Monthly Archives: May 2009


The Administration of “Justice” in Jersey:

How it Works.

In my last, brief posting, I suggested several topics I might examine in the coming days. Three of those subjects are so closely related in their overlapping iterative causality, that I was tempted to deal with them all in one post; the three topics being –

The prosecution of two non-oligarchy members of the Jersey legislature.

Governmental reform in Jersey.

And ‘Groupthink’ as a psychological explanation for the stupidity, ignorance and folly we observe so frequently manifested by Jersey’s public administration.

But, I shall confine myself to the first of these three subjects; let us consider the prosecution of Deputies Geoff Southern and Shona Pitman.

Elections in Jersey occur in two phases; the last elections having taken place in October and November 2008.

The Jersey oligarchy has for many decades – centuries even – carefully inculcated a cultural hostility to the concept of organised politics. Indeed, so heavily propagandised are the Jersey population into believing that political parties would be the harbingers of anarchy and chaos – that even today the average Jersey voter regards political parties with suspicion.

The thinking reader will understand immediately both the motivation for, and consequences of, the anti-organised politics doctrine of the Jersey establishment.

Jersey has been a self-governing jurisdiction for over 800 years. Throughout that entire period, there has not been an occasion when the traditional ruling elites of the day did not have control over the island. Some might say that the Nazi Occupation during WWII represents the sole time when the Jersey oligarchy didn’t have control. Yes – but, frankly, even then things seemed to rub along quite nicely for the local oligarchy who remained comfortably in power before, during and after the Nazi Occupation.

As Norman Le Brocq pointed out to me – the Channel Islands being the only jurisdictions to be fully occupied by the Nazis throughout all of Europe in which the collaborative local leaders remained comfortably in power after occupation – rather than being subjected to a much-deserved purge. And I’ll mention at this point, the Guiton Group – the Jersey company that owned the island’s only newspaper, the Jersey Evening Post. The Rag spent the occupation years cheerfully and profitably churning out Nazi propaganda. The relevance of this point? Wheels within wheels. The Jersey Way. I’ll explain the connections later.

The Jersey establishment’s remarkable – and unique – capacity for survival, post-Nazis, should speak volumes to you in respect of just how entrenched our oligarchy is.

Effectively and functionally, Jersey is a de facto single-party state.

And the covert Jersey Establishment Party want to damn well make sure it stays that way. By pretending to not be a political party – and fostering the suspicion of organised politics – the island’s oligarchy are never opposed by an organised opposition.

There have, from time-to-time, been attempts to establish political parties, but such is the hostility towards such organisations by the oligarchy and its media, that the nascent parties always struggle. Nevertheless – we have one non-establishment political party presently operating in the island; the Jersey Democratic Alliance.

And to the undisguised terror of the oligarchy, they haven’t faded away. In the last elections they fielded 5 candidates – four of who were successful.

You won’t be surprised to discover that the two Deputies prosecuted are JDA members.

And if you’re familiar with what passes for ‘democracy’ in Jersey – you’ll be even less surprised to learn that the clause under which they were prosecuted was – quite extraordinarily – rushed into place – halfway through the elections – for the sole and express purpose of obstructing the JDA and other candidates who may draw on working class support.

This mind-boggling assault upon the basics of democracy was a desperate and panicked attempt at gerrymandering the Jersey elections by minimising the already very low voter turn-out in working-class areas – and obstructing efforts by non-establishment candidates to enfranchise voters by helping them register to vote.

The Jersey oligarchy thought, “We have a problem here. These JDA types are working hard to try and increase voter participation in working-class areas. Oh dear – we can’t have that! More damn proles in the chamber!! Don’t worry – we’ll simply make it a criminal offence for candidates or their team to assist voters to even apply for a postal vote. That’ll sort them out!”

The crypto-fascistic law failed in its prime objective – namely keeping working-class votes down to a sufficiently low degree to prevent pleb representatives from getting elected.

However, it fulfilled its secondary function in enabling the Stalinist show-trial of two JDA Deputies – and the consequent peddling of lies and propaganda against them to the effect that they had, somehow, engaged in ballot fraud.

The “offence” committed by the two Deputies was, in fact, to assist people in their district to apply for a postal vote. Just that.

Nothing to do with actual ballots – just enabling the elderly, the infirm, over-worked parents, and those who don’t have English as a first language – to apply to be able to cast their vote by post.

Voter turn-out in Jersey is extremely low – especially in the densely populated working-class areas. It is these districts which also have the highest densities of elderly, the infirm, those whose work demands make it difficult for them to go to a polling station and those who are not native English speakers.

The Jersey oligarchy frequently pays lip-service to the need to increase voter participation. But yet – when it comes to people making an effort to enable the otherwise disenfranchised to vote – suddenly it’s a terrible menace.

‘Yes’, say the Jersey establishment, ‘we want more people to vote – but they’ve got to be the ‘right kind’ of people – not these dreadful stroppy oiks – who might want the rich in Jersey to start shouldering a proportionate part of the tax burden.’

So – the Jersey oligarchy – in all its shameless ignorance, arrogance and inadequacy – rushed in – half-way through the elections – a law so brazenly anti-democratic as to have no known equivalent in any Commonwealth country.

And – it is not as though the madness stopped there.

It is widely known that at least four other candidates faced prima facie allegations of having broken the Elections Law, and at least two of these involved the same “offence” as that for which the two JDA Deputies were prosecuted.

How many of those four were charged?


Of the six candidates known to have credible allegations against them of breaking the Elections Law – only the two JDA members were prosecuted.

And – you’ll like this – the cops and Bill Bailhache even tried to stick the offences of one of these four others onto the rap-sheet against Deputy Southern. How’s that for the “rule of law”!

Shall we just remind ourselves of who runs Jersey’s prosecution service?

The Attorney General, William Bailhache.

The self-same oligarchy lynch-pin – who is terribly fond of bellowing “every one is equal before the law!” – but then goes on to rather spoil his case by only applying the law against uppity plebs – like the JDA members in the case of the Election Law, or me, in the case of alleged breaches of the Data Protection law.

We – it seems – must bear the full weight of Bill Bailhache’s – in-no-way-Political – decisions on prosecutions.

Meanwhile oligarchy politicians can routinely breach data protection laws, the election laws – and even take kick-backs for supporting land development proposals – with, apparent, immunity from the law.

And as for child abusers – forget it! Extradite child abusers from France back to Jersey? No chance – “not in the public interest”.

Child rapists now living in England? “Oh dear – we just couldn’t have them returned here and face trial – just think of all the bad publicity!”

No – instead, the law in all its Majesty in Jersey prefers only to prosecute these two non-establishment, working class candidates – and fine them the, frankly, insane sum of a total of £12,000.

That’s £12,000 – for doing things such as provide welcome assistance to a British ex-serviceman who would not otherwise have been able to vote.

The gentleman in question even wrote a statement to the court in mitigation for the accused Deputies – which I reproduce here, with his name removed.

“18th May 2009

To Whom It May Concern:

I, [name excised] would like to make the following statement in support of Deputy Shona Pitman’s court case, regarding her breach of the public Elections law.

I can confirm, as I did reluctantly with the Police, that Deputy Shona Pitman visited my home on the 2nd of November last year during the Deputies elections. Upon opening the door to the Deputy, I told her that I could not vote because I was going to be away on Election Day. She replied saying that I could vote by post and handed me an application form to fill in so that I could do this. However, I explained that I have restricted use of the hand that I write with and asked if she would fill it in for me. So the Deputy did so, and when she’d finished she went through the form with me to check everything was OK and I signed it.

The problem with my hand is that it has trapped nerves so I have great difficulty in writing with it. I was very grateful that Deputy Shona Pitman filled in the form, as firstly, I wouldn’t have known that I could vote by post and therefore wouldn’t have voted. Secondly, I don’t know that I would have been able to get someone else to fill the form in because I live by myself, and my family live in the UK and America and I did not know that I could go to the Parish hall to ask someone for assistance.

I was not happy to give a Police statement and felt that the Police questioning, over 3 interviews at my house were intrusive and a bit forceful at times. When I explained to them that I had difficulty writing because of the trapped nerves in my hand and how this happened, they asked me whether or not I could write with the other hand. They seemed to disregard what I had just said and it was none of their business!

