So the Newsnight feature did not name the “close aide” to a former Prime Minister who was linked to the activities of a paedophile ring connected to the routine abuse of young males at care homes in North Wales. But, having done a little more digging, I now know that I was wrong on who I thought it might have been, but right that it wasn’t a current or former cabinet minister.
Those who took any notice of a certain blog that named one of the current cabinet should have paused and thought before believing the name that had been pitched – like looking at the credibility of the rest of its output. In the meantime, although readers must know that I’m avoiding linking to any sources, there follows a series of clues that will give an idea of just how much embarrassment this could cause.
Let’s begin at the beginning: the name that didn’t get named – and who I missed partly because I was looking at MPs as a filter – was related to a peer who was close to Margaret Thatcher. He lived in North Wales. He was connected to the family business, a name that some may recognise.
Allied with him is another lifelong Tory supporter who almost ran for elective office but withdrew at the last moment. This man is alleged to have been a sadist as well as a paedophile. More recently he provided an alibi for a former MP of deeply ambiguous character, both men having been friends of a flamboyant Tory supporting PR man whose business ultimately went bust.
The man benefiting from the alibi was also friends with a Tory MP who resigned his seat in disgrace after a Sunday newspaper discovered he had been treating young male prostitutes to the kind of whip round that does not involve raising money. The homosexual age of consent at the time being 21 – as opposed to 16 for heterosexuals – meant that these activities were illegal.
Meanwhile, two prominent Tories, one a former MP and one still in office, are alleged to be involved on the fringes of the North Wales care homes scandal. One of those two Tories made a media appearance after the Newsnight broadcast where the potential unmasking of the peer (above) was mentioned. He’s a brave fellow if the allegations tying him to that same peer are true.
Much of this was published by a fringe magazine some years ago, but the publication has long since gone out of business and its editor at the time is dead. The figure that Labour MP Tom Watson is investigating is, as far as is known, the peer and confidante of Mrs Thatcher. If his name were to enter the printed and broadcast domain, the others would more than likely follow in short order.
And that, folks, is why it matters, and there are a lot of nervous people out there.