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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Deputy Tadier Talks State Media (Part 1)

In our PREVIOUS POSTING we demonstrated how Jersey's State Media Report (OR NOT) the "News."

We carry on this theme, in an interview, with Jersey Politician Deputy Montfort Tadier who on a number of occasions has fallen victim to "Jersey Journalism."

In this frank, in-depth and exclusive interview the Deputy tells us of the latest piece of (at best) lazy "journalism" from Jersey's only "News"Paper The Jersey Evening Post. Something he himself has Blogged HERE.

Deputy Tadier tells us, among much more, he believes that "Reporters are working within an institutional Bias." He goes on to say "Bloggers completely change the dynamic" and wants "a level playing field" between the State Media and Bloggers when it comes to filming/reporting States and Scrutiny (Parliamentary Select Committee) Meetings and Hearings.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Opinion Management

Here is another stark example of how Jersey's State Media "opinion manage" rather than report "facts" in a Un-bias and objective way.


The Review carried out by BDO/Alto and Police consultant Mike Kellett, has been misrepresented by Jersey's Media, to such an extent that the report and the reporting of it bears little if any resemblance.


Below are some more findings of the Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Sub Panel's (Parliamentary Select Committee) Report that you WON'T be reading about, or hearing about, in any of Jersey's State Media particularly in Jersey's ONLY "News"paper, The Jersey Evening Post.


The Sub Panel's Report will be buried by the Council of Ministers (Law Offices) and by the State Media because it exposes how true power in Jersey lies in how opinion is managed by the State Media.


The Sub Panel's Report should be read in it's ENTIRETY.


169. BDO Alto further maintained that Mr. Harper was not the subject of their review and it was not the intention of the report to be directly critical of him or of any other individual. BDO Alto said that they had acknowledged the hard work of Police officers and third party contractors during the course of the Operation Rectangle enquiry and confirmed that ‘The report is not intended to be in any way critical of their individual efforts….’139

170. Mr. Kellett reiterated this point in his submission:

The Review was not an investigation of any individual but was designed to ascertain what had occurred and to make recommendations for the future. Indeed, that much is clear from my terms of reference. [ ] The manner in which some of our conclusions were expressed was diluted precisely because we had not been able to speak to Mr Harper. Nevertheless, as he himself pointed out in his oral evidence, he made the bulk of the financial decisions and he therefore cannot absolve himself of the extremely serious and costly errors that were made.

171. Mr. Kellett made a point of praising the dedication of Mr. Harper and his determination to bring suspected offenders to justice:

We have no doubt that Mr Harper was totally dedicated to the task of investigating serious crimes that had possibly occurred at Haut de la Garenne and that he was entirely sincere in his belief that child abuse there and elsewhere in Jersey was a major issue that needed to be dealt with. Throughout the period that Operation Rectangle was live, he and his staff displayed great dedication and did their utmost to bring suspected offenders to justice and we pointed out as much in our report (Emphasis added). However, we were not asked to examine motivation and dedication but rather to look at how the resources available to the investigation were managed. We did so and made nineteen recommendations. Inevitably, because of the central role Mr Harper performed, his management of the resources formed a central part of our examination but to the extent that any of those recommendations constitute criticism of his actions, no criticism of, let alone attack on, the existence of the investigation or of the motivation for it is intended or implied. (Emphasis added) 132

173. The issues raised by Mr. Kellett’s declaration above (paragraph 170) that the review carried out by himself and BDO Alto was not intended as criticism of the police investigation is a serious point which we consider later in the section on the media coverage (section 6 of this report).

SECTION 6.

