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Child sex abuse, ‘Fernbridge’ and ‘Fairbank’: Exaro story thread

Police are investigating former senior politicians and other prominent people over historical allegations of child sex abuse. Exaro has run a series of pieces on the issue since late 2012, as listed below.

The Metropolitan Police Service’s paedophile unit launched an investigation into activities at Elm Guest House in Barnes, south-west London, in the early 1980’s.

The Met’s investigation began after Exaro worked with a key source to pass to detectives documents that detail allegations that boys were supplied from the nearby Grafton Close children’s home, which was run by the London borough of Richmond-upon-Thames.

When the Met upgraded the case to a full criminal investigation, it became ‘Operation Fernbridge’. At that point, it was separated from ‘Operation Fairbank’, which is scoping various allegations of child sex abuse against several senior political figures.

Exaro also helped ‘Operation Fairbank’ establish that one set of allegations of indecent assault against a senior Conservative minister was false.

Exaro has also led the way on uncovering documents relating to the case of Sir Cyril Smith, the late former Liberal MP.

The common theme of the pieces below is that they raise questions about how the authorities have tackled the issue of child sex abuse. They led to a call by seven MPs for an overarching inquiry into the organised sexual abuse of children in the UK. It snowballed as nearly 150 MPs supported the inquiry call, which the government eventually granted.

Later, Exaro reported accounts from two people who alleged that they were abused as boys by the ‘Westminster paedophile network’ at Dolphin Square, the apartment complex in Pimlico where many MPs have their London homes. One of the two witnesses says that members of the paedophile network murdered three boys in separate attacks.

Exaro’s reports led the Met to set up a further investigation, ‘Operation Midland’.

Accounts from police whistleblowers, first reported by Exaro, of cover-ups for prominent paedophiles prompted a series of investigations that are being overseen by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

The articles are listed in reverse-chronological order.

Police send file on claims of child sex abuse against ex-MP to CPS

NSPCC to step down as provider of CSA inquiry’s helpline

Revealed: huge probe into ‘cover-ups’ over VIP paedophiles

Court 73: where UK institutions are ‘in the dock’ in CSA inquiry

Harvey Proctor in clear as Yard closes ‘Operation Midland’

CoE finds one million pages of documents about child sex abuse

Smith review finds 72 BBC-linked victims of Sir Jimmy Savile

Smith review: police unearth missing diary of TOTP girl, 15

Met was right to interview Lord Brittan over rape claim – review

Police probe ‘cover-up’ over Peter Morrison, Exaro debate hears

Janet Smith clashes with DJ ‘A7’ over abuse inquiry at BBC

Analysis: why Exaro ran disclosures from leaked Smith review

BBC knew of Savile inquiry’s findings more than a year ago
Judge’s inquiry into Jimmy Savile avoids prejudicing police cases
Janet Smith’s review: key extracts and Exaro story thread

Margaret Thatcher urged knighthood for ‘lurid’ Jimmy Savile
Janet Smith’s review: chapter 4 on society’s lack of alarm

Top of the Pops exposed by Janet Smith’s inquiry into abuse
Inquiry slams BBC over response to suicide of TOTP girl, 15
TOTP photographer took ‘porny’ pictures of girls in audience
Jimmy Savile hid abuse on Top of the Pops in ‘plain sight’
Radio 1 chief failed to see risk posed by Jimmy Savile in 1973
Janet Smith’s review: chapters 9 and 11 on TOTP and Radio 1

BBC staff to Janet Smith: we heard of Jimmy Savile’s exploits
Many of Jimmy Savile’s sexual attacks linked directly to BBC
Jim’ll Fix It sailed on despite concerns with Sir Jimmy Savile
BBC chiefs oblivious to Jimmy Savile’s damning Sun stories
BBC stars blast Jimmy Savile in damning evidence to inquiry
Janet Smith’s review: chapters 3, 5, 6, 7, 10 on ‘who knew what’

Jimmy Savile: Janet Smith’s damning review leaked to Exaro
BBC staff feared reporting Jimmy Savile’s activities to bosses
Whistleblowing at BBC ‘worse’ than in Jimmy Savile’s time
Jimmy Savile inquiry reveals BBC’s ‘kid gloves’ for its stars
Another Jimmy Savile could lurk at BBC, warns inquiry report
Janet Smith’s review: chapters 1, 2, conclusions & afterword

Lord Bramall demands apology from police over investigation

Jersey’s former deputy police chief slams island’s abuse inquiry

IPCC probes Panorama source over leaking of CSA survivors’ IDs

Exaro panel debate: ‘Did the UK cover up over child sex abuse?’