Deputy Pitman did not coerce me in filling in the form or in voting for her or any of her colleagues. Had she put pressure on me in anyway, I would not be supporting her court case now. In fact, I was happy to see that she had bothered once again, to take the time to visit me during the elections as other than JDA candidates no other candidate visited me.

As an ex-Honorary Policeman and a veteran Green Jacket with the Special Forces who served my country for 9 years, I can not understand the injustice that the Deputy and her colleague Geoff Southern are being treated with in being taken to court. All she did was to assist somebody who needed some help and if it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t have known that I could exercise my right to vote and wouldn’t have done it at all. Surely this is a good thing.

Yours truly, [name excised]”

A British ex-serviceman – with a disability – being subjected to three intrusive, aggressive and intimidating police visits – because a candidate helped him to apply for a postal ballot – so he could exercise his democratic right to vote.

You couldn’t make it up.

The average person might imagine that out of sheer embarrassment and shame, the court would have administered some symbolic sentence on the two Deputies – taking into account the extremely powerful mitigation.

For example, the fact that both Deputies immediately pleaded guilty to the offences.

Or that the law in question was manifestly absurd and unworkable.

Or that, as is plain from the record of the debate, the States Assembly didn’t actually have a clue what it was doing.

Or that the law was defective – and rushed into place halfway through the election period.

Or that the law is plainly wholly incompatible with the requirements of the European Convention on Human Rights.

But, no.

Instead – fines totalling £12,000 were imposed on the two working class Deputies.

The vast majority of thinking, decent people will be appalled at such excesses.

I – however – was not surprised.

When I heard that one Advocate Julian Clyde-Smith was presiding over the case, as a Commissioner of the Royal Court, I knew exactly what to expect.

He is a production-line, identikit Jersey oligarch; ultra-conservative and as Right-wing as hell.

Indeed – so perfectly does he fit the template, the oligarchy have no-doubt got him lined-up to replace Bill and Phil in due course.

I have personal understanding of Advocate Clyde-Smith’s attitude to administering “appropriate” sentences to troublesome plebs.

He sentenced a 19 year-old constituent of mine to three years in jail for dealing ecstasy.

The boy was a victim of institutionalised abuse carried out against him over a sustained period by the States of Jersey.

This included keeping him locked-up in solitary confinement – at the age of 14 – for two months.

I’ll just state that again.

Solitary confinement – for two months.

Unsurprisingly, one month into this unlawful and abusive imprisonment, he had an emotional breakdown. The response of the States of Jersey was to send a councillor from the local Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service to ‘speak with him’ – for half-an-hour – once a week.

But, naturally, they still kept him in solitary for another month.

So – following a frankly contemptibly inadequate mitigation pleading from another Jersey Advocate – and the rabid judgment of Julian Clyde-Smith – this child – messed-up by the States of Jersey – got three years.

That case stands out in my mind because of the truly remarkable contrast with another sentencing carried out by Clyde-Smith two weeks later.

A “prominent local businessman” – who was guilty of conspiracy to import a yacht load of cocaine – was sentenced by Clyde-Smith to – wait for it – 270 hours ‘community service’.

Next time you hear the Jersey oligarchy, or their supporters, claim that “everyone is equal before the law”, or that the administration of justice in Jersey works perfectly well – just laugh in their faces.

Don’t let yourselves be taken for fools.

I mentioned earlier the remarkable resilience exhibited by the oligarchies of the Channel Islands – uniquely in occupied Europe – to any consequences or meaningful reform for the shabby conduct of the ruling elites under occupation. And how the Guiton Group, and its ‘newspaper’, the Jersey Evening Post, had carried on churning out Nazi propaganda during the war.

The various scions of the Guiton Group have ended up fabulously wealthy.

People like Frank Harrison Walker – former Chief Minister of Jersey.

And one Sally Le Brocq – nee Harrison – presently 1 of the 12 ‘Jurats’ of Jersey’s Royal Court. Jurats being a form of lay-judge – placed in Office by an electoral college of Jersey lawyers and politicians.

Jersey’s lawyers and politicians – doesn’t that just sound like a recipe for producing a balanced and objective judicial apparatus?

So when Advocate Clyde-Smith – adorned in the faintly comical fancy dress they like to wear to make an ‘impression’ on us plebs – entered the Royal Court to cast down damnation on the two Deputies – he was accompanied by two Jurats.

You know where this is going – don’t you?

Yep – one of the two Jurats was Sally – nee Harrison – Le Brocq. Cousin of Frank Walker – and multi-millionaire scion of the Guiton Group.

Not satisfied with this, frankly, laughable excuse for a judicial process – Clyde-Smith further trampled into the ground the principles of natural justice by constantly and repeatedly interrupting the lawyer who was making a mitigation plea on behalf of the two Deputies – thus ruining the presentation of their case.

“Yes, yes, but they broke the law!” he kept bellowing. An observation which would, perhaps, have been faintly credible – if the law in Jersey was actually applied fairly and impartially – as opposed to being used as a tool to keep the proles in-line.

But some people will take an unforgiving view of law-breaking. They will argue that the laws of the day should be obeyed – especially by politicians – as they make the laws.

Such a view does not withstand scrutiny when contrasted with the history of social change.

Many, many political leaders and reformers and ordinary members of the public have ignored ridiculous legislation. Think of the civil disobedience of the suffragettes – who frequently broke laws in their fight for the rights of women to vote.

Or those who fought against slavery.

What of Nelson Mandela – a great man who broke the laws of South-Africa because those laws were monstrous and disgraceful.

Or Rosa Parks – whose ‘criminal’ action in sitting in the “whites-only” part of the bus did so much to galvanise the civil rights movement in the USA.

The plain fact is that there is a fine and noble tradition of breaking manifestly absurd and unjust laws in acts of non-violent civil disobedience.

Consider the struggles of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King – both men who confronted the laws of the day – ridiculous, contemptible and absurd laws – and stood against them – because the laws were wrong – and the cause of these men had truth and decency on its side.

Just as enabling the poor and disenfranchised to be able to vote is the right and decent thing to do.

I do not know what, if any, further resistance will be undertaken by the two JDA members. All I can do is place myself in their position – which isn’t a fair thing to do, as they, quite rightly, must make their decisions themselves.

But, had it been me charged with these offences, I would, most certainly, appeal the sentence – and take it through the judicial Committee of the Privy Council all the way to Strasbourg if necessary; and I would undertake this resistance in parallel with some of my voters who would have been disenfranchised had I not helped them to apply for a postal vote.

And, at this stage of my career – I wouldn’t pay the fine in any event – and would take the jail sentence.

Just as I will if convicted of any alleged data protection law infractions. As I recently remarked in a comment – frankly, a couple of years in La Moye nick would provide me with ample time to write my memoirs – in addition to the added advantages of being debarred from being a politician – and being able to spend the next couple of years in the company of far fewer liars and crooks than my present occupation requires.



A Brief Speculation on What I Might Write Next.

Apologies for not getting a fresh post up for a while. But, in mitigation, I do get the impression most people appreciated the previous post, so that kind of makes up for its longevity.

I’m mega-busy with a variety of things – essentially, I’m trying to fight a war on approximately four fronts.

I’m battling a variety cases for my constituents.

Whilst I’m trying to fight off various assaults by the Jersey oligarchy.

Whilst preparing and writing-up my personal legal action against the UK Justice Secretary, Jack Straw.

Whilst occasionally wondering around the, now, tidy workshop and trying to meld bits of tree into something people might want to buy one day.

Sadly, this latter activity always comes a distant fourth. Though having said that, I did buy two wonderful pieces of Douglas Fir recently – following an epic excavation through the largely unimpressive timber stock of a Jersey merchant.

And – I’ve even managed to get a mirrored, razor edge on the blade of my Lie Neilson No. 8 try-plane using my 8000 grit Japanese waterstone.

Not an easy ask – with a blade made of A-2 cryogenically treated tool-steel, hardened to Rockwell 60-62.

But no – I must restrain myself from going into woodwork-nerd-mode – for the time-being.

I’m saving that as a ‘special treat’ for my loyal readers.

No – I thought I should just provide you with a bulletin as to what I’m planning to try and write in the coming days.

Firstly – I will be writing about the prosecution of two non-oligarchy Jersey politicians – for the heinous offence of helping disabled ex-servicemen apply for a postal vote.

To be clear – not, as the Jersey oligarchy have portrayed it – something akin to ballot fraud as seen in certain UK elections in recent years. Instead this “crime” was simply helping the elderly, the infirm, those who do not have English as a first language to merely apply for a postal vote.

