The Truth About IPP Sentences

CPS and police remain silent after man cleared of historic abuse

Witnesses who make false allegations of historic abuse should be prosecuted

Witnesses who make false allegations of historic abuse should be prosecuted

Police and Crown Prosecution Service officials declined the opportunity to make their customary statement from the steps of Liverpool Crown Court after a man had been cleared of 40 year old allegations of historic abuse against children and after he had been extradited from Canada; the only evidence against him was the accounts of the two female complainants.

Father of two, Paul Cleary had emigrated to Canada in 1989, had a family and a good job but was forcibly returned to the UK by British police in July of this year.

TheOpinionSite.org should bring to the attention of readers the fact that there have been other cases of historic abuse which have also resulted in an acquittal and where the police and CPS have chosen to say nothing.

One may be forgiven for suggesting that when the prosecuting authorities win a case, they cannot stop talking about it and, when they lose a case, they seek to hide in the deepest hole they can find in order to avoid embarrassing questions or criticism.

Appallingly, in the case of Paul Cleary, even the trial judge seems to have lost his objectivity.

Judge David Aubrey, QC, thanked the jurors for their service and duly released Mr Cleary from the dock.

However, in a hugely inappropriate manner he then went on to say:

“It’s quite apparent there are a number of members of the public gallery who are members of the family left distressed as a result of the verdicts of the jury.

“Of course this court respects and anticipates if they are distressed the two prosecution witnesses in this case will be extremely distressed when they are made aware of the verdicts in this case. It is absolutely essential that both of them are informed of the decision with sensitivity and any help either of them require or need is given to them.”

Perhaps it would have been better if the judge had turned to the defendant and said something along the lines of:

“You leave the court an innocent man and questions should be asked as to why this case was brought in the first place..oh, and we are really sorry that it has completely ruined your life in Canada, possibly cost you your job and may have destroyed your family by us allowing this case to proceed.”

In short, the judge should not sympathise with complainants who have been assessed by the jury as being nothing more than liars.

TheOpinionSite.org would suggest that Judge Aubrey was simply not brave enough to stand up against the populist view that any man accused of a sexual offence against a child – even if the alleged offence was 40 or 50 years ago and there is no real evidence against him – must, according to that populist view, be guilty, regardless of what the jury says.

However, it is hard to blame Judge Aubrey without also making clear the sheer force of opposition to the concept that anyone charged with such an offence could possibly be innocent.

The Prime Minister, his deputy, the former and current Director of Public Prosecutions, the ubiquitous (and some might say, iniquitous NSPCC), the police, numerous feminist groups and of course, the tacky, puerile and moronic tabloid press are all keen to vilify anyone accused of a sexual offence against children, even if the evidence is of the weakest possible nature.

TheOpinionSite.org has previously pointed out the appalling evil that is “similar fact evidence”; the idea that if more than one “victim” comes up with similar accounts, then it must be true.

Peter Spindler, the policeman who headed the investigation into Jimmy Savile also made the point that ”…if so many people are saying the same thing, it must be true.”

What Spindler did not say was that in order to claim victimisation – and compensation –  all one had to do was to repeat one of the many accounts printed in the tabloid press and unquestioned belief by the authorities would then follow.

Thanks to the never ending tirade of what in our opinion is misinformation put out by so called “child protection experts” such as the former junior police officer, Mark Williams-Thomas and the well paid John Carr, the multitudinous executives of the ever money-conscious NSPCC, vote-hunting MPs and of course the editors always anxious to sell newspapers, the public now regards anyone accused of a sexual offence as being the equivalent of a mediaeval witch.

If the accusation is made, it must be true. If the accuse person floats when bound and submerged in water, they must be guilty: if they sink – and die – they must be innocent.

Nowadays, thanks to the endless publicity inflicted upon a public that is sick to death of hearing that every man is a potential child abuser, most juries return guilty verdicts rather than critically asking “Where is the real evidence?”

The situation is made worse by the fact that the Association of Chief Police Officers (which rather oddly is a limited company) has issued guidance from its members – who are mainly chief constables – that following every successful conviction for child sex offences, police should ask other “victims” to come forward, safe in the knowledge that “they will be believed” – which therefore means that even before hearing any evidence, the accused has been presumed by the police and CPS to be guilty.

Even when a defendant is found guilty, he can have no faith in the court’s sentence as, should the judge hand down a sentence that is truly reasonable, it is likely to be appealed by the Attorney General as being “unduly lenient” after having been referred to him by an MP seeking votes, a charity seeking money or a co-ordinated group of individuals seeking compensation.