‘Jane’: witnesses should come forward despite Leon Brittan row Updated 14 December 2015

Tom Driberg MP ‘escaped prosecution for sexually abusing boys’

Police investigate 300 teachers over claims of child sex abuse

Ex-flatmates support ‘Jane’ over rape claim against Leon Brittan
How police chiefs were split over investigation into Leon Brittan

Jimmy Savile: BBC restricts Smith review’s terms of reference
BBC-commissioned study praises corporation on child protection

CSA inquiry plans to start hearings soon – after series of mishaps

Smith review ‘already avoids prejudicing ongoing police cases’

Police probe 13 more politicians over claims of child sex abuse

Mark Watts on RT’s Sputnik: BBC’s attack on abuse survivors

Met investigates Panorama source over leak of CSA survivor’s ID

Analysis: why I turned down Panorama’s interview request

Revealed: Panorama’s plans to smear survivors of child abuse

BBC seeks to delay Smith review until after renewal of charter

IPCC launches 13 more probes into paedophile ‘cover-ups’

Harvey Proctor’s ex-lover talks to Met’s ‘Operation Midland’

Police ‘betray’ CSA survivor by referring his son to social services

Analysis: why police continue to investigate claims by ‘Nick’

Police investigate senior Labour MP for ‘charging constituents’

Found: more secret files on allegations of sex offences by ‘VIPs’

Police are still sifting items seized from raid on Harvey Proctor
Harvey Proctor: ‘I am a homosexual. I am not a murderer’

German TV runs report about Britain’s ‘politician paedophiles’

Video: Esther Baker on how police have stepped up abuse case Updated 14 December 2015

Sir Edward Heath: dozen police probes across UK become one

Mark Watts returns to RT’s Sputnik: VIPs and child sex abuse

Sir Edward Heath: Met also investigates claims of child sex abuse

Ken Clarke: police assure me that they are not investigating me

Police probe second claim against Ken Clarke of sexual assault

Ben Fellows cleared of attempting to pervert course of justice

Australia’s 60 Minutes makes ‘special’ on UK’s VIP paedophiles

Video: Kincora was used for ‘political leverage’ – Richard Kerr 

Richard Kerr names powerful men who ‘covered up’ Kincora

Roger Cook to testify in trial of Ben Fellows over Kenneth Clarke

Jimmy Savile: BBC fears inquiry indictment over abuse failure

Lord Janner charged with child sex abuse in reversal for DPP

Mark Watts tells RT’s Sputnik about ‘Britain’s biggest scandal’

Police raided this former officer in ‘cover-up’ for Lord Janner
Police seized abuse evidence to protect Lord Janner – ex-officer
Detectives told me all about Lord Janner and boys – ex-officer

Commentary: my frustration over rape probe into Leon Brittan

CPS refuses to advise police on rape case against Leon Brittan
How CPS treated late Lord Brittan differently from Arnis Zalkalns

Police quiz paedophile Charles Napier in prison over new claims

Inquiry into child sex abuse to hire 21 barristers in ‘lawyer-fest’

Mark Watts joins LBC Newsmakers to discuss VIP paedophiles

Revealed: how Lord Janner lobbied for Israel as backbench MP

Kincora staff took boys to Europa for sexual abuse by guests
Richard Kerr: how I was trafficked from Kincora to Europa hotel
Richard Kerr: how Kincora warden fixed a job for me at Europa

Three women name former MP as sexual abuser of children
Former MP in police probe denies claims of child sex abuse

Vishal Mehrotra: Sussex Police refers its murder probe to IPCC
Police investigate 76 politicians over claims of child sex abuse

Online Media Awards shortlists Exaro with three nominations

Lord Janner re-appointed to law committee despite ‘dementia’

Richard Kerr: ex-judge sexually abused me at Elm Guest House

Lord Janner voted 203 times in Parliament despite ‘dementia’
Lord Janner’s voting record since granting power of attorney
Lord Janner’s parliamentary attendance since ‘Alzheimer’s’

New Parliament: DPP has it wrong on Lord Janner, say 78 MPs

Lord Janner: DPP faces fresh doubts about medical evidence
Pressure builds on DPP to re-think block on Lord Janner case

Met probes ex-MP Lord Janner over ‘VIP paedophile network’