I’ll save all the surreal, crypto-fascist absurdity of the situation for the substantive post.

Then I thought I would write a post concerning governmental reform in Jersey; the only jurisdiction in western Europe actually heading back towards feudalism.

And – I thought I might write something concerning the sheer mind-boggling stupidity and ‘Groupthink’ we see manifested in the Jersey polity.

Actually – I may well combine the above two subjects – so well do they compliment each-other.

Then – in a few days time – I want to produce a post about a subject that still fills me with bitter anger.

Tomorrow – Wednesday 27th May – a trial begins in New York city.

On trial are the oil company Royal Dutch Shell.

Effectively, this western transnational corporation was complicit – and thus guilty – in the 1995 murder of Ken Saro-Wiwa.

Ken was a leader of the Ogoni people of the Niger Delta; he was an immensely brave campaigner for the rights of Delta people and against the environmental genocide which was being inflicted upon them by the military regime – with the backing and complicity of Shell.

The murder of Ken Saro-Wiwa and his co-campaigners happened in November 1995. It so happened that, shortly after, the States of Jersey were debating a proposition to sell some land at the airport to Shell.

When the debate began, I stood and strenuously opposed the sale – saying that Shell had blood on its hands.

The resultant political fire-storm had to be experienced to be understood. It attracted international media attention – and, when the States inevitably agreed the sale – left me feeling appalled and sickened.

I will write a detailed post on the subject – but only when I feel strong enough.

When I look back and try and contemplate the attitude of most States members during that episode – I find myself thinking of lyrics from a Nick Cave song.

‘People just ain’t no good.
I think that’s well understood.
You see it everywhere you look –
People just ain’t no good.






Read All About it!

Join me upon a hunt – a dangerous yet necessary digression into the sad hinterland of late-night, multi-IP, tragic loser, Billy No-mates trolling that has burgeoned in Jersey cyber-space; for on this quest we must enter a festering and pestilential swamp into which few decent people venture – but which has become the favoured habitat of a handful of inadequates who sit – one hand on the keyboard – whilst delivering to themselves a delusory sense of anonymous omnipotence – but in truth, possessing all the substance and appeal of some pixelated bog-creature from an obsolete computer game.

There are many strange beings to be found in this nocturnal midden. Such creatures have always been with us – but until they found the ideal habitat for their No-Life fantasy existences, one would have to seek them out in back-street pubs where they’d be found, alone, muttering to themselves and staring resentfully at women. And if not there – then they’d be tracked down to a backroom in a house – where they’d still be living with their mothers.

Whilst the curious adventurer can still find specimens in those more traditional habitats – these days, it’s into the void of the coruscating electron nothingness that we must go. Though the habitat itself is invisible – manifestations of it break into the real world – and can be spotted by the faintly lighted windows of tiny bed-sits or back-street flats that enshroud the 2.30 am apparitions – magicked into simulacrums of power and relevance by nine pints of Stella – and an invisible girl-friend.

But – troll-hunters – beware. To spot and catch your troll – you must use guile; for some, like vampires, can only operate at night. And others yet posses shape-shifting powers – and go abroad amongst us in daylight hours – cloaked in the appearance of a normal, functional human being. Great can be their craft at such disguises; but – being trolls – the camouflage they adopt for the real world can rarely withstand close probing and examination. For if you suspect a person you know is, in truth, a troll – you may quickly unmask them – should you be prepared to risk some close acquaintance. Draw them into speaking of their magnificence – converse with them about their friends in high-places – give them every opportunity to explain their brilliance – and especially ask them about the size of their computer.

Soon enough – the troll shall be uncloaked – and revealed in all it’s revolting, twisted, resentful isolation.

And in the flood-tide of flickering binary non-existence occupied by Jersey’s tribe of trolls – there sits one – more gross and poisonous than his fellows – the spiritual tribal leader of the island’s lonely, fantasising inadequates –

“Jason the Maverick” –


‘Jason Roberts’


‘Mean Dean’


‘Mean Bean’

And a vast load of other avatars – too tedious for me to type.

Step forward – you sad, inadequate – formerly anonymous – clown –


That’s Jon Howarth – of Flat 1 – behind W.H. Smiths.

Jon Howarth who works – so he claims – for –

Baker Tilly Channel Islands –

“A leading chartered accountancy practice based in St Helier, Jersey.”

Trolls occupationally say things which are simply not true – but let us assume that he does work for this organisation.

Do his employers – I wonder – know that he engages in such activities as multi-IP trolling?

Of establishing fake Facebook identities – such as ‘Jason Roberts’ – which he then uses to lure people into giving him their electronic contact details.

That he uses his troll nerd-powers to track-down private IP addresses – and then threatens to expose other commenters and bloggers to their employers – if they’ve dared to express non-oligarchy opinions?

Do, I wonder, his employers recognise this for the form of blackmail and menace that it is?

Many of us real people use the realm of cyber-space. Some, like me, do so openly, rather than using a fake identity. Many others – for understandable reasons – keep their identities secret.

But what distinguishes Jon the Troll – like others of his kind – is that they spend their bitter, lonely nighthours trolling and flaming and defaming and wrecking forums – all the while doing so anonymously – and anonymously under 23 different avatars.

So – for all the lies, hatred, spin, vitriol, smears, blackmails, crazed obsessions, threats, defamations, obnoxiousness, intimidation, thuggery and manipulation he has inflicted upon dozens and dozens of other people – today The Quite Vile Blog has bravely tracked down this troll – across the electronic ether – to his rancid cave.

Where we can now observe him.

Contemplate his serious gambling habit.

Consider his weekend paralytic drunkenness.

Listen to his boasts of being real good friends with Phil Ozouf.

Reflect upon his unsurprising state of singleness – given his propensity to make drunken death-threats to those poor women who have the misfortune to encounter him, and then rapidly reject him.

Do – I wonder – the Police know of such conduct?

Oh well – they do now.

Just as, no doubt, do his employers.

Though trolls are not an endangered species – I don’t believe in harming dumb animals. But these strange creatures can be dangerous to people – in all kinds of ways.

So, occasionally – we must answer the call of duty; prepare ourselves for the hunt – and expose the trolls to the light. It can be difficult; it can be dangerous – but those of us who are Knights of the Jersey Chapter of Troll-Hunters shall always be ready to drive away such menaces whenever they emerge from their isolated swamps and intrude into the real world.

Eternal vigilance, my friends – and with a little patience and deduction – trolls can be hunted down and exposed.

Now that the troll JTM – or Jon Howarth – has been exposed, perhaps readers would like to finish off the job by sharing with us the rest of his known avatars?

And any other useful information?

And in the mean time – let us give some thought to the next troublesome troll.

The light shall always win.




Resolution in my Support

Tabled in House of Commons.

I thought readers would be interested in the fact that a parliamentary, ‘Early Day Motion’ has been tabled in the House of Commons in condemnation of the police-state type action taken against me, and in support of the freedom of politicians to effectively represent their constituents.

Early Day Motions rarely get debated, and are, in practice, a means of MPs expressing their concerns about particular topics. Nevertheless, MPs don’t put their names to serious EDMs – unless they understand the importance of the subject, and agree with it.

The procedural quirks of EDMs require that they be no longer than 250 words – and that they must read as one sentence – no full-stops permitted – except at the end. This explains why the language of the resolution may seem a little strange.

There isn’t usually a party whip on EDMs, so MPs from all parties are pretty free to add their names to an EDM if they so choose.

Interestingly, the EDM in defence of my position – and in condemnation of the Jersey establishment – has three initial signatories representing each of the main parties.

Peter Bottomley, of the Conservatives, Austin Mitchell of Labour, and John Hemming of the Lib-Dems.

I reproduce the text of the EDM below – and observe that sooner or later – inevitably – the Jersey oligarchy are going to push their luck too far.

If, in fact, we have not already come to that point.


Early Day Motion.


