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The Anglo-Irish Vice Ring (Online Book)

MI5, MI6, Buckingham Palace, The Royal Ulster Constabulary and the exploitation of children in care by a VIP Anglo-Irish Vice Ring.

By Joseph de Burca.


This online book draws together the main strands of Village’s three year investigation into the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring, a network that exploited children in care on both sides of the Irish Sea for decades. It is offered as an alternative to the Terry, Hughes and Hart Reports which failed to get to the bottom of the scandal. It is not an easy read, nor a short one. It contains the evidence of multiple witnesses and documents to argue that Terry, Hughes and Hart got it wrong when they dismissed State involvement in the Kincora scandal and denied its connection to a wider Anglo-Irish network. (Some information has yet to be added to this report.)



CHAPTER 1 describes how the British Establishment persists in covering up the crimes of an Anglo-Irish child rape network. Lord Mountbatten was its most high-profile member. Some of the other abusers are still alive. No-one in authority in the UK is interested in bringing them to book. This chapter also looks at the origins of the network. The Irish branch was set up by an Englishman educated at Cambridge who worked for the prime minister of Northern Ireland.

CHAPTER 2 provides an overview of the uses to which MI5 and MI6 put the vice ring. It also describes the efforts of a handful of British Intelligence insiders who tried to halt the abuse. Most of the latter group were British Army officers.

CHAPTER 3 presents the evidence that the British Army, MI5 and MI6 knew about William McGrath, Joseph Mains, Raymond Semple and their abuse of boys from care homes in Northern Ireland from the early 1970s.

CHAPTER 4 tells the story of Richard Kerr, the victim who joins all the dots in this scandal. He is a survivor of child abuse at Williamson House, Kincora and Elm Guest House.

CHAPTER 5 shows how at least one boy – a 13 year-old – was brought to Dublin to be abused in 1973. This chapter also looks at British Intelligence sexual blackmail and information gathering operations in Belfast and – almost certainly – Dublin before widening the angle to look at the wider picture of MI6/CIA/NATO blackmail operations involving the notorious Marc Dutroux paedophile network in Belgium.

CHAPTER 6 outlines the role Ian Paisley played in the scandal. He knew about the abuse from the early 1970s yet said nothing. He visited Kincora to see McGrath frequently. Both men had helped set up the UVF and UPV. He bullied at least one Kincora survivor not to reveal what he knew about the sexual abuse of the boys by ‘Englishmen’.

CHAPTER 7 describes the strategy MI5, MI6 and Whitehall designed to cover up their involvement in the scandal after it was finally exposed by investigative journalists in Ireland

CHAPTER 8 concerns the murder of John McKeague, the MI5 agent who knew too much including: the truth about Mountbatten; the murder of Seamus Ludlow; the entrapment of a senior DUP politician; an attempt to bomb the boat of the Irish politician Charles Haughey; a plot to unite all Loyalist paramilitary murder gangs under one leadership and a bizarre meeting with a cardinal about the Pope.

CHAPTER 9 concerns the ongoing cover-up which has involved the submission of a witness statement forged in 1982 by the RUC to the Hart Inquiry in 2016; the destruction of genuine Kincora files and suppression of classified ones.

CHAPTER 10 concerns the intimidation of Richard Kerr and the all too convenient appearance of a deceitful conman masquerading as a child abuse survivor, Carl Beech, who managed to convince the British public that the existence of VIP sex abuse was a figment of his imagination.


CHAPTER 11 exposes the career of MI5’s blackmailer supreme, Peter Wright, a man who exposed many of MI5 and MI6’s darkest secrets. However, he concealed their most atrocious crimes. There were at least ten he kept out of his book Spycatcher. By his own admission, some of them related to Ireland.

CHAPTER 12 provides more information about Anthony Blunt including his possible abuse of Richard Kerr while masquerading as a man called ‘Andrew’, his plot against Ian Paisley and a possible partial rehabilitation by MI5.

CHAPTER 13 looks at the role played by Tommy ‘Tucker’ Lyttle, the senior Belfast UDA commander who trafficked Richard Kerr to two abusers while he was in Kincora. Lyttle was the UDA boss who ordered the assassination of Patrick Finucane. Lyttle admitted that he was an MI5 agent.

CHAPTER 14 outlines the involvement of James Molyneaux in the Kincora scandal.

CHAPTER 15 addresses the role Enoch Powell MP played in the vice ring.

CHAPTER 16 reveals details about Eric Witchell, the Monk from Hell who ran Williamson House where boys as young as six were raped. Some of them were later transferred to Kincora.

CHAPTER 17 examines the role played by Dr. Morris Fraser

Chapter 18 describes how Joss Cardwell organised for two Kincora boys to travel to England. One of them ended up being abused by a famous TV star. The TV Star is alive and plying his trade as an actor. He has contributed to the activities of numerous charities including at least one involved with child welfare. He has stated that some rape victims are liars who are only after money.


CHAPTER 19 describes how a select group of broken boys were procured from Williamson House for Kincora in 1975. They replaced older boys at Kincora. They were then trafficked to a variety of men with a taste for younger teenagers around Northern Ireland, Scotland and England. This was part of a ruthless intensification of the honeytrap operation involving the exploitation of the children which was now under the control of Ian Cameron, a senior MI5 officer who took over control of intelligence in Northern Ireland from MI6 at this time. Some of these boys later committed suicide.

CHAPTER 20 looks at the life of Alan Kerr who was abused at the age of six and ended up as a prostitute in London where he met Prince Andrew as a guest of Lord Greville Janner.

CHAPTER 21 examines the experience of ‘Charles’ at Williamson House at the hands of Eric Witchell.


CHAPTER 22 details how the British media ignored whistleblowers such as Colin Wallace and Fred Holroyd and failed to bring pressure to expose the vice ring and end other dirty trick programmes in Ireland. Some of them continued until the end of the Troubles and involved collusive murderRepublican terrorists and people with no connection to terrorism were murdered by Loyalist gangs controlled by the RUC Special Branch and MI5.

CHAPTER 23 looks at two organisations which may possess a dossier on the scandal. First, a group of ex-RUC Special Branch officers. Second, the UDA which definitely compiled one having monitored Kincora throughout the 1970s.

CHAPTER 24 addresses the failure of the ongoing UK’s Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) to investigate these matters.


CHAPTER 25 deals with the knowledge the Soviet Union accrued about the vice ring and, ironically, how they may have used it to recruit British traitors through blackmail. The penetration of the British Establishment by the Russians during that last 75 years may have gone much deeper and lasted much longer than has ever been suspected by the British public.

Although not addressed in this report (yet), it should be noted that the latest phase of the cover-up is being carried out with the de facto  connivance of An Garda Síochána, the police force of the Republic of Ireland. It has declined to release crucial logs of visitors and cars to Mountbatten’s castle in County Sligo in the Republic of Ireland. They could help establish that Mountbatten abused boys at it. An Garda Síochána is currently commanded by Drew Harris, a former RUC Special Branch officer. While he was in the RUC and PSNI, Harris was responsible for the suppression of incendiary files about British State collusion with Loyalist terrorists such as McKeague.

This investigation is dedicated to the memory of Stephen Waring, a victim of sexual abuse who was trafficked from Kincora to Mountbatten in August of 1977 and committed suicide the following November by plunging in despair from the Belfast-Liverpool ferry into the dark cold sea below after an escape attempt from Kincora to Liverpool had been thwarted by the RUC. His earlier pleas to those in authority had fallen on deaf ears. Had he gone back, he would have been subjected to years of oral and anal rape by older men, many of whom were vicious and cruel.




In 2019 Andrew Lownie’s published ‘The Mountbattens: their Lives and Loves’, which drew the attention of the world to Mountbatten’s sexual abuse of teenage boys at Classiebawn, his castle at Mullaghmore, County Sligo in the Republic of Ireland.

Lownie’s research also unearthed a number of FBI files which revealed that the Royal had been gripped by “a lust for young boys”, and that his former chauffeur, Ron Perks, often drove him to “an upmarket gay brothel used by senior naval officers” called the Red House near Rabat in Malta while he was serving in the Royal Navy.

Village revealed further details: namely that Joseph Mains, the Warden of Kincora, was responsible for trafficking boys to Mountbatten at Classiebawn.

One of Mountbatten’s victims was 16 when he was abused. He is referred to as “Amal ” in Andrew Lownie’s bestselling book. Amal described how he “remembers being brought to Mullaghmore during the summer of 1977”. He says he met Mountbatten four times that summer on a day trip from Belfast. Each time the encounter, lasting an hour, took place in a suite at a hotel by the harbour about 15 minutes from Classiebawn. “Amal” remembered: “He was very polite, very nice. I knew he was someone important. He asked if I wanted a drink or candy. He told me he liked dark-skinned people especially Sri Lankan people as they were very friendly and very good-looking. I remember he admired my smooth skin. We gave each other oral sex in a 69 position. He was very tender and I felt comfortable about it. It seemed very natural. I know that several other boys from Kincora were brought to him on other occasions”. See also:


Mountbatten’s abuse of boys was not an isolated affair. He was a member of a large Anglo-Irish abuse network.

Peter Montgomery, the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Tyrone, was also part of the network which procured boys for Mountbatten. He lured some of them from Portora Royal School in Fermanagh. Montgomery also had access to boys at Williamson House in Belfast. Eric Witchell, another member of the vice ring, was in charge of Williamson House. Witchell is alive and living in London. The boys from Williamson House were brutalised and transformed into sexual playthings for the vice ring. Anal rape commenced at the home when the boys – orphans and abandoned underprivileged children – were as young as six. A number of these victims later committed suicide. 

It is also believed that Mountbatten’s assistant, Peter Murphy, procured boys for him from Portora. Incredible as it may seem, the FBI was interested in Murphy as they believed he was a Marxist. They were not only suspicious of him but also Mountbatten as the latter had access to NATO naval secrets. Hence, they kept the files on him which author Andrew Lownie uncovered.

Robin Bryans, the Kincora whistleblower, wrote about Murphy’s closeness to Mountbatten in his book ‘The Dust Has Never Settled’. He made no bones about the fact Murphy was a lustful paedophile, stating that he and an Irishman called Alan Price “looked for more than Portora schoolboys to lure to their beds”.

In a series of letters Bryans put into circulation in the 1980s (the then equivalent of tweeting), Bryans revealed that Alan Price was part of Mountbatten’s circle in Ireland as was Sir Anthony Blunt, the Keeper of the Queen’s Pictures (and a member of the infamous Cambridge Ring of traitors). Yet another friend was Lord Rosse who owned Birr Castle in County Offaly in the Republic of Ireland. In a letter dated 3 November 1989, Bryans provided a glimpse at the type of events that took place when Lords Mountbatten and Rosse got together with the likes of Blunt and Price. The relevant sentence read as follows: “Any of the old snapshots at Birr Castle showing the late Lord Rosse getting Alan Price to flash his codpiece for Lord Mountbatten and Anthony Blunt are unlikely to be published”.

Joseph Mains trafficked boys from Kincora to Birr Castle. They included Richard Kerr who had first been raped in the middle of the night as he clung to a toy in his bed at Williamson House.

The abuse at Birr Castle came to the attention of Colin Wallace and the military intelligence department at Lisburn in the 1970s.

Lord Rosse became Princess Margaret’s step-father-in-law after she married Anthony Armstrong-Jones (later Lord Snowdon).

It is now virtually impossible to get copies of Bryans’ books. Persons unknown have even gone to the trouble of removing them from libraries throughout the UK, including copywrite libraries.


For decades the members of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring (A-IVR) were untouchable. That changed after the eruption of the Troubles when MI5 swept in to blackmail and exploit the network for various nefarious reasons.

The MI5 officer who first uncovered its gory details was almost certainly Peter Wright. Wright spent seven years unravelling and mapping it out. Wright’s path to it began with MI5’s inquiries into the seedy and criminal private life of the arch MI5 traitor, Sir Anthony Blunt.

While many of Blunt’s friends and colleagues knew or suspected he was gay, only a select few knew that deep in the shadowy recesses of his private life he hid a dark and sinister secret: Blunt enjoyed the ‘rough trade’ – the abuse of impoverished male urchins condemned to eke out a living as male prostitutes in seedy toilets in London. Blunt ‘cottaged’ for them around the lavatories in Hyde Park near to Speakers’ Corner, despite his left-wing pretence to care for the underprivileged.

Blunt was the third and youngest son of the Reverend Stanley Vaughan Blunt (1870–1929) and his wife, Hilda Master (1880–1969). He was also a distant relative of the Queen Mother. He was born at Holy Trinity vicarage, Bournemouth, Hampshire, on 26 September 1907. As a child he lived for a while in Paris, where his father was the British embassy chaplain. He was later educated at Marlborough School where he developed a strong interest in art. According to one of his biographers, Michael Kitson: “Blunt was part of a group of rebellious young aesthetes”, he was producing precociously fluent defences of modern art, much to the infuriation of the deeply conservative art teacher – an early indication of his academic talent and his instinctive contrariness”.

Blunt worked for MI5 during WWII and then pursued a career as an art historian. He was to become a Knight of the Realm and Surveyor of the King’s (and later Queen’s) Pictures. His world was turned upside down in November 1979 after he was exposed as a Soviet mole.


Blunt acquired his taste for ‘rent boys’ from his fellow MI5 traitor Guy Burgess, with whom he once lived. Burgess was addicted to them. While Burgess purported to be concerned for the downtrodden, he made jokes about the children he exploited from their ranks. On one occasion he wrote a nauseating adaptation of La donna e mobile which he thought was hilarious: “Small boys are cheap today, cheaper than yesterday”.

Blunt’s treachery was uncovered by MI5 in 1963. The following year he agreed to make a confession in return for immunity and the wholescale betrayal of the secrets of everyone he knew. Peter Wright of MI5 was assigned to interrogate him. In return for his co-operation, Blunt was given a pardon and his treachery was concealed from the public. The pardon was not limited to his treachery: in addition it afforded him blanket immunity for any crime he had ever committed, something undoubtedly designed to cover his sexual transgressions.


When Peter Wright sat down with Blunt in 1964 he was determined to smoke out any member of the intelligence community, military, civil service or Parliament who – like Blunt – was homosexual: in short anyone of importance who might have been susceptible to blackmail by the Soviets. Homosexuality remained a crime in England and Wales until 1967.

Blunt must have felt he had smashed a mirror for bad luck. His face-to-face encounters with Wright would drag on for seven years. They were still proceeding apace during the early years of the Troubles by which time MI5 was keen to find any mechanism to gain control and influence over Loyalist politicians and paramilitaries. Blunt was in a pole position to assist them with his knowledge of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring of which he was a leading light. The opportunities for sexual blackmail were immense.

For seven years Wright and MI5 pored over the careers of the Oxbridge graduates of the 1930s and anyone else of possible interest known to Blunt. Ostensibly, the pair became so friendly they exchanged Christmas cards. In reality they did not trust each other. Wright wrote later: “We had to adopt a subtle approach, in an attempt to play on [Blunt’s] character. I could tell that Blunt wanted to be thought helpful, even where it was clear that he was not. Moreover, he disliked intensely being caught in a lie. We had to extract intelligence from him by a slow process of cumulative pressure .. Often we drank, he gin and I Scotch; always we talked, about the 1930s, about the KGB, about espionage and friendship, love and betrayal. They remain for me among the most vivid encounters of my life”.


Details of Blunt’s private life and his fondness for visiting Northern Ireland have been described in many of the biographies written about him.

Wright’s odyssey into the hidden recesses of Blunt’s life unravelled an array of friends and associates in Ireland, connections which reached back to his childhood. Blunt had attended Marlborough School where he had befriended the celebrated Belfast poet Louis MacNeice, who was born in the same month as him. For a long time the pair remained the best of friends. MacNiece recalled in his (unpublished) memoirs that Blunt was bullied because he was an individualist and non-conformer: “Boys of that age are especially sadistic…They would seize him, tear off most of his clothes and cover him with house paint, then put him in the basket and push him round and round the hall. .. Government of the mob, by the mob, and for the mob .. a perfect exhibition of mass sadism”.

Another Old Malburian, Sir Peter Tennant, remembered that, “Marlborough was ridden with homosexuality. I suppose all public schools are full of buggery. Masters were deeply involved in it. I won’t name names but as far as I can make out they were practising homosexuals and did it with some boys… I remember the headmaster, George Turner, giving a speech, saying, we will have no more buggery.”

John Betjeman, a future poet laureate and British cultural attache to the British Embassy in Dublin during the 1940s, was haunted throughout his adult life by the memory of a child at the school peering out through the slats of a large basket like a terrified animal as the bullies hoist him in the air.

Then there was “hot-potting”, where the Malburian bullies stripped the trousers off their victims and made them wear two pottery tooth mugs filled with flaming paper on their buttocks.

Another ritual, known as “bum shaving” was administered by prefects. This involved stripping two small boys naked and forcing them to bend over, backsides touching as one of the prefects whips came down between their buttocks. The trick according to Blunt’s older brother Wilfred, was to relax at the last minute and let the other boy take the full brunt of the lash.


Blunt earned a scholarship to Cambridge in 1926 where he made more Irish friends. One of then was Sir Samuel Knox Cunningham who was slightly younger than him. Cunningham became known as the ‘Boxing Queen’ because of his homosexuality and prowess as a pugilist. He was a heavyweight boxing champion at Cambridge. In later life he was elected as a Unionist MP. In the 1960s he represented South Antrim. He served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Prime Minister Harold MacMillan, 1959-1963, and as such routinely attended Cabinet meetings at 10 Downing Street. Knox Cunningham often stayed with Blunt while in London and also knew Guy Burgess from their days at Cambridge. He was a rich man and lived on a 70-acre estate at Glencairn Park, and once came within an inch of becoming Grandmaster of the Orange Order. He chose not to stand in the 1970 general election and was succeeded by his fellow Orangemen and election agent, James Molyneaux who later led the Unionist Party. Molyneaux was a friend of another high-ranking Orangeman, William McGrath, one of the staff at Kincora who was convicted for child abuse in 1981.

The whistleblower Robin Bryans also knew Sir Knox Cunningham QC, MP, well. Cunningham was a key participant in the A-IVR. Bryans recalled that Cunningham “always liked to appear as the great Queen’s Counsel who knew more than anybody about everybody, especially those in my books and bed”.

Knox Cunningham knew Bryans so well he was able to influence him to alter the content of his book ‘Ulster’. When Cunningham discovered that it was due to contain a passage about internment during the IRA’s Border Campaign of the 1950s, he feared it would create a bad impression abroad and intervened: “Sir Knox Cunningham asked me to delete my reference to internment without trials and I agreed believing him to share in 1963’s atmosphere of reconciliation over sectarian hatred”.

A memorandum Capt. Colin Wallace prepared while working at the British Army’s HQNI at Lisburn, stated that Cunningham was “closely associated” with William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora, and was “aware of his activities”. McGrath pleaded guilty to charges of buggery perpetrated at Kincora in 1981.

Cunningham became involved in the World Alliance of Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) in 1947 and became Chairman of its National Council two years later, something which put him in charge of the YMCA in Ireland, Wales and England. His Wikipedia entry suggests that he became involved with the YMCA because of his “religious faith” but it is more likely he wanted to gain access to young men. Much of his interaction with the YMCA boys involved the sport of boxing. According to Bryans, he took Kincora boys to the YMCA in England.

Macmillan recalled Knox Cunningham fondly in his memoirs and awarded him a baronetcy in his resignation honours. Despite this, his publishing company, Macmillan, failed to publish Cunningham’s memoirs.

Richard Kerr has revealed that Knox Cunningham was a visitor to Kincora.

At the start of Blunt’s debriefing, Peter Wright’s interest in Cunningham would have centred on the fact he had sat around the Cabinet table, was gay and the friend of a self-confessed KGB mole (Blunt) and another traitor who had defected to Moscow (Burgess). By the end of the debriefing in the early 1970s, Cunningham’s lofty position within the Orange Order and central role in Unionist politics would have been of equal interest to MI5. Cunningham was one of many homosexuals active inside the Orange Order who were susceptible to blackmail, especially as homosexuality was still a crime in Northern Ireland, and he undoubtedly knew many of them, including a leading light in the Orange Order, William McGrath, the housefather at Kincora


Another of Blunt’s Irish friends was Captain Peter Montgomery, a cousin of ‘Monty’, the famous WWII field marshal. The Captain lived at a magnificent estate in Blessingborne, County Tyrone. The pair first met at Cambridge. Montgomery became one of Blunt’s earliest lovers, possibly even his first. Montgomery later became Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Tyrone, which meant he was one of a elite number of personal representative of the Queen in Ulster. He also became President of the Northern Ireland Arts Council. Montgomery always kept a room for Blunt at Blessingborne, and Montgomery often stayed with Blunt when he visited London. When Blunt suffered nervous exhaustion in 1943, it was to Ulster and the embrace of Montgomery he repaired for recuperation. After Blunt was exposed as an MI5 traitor, Blunt’s signature was found by Sunday Times reporters in the guestbook at Blessingborne. Captain Montgomery was also a key figure in the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring. According to the whistleblower Robin Bryans, who knew him well, he procured boys from Portora Royal College, Enniskillen, for those in the vice ring with a penchant for well-bred children.

The journalist Paul Foot, who spoke at length to Bryans, gained an insight into the vice ring of which Blunt and Montgomery were key figures. He outlined how Blunt became “closely involved with the Orange establishment in Northern Ireland, and particularly with the hyperactive and reckless set of gay people who flourished in the Six Counties [of Northern Ireland] throughout the period .. Especially attractive to this set was the apparently limitless supply of boys of all shapes and sizes. This supply was quite unrivalled anywhere else in the United Kingdom and became legendary in upper-class homosexual circles. It was regarded as a “special treat” to go to Northern Ireland and get yourself invited to one of the “soirées” which would be well attended by not entirely literate or well-adjusted teenage boys. No one ever asked where these boys came from, but some at least were provided through the extremist Orange gang which ran boys homes for Belfast Corporation, notably the one called by an old Irish Royal folk name, Kincora”. (Private Eye No. 681, 22 January 1988)

One of Blunt’s biographers, Miranda Carter, has provided a glimpse at the lifestyle Blunt and Montgomery enjoyed while in England: “The writer Hugh Massingberd, Peter Montgomery’s great-nephew, remembered meeting Blunt, very much ‘off duty’, with his uncle in 1965. ‘It was a very hot day, and Blunt came in wearing virtually a G-string and a light sleeveless T-shirt, and said, “Peter’s overdressed and I’m underdressed. How do you do?”. It was a bit stagey. His uncle also once took him to a party at Blunt’s old stomping ground, Palace Court. ‘There seemed to be a lot of oriental youths around, and Blunt and my uncle, one felt, had dropped their guards. It was full of opera queens and an odd mixture of seedy old faggots and oriental boys. It was very much a gay party’”.

