It seems that the Hillsborough Disaster was not the only thing Margaret Thatcher and her government covered up.
This week it has been alleged that the Conservative former Prime Minister knew about the sexual abuse of young boys carried out by her Cabinet Ministers in the 1980s, and took no action. Former Conservative activist Anthony Gilberthorpe, who claims he was ordered to recruit boys for the ministers, says he posted the allegations to Thatcher after befriending her.
“I outlined exactly what I had witnessed and informed her I intended to expose it. I made it very clear to Mrs Thatcher most trusted ministers had been at these parties with boys who were between 15 and 16”.
He added, “I also told her of the amount of illegal drugs like cocaine that were consumed”.
Those involved in the abuse included Keith Joseph, Rhodes Boyson, Michael Havers and one MP still serving today. Instead of taking any action against the ministers, Thatcher told the then Conservative hopeful to “clean up your sexual act” if he wanted a promotion.
The minister’s alleged interest in abusing young boys first came to light after he stayed at the home of a constituency agent. The agent is believed to have alerted authorities. A high-level meeting involving Mrs Thatcher, Home Secretary Willie Whitelaw, a senior policeman, and an MI5 officer was held to discuss the minister’s behaviour. He was then summoned to 10 Downing Street.
The minister was merely warned about his future behaviour and the matter was kept covered, and faced no disciplinary action.
Ironically, the late sir Rhodes Boyson who was a fierce opponent of homosexuality. He declared being gay was “unnatural” and “biblically wrong”. At the height of fears over Aids in the 1980s, he said;
“If we could wipe out homosexual practices, Aids would die out.”
The claims made to The Sunday People by a source with inside knowledge of Scotland Yard in the early 1980s are to be put before the Westminster Child Abuse Inquiry. This was set up last week by David Cameron to investigate claims that there was an establishment cover up, protecting politicians, judges and police officers involved in a secret paedophile ring.
This investigation comes in light of Operation Yewtree, a police investigation into child sexual abuse against key figures of the British media, most notably Jimmy Savile and Rolf Harris. The investigation, led by the Metropolitan Police Service, started in October 2012.
In 1986, a politician in question was alleged to have been seeking rent boys in the toilets at Victoria railway station in central London. The toilets were the target of an undercover sting by Scotland Yard detectives. Officers approached the minister and warned him about his behaviour. It is believed a report was filed by a CID officer.
The information was passed on by Alec Marnoch, a highly respected police officer and Operations Commander of Westminster and the West End who died in 1999. Police working in Piccadilly Circus had received a report of the same politician targeting one of London’s most notorious rent-boy haunts called the “chicken rack” in the 1980s. Boys as young as 13 waited there to be picked up by men – often politicians, television stars or corrupted policemen – for paid sexual encounters.
David Cameron has already agreed to an in-depth investigation into historical allegations of child abuse. He has appointed Lady Butler-Sloss, a retired senior judge who chaired the Cleveland child abuse inquiry in the late 1980s, to head the investigation. However, Operation Yewtree has also faced criticism from Stephen Fry this week, who believes that there needs to be tougher laws to deter false sex abuse allegations, arguing that “people are innocent until proven guilty”. Mr Cameron may need to look into ways of carrying out the investigation in a fair and thorough manner to avoid the criticism Operation Yewtree has faced.
Labour MP Tom Watson said:
“If true, these extraordinary revelations reveal a remarkable state of affairs – so much so that they’re almost impossible to imagine. These claims should be investigated by the new child-abuse inquiry.”