“That this House deplores the arrest and detention of Senator Stuart Syvret by the Jersey Police Force for alleged infractions of data protection laws; notes that the Senator was in receipt of information disclosed in the public interest, with which he is attempting to hold the Jersey government to account for a variety of profoundly serious child protection and clinical governance failures; condemns the manner of the Senator’s arrest and the subsequent searching of his home by the police without a search warrant; further condemns the fact that substantial quantities of his constituents’ private data were taken and copied by the Jersey police; considers this an intimidatory and anti-democratic action which the Senator is virtually powerless to challenge given the politicisation of the Jersey judiciary and the propensity of the Jersey legislature to oppress minority members; and calls on the Secretary of State for Justice to fulfil his duties by exercising his constitutional powers to intervene and ensure good governance and the proper administration of justice in Jersey through requiring a separation of powers and the imposition of effective checks and balances in order that survivors of child abuse, and other victims of malfeasance gain the proper protection of justice; and considers that through such actions the UK will return to compliance with its obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights, obligations which are breached by tolerating the situation in Jersey.”

John Hemming.

Peter Bottomley.

Austin Mitchell.



But – Read the Sunday Times Magazine Article Below.

And – Read my Introductory Information.

I reproduce below the entire article from today’s Sunday Times, concerning Child abuse in Jersey and the Culture of Concealment.

It is yet another example of professional, investigative real journalism – of the kind notable for its near-complete absence in Jersey.

So, what do decent Jersey people make of the horrors revealed?

I like to think the vast majority of islanders fit into the category of decent people – but because the Jersey media has been a part of the problem – for decades – a central component in the Culture of Concealment – many readers may be shocked to begin to grasp the true nature of how power, official positions, connections and mutual self-interest have – effectively – reduced our island to a state of near lawlessness.

Today – conditions prevail in which child rapists – and those who have concealed their crimes – remain free in our midst’s and untouched by the law – and I – the only Jersey politician really trying to fight for the survivors and expose the truth – get arrested as I step from my home by a team of 10 cops, who then turn over the house from top to bottom – without a search warrant – whilst I’m locked in a small windowless cell for 7 hours; supposedly, in the name of alleged Data Protection Law infractions.

The time has come for decent islanders, even those who don’t usually support me or my approach – to wake up to what our society has become – and unite to restore civil society.

But, sadly, to gain a real understanding of just what a crypto-dictatorship Jersey has become – we must turn to the external media. Not just today’s article – but many, many others as well.

Of course, the local media does – very occasionally – produce some good reports – such as that which appeared on the front page of the Jersey Evening Post of Thursday, 7th May.

“Children Failed by the System”, was the headline. The article went onto describe how the case of three children, said to be the ‘most damaged in Jersey’, was being urgently reviewed.

The article went on to say, “It has been claimed that the children, whose specialist treatment in the UK the States are being asked to fund, suffered years of sexual abuse and neglect because the authorities failed to take them into care despite being warned that they were at risk.”

So let no one think that child abuse, gross child protection failures – and the systemic covering-up of such things – is all in Jersey’s past, and doesn’t happen today.

And we can’t, frankly, be optimistic that things are going to change – and I’ll explain why with a relevant and topical example.

An example the average person will find so jaw-droppingly extraordinary, you’ll rub your eyes in disbelief.

And no – the JEP won’t take a close look at the example.

By way of background information, regular readers will be very familiar with the fact that the Jersey oligarchy had my dismissal as Health & Social Services Minister engineered in 2007; my supposed ‘offence’ was that I was “undermining staff moral” – by attempting to hold the collection of clowns accountable for the kind of atrocity described in the JEP story of Thursday.

I had spent the first half of 2007 uncovering more and more examples of catastrophic child protection failures, and was compiling a detailed dossier to give to the police. It had to be detailed, and rock-solidly evidenced before presentation – because as the Sunday Times article makes clear – for decades, the Jersey police force was a part of the problem itself.

When it became widely know, especially amongst the culpable civil servants, that I was beginning to rip the lid off decades of child protection failures – they had to get rid of me in order to protect their jobs.

Hatred, lies, abuse and slander were heaped upon me by the oligarchy and its media back in 2007.

For example, several JEP leader comments – of frankly barking-mad vituperativness were directed against me – indeed, the full might of the Jersey oligarchy was used in an attempt to crush and discredit me.

But here we are – 15 months later – with, very sadly, my original concerns, and more besides, having been proven to be correct – many time over. Not least by the case featured in the article in Thursday’s edition of The Rag.

I said I would provide you with an extraordinary example which shows not only the persistence of child protection systems failure in Jersey, but, in fact, also illustrates a complete breakdown in good governance and political leadership.

In the case of the three children, they have been victims of years of profoundly damaging abuse and neglect – this notwithstanding repeated warnings made to Social Services management.

It’s the kind of case which would be on the front page of the national newspaper if it occurred on the mainland. Rather like the atrocity of the “Baby P” case.

So gross were the failures of Haringey’s social services in that tragedy, that the head of Children’s’ Services, Sharon Shoesmith, was sacked.

Now, let us speculate just what the response of the Jersey authorities has been to the failures in the case of the three children – and many other similar failures?

Has THE civil servant with prime responsibility for child “protection” been sacked?

Has she even been suspended?

No. The utterly incompetent, dangerous, lying, unethical shyster concerned – one Marnie Baudains – has been subjected to no such action.

Instead – and you couldn’t make this up – Baudains, the Directorate Manager of Social Services – has been placed in charge of directing the organisation of the placements these children need.

Just let me run that by you again.

THE immensely expensive, yet dangerous and despicable clown responsible for the service failures to protect these three children from years of the most appalling abuse – has been placed in charge of directing the care and placement they need in an effort to help them recover from that which they suffered as a consequence of her professional inadequacy.

Let nobody wonder how the Jersey Child Abuse Disaster was able to happen – and let nobody wonder why the Jersey Child Abuse Disaster continues to happen to this very day.

Throughout the battle of the Jersey Child Protection Disaster, the oligarchy have been wrong – and I have been proven to be right. Every time.

My “reward” for being on the right side in these battles on behalf of abused children and adult survivors has been hatred and oppression from the Jersey oligarchy – including, as I said, getting arrested and held in a windowless locked police cell for 7 hours.

I will not – however – be deflected by these crooks and gangsters.

So, let’s deal with some information which is not in today’s Sunday Times article.

The Sunday Times article says, “In two specific cases the alleged abusers were men who had risen up through the care-home system, where they were said to have ruled by terror, to become high-ranking officials of the States of Jersey. Both men stand accused of numerous assaults.”

These two “men” are Tom McKeon – former Director of Jersey’s Education Department.

And Mario Lundy, the man who succeeded McKeon as Education Director when he retired about a year-and-half ago.

McKeon is widely known amongst a large cohort of former victims of the institution he and Lundy ran in the 1980s, Les Chenes, as “The Pinball Wizard” – because of his predilection for battering children by bouncing them of walls and furniture.

I have written previously about these two despicable thugs, in my blog posting of the 1st October, 2008 – which you can read in my archive.

In a letter to his sister, Rickie Tregaskis – who is serving life for murder – wrote this: “I have to thank people like Mario Lundy for teaching me discipline and refining my later life skills.”

McKeon is happily retired – on his vast, gold-plated pension.

And Lundy – extraordinarily – is not even suspended, and is still running the Education Department – where he is probably raking in around £200,000 per year – plus pension provision – at the expense of Jersey taxpayers.

The Sunday Times Article goes on to refer to the meeting at which the victims of the Blanche Pierre group home were told by officials that case against their abusers was being dropped for “lack of evidence.”

Having read that evidence myself – I can state categorically that it is a complete lie by the Jersey establishment to say that there was “insufficient evidence.”

The meeting at which the kids were betrayed – again – was led by what the Sunday Times describes as a “senior childcare officer”. The paper goes on to describe the series of allegations against him, and several arrests – but no action having been taken.

The individual concerned is the infamous Danny Wherry – an ex-cop.

The Article goes on to recount the occasion when a victim, one Raymond Duchesne, was convicted of attempting to blackmail his abuser.

Interestingly, the court at his trial assumed the allegations of abuse were true for the purposes of the case – not something the court would have done unless the claims were credible.

As the article says, “The man, a volunteer at Haut de la Garenne, used to take children out on boat trips from the St Helier marina — a recreational activity common to many Jersey abusers. Andrew Jervis-Dykes had adopted it while he was a maths teacher at Victoria College, taking teenage boys out on sailing trips as part of Combined Cadet Force training.”

The man who was being blackmailed for the abuse allegations, which were deemed credible by the court, is Rene Le Sueur.

As the article correctly reports, the use of sailing boats – which provide abusers with opportunities to have children at their total mercy – and beyond all help – is very common amongst child rapists. This is not a phenomena confined to Jersey, but appears to be widespread, certainly across the UK – and even in Royal Navy circles.

