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Child abuse: Probe into police 'cover-up' claims

The Met Police said it takes allegations of impropriety "very seriously". Credit: PA

A number of claims that police acted inappropriately in relation to child abuse allegations are being investigated, the Metropolitan Police said today.

Speaking at a press briefing today, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Steve Rodhouse said Professional Standards were looking into the claims, which cover a period from the 1970s up to 2005.

Some cover-up allegations are related to different strands of Operation Fairbank - a wide-ranging probe into alleged abuse - while others are completely unrelated, he said.

"We take any allegations of impropriety by police officers very seriously," Rodhouse said.


1,000 people interviewed in wide-ranging abuse probe

A total of 18 separate child abuse investigations are currently underway as part of the over-arching Operation Fairbank - a wide-ranging probe prompted by allegations of historical paedophilia made by MP Tom Watson.

Police say these 18 strands are "varied", not all linked and "not all in London", adding that some relate to care homes, and not all involve "VIPs".

One of these 18 is Operation Midland, which the force has been discussing today, and which will cover claims that three boys' deaths were linked to alleged abuse involving MPs in London.

One thousand people have been interviewed and 900 documents have been seized so far as part of the wide Fairbank investigation.

At present, five people have been charged over historical claims - including John Stingemore and Father Anthony McSweeney in relation to Grafton Close Children's Home in the capital.

However, they have so far received no allegations of abuse by any "VIPs" at Elm House Guest House in west London, and are appealing for anyone who may have been abused there to come forward.

MPs abuse probe: Missing person checks after murder claims

Police investigating the alleged murders of three boys have confirmed they are checking against missing person files from the time, ITV News Correspondent Ronke Phillips reports.

No bodies have been found at present to support the murder claims - which are said to be linked to an alleged Westminster paedophile ring.

However, police say they believe the allegations - - to be "credible and true" and are taking them very seriously.

  1. Juliet Bremner: ITV News Correspondent

Appeal for Dolphin Square residents over alleged abuse

Dolphin Square in Pimlico, London, is said to have been used by an alleged paedophile ring involving MPs. Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Investigators believe Dolphin Square - a London housing estate close to the Houses of Parliament where many MPs have their homes - is an area of interest in a probe into an alleged Westminster child abuse ring and three related allegations of murder.

They are appealing for any boys who think they may have been victims or any residents who lived there and may have suspicions to come forward.

The historical allegations were made by a victim calling himself "Nick".

He alleges he was abused by a group of MPs and other high profile individuals between 1975 -84.

The information he has given them relates to the alleged murders of three young boys and police believe that it is "credible and true".

Child abuse inquiry: Probe into alleged murders of three boys

Police are investigating three alleged murders of young boys as part of an inquiry into historical child abuse claims.


Civilian police workers to strike on December 22

Civilian police workers in England and Wales will stage a 24-hour strike on December 22 in a dispute over pay, the Unison union said.

The industrial action will involve workers in a wide range of support roles, including fingerprint experts, 999 call-takers and community support officers.

The head of Unison, Dave Prentis, said police staff had been hit hard by wage depression since the financial crisis.

"Since 2010, two years of pay freeze and a below-inflation pay deal last year has seen the value of their pay decline by 13%," Mr Prentis said.

"It is rare for police staff to take industrial action and the strike is a clear sign that they've had enough. For many of our members it will be the first time they have ever taken industrial action over pay."

Police chief: 'I fear we will compromise public safety'

The head of a police force praised by David Cameron for solving more crime with less money says continuing spending cuts would put public safety at risk.

Neil Rhodes, chief constable of Lincolnshire said his force could be the first to fall over, as he put it, because of having less money.

ITV News deputy political editor, Chris Ship reports:

Police chief warns budget cuts 'compromise public safety'

The Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Police has warned that further cuts to his force could "compromise public safety" and bring an end to neighbourhood policing.

Neil Rhodes has written to Home Secretary Theresa May warning that more cuts could leave his force "unsustainable".

ITV News North of England Correspondent Damon Green reports.

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