Montgomery was a friend of the British artist Derek Hill who lived in Ireland. Bruce Arnold’s biography of Hill provides a further glimpse of Montgomery’s lifestyle. Arnold describes a visit Montgomery made to a friend of Hill’s in Paris, a man called Geoffrey Gilmour. ‘Geoffrey Gilmour’s supposedly rather louche behaviour was not all fantasy. A friend of Derek’s – Peter Montgomery, who was gay – visited Geoffrey in Paris. He was taken to visit Diana Mosley at Orsay and entertained well. Geoffrey wanted to take Peter out clubbing in the city. He made him strip to his underpants and unburden himself of all possible valuables, including watch, ring, everything. Only then was it safe to go out and face gay club life in Paris. It seems it was not a lot different from the same kind of entertainment in New York and elsewhere’. (Arnold 293)


Blunt might have enjoyed his last few years as a respected Knight of the realm, slithering around Buckingham Palace and his favourite toilets in London, but for the intervention of Robin Bryans, a celebrated travel writer from Belfast who was mentioned above briefly. Bryans knew Blunt, Burgess and others in the A-IVR well. Through them he knew many members of MI5 and MI6. Indeed, it was Bryans who exposed Blunt as a KGB agent through the pages of Private Eye magazine in 1979.

Bryans, who died in 2005, amassed a wealth of information about the fabric of the Ulster branch of the A-IVR which he recorded in various books and open letters.

Bryans was born on 24 April 1928, to an East Belfast working-class family. His travel was informed by his taste for adventure. At one time he worked as a cabin boy on a Belfast Lough dredger; became a teacher in Devon; a shepherd in the Scottish Highlands; a student at Barry Religious College in South Wales; a diamond prospector in Canada and South America; and even hunted and trapped with the Blackfoot and Stony tribes in Canada. Although a Protestant, he was a supporter of civil rights for Catholics.

As he explained in one of his autobiographies, ‘The Protégé’, members of the British aristocracy took him under their wing thereby transforming him into a ‘lifelike toff’. The fact that his cousin, ‘Hellfire’ Jack Bryans became Imperial Grand Master of the Orange Order aided his gentrification and enhanced his status with the Anglo-Irish aristocracy. Hellfire Jack was one of those that Robin approached in his campaign to halt the abuse at Kincora. Bryans reported William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora to Hellfire Jack but nothing was done. McGrath was a leading Orangeman. He was so influential he was permitted to establish his own Orange Lodge. He was convicted for his crimes at Kincora in 1981.


In February 1990, Bryans told this author that: “The Kincora thing will be covered up. I would love to go on talking if I thought it was going to come out, but it’s not, because I know how the Establishment works. Be careful of the word Kincora, because you are going to limit it. There were other homes involved. There were three homes. There was one for boys from 12 to 16, and then there was one for younger ones”.

He revealed that boys from Portora Royal, NI’s most prestigious public school in Enniskillen were abused. They were in demand by members of the A-IVR who preferred boys who were younger and of a higher social class than the teenage boys at Kincora.

One of Richard Kerr’s abusers, Eric Witchell abused boys at Williamson House. It may have been the home for perverts which Bryans revealed catered for those with a taste “for younger ones”.

A children’s home in Portadown was also involved. While many of those involved may well have preferred older teenagers – even some who appeared willing to entertain them in return for alcohol or money – this matters little because many of these slightly older victims had been groomed, abused, brutalised and desensitised since early childhood.

Bryans wrote what might be termed ‘run of the mill’ travel books but also no-holds-barred tomes about the scandalous affairs of the Establishment. The indiscreet tomes were always extremely difficult to acquire; never more so than now. He sometimes wrote under the name Robin Harbinson. He will be referred to throughout this book as Bryans. Bryans had an encounter with a member of the A-IVR as a teenager – Henry Lynch-Robinson, the son of the powerful Permanent Secretary to the Stormont Ministry of Home Affairs. Bryans wrote: “I was 14 when I rose up in rebellion at the proud Henry Lynch-Robinson who tried to get me on my knees to perform an act of fellatio.” Since Bryans was born in April of 1928, he reached 14 in April of 1942. Lynch-Robinson was born in 1920 so would have been approximately 22 at the time of this incident. Lynch-Robinson became a celebrated architect, and died in 1984.


Was Robin Bryan’s a reliable witness?

There are many reasons to suggest he was. For a start, he was right about Anthony Blunt being a traitor who worked for the KGB while he was in MI5 and exposed him to the world.

Second, he was correct in his assertion that there were homes other than Kincora where boys were abused as is evident from Richard Kerr’s horrific experience at Williamson House. Kerr did not speak out in public until a few years ago, long after Bryans’ death.

Third, he was right about the scale of the Vice Ring and its connections to England, Scotland and Wales.

Fourth, declassified British Government documents concerning Lord Shackleton, the Labour Leader in the House of Lords and son of the famous Antarctic explorer, have copper fastened Bryans’ credibility. As Bryans revealed in his book, ‘Blackmail & Whitewash’, he tried to get Shackleton to intervene to put a halt to the Kincora scandal but Shackelton did nothing. Bryans wrote: “I knew too much and too much would come out because in 1973 I had told Lord Shackleton about the Kincora abuses and the terror of its young inmates. .. Shackleton chose to do nothing about the Kincora scandal because he had no wish to upset his fellow Establishment figures who were also Knights of the Garter such as Lord Mountbatten who had known Belfast for an even longer period than Shackleton had”.

Significantly ‘Blackmail & Whitewash’ was published in 1996 long before declassified British Government files confirmed Shackleton’s willingness to protect child abusers. In May 2015 official papers revealed that in 1988 Margaret Thatcher had been furnished with a 19 page dossier which contained details about Sir Cyril Smith’s abuse of children, including an undated letter from Shackleton, then a member of the Political Honours Scrutiny Committee. In it Shackleton disclosed that the police had investigated Smith in the early and mid-1960s. During 1970 they had carried out inquiries about his “indecent assault against teenage boys”. Shackleton told Thatcher that the DPP had not prosecuted Smith because “there was no reasonable prospect of conviction”. This is not surprising since MI5 had confiscated police files and disrupted evidence gathering. The purpose of Shackleton’s letter was to recommend Smith for a knighthood. Shackleton told Thatcher that he felt it would be “slightly unfortunate” if this “episode” impeded Smith from obtaining a gong. Thatcher agreed and one of the most brutal paedophiles of his era became a Knight of the Realm.

There is a fifth indication of Bryans’ reliability: in 2015 an anonymous MI6 agent confirmed to the Daily Express that Bryans had indeed tried to save the victims at Kincora before it was exposed by the Irish Independent in 1980.

Bryans used to refer to Edward Heath as the ‘despised Edwina’ and linked him to a Unionist MP who was involved in the A-IVR. This particular MP – who is long dead – abused children in Northern Ireland and in Scotland. This provides a sixth possible reason to believe Bryans: he clearly knew something about Heath’s secret sex life. Bryans was once interviewed by another Kincora whistleblower, Captain Colin Wallace during which he drew a link between Heath and the MP who had been involved in the A-IVR, but no more. Bryans was usually fearless, but he refused to elaborate any further on the nature of the link. Perhaps the implications of exposing a former Prime Minister was just too much for him.

Heath was not exposed as an abuser until 2017, long after Bryans’ death.

When Colin Wallace interviewed Bryans, he stated that he had also tried to get Lord John Donaldson who served at the NIO, 1974-76, and Lady Avon, the wife of Anthony Eden, British PM 1955-57 to intervene to halt the abuse in NI but without success.


Bryans got to know Anthony Blunt because of the spy’s frequent visits to Ireland. “The gay scene was one of the reasons why Blunt loved Ireland”, Bryans stated in 1990.

Bryans came to learn a lot about Blunt’s secrets. It was he – Bryans – who exposed Blunt as the Fourth Man in the Cambridge KGB Spy Ring through Private Eye magazine.

However, before they fell out, Bryans and Blunt had been quite friendly. In 1964 Bryans published a book entitled ‘Ulster’ with the help of the NI Tourist Board. Blunt assisted Bryans in the preparation of the passage about Louis MacNiece, the celebrated Belfast poet who had died in September 1963. MacNeice and Blunt had been friends since childhood having met at Marlborough School. Bryans’s book praised the courage of MacNeice’s father who had opposed bigotry and violence in Belfast. In another of his books, ‘The Dust Has Yet To Settle’, Bryans wrote that Blunt had been “delighted to read in ‘Ulster’ what I had written with his help about his closest school friend, Louis MacNeice, and the poet’s bishop father and Alan Buchanan the curate Blunt knew best as the Archbishop of Dublin much seen in royal circles”. Blunt helped Bryans prepare a guest list for one of the events associated with the launch of the book, a photographic exhibition of locations featured in it. The event took place at the Royal Institute of British Architects in Portland Place. NI’s then PM, Terence O’Neill, agreed to open the event but was called away at the last moment. In another of his books, ‘Let The Petals Fall’, Bryans described how instead O’Neill’s wife read “out his notes which chose a photograph of a well-known cast-iron gent’s lavatory as his favourite building in Belfast. I had been asked to prepare a guest list which I did in conjunction with Anthony Blunt of whose guests knew the lavatory as a popular picking-up place. But as the British House of Commons was in the throes of passing the [Leo] Abse Bill legalising homosexuality between consenting males, we thought that by choosing the cast-iron lavatory O’Neill had either been hinting that the law should also be repealed in Ulster or that he lived in blissful ignorance of the lavatory’s place in Belfast’s gay life”.

Blunt also tried to inveigle Bryans into spreading smears about Ian Paisley “with a view to blackening the Wilson Government’s record in Northern Ireland”. Bryans believed Blunt did this at the behest of MI5. If true, it raises the possibility that the arch-traitor Blunt was partially rehabilitated and allowed back into the MI5 fold, no doubt under strict supervision.


‘Ulster’ was one of Bryans’ ‘run of the mill’ books. In it he described Alfred Arnold as“the English civil servant [who] fell in love with Ulster” and who was always “looking among theatrical people for likely talent for his new musical plays”. In his ‘indiscreet’ books, interviews and letters, Bryans described how Arnold was the driving force behind the A-IVR and exploited the plays to seduce young male actors. Arnold was also a friend of Blunt’s.

Arnold managed to get away with his heinous crimes because he occupied a lofty perch in the NI Establishment: he served as Private Secretary to notorious anti-Catholic bigot Sir Basil Brooke PM of NI 1943-63. While child abuse among the aristocracy has been going on for centuries, it was Arnold who turned the abuse into a system which turned care homes run by the Stormont Government into child brothels. Paedophiles (adults who sexually abuse children) and pederasts (adult males who sexually abuse adolescents) were assigned to run them and supply children to the A-IVR.

To the public Arnold was a respected member of the arts community. As Bryans wrote: “For many years the BBC programme The Arts in Ulster had the Englishman Alfred Arnold as its chairman, a brilliant student from Cambridge Basil Brooke imported as his private secretary in the 1930s”.

Arnold retired early from the civil service hoping to become Director of the Arts Council in Belfast but he did not find favour with Brooke’s successor as Stormont PM, Terence O’Neill, who thwarted his appointment. According to Bryans: “Alfred also wrote musical plays and involved himself generally in the artistic life of the province. He retired early from the Civil Service as he and many others thought he would make an ideal Director of the Arts Council in Belfast. Alfred did not conceal his devotion to young actors such as Laurence Beattie and he did not become Arts Council director and consequently left Belfast to live in the Maltese island of Gozo, while Lawrence went to Canada”.

Bryans has also described how Sir Basil Brooke was outraged by PM Terence O’Neill’s intervention to deprive Arnold of the Arts Council Directorship. The affair would even form part of the campaign to unseat O’Neill as PM. According to Bryans: “Basil Brooke and his son John were looking for everything possible in their campaign to topple the reformist O’Neill and they looked to their Orange brethren for support. The Alfred Arnold battle gave them good ammunition against O’Neill”.

Bryans hints strongly that Arnold may have seduced Sir Basil Brooke’s son John, who later became a Unionist MP at Stormont. The young man “had been much influenced by Alfred Arnold. When John went off as ADC to Lord Wavell, the Viceroy of India, nobody expressed surprise when the former Vicereine, Lady Linlithgow, called the ADCs’ room ‘The Pansies’ Parlour’. Certainly the last Viceroy, Lord Mountbatten, dined out on the story when he spent his summer holidays in the west of Ireland and brought the latest news to Eli Lodge”.

Arnold also intervened to help members of the A-IVR when they got into trouble. He and Knox Cunningham QC were able to assist the notorious John McKeague escape from a charge of molesting two YMCA boys in 1966.

Arnold could be quite indiscreet: it was he who told Bryans that boys from a home at Portadown were being abused.

Arnold was also a friend of Lord Shackelton which provides yet another explanation for Shackleton’s willingness to protect child molesters.



The ring of which Mountbatten was a part was shielded by MI6 (attached to the Foreign Office) and MI5 (attached to the Home Office). There were – and continue to be – a number of reasons for this.

The first is obvious: deference to a Royal who they placed above the law. With the Royal family still grappling with the Prince Andrew-Jeffrey Epstein scandal, any official acknowledgement of Mountbatten’s crimes – even now – and the fact the Establishment covered them up,  might yet stretch the patience of a wary British – sick of Royal misbehaviour – public beyond breaking point.

A second use of the network was to lure MI5/6 targets to ‘honeytraps’ prepared for them at hotels and other venues where boys were made available and where they could be recorded and brought under MI5/6 control. The hotels included the Girton Lodge, Europa, Park Avenue in Belfast and the Queens’ Court in Bangor.

A third use was to collect ‘kompromat’ which could be used later to destroy reputations instead of using it for blackmail purposes.

The MI5/6 targets included Loyalist politicians and paramilitaries. The Hart Report discloses that MI5 actually admitted that it took photographs of John McKeague of the UVF/Red Hand Commando in London in the 1970s while he was arranging sexual assignations with young males. McKeague’s career as an MI5 agent will be discussed in a later chapter. Meanwhile, MI5 was running other Loyalists killers such as Robin Jackson and Billy Wright as proxy assassins, albeit the methods used to recruit them did not involve the provision of boys from care homes.

Other targets included James Molyneaux MP, the Leader of the Official Unionist Party, who was later appointed to the House of Lords and pursued sexual arrangements with young males. Another person of interest was  a senior figure in the DUP who had a habit of taking his fury out on his wife by beating her up. The “Wife Beater” is still alive and enjoys an influential position within the DUP. Enoch Powell was yet another MP involved in the ring.

Plans were made in 1972 and 1973 for the selective disclosure of the sexual crimes of some of the A-IVR’s members – such as James Molyneaux MP – as part of ‘Operation Clockwork Orange’. The targets were Loyalist politicians and paramilitaries opposed to the Sunningdale Agreement. However, this part of Clockwork Orange was cancelled for a number of reasons one of which was that Harold Wilson became PM and MI5 (and their allies in MI6) decided to let Sunningdale fall and thereby embarrass Wilson and his Labour Government.

No less a figure than Lord John Hunt, the mighty and all-powerful Cabinet Secretary, 1973-79, acknowledged that the plot involving MI5 officers had indeed taken place. In August 1996 Hunt told a Channel 4 documentary that, ‘There is no doubt at all that a few, a very few, malcontents in MI5, people who should not have been there in the first place, a lot of them like Peter Wright who were right-wing, malicious and had serious personal grudges, gave vent to these and spread damaging malicious stories about that Labour government.’ (Curiously, Stella Rimmington, D-G of MI5, 1991-94, denies there was any such plot.)

It is clear that Peter Wright learnt quite a lot about Ted Heath’s aberrant taste for boys because he – Wright – was responsible for spreading stories in 1975 about his attraction to young men as part of a plot topple Heath as Tory Leader and replace him with a more resolute right-wing figure.

Lurid rumours were circulated in 1977 which undermined support for the 1977 strike led by Ian Paisley. Figures such as John McKeague, a notorious pederast and Loyalist terrorist, were the subjects of these rumours. The strike proved a failure. How much of this was due to the rumours is an imponderable.

In 1985 the Westminster press lobby was told during a hush-hush briefing that the Thatcher Government was going to order another investigation into Kincora. This happened just days before the signing of the Hillsborough Agreement. This was undoubtedly a signal to dampen the opposition of certain Loyalist leaders including Molyneaux and his guru, Enoch Powell, who were oposing it. Ian Paisley who knew all about William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora, yet had done nothing to stop him raping children. He must have felt the pressure too. Enoch Powell had a lot to fear if his abuse of children was ever to be exposed. 

There is a full chapter about Enoch Powell below.

Third, senior Establishment figures from the MoD and NIO were able to exploit the children and teenagers ensnared in the network for their own twisted pleasure. They included Peter England, a senior official who had been transferred from the Ministry of Defence to the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) and John Imrie of MI5 who masqueraded as a NIO civil servant in Belfast. They turned the NIO into somewhere decent people would have been well advised to wipe the soles of their shoes on the way out of the building. See also

Children like Richard Kerr were put on a conveyer belt which took them from homes for young children to Kincora and later to London, Manchester and elsewhere where they were made available to VIP abusers thereby perpetuating the same depressing cycle of exploitation, control and blackmail in Westminster and elsewhere.

The politicians involved in the various overlapping vice rings were not in a position to step in to curb extreme MI5/6 operations which involved criminality such as collusion between the security forces and Loyalist murder gangs. On the contrary, they sometimes had to cover them up. This may explain why William van Straubenzee MP of the Conservative Party visited Albert ‘Ginger’ Baker, the notorious killer who was an MRF (military intelligence) agent, in prison after he had confessed to a series of brutal murders in 1973. (Baker’s career will be discussed in a later chapter.) Baker wanted to discuss where he was going to serve his term of imprisonment. Why would the Deputy Secretary of State indulge him so? Did the Secretary of State, William Whitelaw – who later became Deputy PM of Britain -, give him permission for the visit?

The control of politicians would also explain why MI5 permitted Sir Peter Morrison MP to become Thatcher’s private secretary despite its knowledge that he was a child molester.

It appears that at least one member of the A-IVR was coerced into participating in a highly dangerous anti-Provisional IRA operation by MI5. It played out in Dublin in 1981.

The cover-up also served the interests of intelligence mandarins such as Sir Maurice Oldfield of MI6 as he was an abuser of rent boys and – according to records furnished by MI6 to the Hart Inquiry – a friend of Joseph Mains, the Warden of Kincora. It was Mains who ferried the three Kincora boys to Mountbatten.  Oldfield served as Deputy Chief of MI6, 1965-1973, and Chief, 1973-78, after which he was appointed by Margaret Thatcher as intelligence supremo to NI in 1979. He was investigated by MI5 for his sexual behaviour in 1980 and suspended from his NI post to establish if he had been compromised by the Soviets. He was cleared but died the following year.

Oldfield’s reputed deputy chief, Sir Peter Hayman was a convicted sex offender. The man who appointed Oldfield as MI6 Chief was PM Ted Heath, another paedophile. (Please see the section on the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) in Part Five for further information about Hayman.)

The abuse of the children in care in Northern Ireland might have continued for decades – perhaps even to this day – were it not for the press in the Republic of Ireland. What finally put an end to the abuse at Kincora was the intervention of two courageous female social workers at the end of the 1970s who blew the whistle on what was going on. They were responsible for the care of Richard Kerr, a resident of Kincora. They leaked the sordid truth to the Irish Independent.

Sadly, the Jeffrey Epstein-Prince Andrew scandal demonstrates that transatlantic child trafficking took place over the ensuing decades with Royal participation.


There were also a number of people inside the intelligence community who were sickened by what was taking place and helped the media unravel further details, espcially inside the British Army. They included Colin Wallace, a PYSOPS officer stationed at British Army HQ NI at Lisburn.  He knew that William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora, was a child rapist and that children were being exploited by the vice ring across NI.

Captain Brian Gemmell (military intelligence) and General Peter Leng (British Army) also tried to put a halt to McGrath’s activities.

Another soldier, a colleague of Gemmell known only as ‘Denis’ has shown the courage to fit another piece of the Kincora jigsaw into place. (See the section entitled:’The Man from HQNI Who Visited Kincora below.)

Peter Broderick of the MoD will also emerge from this horror story with his reputation intact.

The Permanent Secretary at the MoD, Sir Michael Quinlan, also emerges with most of his honour intact (as shall be described later).

So too does ‘Michael Schneider’ (not his real name) who has also had the courage to reveal that the British Army knew about McGrath and Kincora. (Schneidr’s story appers in a later chapter.)

There were many others outside the British Army who also tried to put a halt to the abuse including Robin Bryans, Roy Garland and the recently deceased Valerie Shaw. A tribute to Ms. Shaw can be found here:


The whistle blowers were thwarted by a gang of shadowy felons in MI5 and MI6. The gang included Sir Michael Hanley, Director-General of MI5, 1972 – 1978, and his assistant Peter Wright.

Another ogre was Sir Howard Smith, who had served as the UK Representative to the NI Government  1971-1972 (i.e. London’s political and intelligence supremo in NI) when the Kincora operation was in its early phase. Smith became D-G of MI5, 1979-1981.

Smith’s deputy, Sir Jack Jones, was also complicit in this abyss of degradation. He served as D-G, 1981-85. Significantly, Jones was in charge when John McKeague was murdered in suspicious circumstances which will be described later.

Sir Howard Smith was a morally homeless individual. Official UK records have long since revealed his willingness to engage in political murder, namely the assassination of Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba of the Congo. When Smith reached the top of the blood soaked MI5 intelligence pole, he came to pass the dirty work to his subordinates. What could have been more unpalatable to a man who had advocated the murder of a moderate democrat such as Lumumba? Perhaps the manipulation of a paedophile network whose members raped children as young as six and which was being exploited by MI5 and MI6 to blackmail and control Loyalist torture and murder gangs (such as McKeague’s Red Hand Commando) might fit the bill. Many of these gangs such as the UDA, UVF and RHC had abducted random Catholics off the streets whom they had tortured and murdered in human abattoirs called ‘Romper Rooms’. (Further details about the ‘Romper Rooms’ can be found on wikipedia: 

Christopher Andrew, the rather dignified official historian of MI5, has described how Smith was perceived inside MI5 as someone who had a “distaste” for some of the operations that were carried out while he was D-G. One of Smith’s senior officers resented the manner in which “he kept far away from A Branch and left it all” to his deputy John Jones, who was a former Director of A Branch (surveillance and blackmail). According to Andrew’s source, Smith regarded “it all as dirty work”. What is clear from this is that Jones was little more than a thug in a suit and Smith knew full well what was going on yet did nothing to stop it.