It is not, therefore, surprising that many abusers and their friends were associated, in one way or another, with the St. Helier Yacht Club.

The article goes on to say, “There were suspicions that others might also have been involved in sexual assaults alongside Jervis-Dykes, but when one officer tried to investigate at the St Helier Yacht Club, he was hindered by a higher-ranking colleague. That officer, who has since retired, was known to other abusers.”

The good officer referred to – who was trying to undertake the investigation, but being obstructed, was one Anton Cornelissen. He was one of the officers who heard Piers Baker utter the words “teachers’ perks” upon being shown home-video footage of abuse taking place on a yacht. Incidentally, Baker remains working for the States of Jersey – in an extremely well-paid post – at Jersey’s Harbours’ Department, funnily enough.

The now retired police officer who obstructed that investigation into St. Helier Yacht Club was one John De La Haye.

When two abusers, Powell and Romeril, were being investigated, it became know to police that they had inside contact with De La Haye. He appears to have leaked information to the two civilian abusers, and certainly, his name featured in text messages. He was described by Romeril, who admitted knowing De La Haye from ‘bridge games’, as “one of the boys”.

Another good cop, increasingly concerned at allegations arising from Haute de la Garenne and other matters, sent a report to another senior colleague.

The report was simply ignored.

The officer who ignored the report was one Andre Bonjour.

Those then are some pieces of information which the Sunday Times Article doesn’t use. But those facts are widely known to the journalist, the paper, and, indeed, a significant number of others – journalist and civilians.

And, sadly, I have to tell you that this is not the end of the material.

When will the full truth emerge?

Frankly – unless and until the vast majority of decent, honest Jersey people – regardless of their political views – finally say, “we’ve had enough of this. We want the proper rule of law in our community” – the truth may never emerge.

Fighting this war as I have done – and bringing you these facts – has been a hell of a burden for one man to shoulder. I’ve already been jailed and had my home searched – without a warrant.

Let us hope enough decent people will now see what needs to be done to return our community to civilised standards.




MAY 10, 2009


Jersey’s authorities say its child-abuse inquiry was a waste of time — that the police got it wrong. So was all the ‘evidence’ a red herring or a whitewashed inconvenient truth?

Accusations of abuse and cover-up reached into the heart of the jersey government. Many are being made public for the first time here.

David James Smith, Britain’s foremost crime writer, investigates
Haut de la Garenne

As one dissident Jersey politician who wished to remain nameless said to me when we huddled together one lunch time in a cramped St Helier cafe, you might have thought Jersey — its politicians and civil servants, its police force, its tourist industry — had something to celebrate when the police concluded that there had been no murders at Haut de la Garenne, the now-notorious children’s home.

Good news at last! Nobody died! Jersey’s reputation is restored. Well, perhaps that last sentiment might have been taking things a bit far, especially bearing in mind what you are about to read, but still, no news was good news, up to a point… Weeks of digging, dog sniffing, soil sifting and bone-fragment analysing had resulted in what appeared to be a clear verdict: no bodies at the old children’s home.

So perhaps it is now time for the perpetrators of the abuse to be brought to justice. We know who they are, the police know who they are, the authorities know who they are. So what is holding things up?

While the media had been fixated on Haut de la Garenne’s cellars, the police inquiries had been wide-ranging. As part of their investigation, they examined the accusations of abuse and cover-up that had reached into the heart of the Jersey government. Many of those accusations are being made public for the first time here, and while we are bound by laws that prevent us naming names, we know the identities of those said to be involved. We do not know why they have not been charged, and that is exactly what the alleged victims would like to know too. The victims have been waiting for action since November, just over eight months after the digging had begun at Haut de la Garenne. We know there were no bodies, but it still seemed the inquiry should move forward. Nobody could have guessed what would happen instead.

On November 12 last year, the media were summoned to a press conference at police headquarters, where one team of senior police officers proceeded to launch an unprecedented attack on the work of another, effectively accusing the former head of the inquiry, Lenny Harper, of misleading the world with inaccurate, sensationalised claims of multiple homicides, and of wilfully misrepresenting the evidence he had found during the searches at the former home.

Harper had been the senior investigating officer for the child-abuse inquiry until he retired, as planned, in August. He had also served six years as deputy chief officer of the Jersey force, second in command to Graham Power, the chief officer who was still just over a year away from retirement, and a recipient of the Queen’s Police Medal for distinguished service. Harper and Power must have been doing something right: Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary had assessed the Jersey police as an efficient organisation with strong leadership.

That morning, while Harper’s work was being traduced in front of the press, Power had gone to a meeting with the then Jersey States home-affairs minister, Andrew Lewis. The chief executive, Bill Ogley, was also there and took notes. Notes he later admitted he had destroyed. Power had been summoned to the meeting in a call by Lewis the previous evening, without being given any idea what the theme of the meeting would be. He was told that the Jersey Council of Ministers — the equivalent of the cabinet — had been briefed by his own police colleagues the night before and the content of the briefing had been so bad they had no option but to suspend him. The officers who had given ministers the briefing were the same two officers who were just then delivering the stinging judgment on Harper to the media.

Power said that he refused an offer to take an hour to consider resigning. He was then handed a letter that referred to an earlier meeting when he had been warned he faced the suspension that was now being put into effect. There had been no earlier meeting. It looked like an unsubtle, outrageous attempt to belatedly satisfy a disciplinary code. Power returned home and was still there at the time of writing this article; he has just won the right to have a judicial review of his suspension.

I had written in detail about the child-abuse inquiry last year. I had never given much credence to the more lurid tales of possible homicides, mainly because I had been counselled against them by Lenny Harper. There were no missing children, he said, clearly and often, and there was no evidence of murder. I knew, too, that Harper believed he was engaged in a struggle with vested interests among Jersey’s ruling elite, who were trying to undermine the inquiry and would rather the whole thing went away. It soon became apparent that allegations of abuse were widespread throughout the Jersey childcare system and had been around for years, but only a handful of the most blatant cases had ever reached court.

When I looked at the story again, I found allegations that point to years of systematic abuse among a loose structure of suspected abusers. Meanwhile, the officers who replaced Lenny Harper have continued to brief against him, off the record, and to minimise or downplay the extent of the claims. In two specific cases the alleged abusers were men who had risen up through the care-home system, where they were said to have ruled by terror, to become high-ranking officials of the States of Jersey. Both men stand accused of numerous assaults. The Sunday Times Magazine knows their identities — half of Jersey knows who they are — but we are forced by law to protect them from public exposure.

One among many of the two men’s alleged victims is Rickie Tregaskis, who claims to have been subjected to endless assaults and abuses while a teenager in a Jersey care home: being made to lie naked on a mattress every night for two weeks in front of a female member of staff; being made to stand in the dining room while one of the men poured food over his head; repeatedly punched and knocked about by that same man, and once having his nose broken by him. At least three of Tregaskis’s peers from the home committed suicide or died young of drug abuse. Others have led chaotic lives, often in and out of prison and/or psychiatric care. Tregaskis himself is serving life for the violent murder of a disabled man in Cornwall in 1997. “In a way,” Tregaskis had once written, not without bitter irony perhaps,

“I have to thank people like him [his abuser] for teaching me discipline and refining my later life talents.” So, while there may be no bodies at Haut de la Garenne, make no mistake, there is certainly a trail of corpses across the wider inquiry.

Since Harper retired, there have been no new charges against alleged perpetrators. Only three people face trial for abuse, and one of those is nothing to do with Haut de la Garenne or any childcare institution. In one case, the charges went ahead only because Harper pretended he had not received a last-minute message from a senior official trying to stop the prosecution going ahead.

The police are now hinting that there may be few, if any, further charges. I heard that one officer is saying he has “bad news” to deliver to alleged victims — the bad news being they may never get their day in court. The officer clearly believes, or wants us to believe, that Harper is to blame for raising expectations and misrepresenting the evidence and the scale of the abuse. Is this true — or are Harper and Power being made scapegoats?

The claims of misconduct, incompetence and self-interest against Harper are so many that it is difficult to know where to start. His replacements certainly have it in for him, letting it be known they think he has lied and jeopardised future prosecutions with his public pronouncements.

During the inquiry he sought and acted on a great deal of external advice, and was told by a security department of the Metropolitan police not to maintain “day books” that could be read by others. So, no daybooks, only a diary in which, he says, he kept personal records relating to his wife’s illness and other matters unrelated to the inquiry.