The sentence is then duly increased from what the trial judge handed down, even though there is no real evidence base on which to increase it. However, it seems that only sentences given for alleged sexual offences against children are ever referred to the Attorney; not those given for any other crime.

TheOpinionSite.org congratulates with great respect the jury in the case of Paul Cleary. We also condemn the judge’s comments as being, in our opinion, wholly inappropriate and indicative of an inability to stand up for justice and to instead be drawn into the cesspool of populist dogma that now saturates Britain’s courts in cases of this nature.

It is also significant that the government has refused point blank to hold a review into how allegations of historic abuse are handled and prosecuted. Ministers have also refused to review the automatic anonymity awarded to accusers, even after they have lost their case against the defendant and have been condemned as liars.

One can only assume the government is afraid of losing populist and female votes.

We wish Mr Cleary well in his attempts to rebuild a life destroyed by what the jury in his case has adjudged to be two female accusers who have deliberately lied and sought to deceive the court.

One would hope that the women concerned might be prosecuted for giving such false evidence but that is unlikely as, just like her predecessor, the current “brave and justice-promoting” Director of Public Prosecutions would never authorise such a prosecution for fear of being criticised.

It is reported that relatives of the two female complainants stormed out of court, angry with the jury’s decision. TheOpinionSite.org  believes that if such complainants as the two women in this case were not guaranteed anonymity, even after they have been proved to have been lying, these women would not have brought their spurious case in the first place, thus saving everyone involved much pain and suffering.

May we respectfully suggest to the police, CPS, MPs, our pathetically weak prime minister (and those with a vested interest in promoting the sordid injustice that sees so many elderly men being prosecuted for ancient alleged offences when there is so little evidence available) that they think again before condemning more innocent men to death in prison, merely on the word of an individual or group of individuals who seek to exploit others for monetary gain or personal revenge.

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17 Responses to CPS and police remain silent after man cleared of historic abuse

  1. Anon
    November 5, 2015 at 8:36 am

    I’ve read the article, and the comments. Falsely accusing someone of any crime is a terrible thing to do, however, from this article, its not clear that this is what happened to Mr Cleary. As I understand it, a jury are instructed to find a defendant guilty when they thing that the evidence shows guilt beyond reasonable doubt. Just because he wasn’t convinced of a crime, doesn’t mean he didn’t do it. If the jury felt that there was reasonable doubt as to his guilt, they would have had to give a not guilty verdict. Thats a long way from saying that the women who accused him were lying. Just means there’s not enough proof to back up their accusations. I think this article has highjacked a case in order to make an important point. Its a shame because it weakens the argument.

    • TheOpinionSite
      November 5, 2015 at 12:05 pm

      Editor’s note: Your observation is well made, although you do not seem to understand the true nature of the British adversarial system:

      Put simply, the prosecution says the defendant is lying, the defence says the witness/complainant is lying. If the jury does not convict, the defendant is innocent and those making the accusations are by definition, to a greater or lesser degree, not telling the truth. The assumption – often forgotten today in our victim-centric society – is that the defendant is always innocent until proven guilty, like it or not.

      There is no “not-proven” verdict; If there were, you would be more correct in your assertion, but there isn’t.

      • Anon
        November 5, 2015 at 11:07 pm

        Innocent (or guilty) in law is not always the same as it is in actual fact. That was my point.

  2. John Marsh
    December 8, 2014 at 7:39 am

    There is a comment above by someone called “annon” with the ascertion that his wife was one of the victims. The real truth is there are many liars and if I was ever a victim for “real”, I still would want the accused to be found guilty on evidence not some kangaroo court as is happening.
    I suggest that not one individual including all the so called victims in the UK would want it to be them in prison based on the word only of another individual or individuals who most likely climbed on the bandwagon to claim the compensation.
    I suggest annon ask the question “what if is was me?”

    • Anon
      March 24, 2015 at 11:29 am

      John Marsh – another one who does not take account of the facts!!
      This case was brought about well before the current “bandwagon” of cases relating to Saville or any of the other high profile stars being tried in a kangaroo court as you suggest.

      Statements were made in 2010! The matter was brought up after 30 years as Cleary had a new grand-daughter to whom he would have access and could repeat his appalling acts! 2 victims and family members testified, all hard working people nurses and teachers etc, do you really believe that they would get together to concoct a story and put themselves through 4 years of hell and ongoing psychological problems to claim compo?

      How do you suggest evidence be sought 30 years on? This dirty paedophile did what many do, consistently abusing 4 year old girls telling them they will get hurt and taken from their mums if they ever tell!