How could Britain’s intelligence services have behaved in such an abhorrent manner? Anthony Cavendish, who served in both MI5 and MI6, and was a close friend of Sir Maurice Oldfield, has provided an insight into the corrosive nature of their work. He described in his memoirs, Inside Intelligence, how as “the years go by, the lies take over from the truth and morality accepts the other demands which are made on an [intelligence] officer to get the job done” and that “theft, deception, lies, mutilation and even murder are considered if and when necessary”.



Wiliam McGrath was referred to as the ‘Beast of Kincora’ by the police officers who investigated his crimes.

McGrath was born a Methodist in Belfast on 11 December 1916, and grew up in Earl Street in the Sailortown area of the city. He presented himself to the world as a devout family man. Having apparently become committed to evangelism, he married an Englishwoman, Kathleen, who was involved in the Worldwide Evangelism Crusade. After they married, they set a room aside at 40 Ponsonby Avenue in the Antrim Road district where they lived in the 1940s, to run a bible mission. One of his more bizarre enterprises was to smuggle bibles behind the Iron Curtain, probably with the connivance of Soviet bloc sailors who put in at Dublin Harbour before sailing back to Poland and East Germany.

The McGraths had three children. In 1960 they moved to the spacious Faith House in Wellington Park, Belfast, where he established the grand-sounding Christian Fellowship and the Irish Emancipation Centre. Young men were invited to stay at Faith House. Most of them had jobs and contributed to the upkeep of the Fellowship. Roy Garland featured among them. Garland explained how the Fellowship followed “the ancient Celtic tradition of a kind of monastic set-up”. McGrath would sometimes imply that the Son of God had engaged in homosexual practices with stories about how Jesus and John, and David and Jonathan “had close friendships which had a physical side to them”. McGrath would quote the verse of a hymn: “Touched by a loving hand, wakened by kindness, chords that were broken will vibrate once more”.

McGrath’s financial mismanagement eventually led to the closure of the ‘monastery’. The McGrath family later moved to Greenwood Avenue on the Upper Newtownards Road, just down the road from Kincora Boys’ Home where McGrath was employed between June 1971 and January 1980.

McGrath perceived the Catholic church as the instrument of the Antichrist and was determined to expunge it from the four corners of island of Ireland so that the Protestant community – which he believed was descended from the Tribe of Dan of Caanan, one of the Lost Tribes of Israel – could prevail. He perceived himself as a soldier in what he called the ‘battles of the Lord’. His self-anointed duty was to prevent the pope ‘enslaving the people of God’, not just in Northern Ireland but throughout Britain.


British military intelligence psychological operations (PSYOPS) were run by the Information Policy Unit (IPU) at the British Army’s HQNI at Lisburn. Colin Wallace worked as a PSYOPS officer for the IPU. During the course of his work he became aware of a Loyalist paramilitary organisation commanded by William McGrath. Wallace believes he “first became aware of Tara in 1971. … From a military perspective, Tara posed no real threat to the Security Forces at that time.   My initial interest in Tara was that some former members of the Ulster Protestant Volunteers were allegedly attending its meetings”.

McGrath would become a target of British Army psychological operations designed to destabilise TARA.


Wallace believes he first learnt that McGrath was a child molester in early 1972 after he met a social worker who told him “that she had a young boy in her charge who had claimed that he had been sexually assaulted” at Kincora. She went on to say that “there had been other similar claims involving other inmates and that, although the matter had been reported to the police, no action had been taken. She asked if I could, through Army channels, get the police to investigate. She appeared to be very distressed about the situation and asked that her identity should not be disclosed. I was given to believe that she was particularly worried because key members of the welfare department’ which ran Kincora were involved and ‘might take reprisals against her’. She also explained that one of the staff at Kincora ‘was a prominent figure in Ulster politics.  This man she identified was William McGrath”.

Wallace reported the conversation to one of the Intelligence staff at Lisburn after he returned to his office. He asked “if the matter could be raised with the RUC through our liaison channels. Some days later the officer to whom I had given the information came to my office and said that I should leave the matter alone because it was already the subject of consideration by ‘other people’.  I did not regard this as unusual because similar situations arose quite frequently when interest by one intelligence group could quite easily damage an operation which was already in progress. Also, at that time the information was of more significance to the police than it was to the Army.”


There is much evidence that MI5 and MI6 were in control of Kincora with McGrath and Mains acting as their agents. One of their tasks was to supply these civilian – as opposed to military – intelligence services with information about Loyalist politicians such as Knox Cunningham, James Molyneaux and others.

A letter from an MI5 agent called James Miller dated 7 April 1972 was submitted to the Hart Inquiry. (James Miller is not to be confused with the Kincora resident of the same name who also features in this report.) In it Miller told MI5 that the “Tara OC [i.e. McGrath] had been accused of assaulting small boys and that he could not account for any cash that had been handed to him over a period of 12 months.”

Judge Hart, having reviewed this and other documents, pointed out that by November 1973 MI5 was “aware that the person who had by then been identified as William McGrath had been accused of “assaulting small boys”. By virtue of section 5 (1) of the Criminal Law Act (Northern Ireland) 1967 MI5 were subject to the same legal obligation as everyone else in Northern Ireland to report the commission of an “arrestable offence” (that is an offence punishable with five years imprisonment) to the police where they knew or believed that such an offence, or some other arrestable offence had been committed. An alleged assault on small boys could, depending on the nature of the alleged assault, have been an arrestable offence which ought to have been reported to the police (See Hart para 228) …. The failure by MI5 to pass this information to RUC Special Branch may have been influenced by a desire to protect the existence of their source, and to ensure that his position was not compromised by any leak from the RUC, because it is clear that the other intelligence agencies were concerned that leaks to terrorist organisations, or hostile political figures, of loyalist and Unionist persuasion might occur”. (See para 230)

Put simply Hart believed that while MI5 knew that McGrath was assaulting “small boys” it did nothing about this to protect Miller’s cover as an informer. This is simply not true and displays Hart’s sloppy ignorance of well known details about Miller’s career: he was run out of NI in 1974 by the UDA when it became clear to them that he was a British agent. Some of this was acknowledged by MI5 at the Saville Inquiry where Miller was referred to as “Observer B”. At the time of his hurried departure, Miller was a UDA intelligence officer. MI5 created a new identity for him and set him up with a small business in Devon.

What possible excuse could MI5 have had for not reporting McGrath to the RUC after Miller had departed?

MI5 was sent a draft copy of the Hart Report before it was published for its comments. Why did not bring this information to the attention of Hart?


One thing is certain: McGrath was not a British military intelligence asset. If he was, the IPU would not have sought to undermine him.

In March 1973 the British Government produced a white paper that proposed a 78-member NI Assembly which was to be elected by proportional representation. The following month a belligerent McGrath issued a Proclamation on behalf of TARA calling for the Roman Catholic Church to be proscribed; Roman Catholic schools to be closed, and all religious education to be taught by Evangelical Protestants. According to Wallace, “McGrath’s utterances exacerbated what was already a volatile situation and the PSYOPS unit began to look at ways in which McGrath’s influence could be neutralised. Of course, the fact that senior officers were, justifiably, angry about the allegations concerning his sexual abuse activities added considerable impetus to the PSYOPS initiatives to undermine him”.


Norman Porter, a lay preacher and politician, was also a member of the Orange Order, an Apprentice Boy and a member of the Royal Black Institution.  Porter had been elected as an Independent Unionist MP for Belfast Clifton at the 1953 NI general election. Following the Tara Proclamation, Porter divulged to a number of people that he had informed the RUC in the 1950s/60s that McGrath had been sexually assaulting members of his evangelical mission at Faith House, but no action had been taken.

Wallace recalls how Porter and other Protestant clergymen had “reacted strongly to McGrath’s [1973] Proclamation” and began to draw attention to rumours about his sexual proclivities. In respect of Porter he states that: “One, a well-known evangelical preacher and local politician with tenuous links to the UVF, claimed that he had informed the RUC in the 1960s that McGrath was a homosexual who had been sexually molesting young people at his Irish missionary organisation’s HQ” and that Paisley knew about this “but that he had probably taken no action because McGrath may have been blackmailing him over his links with the UPV bombing campaign in the late 1960s. The latter allegation was significant [to the Army] because some members of the UPV were also members of TARA”. (These events are described in greater detail later in this article.)

Wallace also learnt that an RUC officer had told another Belfast clergyman that McGrath was running a vice ring from “the children’s home where he was employed as a ‘social worker’ and that he had close links with a number of politicians and other prominent people – some of whom were homosexuals – who probably helped him to get employment at the hostel”.


McGrath’s tentacles spread to Continental Europe. “There is no doubt that at the end of 1973 he was actively attempting to acquire weapons from a right-wing religious group in Holland and the NIO were aware of that,” according to a former official at HQNI.  “One of the Tara members who was involved in that arms purchasing operation in Holland was actually arrested for having firearms at his home – no charges were preferred!  There is also no doubt that the RUC were well aware of the numerous allegations about McGrath sexual activities over the years, but deliberately ignored those allegations – almost certainly as a result of the stance taken by their superiors”. The only rational explanation for this is that McGrath was working for MI5/6.

Holland held other attractions for McGrath: it was also a hotbed of paedophile activity. Richard Kerr, a Kincora resident, would later be made to pose for a paedophile pornographic magazine printed in Holland. The magazine appears to have been published while Kerr was still in Kincora. Had Hart treated Kerr with the respect he was due, he could have learnt this salient fact, one that on its own demolishes the finding of his erroneous report.


Meanwhile, during the summer of 1973 Wallace had been instructed ‘to brief the press unattributably about McGrath’s sexual preferences, his use of blackmail to force young people into homosexual practices, and the fact that he “runs a home for children on the Upper Newtownards Road.” 

Wallace adds that by 1973: “The PSYOPS unit had acquired a significant amount of additional information about TARA”. They were “aware that a number of prominent Tara members were closely linked with the Rev Ian Paisley”. These included James Heyburn, Secretary of Paisley’s church;  Hubert Nesbitt, who provided the land on which Paisley’s church was built;  and David Brown, Deputy Editor of ‘Paisley’s Protestant Telegraph.  “We also had information alleging that serving members of the RUC not only attended TARA meetings, but also were involved in the running of the organisation.  There were indications that McGrath was obtaining Intelligence information from the RUC on Republicans and there were even claims that RUC stations in East Belfast had supplied Tara with firearms which had been surrendered to the police by members of the public.  I do not know how reliable the latter information was, but it was sufficient to make the Army very wary of the RUC when dealing with TARA-related information”.


A number of people were involved in the PSYOPs attack the IPU prepared against McGrath and TARA. One of those was Hugh Mooney, a Trinity College Dublin graduate and ex-Irish Times sub-editor, who worked for the Information Research Department (IRD), the UK’s black propaganda department which was based at Riverbank Housein London. See

Hugh Mooney’s handwriting appears on a 1973 document which was deployed by the British Army at Lisburn, to brief journalists about Tara. According to Hugh Mooney, the document was written by Mike Cunningham. It was furnished to Colin Wallace at Lisburn.

At this time Wallace and the British Army were not aware that MI5 and MI6 were running a vile blackmail operation involving the rape of children at Kincora. This would generate a lot of trouble for Wallace later on when Ian Cameron of MI5 would derail his career because Wallace was persisting in his attempts to end the child rape at Kincora.

Mooney left HQ NI at the end of 1973, so the Tara document must have been created before then.


Not everyone working in intelligence in NI swam in MI5’s river of filth. Peter Broderick, who was Wallace’s boss at British Army HQ NI in 1973 and 1974, was one such person. He instructed Wallace to disclose the information in the 1973 Tara Press Briefing (’73 TPB) to journalists. Moreover, years later he had the integrity to state on public record that he had initialed it. He made this admission to two journalists, Paul Foot of The Daily Mirror and Private Eye, and Barry Penrose of The Sunday Times.

Wallace retained a copy of ‘73 TPB. It described how the ‘OC’ or Officer-in-Command of Tara was ‘William MCGRATH. He is a known homosexual who has conned many people into membership [of Tara] by threatening them with revealing homosexual activities which he himself initiated. He is a prominent figure in Unionist Party politics and in the Orange Order’.

Also that McGrath “uses a non-existent evangelical mission as a front for his homosexual activities and also runs a home for children on the 236 Upper Newtonards Road, Belfast (Tel: B’fast 657838)”.

Suffice it to say, this was address and telephone number of Kincora.

When Peter Broderick was given ‘73 TPB, he scrawled the words “Clerks IP” across the top of it. ‘IP’ stands for Information Policy, the unit Wallace worked for. In 1990 Broderick spoke frankly to the renowned journalist Paul Foot about the ’73 TPB document. On 8 February of that year, Foot reported in the Daily Mirror that, “This week, for the first time, Peter Broderick, Wallace’s boss at the time – 1974 – confirmed to me that he saw the document (The TARA press brief used by Wallace to highlight McGrath’s homosexuality and his role in running a children’s home) and wrote on it. ‘That is certainly my writing’, he told me. ‘I saw the document and approved it’.”

Peter Broderick also confirmed this to Barry Penrose of The Sunday Times on 11 February 1990.

‘73 TPB also bears the handwriting of Lt Colonel Adrian Peck, who was head of PSYOPS at HQNI in 1973 and early 1974, i.e. GSO1 Information Policy.

Broderick – a hero of this story – was pushed out of the MoD for telling the truth and supporting Colin Wallace at the hearing that led to Wallace’s dismissal.


Anumber of other journalists have confirmed that they either saw ‘73 TPB or received a briefing from Wallace in 1973 about Tara based on the information that was contained in it.

Kevin Dowling of The Sunday Mirror was one of them. He gave the Hart Inquiry “a copy of a telex he had sent to his editor in 1973” as a result of information furnished to him by Wallace. The telex stated that “according to Mr. Wallace the CO [i.e. Commanding Officer] of Tara was William McGrath and a homosexual” and that ‘McGrath apparently uses a non-existent evangelical mission as a front to entice young Protestant men into homosexuality. Once in they are potential blackmail victims and soldiers of Tara’.

So, we have a string of journalists, Colin Wallace and Peter Broderick all confirming the authenticity of ‘73 TPB which bears the handwriting of no less a figure than Lt Col. Peck and also Hugh Mooney.

While Judge Hart doubled over in contortions to undermine Wallace, he was not able to deny that Wallace warned the media about McGrath’s abuse of “young” men.

On 13 March 1977, The Sunday Times published an article entitled: ‘The Army’s Secret War in Northern Ireland’ by David Blundy. It reported that at a British Army briefing in 1974 “at which a Sunday Times reporter was present attempts were made to link Paisley with the Protestant para-military group called Tara, a small, obscure and ineffective group as Ulster’s para-military organisations go. The Sunday Times has a copy of an Army intelligence summary on Tara which contains accurate details about its organisation. .. One member, which the summary names, is called a ‘homosexual and has conned many people into membership by threatening them with revealing homosexual activities which he had initiated’”.

The Sunday Times believed the purpose of the briefing was “to link Paisley with homosexuals and Communist sympathisers. .. Our sources say that the army has produced three anonymous documents on this theme which circulated in Belfast”.


Aman called Roy Garland had been involved in TARA but had walked out in 1971. He then spent years trying to expose McGrath and Kincora and became another of the heroes of this appalling saga.

A handwritten note appears on the 1973 Tara Press Briefing which refers to Garland and records that “he said he resigned” from TARA. These words were added in by Hugh Mooney. And Garland had indeed left TARA.


The Hart Inquiry at least established that Hugh Mooney had known something about Kincora. At paragraph 6 of Hart Inquiry document KIN-200535 it is recorded that: “Mr. Mooney said [he] recalled one meeting referring to the Kincora Boys’ Home, but no reference to it as a homosexual honey-trap run by MI5. IP [PSYOPS] had only been interested in TARA the alleged Protestant paramilitary group.”

So what was the meeting about then? PSYOPS [psychological operations] officers did not convene to discuss the weather. Their operations were mainly directed at paramilitary groups such as Tara. Why would a PSYOPS meeting take place during the relentless murderous bedlam of 1973 with Kincora Boys’ Home on the agenda, if it did not relate to McGrath, TARA, sexual abuse, or all three of these topics?

One thing is certain: Hugh Mooney’s account of the PSYOPS meeting is at odds with the Hart Inquiry’s conclusion that Kincora was not referred to by name at Army HQ NI as early as 1973.


The words ‘Some off-the -cuff information on Tara for the Press’ appear at the top of ‘73 TPB. According to the Hart Inquiry (see KIN-190004 and KIN-190002), Hugh Mooney asserted that the handwriting was that of ‘Mike Cunningham’. Mike Cunningham was in fact John Cunningham. Mooney, it must be stressed, was not asked by Hart to give evidence to his inquiry.

Instead of talking to Mooney, Hart relied on a number of documents which were furnished to him by the British Government which concerned Mooney.

For his part, Wallace was aware that Cunningham was indeed an MoD officer who had been assigned to the Army Intelligence staff at HQ NI in 1973/74.

Cunningham, it appears, later went on to join MI6.

There is no evidence that Cunningham was ever interviewed by the RUC, or that he provided a statement about ‘73 TPB to any of the many Kincora inquiries including the one led by Sir George Terry, the deceitful Chief Constable of Sussex, a bent cop whose true legacy is that he protected child rapists and enabled them to commit countless further violation of vulnerable children in care. Judge Hart certainly deserves credit for exposing the lies of Terry in his 2017 report.

Although the Hart Inquiry did acquire a copy of the ‘73 TPB, there is no evidence that Hart asked Cunningham to provide him with any evidence about it.

Assuming Mooney was correct about Cunningham, he is another MoD figure who who emerges from this abyss of lies and horror with credit: he tried to put a halt to the rape of children at Kincora through the production of the ‘73 TPB. Had he been asked to give evidence to Hart, he would have undoubtedly told the truth.

Bearing in mind that ‘73 TPB also bears Hugh Mooney’s annotation, it is most unfortunate that Hart did not speak to Mooney either. Instead he merely reviewed documents furnished to him by the British Government. Mooney died in December 2017.

Hart did not have the advantage of talking to Broderick either who appears to have died before he would have had an opportunity to make contact with him had he wished so to do


According to the Hart Report, Tara was of no significance to the Security Forces until 1974. Yet another document involving Hugh Mooney debunks this mistake.

Colin Wallace asked Gerald Bartlett of The Sunday Telegraph to see if he could find out anything about Tara. Village revealed that a memo headed “Tara” which was dated 19 October, 1973, was sent by Mooney to Ms. Judith Bunbury at the NIO after Bartlett interviewed members of Tara. Mooney’s memo states:

1. I understand that you have interest in this extremist Protestant organisation and I attach a recent proclamation.

2. This and the booklet by Clifford Smith (of which I attach a copy) were sent to PR by Gerald Bartlett of the Sunday Times (sic), who obtained it from Tara in the course of an interview that he had with the leaders recently. [Bartlett actually worked The Sunday Telegraph.]

3. Bartlett told Colin Wallace of PR that the Rev Ian Paisley is implicated with Tara, according to Tara leaders. The booklet is interesting since [Clifford] Smith is known to be close to Paisley and has given sermons in Paisley’s church.”

The memo was copied to Army Intelligence at Lisburn and reinforces the fact that the NIO, IRD and British Army Intelligence had, at the very least, an interest in Tara prior to October 1973, and that Wallace was encouraging the press to do likewise.


The disputed findings of the Hart Report are further undermined by a report in The Sunday Correspondent newspaper dated 18 March 1990. Kevin Toolis, one of the newspaper’s more accomplished reporters, secured an interview with “Hugh Mooney, a former Foreign Office ‘black propagandist’ expert who had worked in the same unit in Northern Ireland as Wallace.”. The report went on to say that, “Mooney also admitted that Mr Wallace had told him about the above sex scandal at the Kincora boys home in Belfast – casting further doubt on Government claims that the security forces had no knowledge of the long-running rape and buggery of children in care. ‘I do know he mentioned it. He was dropping it in and feeling his way. He kept pushing it. But I could never understand why. I thought it was totally irrelevant to our concerns. I did get the feeling he was pushing this’.”

Despite the extremely serious nature of what Mooney revealed to Toolis, neither the RUC, nor the Hart Report appear to have asked either man to make a formal statement about any of the issues raised here, nor provide them with any sort of evidence.


There is yet more. In the early 1990s the House of Commons Defence Committee investigated some of the claims made by Colin Wallace. Hugh Mooney was aware of what was going on and sent a letter dated 1 December 1992 to the “Information Department of the FCO. It read as follows

‘Dear Margaret,

‘Since talking to you about the House of Commons Defence Committee’s special report on Colin Wallace, I have had a chance to look at the documents and fear that the Ministry can be accused of misleading the Committee.

‘In his letter dated 14 February, the clerk to the committee asked for a copy of a document relating to TARA reproduced on page 292 of Paul Foot’s [book] Who Framed Colin Wallace [i.e. the ‘73TPB’]. In reply, the private secretary said: .. “We have not been able to establish whether this is an official document.”

‘This is surprising since the MoD has identified the official who originated the document from his distinctive italic note which said “Some “off-the-cuff” information on TARA for the Press”. I myself recall passing the document to Wallace. Other manuscript notes on the page show that it was entered as page 45 of Information Policy file at Headquarters Northern Ireland. All of this is known to Wallace and his supporters, who can be expected to raise it. The MoD will be found to have lied and Wallace’s credibility will have been increased’.


The IPU also had Paisley in their sights. According to Wallace the unit first “planned attempt to discredit Paisley” by linking him with McGrath took place in 1974. It “was an attempt by the Army to weaken the power of the Loyalist paramilitaries” during the Ulster Workers Strike (UWC) which was aimed at toppling the Sunningdale-inspired Power Sharing Government. However, the Army “plan was not put into action during the strike because of the adverse reaction of the RUC to the Army operation which led to the arrest of quite a few figures in those paramilitary organisations”.

There were subsequent operations against McGrath and TARA. Wallace believes they “were initiated by the Army because of the threat he posed to the political process and to the discussions between Loyalist and Republican paramilitaries. I think Paisley was a target at times because he kept changing his stance on key issues”. 


Wallace has also revealed that the British Army/IPU was supplied with forged share certificates and a bank account in Paisley’s name which indicated he had made a substantial purchase of shares in Canada with misappropriated funds. Wallace believes the fabrications were manufactured by Intelligence sources in London because the Army in NI had neither the knowledge nor the skills to produce them.

