Liar liar! Nick Clegg knew about Fiona Woolf

EMAILS proving Nick Clegg was aware of concerns about Fiona Woolf, the controversial head of Westminster child abuse inquiry, have been obtained by the Scottish Sunday Express.

 Clegg backed Fiona Woolf[FILE PICS]

The deputy prime minister last week publicly backed the Edinburgh-born lawyer and said he “hadn’t heard anything” to say she was not suitable for the role.
However, child abuse survivor Ian McFadyen – who was raped when he was at a top boarding school in England with Mr Clegg – said he feared his former classmate was “not telling the truth”.
Mr McFadyen, who lives in Peebles, explained that he was immediately concerned about Ms Woolf’s appointment when it was announced on September 5.
He said: “From that moment I said she doesn’t have the experience, she is a financial lawyer who doesn’t have the authority or the time to head up a statutory inquiry.”
Five days later, Mr Clegg came to the Scottish Borders to campaign in the independence referendum, accompanied by the local Lib Dem MP and former Scottish Secretary Michael Moore.
Mr McFadyen said: “I went along to Selkirk, I approached Michael Moore and said I went to school with Nick Clegg and I have real concerns about the inquiry and the chair and could you pass my contact details on to Nick?”
He followed that up with an email to Mr Moore and then on September 22 received a response from the deputy prime minister’s private secretary, Suzanne Kochanowski.
She wrote: “Thank you for your email of 10 September which Mike Moore has forwarded to the Deputy Prime Minister’s Office. As requested, I have discussed the concerns you express about the Child Abuse Inquiry with the Deputy Prime Minister.”
However, speaking on LBC radio’s Call Clegg show on Thursday, Mr Clegg said: “Fiona Woolf is obviously the chair but the panel, I think there is a full panel of nine people, and that’s … I haven’t heard anything which suggests to me that the home secretary took the wrong decision. I think Fiona Woolf is obviously a very credible person.”
Ms Woolf’s role came under scrutiny last week due to her friendship with Lord Brittan, the former Conservative home secretary alleged to have done too little to investigate claims of child abuse by senior members of the establishment in the 1980s.
Mr McFadyen said: “I was really upset when I heard Nick Clegg on the radio. Either somebody is not communicating to him in his office or I’m not hearing the truth.”
Born into a hard-working family in Leith, he was sent to £20,000-a-year Caldicott Preparatory School in the Home Counties where he was systematically raped and abused by paedophile teachers.
His chief tormentor, George Hill, killed himself before he could be brought to trial, as did Hugh Henry, 82, before he was due to be sentenced.
However, after a lengthy legal battle by Mr McFadyen and others, the former head master Peter Wright, 83, was found guilty of 12 charges involving boys aged between eight and 13 at the school between 1959 and 1971.
After Wright was jailed for eight years, Mr McFadyen confronted Mr Clegg on his radio phone-in show and urged him to do more to tackle childhood sexual abuse.
Yesterday, he said: “Nick has been of no help as far as I can see. I just thought that somebody I went to school with and considered a friend might actually pick up a phone or email me but I think might be too hot to handle.
“I want an inquiry that is fit for purpose. They don’t get that this is not just about child abuse, this is about the establishment and successive governments covering up for the abusers.”
Mr McFadyen, who ended up living rough in Edinburgh before turning his life around, is now seeking a judicial review of the decision to appoint Ms Woolf.
Home secretary Theresa May is desperate to keep her in the post after losing her first choice Baroness Elizabeth Butler-Sloss, who stepped down earlier this year.
The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister did not return our calls yesterday.

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