227. The publication of the BDO Alto and Wiltshire reports by the Minister for Home Affairs on 14th July 2010 was an occasion for highly critical attention on Mr. Harper. The Jersey Evening Post published an extensive six page report with headlines focussed on:

·           Celebrity lifestyle of Lenny Harper and his officers
·           Meals in top-class restaurants and first class travel at expense of tax payers
·           £42,000 – the overtime paid to a single officer in the first 15 months of the historical abuse enquiry
·           No dog’s life for handler with luxury hotel lifestyle
·           Hot on the trail of top London restaurants
·           Lenny Harper and his team enjoyed £90-a-head meals and travelled first class at taxpayers’ expense, an accountants’ report revealed
·           Off to Scotland Yard again
             .    First class on the Gatwick Express

228. The problem with the way the official review was reported is that it appears to take every opportunity to discredit, with the benefit of hindsight, those in charge of Operation Rectangle without any reference to the constraints and pressures under which the Police were operating during the early stages of the investigation. The emphasis on alleged misuse of taxpayers’ money risks implanting the impression in the public mind that the entire expenditure on Operation Rectangle was badly managed.

229. In contrast, the BDO Alto report notes:

In undertaking this Review and throughout the preparation of this Report we have been conscious of the fact that detailed scrutiny of any major inquiry will reveal errors, omissions and learning opportunities, particularly given the benefit of hindsight. It has not been our intention to be ultra-critical in our conclusions and we have attempted to be fair to all of those involved. 165

230. Mr. Kellett as previously mentioned (166 )made a point of qualifying the critical attention in the report with praise for the dedication and determination which police officers brought to the task of investigating child abuse:

We have no doubt that Mr Harper was totally dedicated to the task of investigating serious crimes that had possibly occurred at Haut de la Garenne and that he was entirely sincere in his belief that child abuse there and elsewhere in Jersey was a major issue that needed to be dealt with. Throughout the period that Operation Rectangle was live, he and his staff displayed great dedication and did their utmost to bring suspected offenders to justice and we pointed out as much in our report. However, we were not asked to examine motivation and dedication but rather to look at how the resources available to the investigation were managed. We did so and made nineteen recommendations. Inevitably, because of the central role Mr Harper performed, his management of the resources formed a central part of our examination but to the extent that any of those recommendations constitute criticism of his actions, no criticism of, let alone attack on, the existence of the investigation or of the motivation for it is intended or implied. (167)

231. No such qualification appears in the above press report. (Emphasis added)

232. Furthermore, the newspaper did not pick up on the fact that Mr. Harper had not been interviewed or given the opportunity to respond to the criticisms in the report. Nor, as far as we are aware, did the newspaper give Mr. Harper any opportunity to state his own perspective. (END)


These findings are a damming indictment of what passes for "Journalism" (Opinion Management) in Jersey and we invite readers to scroll back up and read the Headlines published by The Jersey Evening post remembering paragraph 169 of the Sub Panel's Report.

169. BDO Alto further maintained that Mr. Harper was not the subject of their review and it was not the intention of the report to be directly critical of him or of any other individual. BDO Alto said that they had acknowledged the hard work of Police officers and third party contractors during the course of the Operation Rectangle enquiry and confirmed that ‘The report is not intended to be in any way critical of their individual efforts….’139

Sunday, 20 November 2011

State Media and Scrutiny (2)


In part two of this in-depth interview with Scrutiny Sub Panel (Parliamentary Select Committee) Chairman, Deputy Trevor Pitman, we remain on the subject of Jersey’s State Media and the Report’s damming findings concerning the latter.

Experience has taught us that Jersey’s State Media will bury this Report because it appears to vindicate Former Senior Investigating Officer and Deputy Chief Officer Lenny Harper as well as Former Chief Police Officer Graham Power QPM. The Sub Panel’s Report turns the spotlight onto the media’s role and how the public appears to have been misled by them (State Media).

The AWARD WINNING Channel Television and Jersey’s only “News”paper, the Jersey Evening Post, probably come out the worst in this Report but the man who took over the Historic Child Abuse Enquiry “Mick Gradwell” comes a close second if he doesn’t beat them.

Mick Gradwell, it is reported, was leaking confidential information during a live Child Abuse investigation, to a “journalist” with a history of supporting convicted paedophiles and still none of our State Media have asked “why?”