Unfortunately for the smearmeisters in London, Wallace was “unhappy about the political nature of the material I was being given and did not show those items – or any of the other political material – to journalists at that time.  Clearly, someone else was circulating them”.


Capt. Brian Gemmell learnt about Kincora while working for British military intelligence in Northern Ireland in the mid-1970s. “The Kincora information was part and parcel of my Intelligence Reports (Intreps) on [William McGrath’s paramilitary group] Tara. It was classified Secret and sent/taken by me to HQNI and handed over to MI5 staff there.”

Gemmell had obtained his information from three different sources: James Miller, Roy Garland and Jim McCormick. Garland had served as the second-in-command of Tara. After he submitted his report to MI5, Gemmell was summoned to a meeting by Cameron. Cameron had taken over from Craig Smellie of MI6 as controller of intelligence operations in Northern Ireland. The Kincora operation intensified after he took over, e.g. a younger set of boyts were taken from Wiliamson House (and elsewhere) to replace the older boys who had been resident at the latter home. According to Gemmell, “Ian Cameron was very much a father figure to me at the time,” Gemmell has explained. He was then in his mid-20s while Cameron was in his early 60s. According to Gemmell, the MI5 Mandarin was “normally a very nice chap, but he reacted very strongly. He told me that MI5 did not concern itself with what homosexuals did and he ordered me to stop using an agent I had within Tara, who we had codenamed Royal Flush.” Royal Flush was Roy Garland who was gravely concerned about the young residents at the home.

The Hart Inquiry reported that MI5 had confirmed to it that {i} Gemmell had indeed reported on Tara to Cameron and {ii} that Cameron had acknowledged that he had told Gemmell to desist from further enquiries into allegations concerning homosexuality. (See Chapter 29, paragraph 175.)

Despite all this, Hart dismisses the claim that Gemmell reported the abuse  at Kincora  to MI5 because Gemmell had stated that he had done so in a four-page written report. The problem with this was that MI5 could not find such a report.


Brian Gemmell also revealed that one of his military colleagues had once been asked to drive a man in civilian clothing from HQNI to Kincora. At the time MI5 had offices at HQNI alongside those of the British Army. A similar account had appeared in Chris Moore’s book on Kincora. In his report Hart was faced with facts even he could not wish away. He stated that, “At page 145 of his book The Kincora Scandal, Chris Moore refers to an account by a former Military Intelligence Officer he refers to as ‘Dennis’ driving a civilian to Kincora ‘at the end of 1975 or early in 1976’. The Inquiry has been able to identify ‘Dennis, and at the Inquiry’s request the MoD traced Dennis who provided a witness statement to the Inquiry. In it he described how he was instructed to drive an unnamed visitor to East Belfast. He collected his passenger at HQNI at night, he believes around 7 pm. At his passenger’s direction he drove to a house in East Belfast that he now knows to be Kincora. His passenger entered the building where he remained for a period which Dennis describes as not being sufficiently longer or shorter than an hour, i.e., approximately one hour. When this passenger emerged Dennis drove him back to HQNI”. (Hart paragraph 603). Judge Hart found little or nothing suspicious about this.


Ian Cameron, a senior MI5 officer based at MI5’s station at Lisburn, was in overall charge of running the Kincora operation at ground level in the mid-1970s. Cameron, if he ever had a decent bone in his body, had it surgically removed after he joined MI5. He was also responsible for destroying the career of Colin Wallace because he had tried to halt the abuse of the boys at Kincora by drawing press attention to the home. Cameron furnished a report to MI5 in London on 22 April 1976 accusing Wallace of a breach of security for having briefed the press about TARA.

Cameron’s report is reproduced in the picture above, albeit his name is redacted. The reference to “Box 500” is to MI5. Beneath it is an extract from a New Statesman article by the highly regarded journalist Robert Fisk. It was published on 19 March 1976 and quoted from what Fisk described as the “army’s account of their [i.e. TARA’s] activities collated by an intelligence officer at Lisburn”. The officer was Wallace. Cameron refers to Fisk’s article in his report. The combination of these two documents corroborates Wallace’s claim that he tried to draw the attention of the press to TARA and that MI5 was concerned about it.


One MI6 file that slipped out of its usually airtight archive in London was furnished to the Hart Inquiry. It addressed “various allegations surrounding the Kincora Boys’ Home’ and stated that: “We certainly ran at least one agent who was aware of sexual malpractice at the home and who may have mentioned this to his SIS (i.e. MI6) or Security Service [i.e. MI5)  case officer.”

On 30 June 2016 an anonymous MI6 officer was questioned – albeit fleetingly – at the Hart Inquiry about this astonishing admission. He made deeply unimpressive efforts to it play it down.

MI6 also disclosed a file which referred to the “relationship” which the paedophile Sir Maurice Oldfield, Chief of MI6, 1973-78, had enjoyed with the “Head” of Kincora. The “Head” of Kincora was Joseph Mains.

Richard Kerr is certain that he burst in upon a meeting between Mains, Oldfield and other men in suits at Kincora once after he returned to the home unexpectedly after his school was shut down in cold weather.

There is a fourth indication of MI6’s involvement:  in 2015 an anonymous MI6 agent confirmed to the Daily Express that the Kincora whistle-blower Robin Bryans had tried to expose the scandal in the 1970s. The MI6 agent was probably referring to the fact Bryans had informed two former NI ministers about the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring (A-IVR), namely Lord Donaldson and Lord Shackleton.

And there is a fifth indication of MI6 knowledge of the Kincora vice ring: on 23 May 1975 Andie Tyrie and John Orchin of the UDA met with James Allan, an MI6 officer attached to the NIO. According to the minutes, there was “some ribald discussion of Mr McKeague’s proclivities”.


For some strange reason MI6 denied that while he was Chief of MI6 that Sir Maurice Oldfield even visited Belfast. This misleading assertion has been challenged by a military intelligence source who has spoken to Village. He recalls a car being sent to chauffeur Oldfield about Belfast while he was Chief.

In January 1982 the press were about to start reporting on Kincora. The restrictions imposed by the trial of Mains, McGrath and Semple had been lifted after their conviction the previous December. Now, plots were afoot to prevent a full judicial inquiry taking place while John McKeague was about to be assassinated by British agents to shut him up.

The man at the epicentre of this murder and mayhem was Brian Cubbon, the Head of the Home Office. He was the man to whom MI5 reported. Before this post, he had been in charge of the NIO, 1976-79. If anyone knew the truth about the rape of children in Northern Ireland, collusion between the State and Loyalist murder gangs and all the other scandals, it was Cubbons.

The letter – reproduced above – was one he wrote to Robert Armstrong, Thatcher’s Cabinet Secretary (and the supreme architect of the vice ring cover up) on 29 January 1982. It can only have been an attempt to create a deceitful paper trail to conceal Oldfield’s presence in Northern Ireland during his tenure as Chief of MI6. At the time it was common knowledge in the Metropolitian Police, MI5, MI6, the NIO and in Whitehall generally that Oldfield had been suspended while serving as Security Co-ordinator in Northern Ireland in 1980 on account of his homosexuality and investigated to see if he had been compromised by the Soviets. The likelihood of this emerging into the public domain was high. Since – according to official MI6 records – Oldfield had a “relationship” with the “head” of Kincora, i.e. Mains, the potential for scandal was immense.

Cubbons, ever the manipulative mandarin, claims in the letter that Oldfield – who had died the previous year – had allegedly told him that his ‘first rule’ had been to avoid the North. This contradicts the recollection of people who recall Oldfield visiting Ireland – north and south.

Cunning Cubbons left himself a backdoor to run out of if the truth emerged: he stated in the letter that Oldfield’s avoidance of Northern Ireland was something he only knew to “the best of his knowledge”.

The letter was probably cooked up between Cubbons and Armstrong all along. It was furnished to Judge Hart who accepted its veracity.


Further documents will be described and reproduced later in this book. They were written by Colin Wallace in 1975 and refer to the abuse of children in care, providing yet more documentary proof that the British Army and MI5 knew about the abuse.

Overall, it appears that MI5 and MI6 co-operated in the management of the various operations that swirled around Kincora. They co-operated through a joint Irish intelligence committee. Its files were not disclosed to the Hart Inquiry in 2016.


The British Army destroyed the IPU’s files in 1976 after the unit was disbanded, or at least claimed it did.

Generally, the absence of files permitted the MoD to misrepresent Wallace after he went public about the scandal. UK Ministers were assured by their officials that Wallace was a fantasist, a Walter Mitty-type character. Yet inside the upper reaches of the MoD there was no doubt that he was telling the truth. The Belgrano whistleblower, Clive Ponting, a former senior official in the MoD, has described meetings he attended with MI5 officers in 1983 to discuss how to prevent Wallace from making allegations about ‘dirty tricks’ in Northern Ireland. Ponting has revealed that MI5 was “genuinely worried that Wallace had far worse things to say” about dirty tricks. The Sunday Times  quoted Tony Stevens, who chaired the MoD meetings, as stating that he did not dispute the fact that the MoD/MI5 meetings had taken place in 1983.

The tide turned in Wallace’s favour in 1989 when Sir Michael Quinlan, Permanent Secretary at the MoD, informed Margaret Thatcher that he had established a secret internal investigation into Wallace’s allegations because he believed that Ministers had probably been misinformed about Wallace’s role in NI.  The investigation substantiated much of what Wallace had said.

Ponting was forced to resign in 1985.

Judge Hart did not ask Ponting to give evidence at his inquiry.


An internal MoD investigation was critical of the destruction. Some ‘policy files’, however, did survive until 1981.

The Hart Report found that there was no evidence that the Army knew anything about Kincora prior to 1980.  That finding came about in circumstances where Hart failed to secure the attendance of key witnesses, ignored credible evidence and was not skeptical about the fact IPU files had allegedly been destroyed.

Of course, there is every possibility that some – or all – of these files were in fact preserved. A report by journalist Willie Kiely on 28 March 1982 in The Sunday Journal reported that IPU files had removed from Lisburn earlier that month. If Kiely’s sources were accurate, it means at least some files survived the alleged 1976 and 1981 purges. In turn that means that the Hart Inquiry was misled – yet again. Kiely was not asked to appear at the Inquiry


Judge Hart stated at page 88 of his report that, “We are satisfied that it was not until 1980 [after the media exposed the Kincora scandal] that MI5, SIS, the MoD and the RUC Special Branch became aware that McGrath had been sexually abusing residents of Kincora when that became a public allegation”.

Hart made this finding despite knowing that the Ministry of Defence (MoD) had allegedly destroyed PSYOPS files from HQNI at Lisburn in 1981, or at least alleged that it had. In either event, the files were not available for him to review.

Hart also dismnissed Brian Gemmell’s evidence that he had reported details about Kincora. Why? Because no files were handed to the inquiry by MI5, MI6 or the British Army which confirmed this.

Insofar as controversial lost British files were concerned, Hart was clearly not paying due attention to political reports which had made headlines a few years earlier. In 2011 the Foreign & Commonwealth Office ‘rediscovered’ 1,500 previously classified files on the counter-insurgency campaign Britain had waged against the Mau Mau in Kenya from October 1952 to December 1963, at a secret facility at Hanslope Park. The files detailed the way Kenyan prisoners had been beaten to death, burned alive, castrated and kept in manacles for years. In 2013 the British Government paid out Stg£19.9 million in compensation to 5,228 survivors of their counter-insurgency campaign in Kenya.



Richard Kerr is the key figure in a full appreciation of the magnitude of the scandal. His horrific experience joins the dots between all of the key figures and developments involved in it.

His evidence has helped focus attention on the role played by Joe Mains in the scandal. Mains was probably a more important figure than McGrath.

One of the important points to arise from his story is the role played by Joseph Mains. While the attention of the media has fallen on McGrath, Mains was actually as important – if not more important – in terms of MI5 and MI6 activities for who he worked. Mains was run directly by Sir Maurice Oldfield, the Chief of MI6 in the 1970s. Oldfield retired as Chief in 1978 but was sent to Northern Ireland the following year as the supreme controller of all intelligence operations.

Kerr was born on 12 May 1961, and lived with his family off the Botanic Gardens in Belfast until he was placed into care at Williamson House in North Belfast on 16 December, 1966. Williamson House catered for Catholic and Protestant children. Kerr was abused by Eric Witchell from the age of 8, starting one night after Witchell visited his bed.

“I was on my side, I had a teddy bear. I was biting into that while he had his hand down my backside and fumbled around”. Full rape commenced later. Years later, Witchell was jailed for abusing other boys at Williamson House.

Kerr has informed Village that Witchell became the head of Williamson House “for the Catholics’ side in early 1975 while I was there. Before that he was visiting it and from my memory he was working part-time. He was living in Liverpool at a church, but had his own place in Belfast that he would go to when he would visit Williamson House”. Witchell, he adds, arranged “for me to meet him in the Liverpool at a church; then he abused me there. I was still in care, living in Belfast. But please realise there were others who came to Williamson House who abused us”. One of the “others” who abused the children at Williamson House was Dr Morris Fraser. Both Witchell and Fraser are alive and there is no sign yet that either of them will ever be prosecuted by the PSNI for the abuse of Kerr.

“My school records from Mount Vernon”, Kerr has also told Village, “were destroyed because it contained information indicating that I was being abused at Williamson House. The staff at the school suspected I was being abused but, when asked, I would not answer their questions because I was afraid of my abusers”.


In 1975 Kerr was sent to Kincora. He was only 14 and became its youngest resident. He was forced to have sex with Joseph Mains, the Warden of Kincora, in the shed at the back of the home which “had a chair and a mattress in it, that’s about all”, and in a hotel and a guesthouse. Witchell continued to abuse him. “Eric was a good friend of Mains” and they were often on the phone together. “Eric would call Mains and I would speak to him on the phone when I was in Kincora and [he would ask] me to come over to Williamson House; then he would abuse me. His room was on the top floor”. Kerr had no choice but to submit to Witchell if he wanted to see his sister at Williamson House.

At the age of 15 Kerr was taken to the Whip and Saddle bar at the Europa Hotel by Mains and others who supplied him to men staying at the hotel.

The deeply flawed conclusion of the 2017 Hart Report was that abuse at Kincora was an isolated aberration limited to a handful of miscreants on its staff. Significantly, while Kerr was at Kincora, he was spirited out of Ireland to Manchester, London and elsewhere. He has supplied Village with a photograph taken of him aged 16 in London. This photograph alone sinks the central finding of the Hart Report.

Witchell introduced him to two men who exploited him in Manchester. Abuse took place at the Rembrandt Hotel and elsewhere. The two men “had other boys living with them. They took photographs of us tied up with our clothes off to put in boys’ magazines. They said they were sending some to Amsterdam”.


In June 1977, when he was 16, Joe Mains secured a job for Kerr at the Europa Hotel. He was rostered to work in the “late evening”. This was an excuse to make him available to abusers, many of whom congregated at the Whip and Saddle bar.

Harper Brown, the manager of the Europa Hotel, 1971-84, was a “very, very good friend” of Mains’ and Kerr has no doubt he “knew what was going on there”. Kerr’s employment lasted until October 1977.

“I met Englishmen and Americans at the Europa Hotel where I was abused. Some of these men arranged for me to meet them in England. I was also taken to Larne many times where I was abused at the Harbour Inn Hotel. I was also transported to Scotland from Larne and taken to the North of England and London. This happened quite a bit. I was taken there many times by men who were in the Orange Order. They would come up to Kincora. Two of these men did not abuse me but would take me to meet men that did”. Kerr knew they were Orangemen from discussions with Mains. “When I was in Mains’ room in the late evening and he was drinking he would tell me about his membership in the B Specials, and also about the men he knew in the Orange Order. I met one of these men before Kincora and I met the other two when they came to Kincora. They would take me out to places and they would become intoxicated and would have conversations about the Orange Order. I remember one of them said that he was a member of the club behind the West Circular Road. Mains would write down a false address of where I had been to cover-up where they would take me”.


In 1980 MI5 (which is attached to the British Home Office) carried out an inquiry into the conduct of the former Chief of MI6, Sir Maurice Oldfield, 1973-78. MI6 is attached to the Foreign Office. This happened because Oldfield had been caught lying about his homosexuality. Oldfield was also an abuser of ‘rent boys’, underage male prostitutes. MI6 reviewed their files relating to the matter in 2011. According to the Hart Report, “Officer G” of MI6 “examined four ring binders with material relating to Sir Maurice Oldfield, including the 1980 MI5 investigation”.

Officer G proceeded to describe a “relationship” Oldfield had “had with Kincora boys’ home (KBH) in Belfast”. Oldfield was linked to Kincora “through his friendship with the KBH Head”. Hart concluded that this was not evidence of MI6 involvement in Kincora because Officer G had made a mistake and was apparently merely referring to allegations about a relationship. However, neither MI6 nor the Hart Report quoted a single contemporaneous report alleging a friendship between Oldfield and Joseph Mains, the only man who fits the description of “KBH Head”. Indeed, Village can find no trace anywhere of such a report, nor one about a friendship with any of the other staff members at Kincora.


There is an error at paragraph 607 of Chapter 29 of the Hart Report which was published in 2017 where it is stated that: “As we have explained, Richard Kerr has alleged that he was sexually abused by Sir Maurice Oldfield”. This is not accurate. Indeed, at paragraph 159 of Chapter 26 of the Report, the following appears: “Kerr did not know at the time who Oldfield was, he says, and does not suggest that he abused Kincora boys”.


Kerr came to the attention of the police in October 1977 over an incident involving a car. He had been in the company of some older men who had left it behind, possibly after it had suffered damage to a bumper. After they departed, Kerr was picked up by the RUC. An investigation into the events of that night threatened to unravel the vice ring. “I was taken to the police station in October 1977. They allowed me to privately speak to Joseph Mains but the police officers were not in the same room. Joseph Mains told me as long as I kept my mouth quiet about what was going on, he would get me out of the situation I was in. There was a statement that was meant to be signed; I could not read so if I signed the statement, I did not know what I was signing. Joseph Mains ended up signing the statement as well”.

The statement Kerr signed made him appear a full year older than he was. Mains knew Kerr’s date of birth perfectly well, as of course did Kerr. Kerr believes “they were trying to cover-up by saying I was the driver of the car but it was actually the older men. I was 16, and back then you could only drive when you were 17”.


Two of Richard Kerr’s social workers became aware of what was going on and tried to get the authorities in Belfast to intervene but they met a blank wall because of abusers like Joshua Cardwell. He was Chairman of Belfast Corporation’s Welfare Committee which was responsible for Kincora. He was also a friend of Mains. Another key figure was Belfast Town Solicitor, John A Young, a legal official who helped suppress the scandal.

Kerr knew Cardwell as “Joseph” Cardwell and recalls that he wore a “funny” hat and drove a blue minivan. He does not believe that he “owned the minivan but one was provided for him and others as transportation for outings out of Kincora”. Cardwell took his victims to the Adelphi Hotel in Portrush. Kerr recalls the “evening bar” was “down the stairs back then”. He was plied with alcohol by abusers, there.

Cardwell committed suicide in March 1982 after being interviewed by the RUC about Kincora.


Although there is an entire chapter on John Dunlop McKeague later in this report, his relationship with Kerr will be addressed at this juncture.

The Park Avenue Hotel was another venue of abuse for Kerr. Mains “went there a lot”, according to Kerr. RUC men frequented it too, he recalls. Significantly, Kerr has revealed that “John McKeague and other men” were patrons too. McKeague’s group would occupy the “red seats in the bar area”. Kerr would be sent to a room to await abuse.

Over time McKeague became a sadistic sectarian serial killer, with a penchant for torturing victims before finishing them off.

McKeague would become close to another UVF man, Lenny Murphy, who later achieved infamy as the leader of the Shankill Butchers.

All of this violence was evident in the brutality he meted out to his rape victims.


Richard Kerr was used as bait in paedophile ‘honeytrap’ operations. One of them went badly wrong. Kerr was taken to a hotel. “There was a fight [between two men]. We were outside [the hotel]…Two cars came up to the front of the hotel. I was directed away from the two guys. Those two guys were put into a car. I was put into another car with three men. I was sitting right in the middle. One was to my right. One was to my left and then you have the driver and then they took off. They brought me back to Kincora by the side door. Mr Mains knew about this because he had [received] a telephone call. He knew that I was coming back. I knocked on the door and Mr Mains opened up. He told me to go to my room and he said not to say anything”.

The side door to Kincora

Two of Kerr’s close friends and fellow victims were to die young. One of them, Stephen Waring, couldn’t take any more of the brutality and horror, and committed suicide in 1977 by jumping into the sea during a trip on the Liverpool-Belfast Monarch Ferry. There were other victims who died.


Kerr’s social workers – who are still alive – furnished details about the abuse to Peter McKenna of the Irish Independent. It took a while but he eventually exposed the scandal in January 1980. By this time, Kerr had been trafficked to England by Eric Witchell.

The notorious paedophile, Sir Cyril Smith MP, was one of those who abused Kerr in Manchester. In London he was abused at the Philbeach Hotel in Earl’s Court; raped at Dolphin Square; and brought to Elm Guest House (EGH) which was frequented by Cyril Smith, Jimmy Savile and others. He was abused by a barrister at EGH. Hilton Tims, Editor of the Surrey Comet, 1980- 1988, has revealed that in the 1980s one of his journalists made inquiries about EGH only to receive a national security D-Notice injunction which shut his probe down. What possible “national security” threat was there in a story exposing a child brothel? Why did a judge issue the D-Notice?


Sir Peter Hayman, KCMG, CVO, MBE was another of Richard Kerr’s abusers. Hayman rose to become High Commissioner to Canada and also worked for MI6. According to a slew of reports, he served as MI6’s Deputy Chief for a spell. He was also a member of the notorious Paedophile Information Network. (Hayman’s connections to PIE will be discussed later in this article.)


Kerr has told Village how, “detectives from the RUC also interviewed me in January of 1980 [after the Kincora scandal erupted] in Preston, Lancanshire. I was taken out of the place and threatened when they got me to the police station. Because of their threats I was scared to tell them anything. I kept my mouth shut knowing that the abusers I met were still in contact with me, and the police put me in a cell and made me feel that I was responsible for what happened as if I was the guilty person”.

Kerr later moved to London where other detectives – this time not from the RUC – visited his home, “and did the same thing. They intimidated me and wanted me to not speak any more about what happened. So you can understand why I was scared because they always tried to make me feel I was responsible. I knew too much about what was going on, and the people that were involved – who I became afraid of”.