      If you were accused would you be co-operative and try to clear your name or would you lay low like he did thinking that international red tape would keep him safe. In the end a predominantly male jury believed his lies and clearly when a few people did not agree there were some strong enough to turn their views to a not guilty verdict. Why did some of the jury sob as the verdict was read out.

      To have any faith in the innocence of Cleary is seriously misplaced.

  3. Neil hastie
    June 1, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    Hi can anybody tell me if in the cases of historic consensuall under age sex going back to 1981 must the CPS use
    the laws as they were at the time . & does it cover all the uk

  4. anon
    March 17, 2014 at 9:35 am

    Do any of you replying here know the true facts? NO!!!

    I am the husband of one of Cleary’s victims that man ruined her life and she remains destroyed by his actions. He is no innocent man as you seem to suggest and only escaped justice as he convinced his wife to lie for him and stand by him. That she did even though he had made an admission to her.

    The lack of conviction is now a further nail in the coffin for my wife who has had to endure seemingly endless waits for the case to come to court. Cleary refused to speak to police voluntarily and had to be extradited, a very lengthy process whcih means it took 4 years to get him in the dock.

    To the author Raymond Peyters you really haven’t got a clue!

    I do hope that any of you who have posted a reply in support of Cleary read this and understand the true damage he has done. Just because a jury believe his lies and those of his wife then that does not automatically mean what he said is true.

  5. Annie
    February 14, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    I can honestly say that for the “so called victim”, that makes a false alleagation, against a person that is “wholly innocent”, that they should be definately IDENTIFIED and punished. As this may just prevent further false allegations being made in the future. Also the Alleged victim should not be allowed to be financially compensated.

    The person being falsely accused should NEVER be identified as they and their family are going through a “living hell” and will never be able to rid their mind of the false allegation.

  6. JH
    December 30, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    I agree with everything said so far.

    However, there is one aspect that rankles for me, and that is the misuse of the term similar fact evidence. It seems to me that once more the criminals in the CPS have misled us in their insane effort to secure convictions by any means.

    Similar fact evidence is lawfully used to show that the defendant has a bad character in that he has a disposition towards acting in a similar way to the matter charged in the instant case – in other words, it can establish that such behaviour is his modus operandi. It normally takes the form of previous convictions, cautions, and – more rarely – reputation and acquittals in relation to similar behaviour to that complained of in the instant case. A defendant’s bad character can be used to suggest that he is more likely to have committed the offence charged on this occasion.

    However, such evidence of bad character, which itself must be proved, cannot on its own prove that the defendant committed the offence on this occasion. The case has to be deemed strong before bad character is adduced; if the prosecution are using bad character evidence to bolster a weak case, then an unbiased judge (if such exists) should rule it inadmissible.

    What we are now being given to understand as similar fact evidence is a far cry from what I’ve just described. When B and C make separate unsubstantiated claims to have been e.g. raped by A, B’s testimony is only evidence of what happened to B, and C’s testimony is only evidence of what happened to C. Thus neither testimony helps the other as to the actual facts, and hence similar fact evidence is a misnomer. The only ‘corroboration’ between B’s and C’s testimonies is that A allegedly raped one of them, and we only have the word of B and the word of C. Given that the CPS and police ensure that the first occurring allegation is widely publicised, all the next “brave” accuser to come forward needs to say is, “Oh yes, he did that to me too.” (That point is well made in Mr Peytors’ excellent article of course).

    The essential difference then, as it seems to me, is that true similar fact evidence is founded on provable facts such as e.g. recorded previous convictions, whereas what the CPS calls similar fact evidence is founded on two (in my example) unprovable and hence unproved allegations being used to “prove” each other – a logical nonsense. The only way such allegations might corroborate each other is if the manner in which the offences were carried out is particularly unusual, and B and C – entirely separately – gave similar accounts of that unusual conduct. But for that to be of any probative value, the police would have to refrain from publicising allegations as soon as they are made.

    The CPS might have chosen to call their ‘false law’ corroborative evidence, but since, as stated above, the corroboration between the testimonies of B and C is minimal, and in any event corroboration hasn’t been required in this country for nearly twenty years, such a term was probably seen by the CPS as having less impact than the well-established principle of similar fact evidence.

  7. William
    December 30, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    I think what happened to Paul Cleary was disgusting. But, as I have said before on the Opinion Site, where is the anger from the left?… ie left wing journalists, campaigners, civil liberty groups etc. Nothing, but silence, with the noted exception of this website. I thought they had a tradition of taking up causes (even if unpopular with the masses) if justice and fairness was at stake, but nothing upon nothing is said. Oh!, I am sorry, there was one, I think his name is Owen Jones, who writes in the Independent, who so I have read, seems to have impeccable left wing credentials, yet I read an article of his, in the Independent Newspaper, some time ago, where he endorsed and supported historic abuse accusations, no matter how tenuous. So, if people like him are going to support the establishment, what hope is there, for people like Mr Cleary, and others, even less fortunate, who are wrongly convicted.