Below are some of the key findings of the Sub Panel’s Report concerning the media, of which we will be taking an even closer look at in the coming days.

The Scrutiny Sub Panel's Report can, and should be, read in it's entirety HERE.


Selected extracts from the Report.

247. In each of the above cases neither of the media organisations appeared to undertake any critical analysis of their own of the information they had received. This feeds into the perception by a number of observers that the media has allowed itself to focus on alleged failures in police procedures rather than their attempts to investigate instances of child abuse which had been allowed to continue without effective challenge for many years.

248. The Island has been heavily polarised in regard to the conduct of the Historical Child Abuse Enquiry.  The majority of the members of the public form their views on the basis of media reporting of these issues and we believe it is of paramount importance that the media strive to deal with issues of this magnitude with the highest standards of objectivity. Broadcast media have a special responsibility to use the few words that they have carefully in order to avoid false impressions being left in the minds of the public.

249. We note that parliamentary scrutiny in the UK is also attempting to grapple with difficult issues regarding media reporting. Here in Jersey there are particular issues with regard to the provision of objective reporting due to the limited number of local media organisations. We believe that it is essential that the Chairmen’s Committee give serious consideration to establishing a Scrutiny Panel which could undertake a review which will look specifically at the kind of issues we have identified in this report.

Key Findings

·      The emphasis on alleged misuse of taxpayers’ money in instances of media reporting risks implanting the impression in the public mind that the entire expenditure on Operation Rectangle was badly managed.
·      In our hearing with him on 25th August 2011, the Minister was sympathetic to our concerns about the way negative messages about Mr. Power and Mr Harper had been spun in the media and he offered to make a joint statement to this effect with the Sub-Panel. We believe that this would be a positive step.
  • Our primary concern about the premature leaking of details of the review of financial management relates to issues of fairness in the way these leaks are reported in the media without an adequate opportunity for an alternative perspective to be considered.
  • It is essential that a future Scrutiny Panel give serious consideration to undertaking a review which will look specifically at the kind of issues we have identified in this report.

Recommendation
·      The Chairman’s Committee should establish broadly-based Scrutiny Panel to undertake a review to examine issues relating to the media coverage which we have raised in our report.


Part one of this interview can be viewed HERE


We will once again leave the final word to the Former Chief Police Officer, Graham Power QPM, who reminds us (unlike the State Media) that this is/should be about Child Abuse and how it was able to continue for decades in Jersey's State run Institutions............ And in all that time (DECADES) not one of the victims, out of sheer desperation, took their plight to ANY of the State Media?

"The attempts to divert this debate into discussions concerning the trivia of expense claims, is a scandal of which all involved should be thoroughly ashamed." Graham Power QPM.












Monday, 14 November 2011

"State Sponsored Paedophilia?"


Not for the first time, retired Former Jersey Chief Police Officer Graham Power QPM, has described the allegations of Child Abuse committed in Jersey's State run institutions as "State Sponsored Paedophilia."
How else can it be described? Children were abused for decades in these institutions and nobody ever reported it? 

Following our previous POSTING we have had contact with the former Chief Police Officer and offer this "exclusive" statement on his reaction and thoughts concerning the recent publication of the Report by Jersey's Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Sub Panel. (Parliamentary Select Committee). 


Statement released by Graham Power QPM, retired Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police following the publication of a report by the Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel entitled “Issues surrounding the review of financial management of Operation Rectangle.”


The recently published report by the Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Panel into Issues surrounding the review of the financial management of Operation Rectangle (the Jersey Historic Child Abuse Enquiry) is a thorough and well researched piece of work.   It should be essential reading for anyone interested in the operation of Jersey’s Government and the wider issues arising from the investigation of allegations concerning the systematic abuse of vulnerable children who were in the care of States of Jersey Establishments in recent decades.   While the report should be read in its entirety there are some findings which, from my perspective, are particularly noteworthy. The first is that the Scrutiny Panel have rightly pointed out that the original review of the financial management of the abuse investigation was commissioned, given terms of reference, funded, overseen and heavily influenced by people who had a clear personal interest in the outcome.   This now appears to be beyond dispute. In my view the same could be said of other allegedly “independent” reports relating to the abuse enquiry which have been commissioned and publicised by Jersey’s Home Affairs Department over recent years.