In London, Kerr secured work as a “bell hop” at the Cumberland Hotel near Marble Arch in London. As the pressure built up around the Kincora scandal in the early 1980s, the people behind the cover-up adopted a policy of carrot and stick to contain Kerr. By way of carrot, his financial security was assured: he was able to afford to live in Flat Number 1, 44 Baker St, around the corner from Oxford Street. Kerr has furnished Village with documentation which confirms he lived there. There was no conceivable way a teenage “bell hop” from Belfast could have afforded such a desirable residence without considerable financial assistance.

By way of stick, the intimidation continued: a group of men came to his flat at 44 Baker St. Some were in police uniform, others in civilian clothing. They knocked him to the ground, told him that they were from the British “Secret Service” and that he was to keep quiet about what he knew or they would arrest him as a ‘terrorist’.

The hard-cop-soft-cop routine was also deployed: the next day he received an apology for the rough treatment he had experienced.


While Kerr was living in London, he continued to suffer abuse. At the time he was a teenager, but it mattered little to the abusers that he had been groomed, brutalised and desensitised since the age of eight.

Piccadilly Circus


For a while Richard Kerr co-operated with the Hart Inquiry to which he was a central witness. However, in the end he withdrew. His solicitors KRW Law said: “The State bodies/agencies that are Core Participants to the inquiry appear to have been provided with bundles of documents of up to 16,000 pages. In contrast, Mr Kerr was provided with around 740 pages.

“It is not clear why the inquiry wish to conceal these documents from Mr Kerr or his legal representatives. In the context of an inquiry that is investigating allegations that the British security forces and security services knew that abuse was and would be perpetrated on the children in Kincora and covered this up, this is inherently unreasonable”.

Richard Kerr now lives in Dallas where he has made many enduring friends and has received support, counselling and encouragement from a variety of kind and generous people all of whom he values enormously including Casey Gates. Nonetheless, he is angry at his former abusers, and the mind games they played with him as a child. He has benefited from years of counselling and is now determined to tell his story. Above all else he wants to achieve “a little justice” for those who died, especially Stephen Waring. He has a lot more to reveal. What appears in these pages is merely the beginning.



At least one boy from the North was trafficked to the Republic. He is referred to in the tepid Kincora report furnished by Judge William Hughes in 1986 who described him as Resident 18 (R18).

R18, an orphan, was born in May 1962.  He was adopted but his placement was unsuccessful and he was taken back into care. At some stage in either 1973 or 1974, when he was still 11, he was taken to Dublin to be abused. The Hughes report did not identify who trafficked him, nor who abused him. All it revealed was that he was forced to perform oral sex on a man in a Dublin cinema toilet.

In 1977 R18 was sent to Kincora where he caught William McGrath’s eye. The abuse which followed started with embraces and ‘long and intimate talks’ about sex which the boy found disturbing. He complained to the local authorities and an investigation was launched. The investigator spoke to Joe Mains who ran Kincora and was himself a prolific child abuser. Mains concocted a defence which argued that since R18 had been abused earlier in his life, he had become oversensitive and was overreacting to what McGrath had done. At this point in time McGrath had not yet engaged in physical abuse.

When pressed for details, Mains refused to say anything else. He must have suddenly realised that he had made a potentially catastrophic mistake because any disclosure of R18’s earlier abuse would have exposed the abuse in the cinema in Dublin.  Crucially, R18 had been unable to disclose these details to the investigator. Hence, Mains would have had to explain how he knew about it and why he had not reported it.

In the event, Mains was not obliged to provide any further details. Nothing came of the complaint and R18 was subsequently raped by McGrath. McGrath was convicted for the buggery of R18 in December 1981.

All of this raises a number of questions:

Who took R18 to Dublin in 1973/4?

Who abused him at the cinema?

Was this part of an operation to reward an agent of British Intelligence in the South or blackmail a figure of some importance?

Unfortunately, none of these questions have been raised, let alone answered, by the Terry, Hughes, or Hart inquiries.


Her Majesty’s spies decided they needed eyes and ears in Belfast and Derry to learn what was happening in Loyalist and Nationalist communities. Hence in the early 1970s they organised the establishment of ‘massage’ parlours and a number of brothels in Belfast which were fitted with hidden microphones and 35mm Olympus cameras. The Gemini Health Studio located on the Antrim Road, catered for heterosexual clients while the Gardenia on the Stranmillis Road attracted gay men.

The Gemini opened its doors in the summer of 1970 promising “very attractive masseuses’ in advertisements in Belfast newspapers.

A more upmarket brothel was located on the Malone Road.

The operation was directed from offices in Churchill House, Government Building in Belfast. The objective was to gather information and recruit informers through blackmail. 

Bernie Silver, the vice king of Soho, helped set them up. He was flown into Belfast in 1970 and taken in an MoD vehicle to Lisburn where the general objective of the operation was discussed. Over the next ten days he scouted Belfast with bodyguards looking for suitable premises to convert into brothels and massage parlours and advised his intelligence partners how they should be run. On his return to London, Silver set about recruiting prostitutes for the establishment. The girls he selected were warned that they would be taking part in a risky but rewarding enterprise. The impression most of them got was that they would be entertaining British officers. They paid well above the going rates with their money going directly into UK bank accounts.

The prostitutes were required to sign the Official Secrets Act and Silver was allowed to keep a large part of the money paid to them.

The sparsely decorated Gemini was run by two Catholics who had been recruited by the MRF (a branch of military intelligence), a man and wife. For the sake of appearance, it had a rudimentary gym, sauna, and a solarium, which were rarely if ever used. Most clients headed for the dimly lit corridor flanked by a string of curtained cubicles. Inside there were iron-framed beds, wooden chairs and wardrobes. More significantly, large two-way mirrors were hung on the wall to hide cameras which took pictures of the customers in flagrante delicto. The other establishments were more plush with soft lighting and thick pile carpets. Here, targets waited for the prostitutes in a lounge and were served cocktails or coffee free of charge. All the rooms were fitted with concealed microphones. Conversations were recorded by operators in the attic. The spies also took pictures of various bedrooms, using remote controlled 35mm Olympus cameras. These were fitted with what were then quite sophisticated technology: the cameras had battery-powered motors so that  after the shutter had been fired electrically, it wound the film to the next frame. To cover any sound from the mechanisms, the bedrooms had music piped to them.

In March 1971, a masseuse working at the Gemini managed to get a Belfast SDLP councillor to reveal the names of the IRA men who had murdered three young Royal Highland Fusiliers. The identities of those apparently responsible were known inside the Catholic community but it had not yet been penetrated by British informers, at least not to any appreciable extent.

The IRA uncovered the existence of the brothels and attacked them on Monday 2 October, 1972. They claimed they killed a man codenamed “Bossman Jim” and one of the girls during the attack. Bossman Jim was a retired British Army major. His assistant was the daughter of an Army brigadier. After the attack, witnesses saw the British Army remove a series of cameras and tape-recorders from theestablishment.

‘Mr Frances’, the Welshman who ran the Gardenia for homosexual clients disappeared after the attack on the Gemini.


Two of Silver’s prostitutes, including one from Dublin, died unnaturally shortly afterwards. It was never established if their deaths were linked to the Belfast operation.

Some Garda officers who went to London for meetings or on training courses were invited to go on ‘tours’ of the city. Soho, the notorious vice centre, was sometimes suggested as a destination. No doubt MI5 had access to brothels there which were equipped with cameras in case any of the Irish visitors were foolish enough to succumb to temptation.

It is not the beyond realms of possibility that brothels in the Republic have been managed by British Intelligence assets. Indeed, one of Bernie Silver’s Soho partners came to live in Dublin in suspicious circumstances for a while in the mid-1970s. In any event Dublin was a hot house for sexual tittle-tattle. In the mid to late 1980s deployments of Gardai and military personnel assigned to protect Leinster House at night habitually relieved their boredom by keeping ‘a book’ on the sexual dalliances of the Nation’s more virile politicians. One well-known Fine Gael figure emerged as the overall winner having lured more female visitors to unlit and unoccupied offices late at night than anyone else. His shenanigans kept the security gossip mills churning for years. It is inconceivable that word of his exploits failed to reach the ears of the spooks at the British Embassy.


Whether Silver’s partner set up a brothel for the British in Dublin or not, a number of establishments were placed under observation by the Gardai and soon became the subject matter of gossip which circulated in political, journalistic and diplomatic circles. One Oireachtas member was spotted entering a massage parlor in the 1980s by a unit of Gardai, something that generated a wave of gossip in Garda circles. Since the dogs in the street soon heard about the incident, there is no doubt it reached the British Embassy. No doubt the same fate was suffered by the small number of male politicians who sought the company of male prostitutes in the Phoenix Park and at gay brothels.


Sexual blackmail persisted as one of MI5’s tools throughout the Troubles. Denis Donaldson, a senior Sinn Fein figure, fell into MI5’s grip as a result of it. He had acted as an ambassador for the Republican movement to Europe, the US and the Middle East; and was involved in attempts to secure the release of Brian Keenan in the Lebanon. He was a friend of Gerry Adams and had been in the Maze with Bobby Sands. He was also an incorrigible womaniser.  Since everyone knew his pedigree, he was not regarded as being vulnerable to blackmail on account of it. Marie Mulholland wrote of him: “Denis stood out, all five foot nothing of him. Yes, he was a small man but somehow it never seemed to matter because he had charm – buckets of it. Not the smoozing of an operator, but real charm. It worked wonders with women and Denis loved women – lots of them.”  Yet he did something that was a departure from his nomal womanising that enabled MI5 to arm twist him into spying on Sinn Fein for them.

One rumour – and it is nothing more than that – is that he was caught by MI6 in the middle east engaged in homosexual acts.

In any event, all Donaldson  was prepared to disclose when he confessed his double role at a press conference in 2005 was that he had been recruited “after compromising myself during a vulnerable time in my life”. He was assassinated in Donegal in 2006.


The chilling Belgium case of Marc Dutroux is relevant to this discussion. Dutroux kidnapped, imprisoned, raped, tortured and let young girls starve to death. He served 3 years of a 13 year sentence for rape. After his astonishingly early release, he was provided with an income from the Belgian state. Back on the outside, he built a secret room at one of his seven properties. He videotaped its construction to show others in his network how it could be replicated. After two shocking kidnappings, the police searched his property. A civilian locksmith who accompanied them could hear the cries of the two 8 year old girls who were trapped in the secret compartment only feet away from them yet the police insisted on abandoning the search. They also took Dutroux’s videotape but allegedly never watched it. Their excuse was that they did not have access to a video player. The girls starved to death.

Police cameras monitored Dutroux’s property but detected nothing because they were switched off at 6 p.m. each night. Dutroux became overconfident and was eventually caught prowling around the streets of Belgium in his white van acting suspiciously. After his arrest, he revealed that he was part of a paedophile network which enjoyed high-level protection. One of the victims of his network later emerged to reveal she had been taken to parties where men had abused her, including an official who had been pivotal in securing Dutroux’s early release from prison. Dutroux was also present at some of the parties. She revealed that videotapes were made of a number of them. Rudy Hoskens, a detective who attempted to pursue her claims, was suddenly yanked off the case. The team that replaced him altered her statement and those of other witnesses.

Jean-Marc Connerotte was appointed as the investigating magistrate of the Dutroux case. Connotte’s integrity was beyond question: he had rescued two of Dutroux’s kidnap victims. In January 1996 he wrote to the King of Belgium complaining that his investigation into the network he suspected revolved around Dutroux was being blocked because the suspects “apparently enjoyed serious protection”. He pressed ahead until November 1996 when he was dismissed on spurious grounds. There was outrage. On 20 October, 1996, the two survivors he had saved and 300,000 others marched through Brussels, many dressed in white and carrying white balloons, in protest. Connotte was replaced by a magistrate who had never carried out an investigation in his life and failed to find any evidence of a wider network.

Officially, the Belgian government denied – and continues to deny – that Dutroux was part of a network. Aside from some small fry such as his wife and driver, no one else has been convicted.

Twenty witnesses associated with the Dutroux case died in mysterious circumstances: one was crushed under a train; another was poisoned, another perished in a suspicious road traffic accident; another disappeared with his foot turning up in a canal later.

There is no reason to doubt Dutroux’s claims that he supplied children to a paedophile network with high-level protection. The likely explanation for this is that the Belgian officials involved in the cover-up were dancing to the tune of MI6 and the CIA who were prepared to descend to any depth during the Cold War to advance their interests. Brussels has provided fertile ground for all sorts of sexual blackmail for decades, not just that of paedophiles. Prostitution is legalised and its brothels are frequented by all sorts of EU and non-EU politicians and diplomats. In addition, Brussels attracts military officers from NATO and non-NATO armies alike as is the capital of NATO. At least one well-known Fianna Fail TD frequented these and brothels in other countries. He was also known to pester women for sex despite the fact he was married. He surely is not the only Irish politician to have visited these sorts of establishments.



Paisley was nearly ten years younger than McGrath whom he got to know in 1949 through their joint involvement in the Unionist Association in the Shore Road area. Paisley had moved into the locality to study at a bible college. Like McGrath, Paisley would become a British-Israelite.

Throughout his career Paisley became involved with a bewildering array of Loyalist organisations. The names of the groups matter little.  However, the paramilitaries in them – who were also in Paisley’s orbit – are significant. They included:-

  • William McGrath, paedophile, Orange Order, Tara, UCDC, British agent and Housefather at Kincora;
  • John Dunlop McKeague, paedophile, sadistic torturer, serial killer, member of UCDC, UPA, UVF and Red Hand Commandoes;
  • Gusty Spence, Leader of the UVF; imprisoned in 1966 for the murder of Peter Ward, a Catholic barman in 1966. Forged an alliance with McKeague’s Red Hand Commandoes in the 1970s;
  • Billy and Eddie Spence (brothers of Gusty Spence),
  • Noel Doherty, Orange Order, UPA, UVF, Orange Defence Committee and editor of Paisley’s Protestant Telegraph. He used to refer to Paisley as ‘our Moses’;
  • Billy Mitchell, UVP, Tara and UVF.


In 1966 Paisley and Noel Doherty created the Ulster Constitution Defence Committee (UCDC). Concealed inside it, they organised a paramilitary branch, the Ulster Protestant Volunteers (UVP) which included former B Specials, McKeague, McGrath and Mitchell.

Doherty became the leader of the UVP.  Under Paisley’s instructions, he was tasked with setting up “cells” throughout the Province and acquiring arms.

A printer by trade, Doherty also oversaw the establishment of Paisley’s Puritan Printing Press, which produced Paisley’s literature, including his newspaper, The Protestant Telegraph


In 1968 the PM of NI, Terence O’Neill, tried to persuade his fellow Unionists that if Catholics were given houses, jobs, cars and televisions, they might accept Stormont, and Partition would become permanent. “He is a bridge builder, he tells us. A traitor and a bridge are very much alike for they both go over to the other side,” Paisley thundered in response.

The animosity between Paisley and PM O’Neill dated back to the start of O’Neill’s premiership in 1963. He had sinned grievously in his eyes by seeking a rapprochement with the Republic. Paisley, N. Doherty, the Spence brothers, McGrath and McKeague would become the key protagonists in a clandestine plot to topple him.


The long defunct UVF had also reformed to help oust O’Neill.

On 21 April 1966 Paisley took Doherty and Billy Mitchell to meet a Loughgall farmer, James Murdock. It was later alleged that Paisley left that meeting to attend another one in Armagh and that during his absence the three others discussed the supply of arms and explosives to the UPV.

In 1968 Doherty was tried on bombing charges , convicted and sentenced to two years. On the day of his imprisonment, Paisley made a speech outside the prison in which he denied all knowledge of Doherty’s offences before announcing that he was forthwith expelled from the UPV and the UCDC.

The UVF also publicly denied that Doherty was one of its members.


Contrary to Paisley’s posturing, there are grounds to suspect he had been involved in the anti-O’Neill bomb campaign.

Before his imprisonment, Doherty and Billy Mitchell had been introduced to James Marshall and a supply of explosives from quarries in Lurgan had been secured. The explosives would be used to cause explosions at a Castlereagh electricity station, Silent Valley Reservoir and a further electricity station at Ballyshannon in County Donegal.  The most intense period of UVF/UPV violence took place between 30 March and 23 April 1969. McKeague was deeply involved. The objective of the bomb campaign was to make it look as if the IRA was responsible for it and thereby undermine O’Neill’s authority. The bomb plotters wanted the public to believe that the IRA had smelt blood in the weakness of O’Neill’s moderation. O’Neill resigned on 1 May, 1969. “Either we live in peace or we have no life worth living’, he told his party. These were prophetic words.


An indication of McGrath’s importance to Paisley at the close of the 1960s can be demonstrated by the fact he was at Paisley’s side during the early hours of 14 August, 1969, after the eruption of the tumultuous violence that gave birth to the Troubles. Paisley led a delegation to see new PM of NI, Major James Chichester-Clark who was monitoring events at the RUC’S HQ at Knock in Belfast. One of the delegation, Roy Garland, commented in 1982 that it was surprising that ‘at the height of this violence McGrath, Paisley, myself and a man called Black from Armagh were talking to the Prime Minister, Major James Chichester-Clark about it. [..]  We were demanding that the B Specials be mobilised and a “People’s Militia” be formed’. The PM, however, was not interested.

Meanwhile, McKeague was leading rioters, arsonists and looters in a hate-filled rampage against Catholic homes in Belfast.


Paisley, McKeague and McGrath continued to co-operate after the eruption of the Troubles.

On 10 November 1969, John McKeague, Samuel Stevenson and others were charged with a bomb attack at Dunadry on 24 April 1969. Stevenson confessed and was charged with the unlawful possession of gelignite. 

McKeague’s trial took place before a jury in Belfast in February 1970. Stevenson, who had already been sentenced, was called as a Crown witness. He told the court that when he had been in the police station, Paisley had visited him and whispered: “Did you talk?”

Meanwhile McGrath had circulated a document about the affair which the trial judge had to instruct the McKeague jury to ignore.

McKeague and his co-defendants were acquitted.

At some stage after this, the paths of McKeague, McGrath and Paisley began to diverge.


While Colin Wallace was based at Thiepval Barrack in Lisburn, he learnt that Paisley and Desmond Boal had been ‘closely involved in the re-formation of UVF in mid 1960s with Gusty Spence’.  Paisley and Boal later went on to form the DUP.

Intelligence also emerged that Paisley had been present when N. Doherty and Billy Mitchell had collected explosives in Lurgan. 

Unfortunately for Paisley, McGrath knew about the events at Lurgan, something that undoubtedly enabled him to blackmail Paisley in later years when he desperately needed help after the eruption of the Kincora scandal.


TARA flourished for a while but it fell into decline after McGrath refused to deploy his troops during the August 1969 riots. Tara had enjoyed strong links with the UVF whose members now began to lose faith in McGrath. Additional doubts were raised because McGrath was given to boasting about having links to British Intelligence.

UVF inquiries led them to conclude McGrath was indeed connected to one of Britain’s intelligence services. McGrath may have helped MI6 convey anti-Communist propaganda pamphlets behind the Iron Curtain. He had forged a route to smuggle bibles to Eastern Europe probably with the connivance of Eastern European sailors whose ships docked in Belfast Harbour. McGrath, a part-time preacher, often visited the port to evangelise. McGrath’s homosexual relationship with a British diplomat in Dublin in the 1950s may have served as his introduction to MI6 and kickstarted the smuggling arrangement.

The UVF decided to undermine McGrath by highlighting his homosexuality instead of denouncing him as a British agent. He was challenged by the UVF leader, Samuel “Bo” McClelland, at a Tara gathering in 1971. According to Chris Moore author of the ‘Kincora Scandal’: ‘McClelland’s questions were aimed at pressing McGrath into revealing whether or not he was homosexual. McGrath became embarrassed and responded by calling for McClelland to be “drummed out”. The UVF leader stood up and called for his men to leave. They left, never to return.’

Paisley assiduously cultivated every branch of the Loyalist grapevine. It is inconceivable that by 1971 he was unaware that McGrath was pestering teenagers and young men for sex and had a widely rumoured connection to MI6 which had led to the split with the UVF.

TARA took a battering but struggled on. A declassified British file dated 13 February 1976, which was furnished to the Hart Inquiry, revealed that a ‘source’ had alleged that Tara ‘had been destroyed in 1972 by a smear campaign. They had then been 300 strong and included a number of UVF members. Now they were much smaller and of a higher calibre and were UVF’s main rivals. …  McGrath (according to source) has long made a practice of exploiting other people’s sexual deviations and Tara is vulnerable on this account. Paisley has expressed strong animosity towards McGrath’.


In 1971 McGrath, a man with a well-deserved reputation as a sleazy sexual predator, secured a job at Kincora looking after teenage boys. Moreover, he did so without any type of welfare training or experience. His only qualification was that of a hairdresser.

As the 1970s dragged on, McGrath and McKeague would become increasingly sharp thorns in Paisley’s side because of their links to MI5/6 and their addiction to abusing children.

The obvious candidate for passing on the information about Paisley’s involvement in the collection of the Lurgan explosives to the British was McGrath.


Ian Cameron was not the only person protecting McGrath, Ian Paisley was too. In October 1973 Valerie Shaw, a member of Paisley’s church, informed him that McGrath was abusing children at Kincora. Paisley fobbed her off with empty promises to do something about it.

There were probably others who alerted him but it was all to no avail. From this point on – if not long before – Paisley had to live with the fact that a witness – if not a congregation of them  – existed who could reveal that he knew about Kincora.


Paisley officiated at the wedding of two of McGrath’s children; William Worthington on 15 June 1971, and Elizabeth on 22 January 1976 so it is difficult to know what he really felt about McGrath. What can be noted it that by early 1976 he gave some of his circle the impression that he despised him.

A declassified British file dated 13 February, 1976, which was furnished to the Hart Inquiry, reveals that a ‘source’ had reported that ‘Paisley has expressed strong animosity towards McGrath’. Paisley’s anger was fuelled by the manner in which their long-standing association had enabled MI5 to smear him by linking him ‘with Loyalist paramilitary figures involved in homosexual prostitution at a children’s home in Belfast’.


According to Wallace the first IPU ‘planned attempt to discredit Paisley’ by linking him with McGrath took place in 1974. It ‘was an attempt by the Army to weaken the power of the Loyalist paramilitaries’ during the Ulster Workers Strike (UWC) which was aimed at toppling the Sunningdale-inspired Power Sharing Government. However, the Army ‘plan was not put into action during the strike because of the adverse reaction of the RUC to the Army operation which led to the arrest of quite a few figures in those paramilitary organisations’.

