UK Child Abuse Inquiry
Sunday, 2 November 2014
How can a Child Abuse Inquiry rigorously investigate the possible use of Public Interest Immunity Certificates in the child abuse cover-up?
It seems to me that this is a potentially explosive area.
It seems to me that the investigation of this matter should go back at least as far as the 1970s, not least in view of the allegations that the late Prime Minister Edward Heath was a paedophile and the allegations of cover-up by the Thatcher Government.
My understanding of the potential problem is a little hazy. And that’s one reason I’m posting about it. I’d like to know more about how Public Interest Immunity Certificates could have been used in the official cover-up of child abuse and, in light of that, identify a strategy for the Child Abuse Inquiry to identify any possible use of Public Interest Immunity Certificates in the high-level cover-up of child abuse.
Public Interest Immunity Certificates are certificates issued by Government Ministers which, so I understand, have the effect of blocking disclosure of evidence.
Have Public Interest Immunity Certificates ever been used to block disclosure relating to cases of child abuse?
I don’t know if Public Interest Immunity Certificates have been used to cover up child abuse but I think it’s important to find out.
Historically, Courts took the view that Ministerial issuing of a Public Interest Immunity Certificate was binding and therefore could not be questioned.
Thankfully that ridiculous position is no longer held in the same unquestioning way.
Can anyone help me better understand whether and to what extent Public Interest Immunity Certificates could have been used to conceal evidence relating to child abuse and/or its cover-up?
Are there other mechanisms Ministers could have used to cover up child abuse?
How could such potential mechanisms of Ministerial cover-up of child abuse be rigorously investigated?