Lambeth Child AbuseThe Faceparty Fiasco
There is a considerable amount of material on the internet about Faceparty.com and the suspected unlawful activity that occurred there (and is possibly still occurring).
Brian Pead is currently writing a book about the Faceparty.com fiasco, but a summary can be found below:
• Faceparty liquidated in May 2008 and many thousands of ordinary, decent people ‘lost’ money
• Faceparty claimed to block all under-16s from the website
• Faceparty allowed indecent photos of under-aged teens to be posted on its website, accessible through “AVS and Cool Tools” which required a subscription
• Brian Pead never subscribed to this facility
• Around September 2007, word was going around the internet that there was unlawful and distasteful activity occurring on the website
• Some people suggested it had been “taken over by the police”
• Faceparty claimed that it moderated each chatroom to ensure that no ‘unsavoury activity or conversations’ took place
• Faceparty claimed in its Terms and Conditions that EVERY profile was monitored to ensure that no under-aged people could gain access to the website
• Faceparty claimed to vet EVERY photo uploaded to its website before allowing it to be posted
• Between September 2007 and May 2008, the website was allowing chatrooms to be created with names such as “TeenSluts4Cash”, “Teens4OldMen”, and similarly named rooms
• Other rooms with such names as “YoungPix” or “YoungPicSwap” were also created
• Yet other rooms were created with names such as “Escorts4Cash”, “TeenEscorts” or “YoungEscorts4Cash” and similarly sounding names
• This was clearly at odds with Faceparty’s declared policy
• Along with others, Brian Pead began investigating these rooms with a view to complaining to the management of the website
• As the net was closing in on these unlawful activities, the website was liquidated only to start up again the following day with the same Company Directors
• During the process of liquidation, members who had paid for additional services on the website lost all of their money
• Some estimates have put the total cash lost by members of Faceparty as high as £25million
• Some people have suggested that the website was used by corrupt police officers who
(a) gained a lot of money
(b) traded in child pornography for their own purposes
(c) traded in child pornography to obtain convictions and
(d) used the website to obtain convictions of a sexual nature not directly related to child pornography (such as grooming)
(e) acted as agents provocateurs (which is illegal in itself)
If you would like more information, click on the following links:
[many more links on application via Contact Us form on this website]
If you were affected in any way by the Faceparty website, or if you would like to report criminal activity on that website, use the Contact Us form.
If you would like to speak with someone about abuse you or others suffered on the Faceparty website, please call 07564 002 493.
All telephone calls are recorded for training purposes.
Lambeth Child AbuseThe case of James Walker v Lambeth Council was reported on the BBC and in the London Evening Standard on 6 December 2011 – almost five years after Pead was suspended.
Under the headline “Headmaster gets £100,000 over ‘cancer sacking’, Anna Davis, Education Correspondent, wrote:
“…A former London head has been awarded more than £100,000 in compensation for being unfairly sacked after he returned to work following chemo-therapy treatment.
James Walker, 55, who was head of Henry Fawcett School in Kennington, agreed to the out-of-court settlement. He said he was “relieved” that his family can “move on with their lives”.
His wife Becca said they had gone through three years of stress, adding: “They have taken away James’s career, what he worked all his life for.
“I just want to get things back to how they were before. It’s not about the money, it’s about clearing James’s name and being vindicated.”
Mr Walker had just returned to the Henry Fawcett School in Kennington after six months of cancer treatment in 2008 when he was accused of bullying by another member of staff.
The father of two said the allegation was part of a “witch-hunt” by Lambeth council, which runs the school, which left him feeling “depressed and suicidal”. He said: “Once it was clear I wasn’t leaving [the job] they spent a huge amount of time finding anything they could pin on me. They put in this bullying allegation which was not believed by the court. It’s inhumane how they treated me.
He was suspended from the school, where Jack Straw’s son Will was once a governor, in November 2008.
An employment tribunal in Croydon upheld his claim of unfair dismissal against the council. The tribunal found the council had cleared his office, destroyed his files, insisted on draconian suspension conditions and failed to adopt impartiality. A disability claim that he was discriminated against because of his illness was not upheld.
Employment judge Lindsay Hall-Smith said the tribunal was “struck by the level of hostility” the council showed towards Mr Walker. A council spokesman said it was “sorry that Mr Walker was found to have been treated unfairly. The education of pupils has always been an overriding priority and when allegations are brought to our attention we must respond.” Mr Walker said no action has been taken against the people responsible for damaging his career…”
Note the extraordinary parallels between the two cases of Pead v Lambeth Council and Walker v Lambeth Council:
- both Heads were accused of bullying members of staff
- both men describe a witch-hunt against them
- both men describe how Lambeth spent huge amounts of money and time finding anything they could pin on them
- both men describe inhumane treatment meted out to them by Lambeth Council
- both men were suspended
- both men had their offices cleared
- both men had files destroyed
- both men were subjected to draconian suspension conditions
- both investigations failed to adopt impartiality
- both men complained of Lambeth’s hostility towards them
- no-one has ever been held accountable within Lambeth
But the two cases have further disturbing parallels. James Walker was, like Pead, an astute individual. He had also identified serious weaknesses within Lambeth. And, once he made his line manager – also Barry Gilhooly – aware of the problems, the allegations were turned against him.
In evidence presented to the court by James Walker, the Tribunal heard that two teachers had told the council’s whistle-blowing department shortly after the suspension, that Mrs Bermingham – a key witness in the case – was ‘fabricating her claims’, but this evidence was not acted upon by Phyllis Dunipace, the Executive Director for Children Services at the time.
This is an exact copy of what happened to Pead. He presented to the Investigatory Hearing and to a Disciplinary Hearing evidence – incontrovertible evidence – that Murray and others had fabricated their claims. Twist did nothing. Hare did nothing. Gilhooly did nothing. Dunipace did nothing.
They had all been given evidence that Murray and others had fabricated evidence. They had all been given evidence that Murray was sexually interested in young, white females.
No-one did anything to bring her to account.
In fact, they even reinstated Murray and allowed her further access to thousands of children.
In the case of Walker v Lambeth, the court heard that by February 2009 Ms Dunipace wanted to remove Mr Walker from his post and had commissioned a strategy to bring about an end to his employment with the council. This is an exact echo of what happened to Pead.
In yet another echo of the Walker case, Mr Walker said: “…The tactics used by Lambeth felt like they were designed to make me give up and walk away but I was determined to fight this unjust set of actions…”
Again, this mirrored the Pead case. Lambeth took months before arranging a Disciplinary Hearing. They produced more than 600 pages against him, which could, realistically, have been reduced to no more than 50 pages and they organised a raft of witnesses which had no relevance to the allegations before him.
To read how the BBC reported the James Walker v Lambeth Council case, click here
To read how Lambeth Council treated Brian Pead, click here
To read how the Kennington News blogspot reported the James Walker case, click here
To read how the SouthEast 11 blogspot reported the James Walker case, click here
To read how the ConservativeHome blogspot reported the James Walker case, click here
The South African teacher calling herself Maryn Murray worked at St. Augustine’s school in Ealing. This school has links with St. Benedict’s school in Ealing.
The campaigner Jonathan West, whose son attended St. Augustine’s school, has written extensively on his website, Confessions of a Skeptic, about sexual abuse at St. Benedict’s and lax child protection measures at St. Augustine’s.
The following Letter to the Editor was published in The Times on Friday 19th October 2012.
Click here to see a copy of the letter as it appeared in the paper.
The Government should act without delay to pass a law on mandatory reporting of known or suspected child abuse
Sir, Child sex abuse cases have some very important similarities. Many cases involve abuse that occurred in an institutional context, usually in a school. In these cases the abuser was able to work himself into a position of trust, and the management of the institution had knowledge or suspicions of abuses and did not pass those concerns on to the authorities. In every case, the abuser was able to commit further serious crimes after those concerns had first come to light. Had the concerns been promptly reported to the authorities, it is at least likely that the abuses could have been stopped at a much earlier stage, and much avoidable suffering prevented.
Unbelievably, Britain has no law requiring schools or other institutions responsible for the care of children to report allegations or incidents of child sex abuse. A head teacher can know that one of his or her staff has sexually assaulted one of the pupils and he or she has no legal obligation to report anything to anybody. This has happened in some cases.
A law on mandatory reporting of child abuse was passed last year in the Republic of Ireland, with a sentence of up to five years’ imprisonment for failing to report abuse. A similar law is urgently needed in Britain to ensure that people can report without fear of losing their jobs, and that their employers are prompt in passing those concerns to the authorities.
The Government should act without delay to pass a law on mandatory reporting of known or suspected child abuse in all environments where adults act in loco parentis.
Jonathan West, Lucy Duckworth, www.seechanges.org; Ken Acons, Rosminian Boys Group; Piers Brogan, Chairman of Rosminian Boys Group; Bob Brecher, Professor, University of Brighton; Helen Charlton, Minster and Clergy Sexual Abuse Survivors; Tracey Emmott, director, Emmott Snell Solicitors; Michael Ghersie, chartered accountant; Valerie Gibbs, vicar; David Greenwood, chairman of www.stopchurchchildabuse.co.uk; Phil Johnson, Eastbourne Survivors Group; Rory Johnston, Rosminian Boys Group; Anne Lawrence, barrister, Atlas Chambers; Francis Lionnet, communications consultant; Donald MacFaul, Dere Street Barristers; Olenka Frenkiel, investigative journalist; Clint McMillian, Rosminian Boys Group; John Poppleton, product manager; Peter Saunders, CEO, Napac; Richard Scorer, partner, Pannone LLP Solicitors; Michael Sheridan, accountant; Sam Simeonides, Rosminian Boys Group; Matthew Starrett-Bigg, Rosminian Boys Group; Anna Whiting, campaigner; Clare Whiting, art director; Julian Whiting, ex-police officer, campaigner; Mrs Lorena Whiting, campaigner; The Rev Peter Whiting, Baptist minister; Sophie Whiting, teacher; Alex Wilson, Rosminian Boys Group; Rory O’Neill, Rosminian Boys Group
Click here to read more about significant sexual abuse at St. Benedict’s school in Ealing.
Click here to read how the Head teacher of St. Augustine’s school in Ealing tried in vain to cover up lax child protection measures in her school – the school where Murray worked.
Click here to read Jonathan West’s view of Chris Patten and St. Benedict’s school.
The Jimmy Savile affair has obvious links to the BBC, whose Trust is Chaired by Chris Patten.
Click here to see who else is on the governing body of St. Benedict’s.
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