There were subsequent operations against McGrath and Tara. Wallace believes they ‘were initiated by the Army because of the threat he posed to the political process and to the discussions between Loyalist and Republican paramilitaries. I think Paisley was a target at times because he kept changing his stance on key issues’. 


As described earlier, Wallace was supplied with forged share certificates and a bank account in Paisley’s name which indicated he had made a substantial purchase of shares in Canada with misappropriated funds.

In 1990 he sent the materials to Mrs. Thatcher “in the hope that she would initiate a proper investigation”.   However, no one from the Government ever contacted him as a result.


MI6 held the upper hand in the intelligence bear pit in NI until 1974 when MI5 assumed the dominant role. From this point on, there was a concerted effort to protect McGrath and the operation at Kincora from the threat posed by British Army/IPU destabilisation operations. Paisley would become entangled in the crossfire.

Dark clouds were now hanging over Lisburn. Wallace began to receive propaganda briefs from NIO Intelligence officers in 1973 and into 1974. The new targets included British MPs such as Harold Wilson. In September 1974 Wallace refused to descend into this abyss of treachery.

Shortly afterwards he was informed that his life was in danger – a blatant lie – and that it was going to be necessary to transfer him to England for his own safety. However, he was soon pushed out of the British Army altogether by means of a dirty tricks operation mounted against him by MI5 (for which he was later compensated). It was alleged behind his back that he was working for the UVF, an atrocious libel, one of many deployed against him. Ultimately, he would be framed for killing a man in England; spend years in prison before his conviction was overturned because of the exposure of falsified evidence. When the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Bingham, quashed Wallace’s conviction and sentence in 1996, he said that if the trial jury had relied on the forensic evidence provided by the Home Office pathologist Dr. Ian West in the decision to convict Wallace,  then they had been “seriously misled”.  West should have been prosecuted, but he was terminally ill at that time and no action was taken.

The urgency in destroying Wallace almost certainly sprang from the fact that he was engaged in – and was personally committed to – the attempts to end the Kincora child abuse scandal by exposing McGrath. Once Wallace had received authority from his military superiors to turn the anti-McGrath propaganda tap on again, MI5 had little choice but to destroy him or watch the Kincora operation unravel. They also wanted to replace him with compliant individuals who would engage in treachery against Westminster MPs.

As described earlier, the moving force in the plot against Wallace was Ian Cameron. For example, Cameron made a formal complaint against Wallace for allegedly “breaching security by briefing the press about Tara and McGrath,” Wallace has explained.  “This was based on a piece that Robert Fisk wrote for The New Statesman .. Cameron knew, of course, that I had being briefing the press about McGrath since 1973 at the request of my Army superiors”.   Wallace’s boss at HQ NI in 1974, Peter Broderick, is on public record saying that he initialled the briefing document about Tara that Wallace used and instructed him to disclose it. The document was also initialled by Lt Colonel Peck, the then head of PSYOPS.

“Cameron,’ Wallace believes, “was worried that my attempts to expose McGrath – at the behest of my superiors – was a threat to what MI5 were doing with McGrath and TARA”.

Wallace has also revealed that it “was later made clear to me by a totally reliable source that the ‘leaks’ allegations were just a means of having me removed from the Province because the NIO – particularly MI5 – wanted to take full control of the so-called information war.  In effect this is what happened!”


In early 1976 Paisley had become convinced that the NIO – which acted as a front for MI5 and MI6 – was plotting against him with information about McGrath.

Wallace has revealed that in “1976, a member of Ian Paisley’s church contacted a member of my family and said that IRKP (i.e. Ian Kyle Richard Paisley) wanted to get in touch with me because the press had told him that the Army had been attempting to discredit him and that I had been identified as being involved in that activity.  In 1976 I was living in London, having left Northern Ireland in February 1975”. 

Wallace and Paisley “met briefly near Parliament”.  Wallace recalls that Paisley “began by clearly referring to the material that I had given to the press in 1973/74 relating to William McGrath and TARA.  I confirmed that I had briefed the press about McGrath and TARA, but that he and a few other individuals we referred to, such as the Rev Martin Smith [the Head of the Orange Order], were simply mentioned as being people whom we believed were aware of the sexual abuse allegations relating to McGrath”. 

Paisley then proceeded to tell Wallace that “he had it on good authority from a source at the NIO that a Foreign Office psychological warfare team at Stormont was engaged in a project to discredit him and key members of the DUP”. Paisley then “asked me what I knew about such a Committee and I told him that I didn’t know anything because I had been away from Northern Ireland for more than a year”.


Wallace also says that “looking back on it, I find it interesting that Paisley was clearly aware of the potential danger of his association with McGrath.  He didn’t discuss the matter with me in any way, or volunteer any information, he just asked me questions about the briefings I had given to the Press about McGrath and about the [NIO] Information Co-ordinating Committee”.    

Wallace “got the distinct feeling that Paisley was almost frightened of McGrath, or the extent to which McGrath could damage him”.

In February 1976 Paisley told the House of Commons that a smear campaign against him and other Loyalists was afoot. He specifically referred to the Jeremy Thorpe affair, a scandal which had involved an allegation that Thorpe, the Leader of the Liberal Party, had hired a hitman to kill Norman Scott, his former and much younger lover. This indicates that Paisley anticipated smears of a sexual nature.  

His outburst must have disturbed the members of the VIP paedophile ring at Westminster which then included: Ted Heath; Peter Morrison; Cyril Smith; William van Straubenzee; Greville Janner and others including, ‘The Sadist’ who took Richard Kerr to dine at Septembers Restaurant in London. He is still alive today and busy denying the existence of a VIP abuse network. He abused Kerr twice – once when Kerr was brought to London from Kincora aged 15 or 16, and later when he was living in London.


Paisley would pretend that he severed all links with McGrath after 1973 on account of what Valerie Shaw had told him about McGrath’s proclivities. This, however, is belied by the fact he – Paisley – officiated at the wedding of McGrath’s daughter, Elizabeth, on 22 January 1976. After the scandal erupted, he would feign difficulty as he tried to remember who McGrath was.

Irrespective of whatever charades were being played in early 1976, actual steps were taken to place a distance between Paisley’s DUP and Tara later in the year. According to a declassified NIO cable dated 7 December 1976 ‘the DUP had “decided that members of the paramilitary organisation, Tara, who were also members of the DUP should be forced to resign from the party’ and that ‘Peter Robinson (Secretary of the DUP) would produce a list of other [DUP] members who are members of Tara. These persons will be dismissed in due course’.

Other declassified UK files demonstrate that Paisley’s DUP was being monitored by British spies.


One member of Tara who was expelled from the DUP had once been McGrath’s homosexual lover. According to declassified British files, this individual informed McGrath that he was an MI5 agent. It is hardly surprisingly that McGrath took no step against him as he – McGrath – was also an agent, not to mention the man’s former lover.

MI5 kept this second Tara agent on their books after McGrath was arrested in 1980. The mind boggles as to why.


In 1977 McGrath sent a member of TARA called Colin Wyatt (now deceased) to Holland to procure guns for Tara. Wyatt returned home and was debriefed in McGrath’s house by someone McGrath introduced to him as an Undersecretary from the NIO. It was far more likely that the individual was an intelligence officer.


By 1982 McGrath was in prison and McKeague in his grave.

If British agents had used McGrath and McKeague to strong-arm Paisley into assisting them, what did they do after they were no longer available to put the squeeze on him for them? An off-the-record press briefing which took place shortly before the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement at Hillsborough on 15 November, 1985, may provide the answer.  A week before the Agreement was signed, the Lobby Correspondents in Westminster received an unattributable briefing from Thatcher’s press office to the effect that she had ordered the MoD to open a fresh inquiry into Kincora. Paisley faced the prospect of explaining under oath why he had done nothing about Kincora after Valerie Shaw had told him about it in 1973.


The intention of the hush-hush briefing to the Lobby Correspondents in London can only have been to cow Unionist opposition to Hillsborough.

Paisley responded to Hillsborough by helping to organise rallies and by setting up a paramilitary organization called Ulster Resistance (UR) the following year. Yet UR proved to be little more than a lightning rod through which Paisley captured and channelled a ferocious wave of Loyalist anger before directing it into the ground. There were dramatic rallies with men in red berets waving pieces of paper – purportedly firearm licenses – but it was all flash and no bang. There would be no strike along the lines of the highly successful 1974 UWC stoppage which had torn down the Power-Sharing Government set up after Sunningdale.

Paisley also rounded on Thatcher with dramatic but ultimately harmless words: “We hand her over to the devil that she might learn not to blaspheme. Oh God, we pray this night that Thou wouldst deal with the Prime Minister of our country. Oh God in wrath take vengeance upon this wicked, treacherous, lying woman.” Paisley was compared to the Grand Old Duke of York for metaphorically marching the troops of UR up to the top of the hill before leading them back down again. Soon opposition to Hillsborough fizzled out.

The threatened MoD inquiry which the Lobby Correspondents had been briefed about never materialised.

There was a sinister sequel to this: UR became involved in the importation of arms from the Lebanon in 1987 (and from elsewhere later). The Lebanese consignment was divided into three shares. One part was intercepted outside Portadown while the remaining two – which were intended for UR and the UVF – ended up in the hands of Loyalist paramilitaries. At the time MI5 was busy colluding with a host of Loyalist murder gangs as the Stevens and other official UK investigations have confirmed.

On this occasion space does not permit a description of the links between Colin Wyatt (mentioned earlier) and another Tara member, Samuel Charles Simpson, that the British intelligence community maintained a link with TARA members, long after McGrath was imprisoned. Interest readers should find a copy of Chris Moore’s superb book on Kincora which explores this terrain expertly.  


Paisley performed the most astonishing U-turn of his career in 2007 when he became NI’s First Minister – a post created by the Good Friday 1998 Agreement which he had hitherto despised – and managed to work in perfect harmony with Martin McGuinness, a senior IRA leader, as his deputy. This pirouette would not be that astonishing if it was the case that MI5/6 had twisted his arm. A less conspiratorial interpretation is that it was nothing more than a cynical power grab. These motivations, of course, are not mutually exclusive.

Paisley died in 2014. One question which will now remain unanswered is how he managed to sleep at night in the knowledge that boys were being raped and brutalised on a daily basis all around him for a decade or more, or how he felt about the Kincora suicides.



The involvement of Mountbatten and other VIPs in abuse  on both sides of the Irish Sea  had the potential to shake the British Establishment to its foundation. In more recent times, Prince Andrew has been stripped of his duties and exposed to public opprobrium for the exploitation of a 17 year old teenage girl. To gauge the threat Mountbatten’s sexual excesses posed to the Establishment, one only has to envisage what the reaction would be if the allegations against Prince Andrew were of the rape of a large number of boys and and teenagers, some as young as 8 years of age, with at least one of them committing suicide. Had Mountbatten been exposed, whether before or after his death in 1979, Prime Minister Edward Heath – another paedophile – might have been exposed and the abuse perpetrated by Jimmy Saville, Sir Peter Morrison MP, Sir Cyril Smith MP and others might have been halted. Instead the abusers flourished like fungi in the dankest recesses of society.

To plug the leaking Kincora dam, a cover-up was designed by the NIO, MI5, MI6 and the RUC to hoodwink the public into believing that the boys at the home were only abused by the staff who worked there and never fed out to a wider ring. The darkest secret to conceal was that Mountbatten was a member of the wider ring. A conspiracy of this magnitude can only have been organised at Cabinet Office level. Chris Moore, author of The Kincora Scandal learnt that the Establishment’s paramount concern was that the links between Kincora and Britain would be exposed. Moore posed a particular threat to the cover-up as he worked for BBC NI.

Another fear was the interest of the press in the Republic of Ireland. The British Establishment was not confident it could control it. The crystal clear implication of this is that it could control Fleet Street. While Private Eye magazine and the Daily Mirror inflicted a few blows, few other London-based outlets were bothered by the scandal. The Eye and Mirror were supplied with stories by journalist and author Paul Foot. Generally the fabrication that the abuse was confined to Kincora was lapped up by most British reporters and editors. Yet, there was plenty of evidence available to demonstrate otherwise. All the media had to do was to talk to the former residents. One of them, James Miller, has described how Joe Mains trafficked him and other residents to a hotel in Bangor. As a child he had to wait in the van outside the hotel while one after another the boys returned to it. He recalls they were sobbing after their ordeal inside the building. On this occasion, Miller was lucky not to be sent inside. His evidence was presented to the Hart Inquiry in 2016. No one doubted he was telling the truth, nor challenged his credibility. Hence, Miller presented a serious problem for Hart as he undermined the narrative Hart had latched onto at an early stage i.e. that the abuse at Kincora went no further than the home itself. Since there was no way to undermine Miller’s credibility, Hart’s solution was to simply to ignore him.

The late Clint Massey, a Kincora survivor recalled a lot of “suits” arriving at the home, often in the evening. “In those days, there were loads of people over from London. I have always assumed they were senior figures from Whitehall. I certainly heard English accents,” he once revealed. The voices he heard may have included if not Oldfield, England and Imrie, perhaps some of their colleagues such as the man from HQNI ‘Denis’ drove to Kincora.


The spider at the center of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring cover-up web can only have been Margaret Thatcher’s manipulative cabinet secretary, Sir Robert Armstrong. He was in office between 1979 and 1987 while Kincora was a pressing live issue. MI5 and MI6 were under his thumb and neither would have arranged the murder of John McKeague without his sanction. The murder of McKeague will be described later in this article.

Armstrong certainly had a history of covering up VIP sex abuse. On 4 November, 1986, Sir Antony Duff, Director-General of MI5, 1985-88, wrote to Armstrong after allegations of child abuse had been made by separate sources against Peter Morrison, the then Conservative MP for Chester and Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party. Morrison had been accused (entirely accurately as it transpired) of child abuse. Duff opined that Morrison was only a minor “security danger”. Allegedly, Morrison did not have access to valuable government secrets. Yet by this stage, he had served Minister of State for Trade and Industry, Minister of State for Employment, and Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury. Nonetheless, Duff concluded: “At present stage … the risk of political embarrassment to the Government is rather greater than the security danger”. There was no consideration of the ongoing risk posed by Morrison to children.

After the Morrison memo came to light in July of 2015, Armstrong (famed for his use of the phrase “being economical with the truth”), defended his inaction thus: “Clearly I was aware of it … but I was not concerned with the personal aspect of it, whether he should or should not be pursued. That was something for the police to consider. My concern was implications of national security and international relations.” (BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme)

Yet, Morrison was never reported to the police by Duff or anyone in MI5. Clearly, MI5 did not believe his denials because they rated him as a risk. Had they believed he was innocent, he would not have been susceptible to blackmail and hence could not have been perceived as a “security danger”, of any significance. Morrison went on to become Thatcher’s private secretary and would receive a knighthood. He had been one of one of the first backbench MPs to support her bid for the leadership of the Tories in 1975.

Morrison’s successful upward career trajectory could not have been sustained without the sanction of MI5 who vet all high-level political appointments. Had something been done about him, the abuse victims at Bryn Estate care home in Wrexham, North Wales, might have been spared his deprecations. He, and another high-profile Conservative politician, were visitors to that house of horrors.

Grotesque as it may seem, the fact that Armstrong and MI5 knew all about his proclivities probably made him an attractive candidate for promotion in their eyes: he was someone they could control. Morrison might have become a cabinet minister had Thatcher not fallen in 1992.

Norman Tebbit, a former Chairman of the Tory Party, has revealed that “rumours had got to my ears” that Morrison was a paedophile more than a decade before the truth was exposed. Morrison died from a heart attack on 13 July 1995, aged 51.

Before he was appointed as D-G of MI5, Duff had served as Deputy Secretary (Intelligence and Security Co-ordinator) at the Cabinet Office with responsibility for security matters from 1980 to 1984.

A central file on the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring must have come into existence at some stage shortly after 1980. The British government requires access to the full unexpurgated truth in case it might ever become a live issue. In many senses the Kincora scandal has never ceased to be a live issue. Such a file would be kept in the massive safe in the Cabinet Office in Downing Street. The need for such a file would be required for a number of reasons, e.g., if a high level whistle blower with a conscience emerged or a foreign intelligence service such as Russia, with access to MI5/6 secrets, decided to brief the media or supply stolen files. (The use to which the Soviet Union put “kompromat” about the vice network is dealt with in Part Five of this article.)


After the scandal erupted in 1980, the RUC Special Branch and at least one member of the RUC’s Criminal Investigations Division (CID), were assigned active parts in the cover-up. A highly successful tactic was to take statements from boys who had only been abused by the staff members at Kincora. These statements became the glue that would hold the Kincora lie together for decades to come, at least in so far as official inquiries were concerned. Judge Hart, a man who was out of his depth in puddle, relied on them despite ample evidence that a number of victims such as James Miller, Gary Hoy, Richard Kerr and Ronald Graham provided of external abuse. Kerr was trafficked to various locations in Northern Ireland and Britain for abuse. His abusers include Enoch Powell MP, the “TV Star” and “The Sadist” (a former MP and friend of James Molyneaux who is still alive). For details about the TV Star see

At least two witnesses could have testified about their abuse at the hands of Mountbatten. They are still available to the IICSA in London but it is clearly not interested.

The cherry-picked statements have served the cover-up well over the decades. They were made available to the Terry Inquiry (1982), The Hughes Inquiry (1984) and Hart (2016-7) all of which relied upon them to confine their account of the abuse to the home.

Other witnesses with information about the wider ring are reluctant to come forward because of confidentiality agreements they signed in return for compensation payments made to them many years ago. The sums involved were miserly. The agreements are also illegal as they attempt to cover up the reporting of crime. Any attempt to enforce them would be a perversion of the course of justice. Suffice it to say, this is not what these victims have been misled into believing by the RUC and NIO.


Three of Kincora’s staff members were scheduled to go on trial in December 1981. They included William McGrath. Before the trial, McGrath was ferried around Belfast in a car with a gang of thugs who helped him threaten and menace some of  his former victims. Meanwhile, an RUC officer – who is still alive – went to Preston, England, where he assaulted Richard Kerr, and warned him not to return to Belfast for the trial. The assault took place inside a prison cell made available by the Preston police. The Preston police have never apologised to Kerr for what happened to him while in their custody. Kerr was also assaulted by the police in London. He is presently suing the NI State in the Belfast High Court.

While the RUC were prepared to let Mains and McGrath go to prison if it came to that, they did not want the services they had provided to the RUC Special Branch, MI5 and MI6 to emerge at the trial, nor any hint that VIPs such as Mountbatten had raped boys such as Stephen Waring from the home.

In London, Kerr secured work as a “bell hop” at the Cumberland Hotel near Marble Arch in London. As the pressure built up around the Kincora scandal in the early 1980s, the people behind the cover-up adopted a policy of carrot and stick to contain Kerr. By way of carrot, his financial security was assured: he was able to afford to live in Flat Number 1, 44 Baker St, around the corner from Oxford Street. Kerr has furnished Village with documentation which confirms he lived there. There was no conceivable way a teenage “bell hop” from Belfast could have afforded such a desirable residence without considerable financial assistance.

By way of stick, the intimidation continued: a group of men came to his flat at 44 Baker St. Some were in police uniform, others in civilian clothing. They knocked him to the ground, told him that they were from the British “Secret Service” and that he was to keep quiet about what he knew or they would arrest him as a ‘terrorist’.

The hard-cop-soft-cop routine was also deployed: the next day he received an apology for the rough treatment he had experienced.


Ian Paisley’s knew William McGrath exceptionally well. Their relationship lasted until the early 1980s despite Paisley’s protestation to the contrary. Dishonestly, after the Kincora scandal erupted, Paisley pretended to have difficulty even remembering who McGrath was. Yet, he knew him so well he even visited him at Kincora – though not to abuse any of the boys at the home. One of the former residents at Kincora, James Miller, told the Hart Inquiry on 8 June, 2016, about Paisley’s visits. Miller thought it ‘just seemed strange that he was so friendly with Mr McGrath, you know’. (Day 210 page 75.)

Paisley intervened to help McGrath before the Kincora prosecutions took place.

One evening Richard Kerr was at the bell hops’ station at the Cumberland Hotel when a colleague from the hotel’s café strolled across and told him someone was looking for him. The visitor turned out to be Ian Paisley. Kerr’s recollection of what would unfold is vivid and sharp: Paisley was seated on his own at a table “near a glass area” and was “wearing a suit with a hat that was placed on the table”. He also “carried a newspaper” which he “placed on the table”. A pair of men sat adjacent to him “in professional dress”. While Kerr recognised Paisley, he did not know the others. They would not address him at any stage during the encounter that ensued. “They created space between themselves and others”. As Kerr recalls it: “Paisley spoke with them; they were in earshot of our conversation. I was unable to discern if they spoke in an English accent. I do know that they were accompanying Paisley because they joined him after our conversation was complete”.

Paisley asked Kerr “to be seated after I was speaking with him standing up”. At the start “of the conversation I did not feel intimidated, yet as the meeting continued, I did begin to feel uneasy”, Kerr recalls.

Paisley knew he had been at Kincora and instructed him that if he was questioned by the police, he was not to “mention anything about Englishmen at Kincora”. Kerr was dumbfounded and responded “What?” Paisley repeated the instruction and added that he was “not [to] speak of other events that occurred in Belfast”.

“I nodded my head. No verbal communication was made”. The encounter only lasted about ten minutes. Paisley left with the two men. “I then went back to the bell station slightly disturbed and I did not respond to another bell boy’s question of the encounter”.

Kerr’s impression of the other men was that they had behaved “normally [and] they didn’t appear to be threatening”. Initially he had not been frightened by them as “they did not speak to me. It wasn’t until later that evening after the meeting [had ended] did I begin to feel concerned as to their intentions”.

  • Why did Paisley visit Kincora so often?
  • How did Paisley know that Kerr had been in Kincora?
  • Who told him Kerr was working at the Cumberland?
  • Who told Paisley “Englishmen” had abused children at Kincora?
  • Why was Paisley prepared to help protect English paedophiles?
  • Who were the men who accompanied him?

The following week a white envelope arrived at the hotel. It contained black-and-white photographs of Kerr, naked. The manager of the hotel, a Mr Gardner, showed them to Kerr who was deeply embarrassed and made an excuse that they must have been posted by a jealous ex-girlfriend. Gardner let Kerr know that he was not pleased but didn’t dismiss him.


Who were the Englishmen Paisley wanted to protect?

As described elsewhere in this article, Clint Massey, another Kincora survivor, revealed in 2015 that “there were loads of people over from London. I have always assumed they were senior figures from Whitehall. I certainly heard English accents”.