Secondly, the Panel rightly raises the issue of how it came to be that a legitimate and proper public debate about the sexual and physical abuse of small children was diverted into an argument about the cost of meals in a London restaurant, and why so many Jersey establishment figures appeared to support this change of agenda.   It is not without irony that this diversionary tactic appeared to be enthusiastically driven by a Home Affairs Department who had themselves authorised expenditure of over £38,000 on “meals and entertainment” (1) by Wiltshire officers engaged in the subsequently abandoned disciplinary enquiry into the management of the abuse investigation.   We should not hold our breath while awaiting an “independent” enquiry into that particular use of public funds.

Finally, the Scrutiny Panel are to be commended for using their powers to take the timely action of obtaining a full copy of my 62,000 word statement to the Wiltshire Investigation.   The statement is a detailed and unrestrained account of the early part of the abuse enquiry from the perspective of the Chief Officer of the Force. If nothing else, it is a piece of the Island’s history and its continued suppression by the Jersey Government, in spite of repeated promises that it would be released, is one of many examples of the biased and selective use of information which have characterised Ministers conduct in this matter.

The allegations handled by the Force under my command during 2007 and 2008 involved what was effectively State Sponsored Paedophilia and its concealment over decades by individuals in positions of authority.   Not all of the allegations were supported by the evidence, but many plainly were, and the accounts of the victims remain as a harrowing record of what can occur when those in public office fail to seek out and to confront the truth.   If I have not said it enough then I say it again, the most important people in this whole story are the victims of abuse.   It is their plight and their memories which need to be the subject of candid and public debate at the highest level. The attempts to divert this debate into discussions concerning the trivia of expense claims, is a scandal of which all involved should be thoroughly ashamed.

                                                            Graham Power
                                                            Retired Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police.
13th November 2011.



 (1) Details of the costs of the Wiltshire Investigation up to May 2010 were given in a written answer in the States on 22nd June 2010.   Ref 1240/5(5459).


If it's about money then let's look at how the Wiltshire Constabulary were paid so much for a bungled investigation. But as Mr Power quite rightly points out this should never have turned into how much a meal cost in a London restaurant, it's about decades of Child Abuse that seemingly flourished in Jersey "care" homes. How was it able to be kept so quiet for so long? Just what is the extent of it? Has the surface only just been scratched? Why was the Child Abuse Enquiry shut down by DAVID WARCUP? With all these questions un-answered how is anybody supposed to trust the Jersey authorities?


It's about (or should be) the victims and survivors of Child Abuse. Who's going to speak up and represent them? "The attempts to divert this debate into discussions concerning the trivia of expense claims, is a scandal of which all involved should be thoroughly ashamed."

Saturday, 12 November 2011

UnHappy Anniversary (3)

Today November the 12th 2011 marks the third Anniversary of the very "dubious" suspension of Jersey's Former Chief Police Officer Graham Power QPM. Regular readers/viewers will be aware that we have, and continue, to expose some of the facts and evidence surrounding this injustice that the State Media rather you didn't know.

Graham Power QPM was the head of the Jersey Police Force when his second in command Former DCO Lenny Harper and a team of dedicated professional Police Officers started to investigate, what has been described as "State Sponsored Paedophilia." Decades of Child Abuse, and possible murder, in Jersey institutions such as the Sea Cadets, and Children's "care" homes." The rest, as they say is History.

To mark this Anniversary we thought we would share with our readers/viewers a few of the postings/interviews we have published since Mr. Power's "first Anniversary."

