Senior Westminster figures from 1970s and 1980s including former Home Secretary Leon Brittan named in government child abuse files
- Senior figures include Sir Peter Hayman and Sir William van Straubenzee
- Sir Peter Morrison, an aide to Margaret Thatcher, has also been named
- Cabinet Office confirmed papers exist which relate to men, who are all dead
- Paper also reveals concerns of abuse at Kincora children’s home in Belfast
Senior Westminster figures from the 1970s and 1980s have been named in government files related to child abuse, it emerged tonight.
The men include former Home Secretary Leon Brittan, ex-diplomat Sir Peter Hayman, former minister Sir William van Straubenzee and Sir Peter Morrison, who was an aide to Margaret Thatcher.
The Cabinet Office confirmed that documents relating to the men, who have all since died, exist after a series of requests from Sky News.
The men include former Home Secretary Leon Brittan (pictured), ex-diplomat Sir Peter Hayman, former minister Sir William van Straubenzee and Sir Peter Morrison, who was an aide to Margaret Thatcher
The papers also reveal that concerns over abuse at the Kincora children’s home in Northern Ireland were raised by former intelligence officer Colin Wallace.
The care home in Belfast has previously been at the centre of abuse allegations and children trafficking to England.
Contents of the documents stored by the Cabinet Office have yet to be revealed but have been passed to police and will be shared with the Child Abuse Inquiry, led by Justice Lowell Goddard.
Fresh allegations surrounding Lord Brittan emerged earlier this week when he was named as an abuser by an alleged abuse victim during an appearance on Australian TV show 60 minutes.
The man claimed that, like the late Liberal MP Cyril Smith, Lord Brittan – who died in January this year – was a regular visitor to paedophile parties at Dolphin Square in Pimlico, Central London.
The alleged victim, referred to only as Darren, said: ‘He (Lord Brittan) liked boys to dress in women’s underwear and he liked to be alone in the room to punish you for wearing underwear.’
It also emerged that officers are investigating allegations that aide to Margaret Thatcher, Sir Peter Morrison, was spared prosecution for sex offences because of police and political corruption.
There have long been rumours that a high-level cover-up allowed the barrister and MP for Chester to get away with abusing teenage boys in public lavatories on at least two occasions.
Serving as a Minister under Mrs Thatcher, Morrison was her Parliamentary Private Secretary during her doomed 1990 leadership campaign.
Former Tory MP for Wokingham, Sir William van Straubenzee (pictured), who died in 1999, is also among the key figures named today
He had once been arrested for having sex with a 15-year-old boy in a public toilet but was let off with a caution while he has also been linked to an abuse scandal in North Wales children’s homes.
Sir Morrison, who came from a family of Scottish landowners, died of a heart attack in 1995 before his secret life was exposed but denied any wrongdoing at the time of his arrest.
In January this year, top British diplomat and former MI6 worker Sir Peter Hayman was the focus of a secret Government file about his ‘unnatural’ sexual behaviour.
The file, which has just been released to the National Archives, names him as the subject of a file prepared for then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
Sir Peter Hayman died in 1992 after a career working as a diplomat including as High Commissioner to Canada. He also worked for intelligence service MI6.
He was outed as a paedophile in the House of Commons after being let off with a police caution despite being found with a trove of extreme pornographic images which he shared with other child abusers.
This most recent file reveals there were further Government papers relating to him.
Former Tory MP for Wokingham, Sir William van Straubenzee, who died in 1999, is also among the key figures named today.
He served as an education minister in Edward Heath’s cabinet from 1970 to 1972 before he was promoted to Minister of State in the new Northern Ireland Office.
Sir William was sacked from the front bench by Margaret Thatcher when she came to power in 1979, although she recommended him for a knighthood in 1981.
Arrested: Sir Peter Morrison, pictured with Lady Thatcher. There has long been rumours that a high-level cover-up allowed him to get away with abusing teenage boys in public lavatories on at least two occasions
It comes after a 2014 review of the Home Office’s handling of paedophile ring allegations in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s found no evidence of a cover-up.
The report – by NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless and barrister Richard Whittam QC – looked at how the Government department dealt with information handed over by the late Conservative MP Geoffrey Dickens, as well as other allegations in 114 missing, lost or destroyed files.
The 10-week probe had not uncovered ‘any evidence of organised attempts by the Home Office to conceal child abuse’, the report said.
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