The whistle-blower Robin Bryans knew a lot of the English culprits, including Anthony Blunt of MI5. Another was a “decidedly gay-looking” man called Peter England. Bryans told this author in 1990 that while he knew England “very well” he “didn’t like him much”.

England was a former boyfriend of Sir Samuel Knox Cunningham QC MP and had also had a relationship with the Irish publisher, Charles Monteith, both members of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring.

Peter England lived in London, had served in the Royal Navy during WWII and later went to work at the Ministry of Defence (MoD). He transferred to the Northern Ireland Office in the 1970s. Declassified files furnished to the Hart Inquiry demonstrated that some of his work involved oversight of the black propaganda activities of the Army and intelligence services. According to Bryans, “the main thing to do with covering up for Kincora” related to England. This analysis makes perfect sense because England: 1) had died in 1978 and therefore could be named without fear of a libel action; 2) had a criminal record: he had been arrested and convicted for obscene behaviour in a London toilet; 3) his exposure would have blown the Kincora cover-up wide apart, for it would have demonstrated knowledge of the scandal at the highest level of the NIO and made a nonsense of the claim that Kincora was an isolated aberration.

The late Merlyn Rees, a former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, worked with England at the NIO. In his memoirs, Rees described how England was: “a man of wide experience at the [MoD], whose work over the next three years [in Belfast] was to prove invaluable, though the physical stress of the job may have contributed to his tragically early death in 1978”. Moreover, he said that England “was a hard task master but at the same time he always showed concern for those working in the office”.

Clearly, England showed more “concern” for his staff than for the children he abused. By the time of his death, Bryans recalled that England had let himself go and had become “scruffy”


William McGrath had multiple connections to Paisley – as had McKeague. McKeague had converted to the Paisley brand of Free Presbyterianism in 1966, and acted as Paisley’s bodyguard for a time. He was pivotal to the UVF bombing campaign that helped topple NI PM Terence O’Neill in 1968. He was also involved in the Ulster Protestant Volunteers, an organisation Paisley helped to set up in the 1960s.

During the 1960s while they were close to Paisley, McGrath and McKeague were involved 1) in the UVF; 2) the anti-O’Neill bomb campaign; 3) arms procurement; and 4) no end of hate crimes, not to mention child abuse.

The Cumberland Hotel incident seems to demonstrate that Paisley had been got at, most likely by incriminating information possessed by McGrath and McKeague. Since they were British assets, it is legitimate to ask: did one or both of them turn the screws on Paisley to get him to intimidate Kerr; moreover, did they do so with the support of Ian Cameron; Sir Howard Smith, D-G of MI5 1979-81; his deputy Sir John Jones (who became D-G, 1981-85); and others in MI5?


While Kerr was living in London, he continued to suffer abuse. At the time he was a teenager, but it mattered little to the abusers that he had been groomed, brutalised and desensitised since the age of eight.

Kerr has supplied Village with the name and address of a high-profile celebrity abuser who is alive and still enjoys public acclaim and affection. He has appeared in many successful British TV programmes, including one watched by millions of viewers in recent years with him at the centre of it.

There were other VIP abusers of Kerr including a Tory MP who, although no longer serving in Parliament, maintains a high profile. He has endeavoured to cast doubt about the existence of a VIP vice ring during the last few years. Village believes it is highly likely he is one of the main protagonists behind the ongoing cover-up and is acting in tandem with a dubious journalist who has done a lot to introduce misleading information to the public, all of which tends to undermine the credibility of genuine victims,like Kerr.

Returning to the 1980s: Kerr had become a serious threat to the cover-up of the truth about Kincora. One solution would have been to have had him murdered. Howard Smith, the then Direcor General of MI5, was – according to UK declassified files – an advocate of political assassination. John McKeague would have been an ideal choice as a hit man. However, by then Kerr’s murder would have caused too many waves because he had crossed paths with too many VIPs who hardly wanted the police knocking on their doors. In the end the conspirators opted to spirit him out of the country.

A passport was obtained with the assistance of Leon Brittan and Kerr was taken to the US. This was his choice. He had admired Texas as a result of watching the TV show Dallas and asked to be relocated there. Although he could neither read nor write properly, had never had a job – except as a male prostitute under violent duress and a spell as a bell hop- and had no qualifications of any sort, he was instantly provided with a job in the US civil service, a house and a large sum of money.

Richard Kerr now lives in Dallas where he has made many enduring friends and has received support, counselling and encouragement from a variety of kind and generous people all of whom he values enormously including Casey Gates. Nonetheless, he is angry at his former abusers, and the mind games they played with him as a child. He has benefited from years of counselling and is now determined to tell his story. Above all else he wants to achieve “a little justice” for those who died. He has a lot more to reveal. What appears in these pages is merely the beginning.


Paul Foot wrote a series of articles in Private Eye as the Wallace-Clockwork Orange-Kincora crisis threatened to explode into a scandal of Watergate proportions. Foot’s stories were based on leaks from inside the ministry. What they reveal is that there were some senior civil servants, including the “stern Catholic” Permanent Secretary Sir Michael Quinlan, who wanted a full judicial inquiry into the entire murky swamp.

Inevitably, the cover-up merchants prevailed.

Lord Mackay, mentioned in the Private Eye stories, did not manage to get the truth across the line. He served as Lord Chancellor, 1987-97. He presently sits as a Conservative in the House of Lords.


All three of the Kincora staff were convicted but received lenient sentences and were back on the street in no time. When he was released, McGrath received a gift of £10,000 from a mysterious source and was able to purchase a house at Ballyhalbert, Co. Down. When confronted by journalists about this, he refused to disclose the source of the money.

Semple and Mains, who knew all the dark corners too and what lurked in them, presumably received similar sums from an MI5 slush fund.

Ronald Graham, a Kincora survivor who has campaigned for compensation for abuse victims.

These sums were multiples of the pittances doled out to some of their victims back in the 1980s. Most survivors received nothing. It took decades of campaigning in the face of disdain and contempt before the NI State finally resolved to compensate the survivors of institutional sexual abuse in 2020. The recommendation to make recompense was one of the few good things to result from the Hart Inquiry.



John Dunlop McKeague was a sadistic child rapist. The highly regarded journalist and author Martin Dillon has described him as someone who was “lean, sleazy and snake-like, his eyes slightly sunken. When he spoke, the menace was wrapped in slyness but there was no missing his capacity for sadism”.

McKeague was born in Bushmills, County Antrim in 1930. He had strong Loyalist roots. His father and grandfather were members of the original Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and fought with the 36th Ulster Division during WW1. He joined the Unionist party, the Orange Order and the Blackmen as a young man but did not stick with them. “The Orange Order’s like a chocolate egg, it’s hollow in the middle”, he told the Sunday World in 1980. “Certainly, it’s been a dead organisation for years and for that matter, Martin Smyth, the Grand Master is dead as well. If he hadn’t a dog collar, he would never be where he is. Anyway, I left them in ’67, disappointed just as I was with the Unionists. They had become dead wood drifting. That’s proved by the fact that when the troubles broke out they were found wanting”.


McKeague’s unbalanced nature was demonstrated by his bizarre obsession with the Occult, particularly one of its practitioners, Evan Frederick Moran, the second Viscount Tredegar. Tredegar was reputedly the richest man in Britain at the time. He was also reputed to have been an enthusiastic and willing plaything for paedophiles at Buckingham Palace while serving there as a pageboy. His family owned massive mining interests in the UK. He often sailed to Ireland on his magnificent yacht.

Tredegar (left)

Robin Bryans, the Kincora whistleblower who knew McKeague well, described McKeague’s fascination with Tredegar in some of his books. In ‘The Dust Has Never Settled’, Bryans wrote about how “John McKeague kept up his interest in the black mass. … [Tredegar] obsessed McKeague who thought himself something of a poet, and therefore eager to learn more about the Playboy Poet, Evan Morgan, the second Viscount Tredegar”. Ironically, Tredegar later became internationally known for his conversion to Roman Catholicism, and therefore a ‘Taig’ as well as being the high priest of the black mass.

Bryans also described how, “Evan Tredegar loved giving presents, whether to his handsome men-servants or members of the Royal family. When he found out that my mother had been born in July, he quickly dispatched her a ruby ring which she wore until she died 40 years later in 1986. This ring hypnotised John McKeague for he knew Evan Tredegar believed rings possessed mystical qualities”.


McKeague was arrested in 1966 for molesting two YMCA boys. Two powerful men, Alfred Arnold and Sir Knox Cunningham MP, QC, helped him slip free from the charges he faced.

Jeff Dudgeon was interviewed by the author and historian Gareth Mulvenna, for the latter’s podcast, Hidden Histories of the Northern Ireland Troubles. Dudgeon had once spoken to a man who had been “intimately involved” with McKeague and knew about the scandal. “He told me the whole saga of McKeague when he lived in Coleraine. I think he came from, or near there…This guy was a teenager, a young teenager whenever he met McKeague and had some sort of affair with him; and the father…the family, found out and McKeague was told “Get packing” and leave the area, if not, certainly leave the boy alone”.

That same year McKeague transferred his allegiance to Ian Paisley. “I went to hear him speak in Ballymoney and he attacked the Church of Ireland which I belonged to. I went back to my minister and he couldn’t give me the answers, so I went over to Paisley”. He told the Sunday World that, “In 1969 I would have licked Paisley’s boots and the very ground he walked on. But I later found out he wasn’t the man I thought he was. I went to Paisley’s church because I thought the truth was being told biblically, but as I soon realised, it was really being twisted to suit the occasion”.

He went to live in Belfast in 1968. By now he was a friend of of William McGrath and Joseph Mains who would be convicted for child abuse at Kincora in December 1981.


In the late 1960s McKeague was a driving force in the campaign to oust Captain Terence O’Neill as prime mininster of Northern Ireland by extremist Loyalists. McKeague despised O’Neill because he wanted to build bridges with the Catholic community in the North and the Irish Government in the South.

As the 1968 Stormont elections drew near, McKeague and his associates plotted to convince the Unionist electorate that the IRA was on a war footing when in reality it was all but extinct. They hoped to portray O’Neill as weak, ineffectual and an appeaser in the face of a faux IRA campaign; and thereby create a springboard to eject him from office.

McKeague was ever present when trouble was brewing. On 30 November, 1968, he assembled a convoy of thirty cars and headed for Armagh where a NICRA demonstration was about to take place. The RUC intercepted it confiscating 220 cudgels and a pair of guns among other weapons.

Ian Paisley stood against O’Neill in the Bannside constituency in the 1968 election and polled favourably, an outcome that severely undermining O‘Neill’s standing. Weakened, but back in office, O’Neill forged ahead with his reforms. On 23 April 1969 he persuaded his Government to support adult suffrage in local government elections. This in effect gave the Civil Rights organisation the “one man, one vote” they had been looking for. This led to more dissension: O’Neill’s Minister for Agriculture, Major James Chichester Clark, resigned in April 1969.

McKeague became the first terrorist bomber of the Troubles. Between 30 March and 23 April 1969 he and colleagues in the UVF/UPV orchestrated a series of explosions. On the eve of a crucial Unionist Party meeting to discuss leadership issues, the electricity sub-station at Castlereagh, Belfast, was destroyed by four explosions. On Sunday 20 April, another two explosions detonated at the Silent Valley Reservoir in County Down, wrecking valves and supply pipes which cut off two thirds of the water supply to Belfast. On the same night in Kilmore, Co. Armagh, an electricity pylon was damaged and high-tension wires were cut. Three days later another water-supply pipe in Antrim was destroyed. On the 24th an explosion damaged yet another supply pipe.

O’Neill resigned on 1 May, 1969. “Either we live in peace or we have no life worth living”, he told his party. These were prophetic words.


In August 1969 McKeague led the Shankill Defence Association (SDA) gangs that burned hundreds of Catholics out of their homes in Belfast and sparked the Troubles. Half of the houses on Bombay Street were gutted by arsonists, but not before many of them were looted.

Michael McCann’s book provides more detail about the destruction of Catholic homes by McKeague’s thugs

Paddy Devlin MP described the tactics of McKeague’s thugs: “Loyalists who knew the streets daubed whitewash marks on the doors or windows of Catholic homes. These homes were then emptied of the people and burned. As far as I could tell around 650 Catholic families were burnt out that night. Five people lost their lives in exchanges of sniper fire. Police in uniform, covered in civilian coats, were recognised amongst loyalist attackers in Dover Street and I myself saw police armoured cars in Conway Street, standing by as the mobs broke the windows of hastily abandoned Catholic houses before pouring petrol in to burn them”.

Ian Paisley did not participate in the rioting and maintained a relatively low profile. At one point he surfaced at the Ulster Hall to claim that the fighting was being organised by the Catholic Church. He alleged he had evidence that priests had been handing out guns from a church in the Ardoyne. He also claimed that Catholics on the Falls Road were responsible for setting their own homes ablaze as one house had been stockpiled with petrol bombs and when it had been set on fire, all the buildings next to it had gone up in flames.

McKeague on the other hand was proud of what he had done and boasted that if the men under his control had been given “another 48 hours” they would have burnt Catholics out of the maze of side streets around the Clonard.


On 10 November 1969, McKeague, Samuel Stevenson and others were charged with a bomb attack that had taken place at Dunadry on 24 April 1969. Stevenson confessed and was charged with the unlawful possession of gelignite.

McKeague’s trial took place before a jury in Belfast in February 1970. Stevenson, who had already been sentenced, was called as a Crown witness. He told the court that when he had been in the police station, Paisley had visited him and whispered: “Did you talk?”.

Meanwhile William McGrath had circulated a document about the affair which the trial judge had to instruct the McKeague jury to ignore.

During the trial a bomb exploded outside the courthouse, a clear signal to the jury about how they were to determine the outcome of the prosecution. McKeague and his co-defendants were acquitted.


Despite his interest in the McKeague trial – which involved a lot of self-interest and self-preservation – Paisley had fallen out with McKeague by the end of 1969. Paisley’s biographers, Ed Moloney and Andy Pollock, have pointed out that: “McKeague was discarded [by Paisley] in late 1969 at a time when rumours of his homosexuality had become rife in Loyalist circles – his boyfriend was arrested during the August riots and McKeague became so distraught it attracted comment. All that McKeague would ever say about his break with Paisley was that Paisley had summoned him to say that he had become ‘an embarrassment’ and would have to leave the Free Presbyterian Church”.

After the August 1969 riots, Paisley blocked McKeague’s attempts to reactivate the SDA and a string of interlocking vigilante groups. When McKeague tried to organise one in the Donegall Road area, the local defence committee – controlled by Paisley – issued a statement warning people not to engage with him. The Ulster Unionist Party and the Orange Order joined the chorus of denunciation. As authors Cusack and McDonald noted there was “also an effective whispering campaign about McKeague’s homosexuality. The word was put around the Shankill that he was a ‘fruit’”.

As a result of this, from early 1970 McKeague kept to the east side of Belfast where he set up his own private army, called the Red Hand Commando, which was small but well armed and dangerous.


The precise date upon which the RHC was formed is still a mystery but it was most likely sometime in 1972. It was centred on East Belfast, the Sandy Row area and parts of North Down. McKeague and some of his fellow members of the SDA were at its core. They enjoyed close fraternal links with the UVF.

McKeague would personally engage in a series of gruesome sectarian murders with UVF men. Some of these involved so-called ‘rompering’ during which victims were given slow and horrific deaths in torture chambers called Romper Rooms after a television programme for children. They were usually located inside disused buildings, lock-up garages or rooms above pubs and drinking clubs controlled by the UVF, UDA and RHC. Once inside, a victim would be beaten and tortured relentlessly as a prelude to murder, often for the pleasure of his captors. McKeague was the ring leader in a string of these type of gruesome murders.


Michael Stone was once a member of the RHC. He was introduced to McKeague by Sammy Cinnamound the RHC leader in the Braniel estate: “I met McKeague just once, in the Loyalist club on the Ravenhill Road. Sammy introduced us to McKeague and I spoke for a few minutes. I was initially taken aback by his shock of blond hair but immediately understood why people said he was a member of the Red Handbag Commandos. McKeague was blatantly homosexual. A hard-working loyalist, he even printed his own political papers on his own press and he ran the Woodvale Defence Association like a military operation”.

Martin Dillon

Author Martin Dillon, who was a close observer of these events, has noted that McKeague was “a practised manipulator and the young thugs under his control were sometimes targets of his sexual appetite. However, all of them were directed to commit hideous murders… William McGrath, another pederast, was a British Intelligence agent from the 1950s onwards. Like McKeague, he sought out young men and boys, often using his religious ministry as a cover for his sexual proclivities. His connection to McKeague was through their shared, insatiable paedophile leanings and both knew Sir Knox Cunningham and other leading Unionist homosexuals. Collectively, they were part of what today would be called a paedophile ring”.

Another tactic deployed by the RHC was the random drive-by shooting of perfectly innocent Catholics. Some of these were carried out by his teenager recruits.


McKeague may have purchased a degree of protection from the RUC by becoming an informant for it in 1971. According to authors Cusack and McDonald, he was handed over as an informant to the British Army the following year. Cusack and McDonald spoke to a man who claimed he had been McKeague’s military intelligence handler. If the Army source was telling the truth, it means that while McKeague was acting as a source of information for the British Army, he was participating in a series of sectarian murders perpetrated by the RHC.

McKeague’s motive in becoming an informer was to have his revenge against the UDA over a conflict involving protection rackets and, significantly, because they had killed his mother on May 9 1971 in a botched attempt to kill him.

He told the Sunday World that, “Loyalists killed my mother, it wasn’t the work of the enemy. Mother knew who came in, so she had to perish. Certain people couldn’t do what they wanted. They thought if they had rid of me, that would help. I have all the evidence connected with the crime”. Three Loyalists were arrested at the time and released after twenty-two hours questioning. “I know the names of the people involved. The police are well aware too. Some of them are alive, some aren’t. The ones that aren’t met with justice.”


McKeague’s career is littered with examples of extreme antiCatholic/Nationalist loathing. McKeague published the sectarian Loyalist News, which he filled with anti-Catholic rants and sectarian rhymes and cartoons which presented Catholics as unwashed idiots and drunks, and the women as slatternly.

In 1971 McKeague was prosecuted under religious hatred legislation but acquitted.

In early 1972 McKeague appeared on television shortly after Bloody Sunday which he described as “Good Sunday”.

Bloody Sunday, 1972

In September 1972, six months after the fall of Stormont, and the introduction of Direct Rule from London, Loyalist News, seethed with resentment against the British Government, and provides a valuable insight into McKeague’s mindset. It opined that for “being British we have had the privilege to lose our democratically elected local government, thus putting us in a state of limbo which Westminster cannot cope with, never mind understand [..] we are enforced to have to sit and watch every Tom, Dick and Harry of English politicians taking notes and talking a lot of rubbish about our troubles … the privilege of being British means having to sit back and watch people whom you know have no love for this country being taken by the hand by blind politicians grasping for an answer to our troubles. The Loyalist people have certainly paid a heavy price for the privilege of being British … our sacrifices in two world wars and our service to Britain count for nothing when the chips are down. We are being used in a dirty political game by those whom we depend on. Yes the privilege of being British falls heavily on Ulstermen’s shoulders and only time will tell how long we can carry the burden”. (Loyalist News 30 September 1972).

He added ominously, “What we need are one, two, three, many more Bloody Sundays”.


Gusty Spence

Gusty Spence of the UVF escaped from imprisonment after he was released to attend the wedding of his daughter. He and McKeague concluded an agreement on 15 July 1972 on behalf of their respective militia. It stipulated that the two bodies would “work hand in hand in a joint effort to aggregate all resources of both groups and devote all their energies to the war against the IRA”. The agreement noted that the larger UVF recognised “the right of Red Hand units to retain their own separate identity, as a regiment with its own pride and particular style of internal organisation”.

The RHC would also allow the UVF to claim some of the killings it perpetrated.


On 12 November 1973, NI Secretary of State William Whitelaw MP proscribed the RHC.

McKeague was not only interned that year but arrested for armed robbery and sentenced to three years in prison. During his imprisonment he maintained his relationship with Gusty Spence; assumed a leadership role among Loyalist prisoners, and went on two short hunger strikes in protest against the Special Powers Act and prison conditions.

He also intervened to assist the leader of the barbaric Shankill Butchers Lenny Murphy when Murphy landed himself in trouble inside the Maze with some of his fellow Loyalist prisoners.


The fact that the RUC were aware of McKeague’s brutal nature is evident from the fact that they suspected his circle was responsible for one of the most horrific child murders in Irish history, that of Brian McDermott.

On 2 September, 1973, Brian McDermott, a ten-year-old boy from East Belfast was kidnapped and murdered. He was last seen at a playground in Ormeau Park. Parts of his mutilated body were found in a sack in the River Lagan nearly a week later.

For a while, one of McKeague’s close friends Alan Campbell was the RUC’s chief suspect. Campbell was ‘The Demon Pastor’ referred to in the books by Cusack and McDonald. They believed he was a British agent. Their analysis makes perfect sense.

McKeague and Campbell had been members of Paisley’s Ulster Constitution Defence Committee. Campbell had escaped conviction for sexually assaulting a boy from the Bawnmore home in 1971 when leading Loyalists gave him a false alibi.

A military intelligence report on TARA touched upon the murder of McDermott. It noted that the “only link that can be identified between the murder and the homosexual community is via John McKeague. McKeague’s own statements (see Flag ‘S’) raise more questions than they answer. Certainly, his boast that he will not be prosecuted because ‘he knows too much about some people’ merits serious investigation…”.

Village has good reason to believe that the boy was murdered by Campbell and others in the McKeague-Campbell-Mains circle who were abusing him. Privately, Mains spoke about the killing indicating that he knew all about it.

Rumours have circulated that the boy was murdered as part of a Satanic ritual. This is not what Mains ever spoke about. It is more likely that the boy was viciously sexually assaulted, died and his body was cut up so that the evidence of the sexual assault could be concealed. The body was then disposed of in parts, one section turning up in the bag in the river.

If Campbell and Mains were involved, MI5 may very well know precisely what happened.

The rumours that he may have died as a result of a fight with his brother are wholly unfounded and a gross defamation of an innocent man.


On 8 November 1974, Colin Wallace produced a memo for his superiors highlighting the abuse at Kincora and at other children’s homes. It also addressed the McDermott atrocity.

Wallace wanted to interest the press in the Kincora scandal “with a view to exposing what has been taking place and thereby stopping further assaults on the youngsters in these hostels”. He felt this could be achieved by making use of “our own background information… As you know I did try to develop press interest in this matter last but without any success”.