Police reveal fury with CPS for refusing to charge Lord Janner

World’s media focus on scandal of child sex abuse by UK VIPs

Carole Kasir ‘boasted about VIPs who visited Elm Guest House’
Carole Kasir’s past: fractious family life and failed relationships
Revealed: Carole Kasir and her squalid life at Elm Guest House

BBC at war over Panorama on claims of VIP paedophile network

Ministers block move to lift Official Secrets Act for CSA scandal
How MPs voted on move to change Official Secrets Act over CSA

Leon Brittan: IPCC investigates claim of ‘cover-up’ for top Tory Updated 27 March 2015
Scotland Yard’s ‘charge sheet’ for cover-up on ‘VIP paedophiles’

Police see Pimlico property as key to ‘paedophile murder’ case

Press Awards nominates Exaro and Sunday People jointly Updated 10 March 2015

Police raid Leon Brittan’s properties in London and Yorkshire Updated 15 January 2016

Harvey Proctor denies attending Dolphin Square ‘sex parties’ Updated 18 June 2015

Police raid Harvey Proctor’s home under ‘Operation Midland’

Met opens new probe into Tony McSweeney and Grafton Close Updated 27 March 2015

Tony McSweeney found guilty of abusing boy at Grafton Close

Peter Hayman and John Henniker linked to paedophile scandal

Paedophile linchpin Peter Righton ‘carried out sadistic murder’ Updated 14 December 2015
‘Murder at Thornham Magna’: ‘Darren’ relives harrowing scene 

Tony McSweeney on trial for ‘child sex abuse’ at Grafton Close

Leon Brittan faced Met questions over Elm Guest House ‘visits’

Graham Wilmer: CSA inquiry panel to have no abuse survivors

Tory hopeful told speaker’s dinner: Leon Brittan is a paedophile

Leon Brittan buried in unmarked grave in ‘very private funeral’

Theresa May stunned members of CSA inquiry at final meeting

Bid to bar reporting Ken Clarke’s name in sex accuser’s trial fails

Leon Brittan was under Met probe over claims of child sex abuse
Abuse survivors call on Yard to continue probe into Leon Brittan

Commentary: skulduggery besieges inquiry into child sex abuse

Video: ‘Darren’ calls on police to arrest Dolphin Square abusers Updated 14 December 2015

Commentary: panel for inquiry into child sex abuse must stay

Dolphin Square: third witness tells of child sex abuse by MPs Updated 14 December 2015
Peter Righton ordered teenager to ‘pleasure’ Charles Napier
Ex-minister wanted boys dressed in ladies’ lacy underwear
Darren: my dread of ‘medical room’ at Dolphin Square flat

Home Office mandarins ‘are seeking to subvert abuse inquiry’

Charles Napier jailed in first triumph for ‘Operation Fairbank’

Paedophile operations: ex-police to submit dossier to Met chief
Police discuss submitting statements on paedophile ‘cover-up’

Police to ask ‘Nick’ to try to identify victims from ‘missing boys’

Theresa May to scrap panel for inquiry into child sex abuse

Police privately admit ‘cover-up’ for paedophile MPs and VIPs
Protected: paedophile MPs and ‘prominent people’, say police

Lord Janner faces re-opened police probe into child sex abuse

Exaro and David Hencke up for top awards over CSA inquiry

Buckingham Palace drawn into scandal over ‘paedophile ring’
Revealed: buried files link Buckingham Palace to paedophilia Updated 30 January 2015

MP paedophiles were ‘Untouchables’ – ex-Special Branch officer

Met trawls files on 200 missing boys in murder probe into VIPs

‘Operation Midland’ investigates Tory MP over boy’s murder
Analysis: what led to ‘homicide’ probe by ‘Operation Midland’

Ex-MI6 chief named as sexual abuser of boys at Dolphin Square
Revealed: Peter Hayman, paedo, spy. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, PIE
How Peter Hayman was linked in Parliament to paedophile ring

Video: ‘Nick’ tells of how MPs ‘liked to inflict pain’ during abuse 

Met starts investigation into child sex abuse at Dolphin Square
Nick: one MP abuser was ‘sadistic’ – another especially violent

