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Durham Police 'welcome' Medomsley investigation

A spokesman for Durham Constabulary has said that they welcome the investigation by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse at the former detention centre:

“We welcome the news that Lord Justice Goddard will examine the Medomsley Detention Centre investigation.

To date more than 1,200 victims have come forward to report both physical and sexual abuse. Our overarching priority has been to support these victims through this difficult time and to help bring closure for them.

Durham Constabulary has spent millions of pounds on this ongoing inquiry and dedicated a huge amount of highly-skilled officers and staff to find out what happened at the centre.

Indeed, this has become the biggest investigation of its kind in the country.

Victim care is foremost in our minds and we look forward to co-operating with any national inquiry.

– Durham Constabulary spokesperson

Medomsley abuse investigation: Former staff arrested

Two former members of staff at Medomsley Detention Centre have been arrested over allegations of sexual and physical abuse against hundreds of inmates at a former County Durham detention centre.

The alleged victims were all in their 'teens when they were sent to Medomsley, often for minor offences, from the 1960's until the centre closed in 1988.

In August 2013 Durham Police announced that the force was opening a new investigation – named ‘Operation Seabrook’ - into allegations from ex-inmates of Medomsley Detention Centre, near Consett.

Previous police investigations in 2003 and 2005 led to the conviction and jailing of Neville Husband and Leslie Johnson, former members of staff at the centre who have since died.

  • Since August 2013, a total of 1,123 men have contacted the Operation Seabrook team to report that they were victims of either sexual or physical assaults. Of these, approximately one-third have reported they were sexually assaulted by either Husband or Johnson.
  • In November 2014 police began the process of interviewing ex- members of staff who worked at Medomsley during the 1970’s and 1980’s.

While several have died in the intervening years, 16 who are still alive have been identified in this initial phase. All have now been spoken to, the majority as voluntary attenders at local police stations.

However, two of the 16 – now aged 69 and 58 – were arrested and questioned before being released on police bail. Both were detained on suspicion of physical and sexual assaults on Medomsley inmates.

A police spokesman says efforts are now being made to trace and interview at least a dozen more former members of staff.

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200 potential new victims of abuse at detention centre

More than 200 potential new victims have contacted police investigating abuse at the former Medomsley Detention Centre, near Consett.

In August last year Durham Constabulary announced it was opening a new investigation into allegations inmates were either sexually or physically abused during their time at Medomsley, between the late 1960’s and the mid-1980’s.

“Our aims all along have been to gain a clearer picture of what happened at

Medomsley, obtain evidence which may lead to a criminal prosecution and, most

importantly, to leave the victims in a better place than they were before,”

– Det Supt Paul Goundry, the senior investigating officer

An earlier investigation led to a former catering officer, Neville Husband, being jailed in 2003 for abusing a number of young men. He died in 2010, after his release from prison.

The total number of potential victims now stands at 375.

Inmate speaks out against detention centre abuse

Inmate speaks out against detention centre abuse

It has emerged that the number of alleged victims of sexual abuse at a former County Durham detention centre has risen to 143.

Durham Police re-opened the investigation into abuse at Medomsley last year.

We have heard from one former inmate, who was subjected to horrific rapes and sexual assaults, who told us how his life fell apart when he confronted his demons.

Kevin Young's testimony helped convict Neville Husband, the prison officer responsible for much of the abuse - but he told Kenny Toal that since then his life has been in freefall.

Watch Kenny's full report below.

Report: More victims come forward in historic abuse investigation

Police investigating historic sexual abuse at a County Durham detention centre say almost 100 alleged victims have come forward since they re-opened the inquiry earlier this year.

Around 80 detectives are examining new evidence of abuse at Medomsley Detention Centre in the 1970s and 1980s.

They are convinced there are many more victims out there, who simply can't bring themselves to talk about what happened.

Kenny Toal reports.

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