Labour peer’s son says public inquiry’s investigation of his father should wait until after civil court cases
The family of Greville Janner wants the public inquiry into child abuse to delay its investigation of the late Labour peer.
Lord Janner, 87, who died in December, is alleged to have abused youngsters over a period spanning more than 30 years dating back to the 1950s, with offending said to have taken place at children’s homes and hotels.
The allegations against him are due to be examined at hearings of the public inquiry next March.
But his son has said that as civil proceedings by some of his alleged victims have been started, the claims should go through the courts – where his father’s accusers can be cross-examined – before they feature in the inquiry.
Daniel Janner QC told the BBC he had prepared a submission for the home affairs select committee, which is due to question the home secretary, Amber Rudd, next month.
He said: “We very much hope that the committee will question carefully why the inquiry is planning to make findings of fact in relation to my late father when he is dead, when he cannot answer back, when he has never been convicted of any offence and is entirely innocent.
“Moreover we are denied the right to cross-examine what we know to be false allegations and we say this process actually discredits the important work of the inquiry.
“Civil proceedings are in train and it is in those civil proceedings that we do get the right to cross-examine, when those allegations can be tested.”
He said he and his two sisters intended to use their inheritance to clear the family name.
IPCC investigates 11 for mishandling Greville Janner child sex abuse claims
Police watchdog has served criminal notices for gross misconduct over sex abuse allegations against late Labour peer
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said it had served criminal and gross misconduct notices on 11 individuals. It did not name those involved.
Lord Janner, who had dementia, died last year aged 87, while awaiting a trial of the facts for 22 alleged sexual offences against nine men and boys.
The IPCC launched an independent investigation into the handling of allegations by Leicestershire police in April last year. Janner was subject to three police investigations between 1991 and 2007.
“The IPCC has decided not to name any subjects to ensure that the ongoing criminal investigation is not compromised.”
Criminal and misconduct notices are formal warnings notifying the recipients that they are under investigation for either criminal or gross misconduct offences.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and Leicestershire police were severely criticised in an independent report by Richard Henriques, a retired judge, for mishandling investigations into the peer.
The report showed in sometimes harrowing detail how former residents of children’s homes repeatedly made claims of abuse to officials in authority but their claims were not acted upon.
Janner was the MP for Leicester West for 27 years and stood down at the 1997 election.
He was eventually charged with 22 offences relating to nine men and boys following another inquiry in 2013. His family insist he is innocent of any wrongdoing.
Alison Saunders, the director of public prosecutions, decided in April last year that his ill health meant he should not be charged.
But a month later that decision was overturned by an independent review and Saunders reversed her decision, bringing charges against Janner to bring about a trial of the facts.
Janner appeared at Westminster magistrates’ court in August and appeared to be confused when asked to confirm his identity, saying “Ooh, it’s wonderful.”
After a number of court hearings, Mr Justice Openshaw ultimately determined Janner was unfit to plead and a trial of the facts was ordered. In a “trial of facts”, the jury is asked to decide – on the basis of evidence adduced by prosecution lawyers and by lawyers who put the case for the defence – whether or not the accused did the acts he or she was charged with.
JANNER: INDEPENDENT ENQUIRY: DPP HEAD SAUNDERS STATES “DEEP REGRET” AT NOT PROSECUTING JANNER – IT IS A DEEP REGRET ALSO THERES BEEN A COVERUP 19/01/16 WATCH: