A number of top public figures’ were protected from prosecution for child abuse images
Sunday People, 22nd March 1981
The same issue of the Sunday People carried this editorial:
The ‘Old Harrovian’ who ran the paedophile mailing list which included many prominent people is almost certainly John Risely-Prichard, who was exposed in 1994 by Roger Insall, one of the three journalists who wrote the 1981 article.
The full 1994 article on John Risely-Prichard can be found here
On 22nd March 1981, the same day as the Sunday People revealed that public figures had escaped prosecution, the News of the World revealed that the Scotland Yard investigation into the Paedophile Information Exchange did not even ask the Royal Mail for permission to examine the post office boxes of PIE members.
Paedophiles hadn’t always been protected from investigation and prosecution. A 1978 investigation which centred on a magazine called Mailbox Boys resulted in dozens of successful prosecutions. This was a mainly London-based network which operated out of a South-East London bookshop. If the Paedophile Information Exchange had been investigated in the same way then the number of prosecutions could have been huge. For more on the Mailbox Boys case, see News of the World 09.10.77 and News of the World 02.04.78
In 1984, paedophiles receiving child abuse images in the post were offered another layer of protection by the Home Secretary, Leon Brittan, who wrote:
“I do not think Customs should supply to police names and addresses of everyone receiving obscene or indecent articles, regardless of whether an offence has been established” (Source: The Mirror 12.11.14)