Check before you book

Booking a holiday and finding a place to stay can be difficult enough at the best of times. It’s not enough just to see if there is a gym, a swimming pool and good restaurants and other amenities but to also consider if the accommodation is a safe haven and not managed, run or staffed by inappropriate personnel.

An example of the risk can be seen from the recent conviction of an ex-Army intelligence officer and Manchester hotelier, for a second time for abusing children at his £2m B&B. Saleem targeted children after they checked into his hotel with their parents near Manchester Airport. He had been previously jailed in October 2018 after attacking two sisters aged four and eight. He has been jailed again after a nine year old girl made a complaint following his first sentence. Saleem said his conviction was ‘unjust and tyrannical’.

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Primark security guard jailed

A Primark security guard has been jailed after being found guilty of the rape and sexual assault of four underage girls who were found shop lifting from the store.  Zia Uddin, who worked at the chain’s Kingston upon Thames store, caught the girls shoplifting then abused his authority by telling them he would let them go without informing the police or their parents about their thefts if they performed sexual acts on him.

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Limitation in abuse cases: Nigel Dunn v Durham County Council

This claim was before the courts in 2012 on the claimant’s successful application for non-redacted disclosure of the defendant’s records, which led to the decision of Dunn v Durham CC [2012] EWCA.

Mr Dunn alleged that he had suffered abuse whilst a child and was resident at the defendants Aycliffe Young Peoples Centre. It should be noted that this claim involved allegations of physical and not sexual abuse.

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Allegations of abuse accepted by police with little evidence

Three chapters from the report drafted by Sir Richard Henriques into the Metropolitan Police Service’s (MPS) handling of the investigation into allegations of abuse made by ‘Nick’ (real name Carl Beech) against Lord Brittan, Lord Bramall, Harvey Proctor and others, were re-published on 4 October 2019. Click here to read the report.  The three chapters alone run to 391 pages and were previously released three years ago, but were heavily redacted at the time.

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Universities in the spotlight: Sexual abuse on campus – the UK perspective

There has been a marked increase in the number of reported incidents of sexual assaults or misconduct made by students. BBC File on Four (17 September 2019) asked 115 universities the number of complaints they received.  80 universities replied.  The combined number of complaints was more than 700 last year.  According to Channel Four, incidents reported went from 65 in 2014 to 626 in 2018, an 85% increase.  165 allegations of rape or sexual assault have been reported by students at one university alone in the last three years.  This trend reflects an increased willingness to report incidents – although many are never reported – and an increased willingness to investigate them.

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Children’s Commissioner publishes a statutory Duty of Care for online service providers

Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, has challenged Government Ministers to adopt her “powerful yet simple” proposals and create a statutory duty of care to all children who use online services.

Children who use these platforms are frequently exposed to harmful material and are at risk of online grooming.

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Victims of abuse at Aston Hall criticise Government’s compensation deal

Around 120 individuals have now come forward stating they were abused by Dr Kenneth Milner in the 1960s and 70s.

Dr Milner worked as the medical superintendent at Aston Hall psychiatric hospital in Derbyshire. The hospital treated children with learning disabilities and mental health issues.

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