During the press conference, and in subsequent briefings and interviews, Jersey police have sought to create the impression of Harper as a maverick, bullying figure. Yet, far from going it alone, Harper early on sought the advice and support of the homicide working group of the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), who sent a team of three officers to Jersey to monitor and review the inquiry. The team was led by one of the country’s most eminent detectives, André Baker, now a deputy director at the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca). The others were Anne Harrison and John Mooney of the National Policing Improvement Agency (NPIA).

If you mention this team to the new Jersey police, they will say they were not there to review the inquiry and only had a limited role. This, so far as I can tell, is not true. I have seen the team’s terms of reference, and they clearly state that its role was to “quality assure” the investigation. They did indeed make many recommendations, and all were implemented except, by mutual agreement, two or three that were deemed not relevant.

The team made four visits. Its role was to “monitor the 27 recommendations, to maintain the role of mentors, and to identify any further work”. Later it reported: “The recommendations from the initial visit have been acted upon, some within a very short period. The States of Jersey Police are to be commended for their positive reception of the report and for their extremely prompt response in implementing recommendations.” Two team members also gave a private briefing to Frank Walker, the then chief minister, and some of his most senior colleagues, which would have presented another opportunity to report concerns. There were none.

Harper first contacted Acpo on February 23 last year, the day of the discovery of the now notorious fragment that was initially considered by the forensic anthropologist who found it as having the appearance of a small piece of a child’s skull. The inquiry was then in the fourth day of what might be called a recce, a preliminary dig to see if anything would turn up. This approach had been agreed at a conference Harper had organised with the NPIA and scientists from LGC Forensics in Oxford, where the discussion took place. If they did not find anything, they would pack up and leave, but if anything significant turned up they would start a more thorough search.

The decision to start digging was not taken idly. Haut de la Garenne had cropped up repeatedly during other earlier child-abuse inquiries, touching on a number of organisations such as the Jersey Sea Cadets, St John Ambulance, Victoria College and the St Helier Yacht Club. Haut de la Garenne was a common thread. One of Tregaskis’s two alleged abusers had also worked there before going on to manage the residential home where Tregaskis lived during his time in care. Those two alleged abusers are linked to a series of allegations. One victim claims he was punched by both men; another that he was punched by one of them; still another that he was punched and stamped on by the other man. This victim also claimed to have been “pinballed” — bounced around the walls of that official’s office — by that official, punched to the floor by the other man, assaulted by both regularly. He also witnessed the second man hit another boy, now dead, with a cane so hard that he drew blood. Another resident saw someone assaulted by a third member of staff before being dragged by the second man into his office to be “pinballed”. He later emerged marked and bruised. In one further case, a victim claims to have been punched and kicked for 20 minutes by the second man while the other one was there, and also took part in the assault by kicking the boy. This same boy saw two other fellow residents being “pinballed”, one after complaining to his mother about an earlier assault. A boy also said he was picked up by his ears by the official before being punched in the stomach. A witness watched as that same man punched a boy in the face after pinning him against the wall by his throat.

Neither of the men has ever been charged over the allegations, though The Sunday Times Magazine is aware that the police have assembled a file of statements from both alleged victims and witnesses to incidents of abuse. The police say the inquiries are continuing. Let’s not hold our breath.

A former employee at Haut de la Garenne is Jane Maguire, who went on to run the care home Blanche Pierre with her husband, Alan. A case against them for alleged physical abuses reached court in the late 1990s before collapsing for lack of evidence, even though a number of alleged victims were ready to give evidence and some of the more routine abuses had actually been recorded in a daybook. A court official said the correct procedures had been followed before the decision to throw out the charges.

The victims were told about the collapse of the Maguire case at a meeting attended by a senior childcare officer, who was himself a former volunteer at Haut de la Garenne and who had left the police force to join social services. This man’s name is also known to The Sunday Times Magazine and to the police. There are claims he failed to act on several occasions after children reported allegations to him, and also that he abused them himself. He had first been arrested and questioned in 2003. He was not charged.

A second claim of assault did not result in any charges either. He has always denied the allegations. He was arrested for the third time last year over three fresh claims of assault, one on a female, two on boys.

I have also learnt the name of a man whose identity was protected during a 2004 trial in Jersey when he was the victim of blackmail. The alleged blackmailer, Raymond Duchesne, claimed to have been repeatedly sodomised between the ages of 6 and 10 while he was in care at Haut de la Garenne by the man he was now trying to blackmail. After some debate, the court agreed to accept the allegations were true, for the purposes of the case. The man, a volunteer at Haut de la Garenne, used to take children out on boat trips from the St Helier marina — a recreational activity common to many Jersey abusers. Andrew Jervis-Dykes had adopted it while he was a maths teacher at Victoria College, taking teenage boys out on sailing trips as part of Combined Cadet Force training. Jervis-Dykes was eventually jailed for six indecent assaults between 1984 and 1991.

There were suspicions that others might also have been involved in sexual assaults alongside Jervis-Dykes, but when one officer tried to investigate at the St Helier Yacht Club, he was hindered by a higher-ranking colleague. That officer, who has since retired, was known to other abusers.

The Jervis-Dykes inquiry in the 1990s was reportedly plagued by internal obstruction and claims that exhibits were going missing. Three junior detectives were so troubled by the obstacles being put in their way that they went over the heads of their team leaders, including the officer with his own boat, to report their concerns to senior colleagues. There was no action, but the suspicions lingered. Then the name of the officer turned up in text messages between two civilians accused of indecent assaults on boys. He appeared to have leaked information to them, and the two paedophiles agreed he was “one of the boys”. One of the two men, David Powell, was convicted and jailed for 3Å years in 2007. His co-accused, Paul Romeril, was suspected of around 60 offences of serious sexual assault on boys, most of which had taken place on his two boats. Romeril hanged himself while on remand at Jersey’s La Moye prison. Two other suspects in the inquiry were not charged. Meanwhile, long before Harper took an interest in Haut de la Garenne, other officers had been concerned by allegations, and one of them produced a report proposing further inquiries at the former home. Duchesne’s alleged abuser was the subject of a number of allegations of vile abuse.

Nobody should be in any doubt about the extent and seriousness of the crimes being considered: in one claim he was abusing a boy who was draped over the side of the boat, the abuse so violent that the boy’s head was bobbing in and out of the water while the offence took place. The report was passed on to a senior police officer in early 2006, but it was ignored until Harper’s inquiry began. The officer who had produced the report at one stage asked his superior what was happening and was told: “I haven’t got to it — other priorities.” An outside force was brought in to consider the officer’s conduct in sitting on the report. That was early last year, involving officers from South Yorkshire. This all formed the background to the beginning of Harper’s own inquiries at Haut de la Garenne.

Harper has since been challenged that the supposed claims of dead or disappeared children came from unreliable witnesses and should not have been given credibility. Many of the victims told me that they have been trying for years to get someone to take their claims seriously. They had never felt listened to or believed until Harper came along. I don’t imagine, however, that Harper was driven by sentimental regard for the victims. As he told me in March 2008, and is still saying now, he could not ignore the information, but did not at first believe it warranted a full-scale dig. Hence the recce. The dog was brought in. The cadaver dog that alerts to human remains, the same dog that nearly did for Kate and Gerry McCann after it alerted at the boot of their car. Unlike the Portuguese police, apparently, Harper’s team understood that the dog’s alerts were not evidence of a crime being committed, merely an indicator of something to be explored. I have heard that Harper’s replacements have spoken cynically about the dog, implying that its handler, Martin Grime, fixes the dog’s demonstrations by priming it in advance with his own scent. But Harper gave convincing accounts of how the dog would pick up the merest trace of human remains and ignore animal remains, and how it would not be tricked into making errors. They decided to dig where the dog alerted and where radar equipment picked up anomalies in the ground. One of those locations was the stairwell where the builders had found bones in 2003, and also where the “skull” fragment was found by the LGC anthropologist Julie Roberts on February 23. The item was labelled JAR/6. She described it as “degraded fragment of bone thought to be human skull, probably from a child”.

