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Court sanctions compensation scheme for Savile victims

A compensation scheme set up for women who say they were sexually abused by television personality Jimmy Savile has been sanctioned by the Court of Appeal.

Three appeal judges gave their verdict today after a charity which is the major beneficiary of Savile's estate raised concerns about the scheme.

Lawyers representing the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust said the scheme - agreed between the estate executor, the NatWest bank, and lawyers representing alleged victims - did not assess the "validity" of claimants and lacked a "process of evaluation".

But today the Court of Appeal agreed with a High Court ruling that said the compensation scheme could go ahead.

Liz Dux, a lawyer at law firm Slater & Gordon which represents victims, said: "Today's ruling will bring great relief to Savile's many victims who have been living with the uncertainty of not knowing whether they would be blocked in their claims."

Savile officer faces misconduct probe

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has revealed it has served a misconduct notice on a detective sergeant with North Yorkshire Police as part of its investigation into the Jimmy Savile scandal.

The revelation has been made in a statement released today by the IPCC regarding its investigation into the way West Yorkshire and North Yorkshire Police handled complaints about the disgraced TV entertainer.

Disgraced TV host Jimmy Savile Credit: ITV Yorkshire

With regards to its investigation into the North Yorkshire force the statement says:

"The IPCC has an independent investigation under way into potential misconduct issues arising from the manner in which North Yorkshire police officers handled information about Jimmy Savile, and an associate, the late Peter Jaconelli.

"Matters under investigation by the IPCC relate to how the force handled information from a 15 year old girl in 2002 regarding Savile, and how the force treated two disclosures made by a serving prisoner about Jaconelli in December 2008 and January 2009.

"One serving detective sergeant has so far been served with a misconduct notice to advise him his conduct is subject to IPCC investigation. The officer has been interviewed by an IPCC investigator recently.

"The investigation is examining whether the North Yorkshire Police response to the disclosures was in accordance with national and force policies on crime recording, intelligence handling and dealing with victims of sexual abuse.

"This investigation follows a referral from North Yorkshire Police in April this year which included whether any information it held on record about Savile or his known associates was properly and comprehensively disclosed to Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary when it, and other forces, were asked to do so by HMIC in December 2012 and again by the IPCC in May last year. "After assessment by the IPCC those matters have been sent back to the force to deal with.

"North Yorkshire Police has an ongoing investigation into historical sexual abuse for which it has previously asked people from the Scarborough area to come forward with any information.

– Sarah Green, IPCC deputy chair

With regard to the investigation into West Yorkshire Police the statement says:

An IPCC investigation into allegations against a former inspector with West Yorkshire Police having ‘acted on behalf’ of Jimmy Savile by inappropriately contacting Surrey Police ahead of a police interview in 2009 is nearing completion.

"The investigation is looking into what knowledge the former inspector had of any letters received making accusations against Savile and what action, if any, was taken in respect of them.

"The former inspector has been interviewed under criminal caution by an IPCC investigator.

"The IPCC has spoken to several former police and non-police attendees of the ‘Friday Morning Club’, or those with knowledge of it, as witnesses over whether they have any awareness of accusatory letters being received by Savile and passed on to officers or discussed.

"Investigators have been in contact with a number of the ongoing independent inquiries investigating allegations of abuse by Savile over any information they may have which would be useful to the IPCC independent investigation.”

"The IPCC investigation began last year following a direction to the force to record and refer the conduct of the former inspector, identified in a Surrey Police report as ‘Inspector 5’.

"Other wider Savile-related matters referred to the IPCC by West Yorkshire Police from its Operation Newgreen report were, after assessment, sent back to the force.

– Sarah Green, IPCC deputy chair

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Savile victims' lawyer 'disappointed' by compensation scheme challenge

A charity set up by Jimmy Savile is to challenge a compensation scheme for victims of the sex attacker.

The Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust will take its case to the Court of Appeal later this year.

Liz Dux, who represents 176 of the late DJ's victims, said she was disappointed by the move:

The Trustees of the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust issued the following statement:

First, we remain concerned by the amount of legal fees that NatWest has incurred (over £0.5m to date). We are particularly concerned that NatWest’s
lawyers took their fees from the estate without having any authority to do so at the time.

Second, we do not feel that the proposed compensation scheme for claimants is fair. The current scheme gives the claimants’ lawyers an automatic right to claim fees of about £14,000 per claimant, irrespective of the amount the claimant receives.
This could mean a claimant receives only a fraction of the amount paid
to the lawyers. It also means that a very substantial amount of the estate
(perhaps over £2m) could be paid out in legal fees. We feel strongly that the
estate funds should either go to the claimants, or to beneficiaries of the estate (including the charity). It is our hope that we can protect the value of the estate by our application, so that more money is available to pay to those who have proper claims against the estate. As charity trustees, we also have an obligation to protect the funds that will go to charity, if there is anything left in the estate after paying the claims.

– Trustees of the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust

New unit to investigate any new Savile complaints

A new NHS unit is to be set up by the Department of Health to monitor new complaints from potential victims of Jimmy Savile and ensure they are investigated properly.

The Government hope it will make it easier for any other victims of the disgraced TV personality to come forward.

Recent investigations into Savile's behaviour provoked an apology from Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.

Abuse victims scared of 'speaking out', warns Health Secretary

Jimmy Savile Credit: PA

Abuse victims are still frightened of speaking out against powerful people, Jeremy Hunt has warned after the shocking findings of the Jimmy Savile investigation.

The Health Secretary, said there had been major changes in recent decades but "we haven't come the whole way." A series of chilling reports into the activities of Savile found he had subjected patients in hospitals to "sickening" sexual abuse.

Mr Hunt apologised on behalf of the Government and NHS to Savile's victim when the findings at 28 hospitals were published on Thursday.

He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme:

"I think we are kidding ourselves if we think there aren't people even today who are frightened of speaking out in those situations and whilst, of course we always look at the law, we also have to look at the culture and being better at supporting people who do want to speak out."

Dozens report years of abuse by Savile

The true scale of the Jimmy Savile scandal has been laid bare today as a report revealed how he was allowed to commit a horrifying catalogue of sexual abuse in hospitals up and down the country over 50 years.

At Leeds General Infirmary alone, dozens of people came forward to say he had abused them. His victims were patients, staff, young boys and girls and even pensioners.

In a damning indictment, investigators found his predatory and manipulative behaviour was allowed to thrive in the Leeds hospital because reports of allegations against him there were never passed onto senior staff. Jon Hill reports:

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Hull MP: Savile revelations raise concerns for parents across the country

The Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has apologised to the victims of Jimmy Savile today saying "Savile's actions will shake our country to the core."

The scale of the disgraced DJ's catalogue of sexual abuse of the most vulnerable victims aged from just five to 75 has become clear. A report has been published detailing investigations at 28 hospitals including allegations of historic abuse at De la Pole hospital in Hull.

Today in the Commons one of the city's MPs, Diana Johnson, said the revelations raised concerns over plans to scale back background checks for volunteers in hospitals:

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Jimmy Savile victim: I still have nightmares

A transgender man abused by Jimmy Savile has told ITV News he still has nightmares about his ordeal.

The Health Secretary today apologised to victims after further details of Savile's crimes at NHS hospitals across the country were released.

"I still have nightmares. A lot of people would think 'there's nothing wrong with him' but that's not true - I still have nightmare. I still dream I'm locked up," Steven George said.

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