young men from Playland to punters. “The Firm”, writes Tony, “had connections to and serviced those in the establishment.”

One of those clients, says Tony, was Havers. Tony was his companion for a get-together in Whitehall. Most of the men there had been in the armed forces, and the others included a couple of businessmen, politicians and television celebrities along with “Dilly rent” in their late teens or a little older. Havers took Tony off to a room for sex.

Tony recalls other VIP clients: Viscount William De L’Isle, a Conservative MP before he inherited his peerage and a former governor-general of Australia, and Nicholas Eden, son of the former prime minister, Anthony Eden, who later inherited his father’s title as Earl of Avon.

“The perception was that they were so powerful, so well connected, there was no way I could ever pose a threat to them. Normal rules didn’t apply here,” Tony writes.

“They were unassailable and untouchable.”

He saw to one client, an officer in the Grenadier Guards, at St James’s Palace, a royal residence.

Charles Hornby arranged for Tony, even though he was working for ‘the Firm’, to see another “associate”. His name was Simon.

They had something in common: book selling. Simon explained that he was director of retail at WH Smith, where he had been working for nearly two decades.

He was Simon Hornby, brother of Charles, a 40-year-old Old Etonian and former Grenadier Guard who would become chairman of WH Smith Group and a director of several blue-chip companies. He also became a regular client of Tony, who recounts Simon’s explanation of how the ‘great and the good’ exchange “cake”. Cake might be a directorship, a contract or some other favour.

Tony was a piece of cake, and Simon became another pimp.

Simon’s “network”, writes Tony, “had powerful political connections and links to financial institutions and the military.” Simon was knighted in 1988.

Among further clients named by Tony was Tom Driberg, who had retired as a Labour MP the previous year, a former chairman of the Labour party, and who was named as an agent for the Security Service, better known as MI5, while working as a journalist on the Daily Express before turning to politics.

The most harrowing scene follows a gathering at Prunier restaurant in St James’s of some senior figures in the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE), which lobbied to legalise sex with children. Tony identifies one of them as Sir Peter Hayman, the UK’s former high commissioner to Canada and a long-time senior officer of the Secret Intelligence Service (SIS), better known as MI6.

Keith shepherded Tony into one of three cars that transported the dinner guests to a flat in Notting Hill for “the best show in London”. There, they joined a few men in a dimly lit living room.

Two boys – brothers of eight and ten, Tony was told – performed sexual acts on each other before some of the men, including Hayman, abused them, according to Tony. He says that he shouted, “You’re all sick bastards,” which led to his being physically and sexually attacked until he passed out.

After a few torturous weeks on the meat rack of Piccadilly Circus, Tony returned to his parent’s house in Derry. But he was not forgotten. Tony recounts how, the following year, soldiers carried out an early-morning raid on his home. He quotes the officer in charge as saying to him: “Consider this a calling card from your friends in London.”

In 2016, as he prepared to publish the book, police raided his home, claiming to have “intelligence” that linked his address to indecent images of children. Just over a year ago, police told him that 11 indecent images of children were found on his computer.

Since the book was published, Tony tells me that the police have informed him that he will not be charged, although his computer would still be destroyed – along with photographic evidence on it that linked him to Simon Hornby.

All the punters identified in Playland, apart from Lord Back-Seat, as well as the named attendees of sex parties, including those where children were abused, have since died.
Only one was prosecuted: Charles Hornby was committed to trial just days before Keith took Tony to meet him.

Later that year, Charles was jailed for 30 months and fined £1,000 for sexual offences against boys. Others were convicted of running a rent-boy racket out of the Playland arcade. Charles was a client. It was known as the Playland trial.

Scotland Yard was dogged by accusations of failing to pursue other VIP clients of the Playland ring. Even the trial judge remarked that not all the perpetrators were in the dock.

Charles died in ignominy aged 57. Not one obituary is to be found for him on a comprehensive newspaper-cuttings database.

But the establishment gladly buried him – along with the Playland scandal.

However, the ghost of Playland has returned to haunt the establishment again in the form of this revealing book.

The one fault with it, sprinkled with so many references to an array of ‘VIPs’, is its lack of an index.

But Playland is a superbly executed book that is crying out to be turned into a television production or film.