Justin Welby admits: child abuse has been ‘rampant’ within CoE

Fiona Woolf grilled by MPs about her links with Lord Brittan

Lord Brittan leaves vice-chairman job at UBS Investment Bank

Clergy to be given training on ‘safeguarding’ children in CoE

‘Operation Fernbridge’ loses chief as pressure mounts on Met

Graham Wilmer blasts Michael Gove over sex abuse at schools

Catholic school’s child psychotherapist exposed as paedophile

Commentary: how paedophile Peter Morrison escaped exposure

Inquiry head faces calls to declare links with Leon Brittan fully

Fiona Woolf to defend her role as head of CSA inquiry ‘robustly’

Conservative conference faces fresh claims over paedophile MPs

New head of CSA inquiry is cleared to read intelligence papers

‘Only one in 20 victims of child sex abuse likely to win civil claim’

Scotland Yard delays 200 charges over claims of child sex abuse

Rochdale council rejects claim of child sex abuse as ‘out of time’

Police investigate second boys’ school linked to Cyril Smith MP

Church to spend £2m on support for victims of child sex abuse

Prosecutors reinstate key charges after error over Elm Guest House

CPS forced to disclose damning police report on Cyril Smith
Cyril Smith: damning police report on his sexual abuse – in full

Theresa May ‘to consult’ on choice for new head of CSA inquiry

Audio file set to blow lid off paedophile scandal at Westminster

Baroness Butler-Sloss faces another hitch in heading CSA inquiry Updated 14 July 2014

Dolphin Square: MPs threw parties ‘for sexual abuse of children’
MPs took boys to Dolphin Square for sexual assault – and rape
MPs, celebrities and spies share dark secrets of Dolphin Square

MPs tell Theresa May: abuse survivors must be on inquiry panel

Theresa May orders independent inquiry into child sex abuse Updated 8 July 2014
CSA inquiry: Theresa May’s statement to House of Commons

Baroness Butler-Sloss and bishop of Durham back CSA inquiry: list of Lords who back inquiry call 

DPP forced Scotland Yard to quiz Leon Brittan over rape claim

Theresa May delays decision on call by 141 MPs for CSA inquiry Updated 4 July 2014
Dear Zac, no CSA inquiry yet, maybe later. Yours, Theresa May

Five more Conservative MPs join cross-party call for CSA inquiry
Leon Brittan and Home Office issue statements on missing file

Simon Danczuk asks DPP to review claim over Elm Guest House

Commentary: no MP should name ‘paedophile’ ex-minister yet

Andy Burnham presses Jeremy Hunt for ‘overarching inquiry’

MPs who want inquiry into organised abuse of children tops 100

BASW e-mails 15,000 social workers: lobby MPs for CSA inquiry

MPs tell Tim Loughton: we also want inquiry into child sex abuse Updated 19 June 2014

Every MP asked to back inquiry into organised child sex abuse

David Cameron pressed at PMQs on inquiry into child sex abuse
Pressure builds in Parliament to address child sex abuse in UK: full list of MPs who back CSA inquiry

Met complains about Exaro’s ‘overly intrusive’ investigation

MPs call on Theresa May to set up inquiry into child sex abuse
Police keep failing ‘to follow evidence’ in abuse cases, say MPs

Met ‘breached guidelines’ in rape investigation into ex-minister
Detectives fail to see how ‘Jane’ refused consent in rape case

Police smear woman who alleged rape by ex-cabinet minister

Video: ‘Jane’ gives her account of rape by ex-cabinet minister

‘Rapist’ ex-cabinet minister named in Tom Watson’s DPP letter

Tom Watson asks DPP to review rape claim against ex-minister

‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19,’ woman tells Met
Jane: ‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19’ – part 1
Jane: ‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19’ – part 2
Jane: ‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19’ – part 3
Jane: ‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19’ – part 4
Jane: ‘Ex-cabinet minister raped me when I was 19’ – part 5

Police pore through council files on Cyril Smith’s special school

Customs seized video of child sex abuse and ex-cabinet minister
Man who tried to import video: ‘I did not know what was inside’

David Hencke nominated for Orwell Prize 2014 for Exaro scoops

Revealed: Whitehall official who blocked objections to fund PIE

Police poised to level charges in paedophile ring linked to MPs

Police and CPS ‘leave survivors of child sex abuse in the lurch’
Commentary: ‘justice’ in UK still fails survivors of child sex abuse

Detectives investigate use of ‘staging post’ for Elm Guest House

Met’s ‘VIP paedophiles’ probe turns into murder investigation

Met’s paedophile unit seizes video of ex-minister at ‘sex party’ Updated 11 January 2014

‘Operation Fernbridge’ releases Elm co-manager without charge

CPS to drop key charges brought under ‘Operation Fernbridge’ Updated 27 June 2014