Did Harper, as his detractors have claimed, misrepresent the fragment, or claim it was one thing when he knew it was another? Perhaps too, though he would deny it, he was keen to find something to justify the more thorough dig. He would say he was simply passing on what the anthropologist said. Certainly he told it as she had described it. The anthropologist’s employer has since said they told the inquiry the very next day, February 24, that JAR/6 was in a 1940s layer and so “would appear to have been beyond the parameters of the investigation”. Harper denies ever hearing this. He says the first scientific doubts about the age were raised by the radiocarbon-dating lab at Oxford University on March 14, when they suggested it was very old or badly degraded. Everyone then was still assuming it was a fragment of human skull. But there is a clue to Harper’s real thinking in a Jersey Evening Post story, dated March 3: “The deputy police chief Lenny Harper told the JEP that it was not possible to say whether the skull fragment was from recent times or from before the 1950s, the period to which the inquiry dates back. ‘It could be a red herring — we just don’t know yet. But if it is, we will not have wasted much time during the inquiry on the item, as it has been bagged, sealed and sent to the UK for forensic examination,’ he said.”

On March 14, the scientists told the police that there was not enough collagen to date the fragment; a week later they said there was enough after all. Collagen is only present in human bones — not in wood or coconut shells. Then another week later, they changed their minds again: there was probably no collagen after all. It was only in early April that the experts began to suggest it was probably — not definitely — not human after all. So far as Harper is concerned, that is still the position now. The suggestion was that it could be wood or a seed. The idea that it might be a fragment of coconut shell was a secondary opinion never given directly to the inquiry. The anthropologist who had originally thought it was a piece of a child’s skull re-examined it over April 8 and 9 and noted it had changed texture, weight and colour since she first saw it. Now she thought it might not be bone, though she too could not be certain. But by now it was established that the fragment, human or not, came from a pre-1940s/Victorian layer of the dig. They agreed to put it to one side and not waste further resources on more tests. It was no longer relevant.

Harper says that perhaps he should have made the message clearer that the possible partial human remains were probably not human in origin. But at the time, with all the political flak around the inquiry, he decided it would be best to put it to one side and move on. Still, the press office would tell anyone who asked that the fragment had now been ruled out of the inquiry. There was never any attempt to maintain a deception that it was still a skull fragment.

One victim claimed to have been shackled in the cellars, and the 2003 builders had described finding shackles. When the inquiry recovered the items the builders had apparently seen, they did not describe them as shackles, but that was the word the media picked up from the builders. Harper says that he resisted the word for a long time, but eventually began using it himself. I have seen the “shackles” and, taken out of context, they are not convincing: one looks like an old stretched-out bed spring. But taken with the victim statement, the builders’ accounts and the circumstances in which they were found, you would not rule them out altogether.

The new inquiry told me that only three pieces of bone that were likely to be human had been found at the former home. Harper said it was 16. In fact, they were both wrong, though the Sheffield University anthropologist Andrew Chamberlain, who had examined those pieces, went out of his way to emphasise that he had never heard Harper say anything that contradicted or distorted his findings and had never found the inquiry to be anything other than professional.

A total of 65 children’s teeth had also been found — an extraordinary number, made more extraordinary by the anthropologist who had found them suggesting that some appeared to have been deliberately concealed in the cellars and elsewhere and by further evidence that many had not been shed naturally. The new police had attempted to make light of the discovery, suggesting the “tooth fairy” was the explanation, as a dentist had given evidence of removing teeth and handing them to staff for the children. Perhaps the staff had not bothered playing the tooth fairy and simply hoarded all the teeth. Perhaps. There was no witness evidence to explain the teeth. Perhaps they too were very old. Perhaps. Nobody could say unless they were dated. I was told the new inquiry had considered sending the teeth to be dated, but had been told not to, to save the cost.

During Harper’s inquiry, under public pressure to be seen to be doing the right thing, the Jersey States had told Harper that money was no object. Indeed, the chief executive had complained when Harper had said in a press release that he was weighing up the financial implications. Don’t do that, he was told. Spend what you need to spend. In truth, Harper is still not convinced that there were no relevant human remains at Haut de la Garenne. He points to all the odd circumstances: the teeth, the burnt bones, the builder’s finds, the stories of former residents, the pits dug in the grounds and lined with lime — nobody has ever explained what they were for. But, as he knows, the bodies just never materialised.

When Harper retired, his role had been split in two and he had been replaced as deputy chief officer by David Warcup from Northumbria police and as senior investigating officer for the abuse inquiry, known as Operation Rectangle, by a Lancashire detective, Mick Gradwell, widely praised for his handling of the inquiry into the deaths of the Chinese cockle-pickers in Morecambe Bay.

I believe that Mick Gradwell came to Jersey with his reputation as a major-league senior investigating officer expecting to run a multiple-death inquiry, and was disappointed and frustrated to discover there were no murders after all. He packed his desk and took his plaques down from his office wall before Christmas and was about to resign and go home to Lancashire after only four months, only changing his mind at the last minute. He tells colleagues he is not putting the plaques back up, since he doesn’t anticipate staying for long. Whatever has gone on in the police camp, it has certainly meant that resources — and the long, painstaking work of once-trusted officers — have been squandered.

Perhaps, you will wonder, as I have, why they are spending so much time picking over Lenny Harper’s work and reputation when men who helped turn children into murderers and suicides, and a man who made a small boy’s head bob up and down in the water, have not been called to account.

David James Smith.





Make Sure you get a Copy.

Many readers will recollect that on May the 4th last year, the Sunday Times Magazine carried a very professional, in-depth article on the Jersey Child Abuse Disaster.

The author of that article, David James Smith, has revisited Jersey’s child protection failures one year on – and has written another in-depth article which will appear in the Sunday Times Magazine this coming Sunday.

I would strongly recommend that everyone interested in how so many child abuses were able to be concealed for so long in Jersey obtains a copy.

I haven’t seen the article, but I’m given to understand that it is focusing on the centrally important subjects of the ineffectuality of checks and balances in Jersey, and asks such questions as “where are the prosecutions?” It questions the apparent invulnerability of certain key figures, for example certain current or former public employees? It challenges the police – and asks why on Earth have the “new management” of the police force been spending so much time and effort in attacking Lenny Harper – rather than bringing child abusers to book?

I believe the article will also be taking a look at the real devastation wrought upon the lives of many victims. The trail of human wreckage that is the direct consequence of the failures of “The Jersey Way”. People whose lives I am, in many cases, familiar with.

If the quality of last year’s article is any yardstick – I’m certain this Sunday’s piece will make a fascinating – and probably angering – read.

Make sure you check it out.



When All Unite to Crush Dissent

Dark Days Cannot be Far Away.

Last Thursday, the Jersey parliament debated a proposition which asked the legislature to, essentially, express concern at the implications for private communications between elected representatives and their constituents. Indeed, the privacy of communications between politicians – and the right of people and their elected representatives to freely work together – without facing intimidatory and unlawful police harassments of the kind one might expect to encounter in a banana republic.

The proposition – which can be found in my posting of the 16th April – was, naturally, heavily defeated.

To the great self-satisfaction of the Jersey Establishment Party.

It apparently not occurring to them that the States of Jersey is certainly the only legislature in western Europe that would have expressed satisfaction at the fact that one of its members had been arrested and held in police cells for 7 hours – whilst his home was turned over – without a search warrant – by the police who took and copied privileged communications between him and his constituents – all because the member was doing an effective job in holding the executive to account.

And they wonder why so many people around the world regard Jersey as a failed jurisdiction?

Still – the outcome was predictable. The “thinking” of the oligarchy politicians being well-know beforehand.

As far as the detail of the debate is concerned – so very fascinating is that that I will write a posting in which I will analyse the content of the debate – and one or two other issues – later this week.

In the interim, a few reflections on the Politics of events.

A number of States members have been saying, both publicly and privately to other people that the police raid and search of my home without a warrant was – somehow – “justified” as some form of “punishment” or “retribution”.

That it was “high-time Syvret was punished for being so rude about establishment people on his blog.” And no – I’m not making that up.

Yes – a majority of Jersey politicians seriously believe that because someone is critical of the government of the day and rude about senior establishment figures – they get what they deserve if raided by the police without a search warrant and held in locked cells for 7 hours.

As a significant number of older Jersey people have said to me, “the last time they remember that happening to anyone because they had annoyed those in power, was during the Nazi occupation.”

For example, when I spoke during the debate of the police raid and search of the office and home of Damien Green MP, the predictable round of giggles and huffing and puffing went around the oligarchy benches. The mood seemed to be that Mr. Green is a respectable Conservative MP, which, indeed, he is. And I, by way of contrast, was – well – just some kind of anarcho-commie prole who refused to respect his social superiors – so the action against me was just fine.