  8. sambest
    December 28, 2013 at 4:15 am

    I believe these historic allegations will get worse and nothing will happen until higher up police,Royal Family members or politicians (who CAN prove their innocence beyond all doubt) are accused.

    It is beyond comprehension that there is not a statute of limitations on claims of sex assault when it is almost impossible for evidence to be found and it’s one person’s word against the other : ie whoever tells the better story will be believed.

    I note that the boss of the NAPAC was in the media the other day announcing after a court case that the lives of children abused are forever destroyed. In other words he was announcing to future rape victims that basically- “your life is now over with no hope of recovery”. Where do they get the power to make such sweeping claims ?

    • DD
      December 28, 2013 at 4:57 pm

      Sam, going by your first paragraph where nothing will be done until higher up police, royal family and politicians are accused then I think we can safely say that nothing will ever be done. Ore and the Elm House fiasco proves that.

      Is it just me or is it strange that the acquittal of Paul Cleary has not made the news. Seems strange in the media feeding frenzy that they haven’t covered it….. just kidding, theres no chance that the press are going to cover an acquittal of a sex offence case. The great British public don’t want to hear such a shocking story!

  9. Margaret FASO director
    December 27, 2013 at 11:41 pm

    Well said Raymond

    We at FASO support you in your insightful comments highlighting the plight of the falsely accused, a problem we hear of from callers and those who e-mail us and we support on a daily basis.

    The powers that be are aware of false allegations, and publicly acknowledged it – it would not only bring the government down, but the judiciary and send the police and CPS into a tailspin. Trillions of pounds would be needed from our tax budget to pay compensation for those wrongfully accused and/or convicted – but no doubt no prosecutions of maladministration would follow.

    If thorough investigations were carried out, compensation dropped and only free specialised health care given to those genuine victims, as they need it – those making false allegations would drop drastically as has been proved in other countries where compensation has been withdrawn.

    Margaret

  10. Alan Wigley
    December 27, 2013 at 8:47 pm

    One of the best articles I’ve read in years. Problem is too much interest by CPS,MP,Police,Charities,Feminists to want to change to a fairer system

  11. pete
    December 27, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    A most courageous and forthright defence of justice and reason against the irrational and emotive forces of retributive darkness in our midst. No one who believes in the rule of law could possibly endorse the unseemly spectacle of police officers crowing jubilantly outside a courtroom after some unfortunate man has been utterly destroyed by the monstrosity of similar fact testimony. Multiple liars or fantasists saying the same thing don’t add up to the truth and never will.

    The UK’s endlessly punitive State appears more determined to rescue the severely tarnished reputations of the cops and the CPS after Leveson, Hillsborough, and Ian Tomlinson than it has ever been to pursue meaningful justice. These dangerous precedents – the official habit of immediately designating historic sex abuse complainants as “victims” before their evidence has been tested in court, the presumption of guilt for all defendants accused of a sexual crime, the intrusion of an unappeasable and limitlessly vindictive victims’ rights agenda into due process and sentencing, the frenzied hunt for suspected paedophiles – all are subverting the rule of law in favour of a reactionary and paranoid populism which imperils everyone.

    The presumption of innocence is there for a good reason: to prevent the State, with all its prosecutorial might and inexhaustible resources, from locking comparatively powerless and resourceless individuals up at whim. Martin Niemöller’s poetic warning against the rise of murderous populism needs to be rewritten for our times: “First they came for (those they labelled) the sex offenders …”

    In case the cops, victims’ advocacy nutjobs and weak, unpopular politicians haven’t noticed, there are two parties to criminal proceedings, not three: the State, in the form of the Crown Prosecution Service, and the defendant. Whatever their claims in wider society may by, victims’ rights blowhards have no place in a court of law if sane and balanced verdicts are to be reached and humanely proportionate sentences imposed.

    Three cheers for Mr Cleary, although it’s by no means clear whether he will ever be able to rebuild the life that the British State and its punitive petty officials so comprehensively demolished in their paedo-hunting madness and delusional moral grandstanding. And four cheers to Mr Peytors for having the guts to speak out against this illiberal, ugly, official zealotry.

  12. arthur
    December 27, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I hope the NSPCC and all those other money grabbing organisations read this.

    As for the police, their actions are disgusting, as are the politicians who allow the police and CPS to prosecute anything they like if they think it will make them look good.

    Thank you for this article which says what everyone else is afraid to say.

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