Unhappy Anniversary ONE

Unhappy Anniversary TWO

In-depth Q&A with MR. POWER

Video Interview with Mr. Power PART ONE

Video Interview with Mr. Power PART TWO

Video Interview with Mr. Power PART THREE

For the more serious reader these links, although there are many more, will give an insight as to what Jersey's State Media haven't been reporting and how things are done in Jersey.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

State Media and Scrutiny.

Today saw the publication of the long awaited Report from the Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Sub Panel's Investigation into Issues surrounding the Review of Financial Management of Operation Rectangle (Jersey Child Abuse Enquiry).

Firstly this Sub Panel's Investigation came about because of questions asked by Bloggers. Well one question and that was "how can a Report be conducted into the expenditure of the Historic Child Abuse Enquiry (HCAE) without the Senior Investigating Officer of that Enquiry being interviewed?"  The Senior Investigating Officer being Lenny Harper, we've all seen and heard the Headlines "The Lavish Lifestyle of Lenny Harper", "Meals at top class London Restaurants paid for by the tax payer" "First class trips to Australia" etc, etc. Yet not one of Jersey's "Journalists" thought to ask, "what does Lenny Harper have to say about this?"

These headlines, and many others similar, came on the back of a Report commissioned to examine the expenditure of the HCAE. This Report has been totally misrepresented by Jersey's State Media and used as a stick to beat Lenny Harper and Former Jersey Chief of Police Graham Power with, two cops, with their team, who were investigating Child Abuse that carried on for decades in Jersey State run Institutions.

The Scrutiny Sub Panel chaired by Deputy Trevor Pitman with members Deputies Daniel Wimberley and Roy Le Herissier has opened up a huge can of worms that should become one of the most important documents for anybody researching this dark period in Jersey's History.

The Report made a number of recommendations and findings and can be viewed on Rico Sorda's Blog HERE

One of the key issues highlighted in the Sub Panel's Report is the role of Jersey's State Media, the mis-reporting, the non-reporting and creating a completely false impression to its audience.

Deputy Pitman, along with Senator Ian Le Marquand, were guests on BBC Radio Jersey this morning (recorded by TJW and we'll put a link to it when published later tonight) where they explained how they are in agreement when it comes to the poor media reporting. Once more yours truly phoned in to the show and was prevented from going on air but as regular readers will be aware that's nothing new.

Below is part 1 of a two part in-depth interview with Deputy Trevor Pitman, edited in order that we can focus predominantly on the subject of Jersey's State Media. We also discuss the man who took over the HCAE upon Mr. Harper's retirement and that's Mick Gradwell. He has been accused by at least one witness under oath at the Scrutiny Panel, including the Home Affairs Minister Senator Ian Le Marquand telling States Members that after an internal enquiry all avenues of a leak to the National Media led to the door of Mr. Gradwell.......And Jersey's State Media didn't think it newsworthy?

This is just one of the cans of worms opened by this Sub Panel's enquiry which will surely now demand that the HCAE under the leadership of Mr. Gradwell is revisited and his motives questioned? Gradwell trashed the Child Abuse Enquiry under the command of Lenny Harper and at the same time allegedly leaking confidential information (during a live Child Abuse Investigation) to a journalist with a history of supporting convicted paedophiles?

The same Mick Gradwell that the Home Affairs Minister, reluctantly conceded, had he (Gradwell) not been seconded and was a States Of Jersey Police Officer would likely be facing disciplinary charges. The same Mick Gradwell that said he would take part in any enquiry set up to look at the HCAE didn't give evidence to this enquiry.

Finally This Scrutiny Review, along with the "Lime Grove" Review is what Scrutiny should be about, tackling "real" issues that seriously challenge our government and credit must go to Deputies Pitman, Wimberley and Le Herissier, now all we need is a media that will do the same (challenge our government) so us members of the public don't have to live in this culture of fear by highlighting the stuff they should be.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Independent Police Force (Terrifying)

Former Senator and Health Minister Stuart Syvret was jailed yesterday (2nd November 2011) apparently for not complying with his Community Service order. This of course is the line taken by Jersey's State Media. However, as is so often the case, the State Media are being a little economical with the full facts.