The fact that the action taken against Mr. Green – and the action taken against me are qualitatively identical was of no interest to the Jersey Establishment Party.

In fact, we must draw two disturbing conclusions concerning the “thinking” of most States members. A number of them will have understood perfectly well the threat to parliamentary democracy which arises from the police-state-type action – but were quite indifferent to such considerations – and only really interested in the debate as a vehicle to vent their visceral hatred of me. Fear, you see, breeds hatred.

And of greater concern – the importance of the fundamental issues clearly went completely over the heads of a substantial number of members; they just didn’t “get it”.

The degree of political illiteracy displayed by a majority of States members will appear quite startling to any thinking person with a grasp of the workings of representative parliamentary democracy.

The action against Mr. Green elicited very, very substantial cross-bench support for him from all the main political parties, and attracted heavy criticisms from all sides of the House. In fact – with the exception of the Labour cabinet, it’s junior Ministers and a few other Labour apparatchiks – you would have been hard-put to find any MP who was not deeply concerned about the dramatic implications of the police action against Mr. Green.

Yet, the States Assembly showed itself to be incapable of likewise setting aside partisan politicking – instead just viewing the issue as yet another occasion for the dominant party to endorse the abuse of power against minority members.

The States of Jersey is the only democratic legislature which positively revels in the intimidation, harassment and oppression of minority members. A frequently exhibited tyranny by the majority – enthusiastically supported and facilitated by Phil Bailhache & Michael Birt.

It was openly said by a number of members after the debate that if the target of the police action had been any member except me, they would have voted in favour. A fact which, again, tells us a great deal about the non-existent capacity of these people to make competent decisions.

I was a politician for nearly 20 years – and during that time had some pretty – err – fractious relationships with political opponents, and was frequently on the receiving end of various insults, oppressions and obstructions from them.

But I could confidently state under oath that I have never voted in the chamber in a way I felt was wrong – just because to have done so would have been an opportunistic dig at political opponents.

Look – I even spoke and voted against a censure motion brought against Frank Walker.

I did so, because in my opinion, the censure motion was undeserved under the circumstances. And this was not that long after he had organised and led the unjustified efforts to have me terminated from Health & Social Services.

We carry a great responsibility for this community – which is why, as far as I’m concerned, personal antagonisms get left outside the chamber – and I speak and vote for what I genuinely believe to be the right decision.

There are a number of other States members of whom the same could be said.

However, they’re in a minority.

And that fact was illustrated yet again in Thursday’s vote.

The presentation of the debate by The Rag was very, very interesting – it dripped fear.

“Syvret Arrest: States Back Police” – screamed the headline. As though to have objected to the unlawful action against an elected member of the assembly and his constituents would have been some form of anarchist up-rising against the forces of law and order.

When the JEP displays such comical desperation to prop-up the establishment, you know they’re worried that the oligarchy may have gone too far this time. Well, they have – but that’s for another occasion.

Speaking of the Jersey media, I had to have a little chuckle when reading Rob Shipley’s A Backwards Glance column, in which he condemns my ‘imaginative invective’ – and begins to trot out – under the cover of an innocent musing – that tired old Jersey oligarchy device “patriotism”. That infamous “last refuge of the scoundrel”.

The Rag is nothing, if not predictable. I’ve been bombarded with this particular weapon by the JEP on too many occasions to remember during the last 20 years.

I make a critical remark – and even use a metaphor perhaps – to attack our stagnant oligarchy – and in JEP world – ‘it’s a traitorous attack on Jersey!’ “Syvret – the enemy within – insults Jersey!”


Look, Rob, there is this literary device called “metaphor”. The word is derived from the Latin, metaphoria, which is itself derived from the Greek terms for ‘transference’, ‘to carry over’, ‘to bear between’.

A metaphor is produced by a writer, say, for reasons of dramatic effect, hyperbole, economy of words or the making of a powerful connection between different things. Thus metaphor uses one word or phrase – to describe another, perhaps even unrelated, thing.

So when I described Jersey as the North Korea of the English Channel – I was using a “metaphor”, intended, with admitted hyperbole, to alert people to the dangers of excessive, abusive and intrusive policing being used by the establishment as a political device to harass and intimidate opposition politicians.

I don’t, actually, recollect – even indirectly – suggesting that the Jersey oligarchy have a growing stock-pile of nuclear warheads and are about to start testing an inter-Channel Island ballistic missile to take-out our odd-toed ungulate cousins upon the neighbouring rock.

For such devices would be terribly expensive – so why bother with them – when we can just send over Matt Banahan?

When you consider the oligarchy media and its various internet forums, you will read the out-put of their spin-doctors – who have evolved into trolls, and now sit desperately thrashing away under 20 different avatars.

You can tell it’s text-book spin – fresh from the production-line – because the tactic embodied in it is one of the oldest tricks in the book, namely, the diversionary counter-attack.

Ignore the real issues – and instead try and draw fire from your malfeasances by mounting a largely irrelevant attack on your opponent.

Thus in oligarchy-world the decades of the concealment of child abuse, the demonstrable lying and cover-ups by certain of today’s politicians, the many gross malfeasances of senior civil servants, the efforts being made to stitch-up the survivors – again, the use by the oligarchy of the police force to mount an illegal search on a politicians home and the consequent theft of a great quantity of constituents’ data – all virtually irrelevant.

The far, far more important subject being – apparently – what a rude bastard that Stuart Syvret is.

Certainly, my approach to my political work is a good deal more forthright and passionate than that of the average States member.

But before I be condemned for that, let us reflect on my political history.

I was elected as Deputy in 1990, at the age of 25, and three years later was elected as a Senator, a position I still hold 20 years since first getting elected.

Throughout that period, I have been entirely consistent, honest, reliable and determined in my representation.

The reality of politics in Jersey is, essentially, that of a single party state. And battling the greed, incompetence and short-term self-interest of the entrenched elite has been my work for 20 years.

The consequences for me personally of honestly representing my constituents – and trying to do what is right – have been 20 years of untrammelled abuse, smears, defamations, biases, insults, oppressions and lies.

I have had to put up with this kind of treatment at the hands of The Rag, BBC Jersey, and the rest of the unprincipled clowns and shysters – with no real or effective means of fighting back.

Until, that is, January 2008 – when I began blogging.

Citizen Media has finally empowered me, as it has millions of others, to get our voice heard – despite the old-fashioned control by the powerful over the traditional media.

We can no longer be silenced.

The fear and hatred this has evinced on the part of the traditional hacks does, I confess, produce a certain schadenfreude. Times were bad enough for traditional media in any event. But with the economic meltdown and the drying up of advertising – sites like this are helping to hasten the long over-due demise of the Jersey oligarchy’s propaganda rag.

But – I must say this for the Jersey Evening Post.

If my blog is aggressive, insulting, rude, upsetting to its targets, unfair – etc. – I must confess I learnt everything I know from the JEP.

Before I started this blog, I had been subjected to over 18 years of lies, smears, abuses and bias by The Rag.

So if what I write now seems belligerent, just reflect upon the fact that during these last 14 months I have simply begun to fight back – to give as good as I have been subjected to – for 18 years.

Do you know how many absurd, dishonest and biased – and anonymous – Rag editorial leader comments I have been subjected to over all those years?

I confess I’d have to search my archives – well, at least those the police haven’t stolen, to get the number quite right – but take my word for it – it’s a very large number.

In fact, I’d guess second only amongst all Jersey politicians to the avalanche of hatred and oppression heaped upon the late, great Norman Le Brocq.

For example, when I was illegally thrown out of the States Assembly for 6 months – by Phil Bailhache for exposing his mate as a shameless crook – The Rag printed no less than five editorial leader comments attacking me during that episode, as though I were the villain of the piece.

In fact – so comical, ignorant, Warsaw-Pact and, frankly barking-mad were these leader comments, I copied them and put them in a frame.

Much like today’s episode – when a corrupt, entrenched, stagnant oligarchy exhibits quite so much undisguised terror, and attempts to crush political dissidents – you know you must be doing something right.

Later in the week we’ll take a look at what emerged during the States debate, and consider the legal and political ramification for power in Jersey.

Until then – if you are a supporter of the Jersey oligarchy, just remember – concealing, and thus supporting and condoning, child abuse – is just fine – as far as your leaders are concerned – provided you’re terribly “polite” about everything.