Mark Watts (@MarkWatts_1), co-ordinator of the FOIA Centre, is the former Editor-in-Chief of Exaro. Playland is published by Mirror Books.

Comment on this article

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Cyril Smith, Rochdale and a lot of startling disclosures to CSA inquiry ignored by media
Cyril Smith’s Tory councillor boyfriend Harry Wild ‘groomed’ young prison inmates
Carole Kasir: coroner was blocked from asking ‘incriminating’ questions of ex-lover
Mike Veale: vilification of investigation into Edward Heath risks harm to abuse survivors
CSA inquiry lacks ‘investigative capability’ to probe ‘cover-up’ claims, warns Mike Veale
Mike Veale slams Keith Vaz’s intervention in Operation Conifer’s probe into Edward Heath
Operation Conifer: Mike Veale ‘appalled’ by previous cover-ups over child sexual abuse
Edward Heath: police delayed Conifer report to avoid overshadowing Tory conference
Exaro helped Britain turn corner on dark chapter of cover-up over child sexual abuse



Witness: Tony Daly in 1975
Author: Tony Daly today
Cover-up: Old Bailey
Pic: Jerzy Strzelecki
Pic: Lorcan Doherty
Pic: Jennifer Boyer

1,070 Incidents of Alleged Child Sexual Abuse In Secure Units Reported over an 8 Year Period

Researching Reform

The nation’s child abuse inquiry has just published its report on child sexual abuse within secure units for children. The research confirms that the number of reported incidents of sexual abuse is much higher than was previously believed.

The report noted that about 1,070 incidents of alleged sexual abuse were reported from 2009 to 2017. The figure is particularly concerning as the number of children in detention has been steadily decreasing over time.

The inquiry focused on three units:

Feltham and Werrington – young offender institutions (YOIs)

Medway and Rainsbrook – secure training centres (STCs)

Vinney Green and Aycliffe – secure children’s homes (SCHs)

The inquiry concluded that children held in YOIs and STCs were not safe from physical or sexual abuse. It found that most alleged sexual assaults took place during body searches or restraint by staff.

The summary includes harrowing descriptions of several of the allegations

View original post 186 more words


Dumbarton surgeon spared jail after sending vulgar images to undercover cop he thought was child

Urology consultant John Crooks, 54, believed he was sending the messages to a 14-year-old girl

Glasgow Sheriff Court (Image: Christopher McQuade/Glasgow Live)
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A consultant in urology from Dumbarton has been spared jail after he admitted sending vulgar messages and graphic pictures to an undercover police officer he thought was child.

Paedophile John Crooks, 54, told who he believed was Lara Dickson, a 14-year-old girl from Perth, he was a doctor and wanted to examine her.

Crooks sent images of himself to the girl, completely unaware it was an undercover cop.

He arranged to meet the girl but when he arrived at the travel lodge he had booked, with a bag packed with condoms, lube and viagra, he was snared by police.

The former surgeon pled guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to attempting to communicate indecently with a child, and attempting to cause a child to view a sexual images by sending pictures of his penis, on various occasions between February 2018 and March 2018.

He also admitted attempting to meet an underage girl “with the intention of engaging in unlawful sexual behaviour”.

Sheriff Martin Jones QC said: “Because of the serious nature of these offences, what I am about to impose is a direct alternative to custody.

“The offences you have pled guilty to are well passed the custody threshold.”

He gave Crooks a three-year community payback order with a string of conditions including being supervised in the community and carrying out 300 hours unpaid work.

He will be on the sex offenders register for three years and cannot use anything that connects to the internet, unless it retains the history that the police or authorities can check.

The court previously heard Crooks sent a message to who he believed to be the schoolgirl on a messenger service called Kik.

After he was told she was a 14-year-old girl from Perth, he sent a string of lewd messages.

Procurator fiscal depute Chris Farrell said Crooks told the girl he was a doctor and wished to examine her.

During their chat Crooks sent pictures of his private parts to her and suggested they meet.

Intelligence was passed on and officers prepared to meet Crooks at the travel lodge instead of the 14-year-old he thought he would see.

Mr Farrell said Crooks – who lived in Kirkintilloch at the time –  made his way to a travel lodge, where he was met by two officers in the reception.

He had with him a bag with condoms, lube and viagra.







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