Revealed: Cyril Smith hoped to help take direct control of school

Police arrest man over false accusation against Kenneth Clarke

Police pursue new leads in paedophile case against ex-minister

Secret files expose Cyril Smith’s ‘special school for child abuse’
Knowl View files: Rochdale council chiefs warned of ‘scandal’
Knowl View files: ‘serious sexual incidents’ logged in report
Knowl View files: staff, governors and authorities failed boys

Priest and ex-manager of Richmond children’s home in court

Revealed: how Cyril Smith denied paedophile claims to police
Cyril Smith told detectives: I never behaved in any indecent way

‘Operation Fernbridge’ arrests ex-manager of Elm Guest House

Church of England considers ‘commission’ on child sex abuse

Ofsted forces private school to close over sexual abuse of pupils

Exaro’s video shows ‘Fairbank’ arrest of Tory MP’s half-brother

Met’s ‘Operation Fairbank’ arrests half-brother of top Tory MP

Kenneth Clarke wrongly accused of indecently assaulting boy
How I helped police clear Kenneth Clarke of ‘sex assault’ smear

MBE for head of project helping sex victims, but funding is axed

Labour urges re-think on reporting by schools of abuse claims

Michael Gove blocks move to force schools to report sex abuse

Met’s ‘Operation Fernbridge’ is ‘going well’, says Boris Johnson

Met investigates Catholic order’s schools over child sex abuse
Operation Torva: ex-pupil joined police and triggered Met probe

MoD policy on claims of child sex abuse at schools ‘stuns’ MPs

Police abandon probe into Cyril Smith’s sexual abuse of boys

Elm Guest House linked to ‘Britain’s biggest child sex racket’

Ex-Richmond boss Louis Minster denies being… Louis Minster

Scene pictured from children’s home in Met’s paedophile case

Richmond files reveal failure to pursue claim of child sex abuse

Met investigates police watchdog over Richmond ‘paedo ring’

Met’s paedophile unit starts investigating Catholic Church in UK

Police commander overseeing ‘Operation Yewtree’ quits Met

Police seek Asbo-style orders against suspected paedophiles

Child sex abuse: groups offering support services face closure

Police re-open files on child sex abuse at Kincora boys’ home

Witnesses in ‘Operation Fernbridge’ plead for support service
Two who suffered sexual abuse make appeal through Exaro

Analysis: we must change how society tackles child sex abuse

Richmond council ‘was alerted to allegations of child sex abuse’
Police gave council advance warning of raid on Elm Guest House

Met paedophile unit prepares to arrest ex-Tory cabinet minister

Met detectives told of Jimmy Savile’s link to Elm Guest House
Analysis: public should know truth about VIP paedophile ring

Co-manager of guest house in police probe plans to leave UK

Claims of child sex abuse haunted Richmond boss for 30 years

Police examine sacking of Richmond’s head of social services
Councillors give contrasting reasons for Louis Minster’s sacking

Richmond’s ex-head of social services ‘unaware’ of ‘paedo ring’

Exaro’s pictures show first arrest in ‘Operation Fernbridge’

‘Operation Fernbridge’ makes first arrests in paedophile probe

Two managers of children’s home named in VIP paedo probe

Files reveal who turned Elm Guest House into paedo brothel
Richmond council made ‘hush payment’ to victim of sex abuse

Police chief warns VIP paedophiles: look over your shoulder

Tory group recommended guest house in Met’s paedo probe
Police investigate Richmond council over ‘VIP paedophile ring’

Detectives set up 30 operations into ‘child sex abuse by groups’
Police operations into ‘child sex abuse by groups’ – Exaro’s list

Found: co-manager of guest house at centre of police probe

Met turns ‘Operation Fairbank’ into full criminal investigation

‘Operation Fairbank’ carries out raid to seize files naming MPs

How exposure of high-profile abusers impacts care for children

Revealed: diaries and receipts from guest house in police probe

Locals spoke of ‘the activities’ at guest house in police probe
MPs and judges visited Elm Guest House, coroner’s court told
Detectives who must peer into disturbing case of child abuse

Police investigate top Tories over ‘child abuse at guest house’
Police ‘twice failed to probe paedophile ring at guest house’

Analysis: why media must still investigate claims of child abuse

Audio: investigative journalism’s future after Newsnight fiasco

Investigations, not witch-hunts: David Hencke on BBC R4 Today

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