From the very start Mr. Syvret claimed that the prosecution against him was "a criminal enterprise." After being sentenced to the 80 hours Community Service he claimed to have received evidence, in the form of Former Jersey Police Chief Graham Power's, submission to the Wiltshire Constabulary's DISCREDITED REPORT. Mr. Syvret also claimed that a witness, known to the prosecution, was kept from him which he claims hampered his case.

We are led to believe Mr. Syvret applied for a court hearing to submit all this new evidence but this was denied him by Mr. William Bailhache (Deputy Bailiff) who's brother Philip Bailhache (Former Bailiff) was running against him in the Jersey elections.

Mr. Syvret claims since he was refused this court hearing then he was forced not to comply with his Community Service Order so as he would get brought back to court where he could then submit this new evidence that he claimed to prove the prosecution against him was indeed criminal. However, rightly or wrongly, the Magistrate's Court refused to hear any of this new evidence and jailed him for eight weeks.

But there does appear to be a common thread running through all of this and that is "Child Abuse."  Mr. Syvret was the first politician to speak out against Jersey's Child Protection Failures back in 2007 and as a result of this there is strong evidence to suggest that his removal from office (Health Minister) was engineered by, among others, the very Civil Servants, who he claimed were responsible for these failures.

At the same time as the Former Health Minster was publicly condemning Jersey's Child Protection Apparatus, unknown to him, there was a covert police investigation into Institutional Child Abuse ("Operation Rectangle") in progress headed up by the then Deputy Police Chief Officer Lenny Harper. This was possibly the biggest investigation ever undertaken by a Jersey Police Force where a number of the suspects were people, known as "The Establishment" people who wielded a lot of power and influence in Jersey.............That were never charged.

The rest is well recorded (by Bloggers) History, out of the 151 suspects only a mere 8 of them were ever charged, by what is strongly believed to be a politicised Judicial system where the public were only given a couple of SHOW TRIALS.

The then Chief of Police Graham Power QPM was, "Dubiously"  suspended from duty, Lenny Harper retired, and the State Media went about trashing their names and reputations. All the focus seemed to shift from the Child Abuse that was able to flourish for decades in Jersey's "care" homes onto how much Lenny Harper spent on a Prawn Cocktail in a Bombay Brasserie. The State Media have never set about asking how paedophiles could ply their trade in Jersey's State Run institutions for so long without detection. Indeed the State Media haven't set about asking many questions at all they just repeat, broadcast, publish or print the Press Releases they are given by the State regardless of how preposterous they are.

Below we have part two of Mr. Syvret's evidence given to the Education and Home Affairs Scrutiny Sub Panel (parliamentary Select Committee) who are investigating issues surrounding the Review of financial management of "Operation Rectangle."

We must remember the "State Line" is that Lenny Harper and Graham Power became, overnight, terrible cops who must have completely forgotten all their police training as soon as they started to investigate Child Abuse in Jersey. Or is it, as Mr. Syvret claims in his evidence to Scrutiny, that Mr. Harper and Mr. Power were two straight cops who were going to investigate without fear or favour? Is the truth of all this that these two cops were truly independent and this "terrified" the Jersey Establishment? Is Stuart Syvret spending 8 weeks in prison because he blew the lid off of the Child Abuse atrocities in Jersey? Have the reputations of Lenny Harper and Graham Power QPM been trashed by the Jersey Establishment (and their media) because they blew the lid off of Jersey's "Dirty Secrets?" Has the Home Affairs Minister, Senator Ian Le Marquand, fulfilled his wish and brought the police back under Political Control? Does anybody remember that amongst all this are people who suffered at the hands of paedophiles in State Run "Care" Homes FOR DECADES?

The views expressed by the witness are his own and not necessarily shared by VFC.

Part one of this interview can be viewed HERE