Crucially at paragraph 10 (b) he stated that “The Rev PAISLEY is aware of the situation but has failed to take any action because of possible blackmail pressure owing to his connection with MCGRATH, DAVID BROWN and JOHN McKEAGUE”.

Under the heading ‘Conclusions and Recommendations’ Wallace stated that he found it “very difficult to accept that the RUC consistently failed to take action on such serious allegations unless they had specifically received some form of policy direction. Such direction could only have come from a very high political or police level”.

If, however, the allegations were true, he felt “we should do everything possible to ensure that the situation is not allowed to continue. The youngsters in these hostels almost certainly come from problem families, and it is clear that no one will fight their case unless we do. Those responsible for the murder of Brian McDermott must be brought to trial before another child is killed, and if it can be proved that there is a connection with this homosexual group, then the RUC must be forced to take action irrespective of who is involved”.

The McDermott murder has never been solved.

Alan Campbell enjoyed a career as a pastor and was never charged with McDermott’s murder.

Like McGrath and Paisley, Campbell was a British-Israelite. Another of his beliefs was that black people were inferior to white, no more than ‘beasts of the field’. He described Catholics as worshippers of a “wafer god”. He died in June 2017.

Judge Hart did not ask him to assist his inquiry.


By 1975 McKeague had been released from custody. He nearly met his demise on 6 October 1975 when the IRA attacked his shop. An IRA man threw a bomb into it and killed a Catholic customer, Alice McGuinness. One of McKeague’s sisters was severely injured.


One of those McKeague raped after moving to Belfast was Richard Kerr while the latter was a resident at Kincora. Kerr was supplied to McKeague by his friend Mains. The abuse he had to endure took place on three or four occasions at the Girton Lodge hotel which was a short walk from Kincora. Kerr would receive a phone call ordering him to go down to the hotel which was a six minute walk from the home. There was a reception area on the ground floor with a small corridor off it which had rooms. The abuse took place in these rooms. There was also a bath at the venue. Kerr was given alcohol prior to the abuse he had to endure at it.

Kerr has also provided details to Village  about the defilement of boys at a range of hotels in Belfast and Bangor. It is independently confirmed by contemporaneous British Army notes. (These notes are discussed below.)


One of MI5 and MI6’s darkest projects in Northern Ireland was entitled Operation Clockwork Orange. It exploited the paedophile ring of which McKeague was a member. The operation went through a number of phases. It was primarily designed to counter Loyalist anti-State activities. It involved, inter alia, the collection of damaging information about DUP and other Loyalist politicians as well as paramilitaries such as McKeague.

Colin Wallace was asked by MI5 to assist Operation Clockwork Orange. Towards this end, he was provided with information which he recorded in his notebook. Forensic examination has proven that his notes are authentic. In December 1974 Wallace recorded the following:

“Joseph Mains may be extensively involved in a prostitution ring supplying boys to hotels in Belfast and Bangor. The hotels include: Girton Lodge, Park Avenue; Stormont; Europa and the Queen’s Court in Bangor. [John] McKeague is said to use the Royal Avenue Hotel for the same purposes. Bearing in mind that the East Belfast UDA leadership use the Girton Lodge and the Park Avenue for their meetings, it is simply [not] credible that they did not know what is going on there. Note: Mains has a brother in the RUC. He also has a questionable relationship with Belfast Corporation Welfare Chairman (Cardwell) and Legal Adviser (Young)”.

In September 1975 Wallace wrote a letter to his former boss at British Army HQ in Northern Ireland which referred to “homosexual prostitution at a children’s home in Belfast”.  The relevant extract reads as follows: “My concern now is that there may be an attempt by the Ministry [of Defence] to deny any form of official “dirty tricks” organisation existed within the Security Forces. For example, in the Ministry’s summary of my oral representations made [at an employment tribunal] to John Groves and Mr Fairbairn on 10 May reference is made in paragraph 3 to ‘actions’ which I was asked to launch during the [1974 Ulster Workers Council anti-power-sharing] strike. The word ‘actions’ appears to have been used by MOD to conceal the fact that I referred to the attempts made by the Security Service [i.e. MI5] to discredit various Loyalist politicians, including the Rev Ian Paisley [of the DUP], by the use of forged documents and by linking the MPs with loyalist paramilitary figures involved in homosexual prostitution at a children’s home in Belfast”.

Wallace’s Clockwork Orange notes and his September 1975 letter were furnished to the Hart Inquiry which clearly did not appreciate the significance of either. On their own – and at a minimum – they confirm that MI5 knew about the existence of a paedophile network involving Joseph Mains and John McKeague in Belfast and Bangor five years before it was exposed in the Irish Independent, yet did nothing to interfere with it. On the contrary, they continued to exploit it.

The NIO certainly also knew about McKeague’s sexual deviancy. Indeed, the security departments of the NIO were staffed by MI5 and MI6 officers masquerading as civil servants along with some from the MoD. On 23 May 1975 Andy Tyrie, the Supreme Commander of the UDA – who is still alive –  and another UDA commander, John Orchin, held a meeting with James Allan, a senior MI6 officer posing as a civil servant at the NIO. As indicated earlier in this article, according to declassified British files, during the discussion there were “some ribald discussions of Mr McKeague’s proclivities”. (CJ/43734; See also Margaret Urwin’s superb book on collusion, A State in Denial at page 139.)

McKeague’s military-intelligence handler gave a series of interviews to Jack Holland and Henry McDonald, the authors of the highly regarded book, “INLA Deadly Divisions”. They described how an “intelligence agent who says he was McKeague’s handler confirmed to the authors the former loyalist leader was supplying information to the British from the early 1970s. This man had been McKeague’s handler up until 1976; after that his contact was less frequent, as the value of McKeague’s information declined, mainly because of the fact that other loyalists intensely distrusted him. Still, his handler would visit him in his shop regularly to pick up whatever McKeague had to offer” (p. 307).


In 2016 and 2017 Judge Anthony Hart reviewed the case of Brian Gemmell, an acknowledged British military intelligence officer, who ran Loyalist agents for MI5 in the mid-1970s. Gemmell had disclosed to the press that he had attended a conference with MI5 officers in a hotel on Buckingham Palace Road, London, at which the MI5 contingent spoke about a compromising film they had shot of McKeague while engaged in homosexual acts, something that was still illegal in NI although not in England. MI5 was considering recruiting McKeague as an ‘agent’.

Brian Gemmell

MI5 could not dismiss Gemmell as a liar or fantasist because of the existence of a paper trail that copperfastened his credibility. Instead, damage limitation became the order of the day.

McKeague and some of his associates had been supplied with boys by Joseph Mains at The Park Avenue Hotel in Belfast. According to Richard Kerr, a Kincora resident 1975-77, McKeague ‘and other men’ used to meet Mains at the hotel.

McKeague’s group used to meet in the bar and later abuse boys upstairs. 

MI5’s ‘compromising film’ of McKeague was part of a scheme to blackmail McKeague into becoming an MI5 agent. The odds are high that it was shot in Northern Ireland probably at the Park Avenue Hotel.

Significantly, MI5 acknowledged to Hart that the London meeting took place and that Gemmell had been at it. They even provided an exact date: 10 May 1976. Another meeting took place on 7 September 1976.

Crucially, MI5 then managed to divert Hart’s attention from Belfast to London. As Hart reported, McKeague had been “the subject of surveillance during a visit to London in June 1976 when he was suspected of being part of a UVF arms procurement operation. Photographs were taken of him in public places which suggested to those conducting a surveillance that McKeague had contact with young men to establish homosexual assignations”.


Although Hart swallowed it whole, MI5’s account of the Gemmell-McKeague affair does not chime with the truth. The purported photographs of McKeague in London conversing with ‘young men’ would have been worthless to MI5 as tools of blackmail. In the first instance, homosexual relations with young men – once they had reached the age of consent – was legal in England in 1976. Moreover, McKeague’s sexuality was common knowledge in NI.

Clearly, MI5’s ‘compromising film’ must have involved something far more squalid than photos taken on the streets of London:  it far more likely involved moving footage of McKeague engaged in the rape of a juvenile or child in NI.

On one level perhaps MI5 deserves credit for having at least conceded that a proposal had been made to blackmail McKeague. ‘Officer 9004’ of MI5 admitted to Hart “that there was a proposal in November 1976 by the MI5 officer with whom Brian Gemmell had lunch in September that ‘serious consideration should be given to using [McKeague’s] homosexual tendencies to recruit him’”.

Readers, however, are invited to make up their own minds about another assertion made by Officer 9004, namely that while the proposal was examined by other MI5 officers, including management, it was not endorsed in the end.

At least one thing has been put beyond debate: it is now an officially acknowledged and recognised fact that MI5 considered the use of sexual blackmail to ensnare McKeague – a known sadistic sectarian serial killer – on the basis of his sexual interest in ‘young men’.


The rest of this article will proceed on the basis that McKeague did in fact become an MI5 agent in 1976. The difference between an informer and an agent in this context is that an informer supplies information and retains a degree of independence whereas an agent generally follows the orders issued to him by his handlers. Some information has come to light about the use to which MI5 put McKeague.

As an MI5 agent McKeague helped set up the “Wife Beater”, a leading DUP politician, for MI5. The latter was recorded while having sex with a teenager at the Park Avenue Hotel in Belfast in late 1976 or 1977. The “honey trap” operation took place on the first floor of the hotel. The teenager was told by an Englishman in a nearby room to that occupied by the “Wife Beater” to make sure that the target was to be caught saying something incriminating. The teenager was told where a hidden microphone was placed so he could make sure it picked up their conversation. “I was asked to get [the target] to undress me and get him talking on tape”. See also


An early indication of McKeague’s recruitment as an MI5 agent lies in the fact the RHC came to enjoy high-level protection during the investigation into the murder of Thomas Ludlow. Although Ludlow’s murder had taken place in May 1976 before the likely date of McKeague’s recruitment by MI5 later that year, the investigation continued for years. Crucial evidence was withheld from the gardaí by the RUC which could have solved the crime.

Paul Hosking

Ludlow was murdered by a vicious drunken Red Hand Commando unit murdered in Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland. Ludlow was a likeable man who played Santa for children at Christmas. Politically, he was a Fine Gael supporter. He was abducted while walking home at night at random by the Red Hand Commando gang on 1 May, 1976. Earlier that day three of McKeague’s subordinates along with a fourth man had crossed the Border. The fourth man was a low level member of the UDA called Paul Hosking who was then a 19-year-old factory worker. He had fallen in with the RHC unit during a drinking spree earlier that day. As the session proceeded, the gang asked him to join them on a spying mission across the Border. Hosking had never been in the Republic and agreed to go, hoping to enjoy a pint of Guinness on enemy soil. He was shocked when, in the early hours of the morning, the trip ended in the brutal random slaying of Seamus Ludlow, a much-loved and inoffensive 47-year old forestry worker, in Dundalk.

Seamus Ludlow

The next day one of the unit, Richard Long, spoke to McKeague and told him what had happened including the fact that Hosking had been present. McKeague saw a solution to the problem by forcing Hosking to join the RHC. Later Hosking was told that McKeague knew about his presence on the mission and that he would be killed if he talked about it and that McKeague wanted him to join the RHC. Hosking didn’t want to join and successfully obtained help and protection from the UDA

The RUC Special Branch soon amassed a body of evidence to identify the killers but dark forces on both sides of the border intervened to ensure that the murder was not solved. By the time of this intervention, McKeague had become an MI5 agent.

The Barron Inquiry, set up by the Irish government, into Ludlow’s killing revealed a wealth of material including the perplexing behaviour of British security forces which can only make sense if they were protecting McKeague. Equally perplexing was the response by Larry Wren, the head of the Garda’s overarching intelligence directorate, C3, to exploit the available evidence.

The behaviour of the RUC and C3 only makes sense if McKeague was being protected by MI5 and Wren was extending a helping hand in the cover-up. This was not the first – nor would it be the last – time Wren would act in a manner which was to the benefit of British Intelligence. See also

Wren’s name came back into the public arena in 2019 when his reprehensible treatment of Garda Majella Moynihan was exposed.

See also

See also


McKeague became involved in the Ulster Loyalist Central Co-ordinating Committee (ULCCC), eventually becoming its chairman. It had been set up in 1974 after the success of the Ulster Workers Council strike which had brought down the Stormont Power Sharing administration earlier that year. Its members included the UDA, UVF, Red Hand Commando, Down Orange Welfare, Loyalist Association of Workers, Orange Volunteers and other groups.  

In 1976 McKeague was acting as its spokesman. He also established a sub-committee in an attempt to co-ordinate loyalist paramilitaries under one unified “Ulster army”. Had he succeeded, he would have been able to give MI5 an insight into the inner workings of the UDA, UVF and other terror groupings who would have enlisted. McKeague later became the chair of the ULCCC and presumably would have played a decisive role in a co-ordinated Loyalist paramilitary army. However, the process proved a failure. Rather than coalesce, the UDA and UVF continued to feud.

The precise role MI5 played in all of this remains elusive. All that can be noted for the present is that the man at the centre of these developments was an MI5 agent. Did MI5 and the NIO hope to unite all of the Loyalist terror groups under one banner and control them through McKeague who became chairman of the organisation?

McKeague engaged in another bizarre foray with the aid of the ULCCC in late 1976. Together with a man called John McClure, he reached out to Republicans Joe Cahill and Ruairí Ó Brádaigh with the prospect of starting talks to find a common platform to achieve an independent Northern Ireland. A first meeting appears to have taken place in late December 1976. Other talks followed. The aim was to merge the ULCCC’s proposal for an independent Six-County State with the Republican Movement’s programme for a new four-province federation known as ÉIRE NUA. If successful, the parties would then approach the British Labour government led by James Callaghan and ask Britain to leave Ireland.

Desmond Boal QC came on board to represent Loyalists while Seán Mac Bride SC flew the flag for Republicans. McKeague also met Gerry Adams but the meeting or meetings were unproductive. Adams left feeling that covert discussions with loyalist paramilitaries were a waste of time. However, Boal and McBride had a number of meetings at discreet venues including one in Paris. If they thought they were hiding from the press and intelligence services, they were sorely mistaken for McKeague would have been reporting developments to his handlers in MI5. Conor Cruise O’Brien became aware of it and condemned it on RTÉ Radio.

The process did not survive the bright light of public scrutiny and collapsed. There were repercussions for the ULCCC as it had not endorsed the process, and the UDA and Down Orange Welfare resigned from the co-ordinating body with the result the wider organisation went into abeyance.

Did it suit MI5 to embarrass Republicans by revealing they had been meeting notorious Loyalists such as McKeague?

Who leaked details of the process to Conor Cruise O’Brien?

Would the leaks have occurred if the ULCCC had not begun to fall apart anyway?


The failure of the ULCCC also undermined the unity of a strike which Paisley was trying to organise to emulate the successful 1974 Ulster Workers Council one which had brought down the Stormont Power Sharing administration. McKeague became embroiled in attempts to undermine 1977 strike. The campaign was one involving smears and destabilisation with strong echoes of Operation Clockwork Orange i.e. stories about homosexual activities among the organisers. The 1977 strike proved a failure.


Britain’s Foreign Office had opposed the appointment of Cardinal Tomas O Fiaich, who had been critical of British excesses in Ireland, as the Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of Ireland in August 1977. Later, there was sustained British opposition, some of it made public by Tory MPs, to him being given a cardinal’s hat. After he was made a cardinal in June 1979, British diplomatic pressure on the Vatican switched to having a second Irish cardinal created, one who might balance O Fiaich’s nationalistic views. This was an almost unprecedented suggestion: there had not been two Cardinals in Ireland at the same time since the 19th century, Cardinals Cullen and McCabe.

The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) and the Foreign Office had long since realised the value of the Catholic Church in Ireland as a propaganda tool against the IRA. The best known of the attempts made by their colleagues in British Intelligence to woo the Catholic Church were those of Sir Maurice Oldfield after his appointment as Security Co-ordinator Northern Ireland, by Mrs Thatcher in 1979. He went to great efforts to get to know Catholic priests personally and manipulate them. These efforts were detailed by his close friend, Anthony Cavendish, in his 1987 book, Inside Intelligence.

Cardinal O Fiaich, the most important cleric in the country, however, was a lot wiser to the machinations of the NIO, MI5/6 and Military Intelligence than most of his clerical contemporaries. He had a keen interest in how they operated in Ireland. His private library contained a number of books on British Intelligence, including Roger Faligot’s banned book, The Kitson Experiment which had been withdrawn as a result of a minor libel. In 1979 the cardinal became the object of the attention of MI5 agent McKeague.

McKeague loathed the Vatican and everything it stood for. He had spent his life denigrating, ethnically cleansing, torturing and murdering Catholics to stem what he perceived as the Vatican’s anti-Protestant agenda. Like McGrath, he almost certainly saw the IRA and the Vatican as partners. When there was speculation that Pope John II would cross the border during his visit to the Republic in 1979, Paisley threatened action if the proposed trip was given the green light. The Foreign Office and NIO were anxious to lure the Pope to the North. They knew that he was going to implore the IRA to abandon violence and felt his plea would have more impact if made on Northern soil. A site near the cathedral in Armagh in Northern Ireland was chosen for an open-air mass should he come. However, a number of bishops were against a visit on security grounds. Shortly after Paisley’s threats, a delegation of Loyalists including McKeague visited Cardinal O Fiaich at his home, Ara Coeli, behind the cathedral in Armagh. During the meeting McKeague assured the cardinal that the Pope had nothing to fear if he came North. Paisley could complain, he added, but without their “muscle”, he could do nothing. The story of this bizarre visit was later reported in John Hume’s biography by Belfast journalist Barry White (p. 207). At the time, McKeague’s actions were perplexing. They can, however, be explained in terms of him having been a British agent acting on orders.

McKeague’s mission was not a success and security concerns prevailed with the result the Pope did not cross the border. Instead, on 29 September, 1979, he visited Killineer, near Drogheda, close to the border, where he led a Liturgy of the Word for 300,000 people, many from across the border where he appealed to the men of violence: “on my knees I beg you to turn away from the path of violence and return to the ways of peace”.


McKeague’s Red Hand Commando (RHC) continued to pursue it murderous agenda during the late 1970s and by 1981 was plotting to kill Charles Haughey, the former Taoiseach (prime minister) and leader of Fianna Fail and his family.

The RHC plot involved a bomb attack aimed at Haughey’s yacht, the Taurima II, while it was berthed at Dingle Harbour. The RHC conspirators wanted to avenge the murder of Lord Louis Mountbatten whose boat, the Shadow V, had been destroyed in an IRA explosion off the Sligo coast in August of 1979. The RHC operation gathered momentum during the summer of 1981, a few months after Haughey and his Fianna Fáil party had gone into opposition but with a healthy 45.3% of the vote. Haughey had repaired to Kerry to relax after the election. If Haughey had been assassinated, George Colley would probably have succeeded him as Fianna Fail leader.

Michael Stone, a Loyalist terrorist, learnt about the RHC plot in the 1990s while serving a sentence in the Maze with the bomb-maker who was the driving force behind the operation. Stone referred to him as ‘M’, someone who held ‘rank’ in the RHC.

The RHC unit which murdered Thomas Ludlow in the Republic of Ireland in 1976 had reported directly to McKeague. Presumably, as a holder of ‘rank’ in the RHC, ‘M’ also reported directly to him.

According to Stone, ‘M’ had “seen” a “massive” file which disclosed a large amount of information on all aspects of Haughey’s life. This was hardly something ‘M’ or the RHC had assembled on their own. It was, however, exactly the type of information which MI5 and MI6 had been collecting about Haughey for over a decade.

In addition, ‘M’ carried out his own fieldwork. According to Stone, he “watched the [Haughey] boat for two weeks and knew it would be easy to breach its security and plant the bomb once it berthed in Dingle”. ‘M’ told Stone “the plan was that Charles Haughey would die in exactly the same way as Lord Mountbatten – blown to bits on his boat”.

Haughey kept the Taurima II in Howth during most of the year but took it to Kerry during the summer holidays. In 1981 it was skippered by a man called Brian Stafford. Haughey and members of his family including Sean and Conor and family friends were often on it. The boat would sail between Dingle and Inisvickillane where it moored just off the island. It also went on longer trips around the Irish coastline. Hence, any number of people could have been killed by the RHC bomb, not just Haughey. Indeed, Haughey might not have been killed at all.

In the eyes of the RHC, Haughey’s wife and children were fair game for this act of revenge; probably because Mountbatten’s grandson had been killed in the Sligo explosion. It need hardly be stressed that Haughey and his family had deplored the Mountbatten atrocity but this mattered little to the extremists of the RHC.

‘M’ had business interests in Dublin which provided him with an excuse to explore landmarks both commercial and industrial that could be attacked. His business associate had a car and that meant ‘M’ could travel throughout the island without attracting suspicion. He said he made the most of all opportunities and even took an unsuspecting girlfriend on holiday to County Kerry, where Haughey had a holiday home and a yacht. ‘M’ said he loved Kerry; it was a beautiful landscape. The couple spent two weeks in the caravan park in Dingle.

According to Stone, ‘M’ planned to “wire Haughey’s boat with five pounds of commercial explosives. … [‘M’] would attach the bomb to the on-board radio using an electrical detonator. Once the radio was switched on, the bomb would explode”.

Fortunately for the Haughey family, the operation ran onto the sand when two of the RHC conspirators were arrested during a bank heist a week before the proposed attack in Dingle.

There was a second hitch: the gelignite for the attack “was purchased from a quarry in Scotland and transported by a sympathetic Ulster freight firm, to the province. Unfortunately, the journey did not agree with the explosives and when the sticks were unwrapped they were covered in beads of liquid. The long transit had caused them to sweat, which meant they were volatile and ready to explode at any time. M disposed of them. He had to go back to the drawing board and look for a new device”.

In the end ‘M’ abandoned the operation. See also


The Kincora scandal erupted in Januay 1980. After the conviction of the three Kincora staff members in December 1981, a number of RUC CID officers began to circle around McKeague. Clearly, these officers did not believe the child abuse involving the boys from Kincora was confined to the staff members since McKeague did not work at the home. McKeague was picked up and questioned by them in January 1982. He responded by making threats that if he was charged, he would expose what he knew about the scandal. McKeague’s former British military intelligence handler told Holland and McDonald “that some time in January 1982 he learnt that McKeague was about to “go public” on what he knew concerning the Kincora Boys’ Home scandal”. (p. 308) To those in the CID who were not infected by the contagious immorality of the NIO/MI5/6, this could have been a major breakthrough. The obvious next step was to charge McKeague and see who he would point the finger at. Since McKeague was extremely close to Mains, he undoubtedly knew about Mountbatten. Indeed, Mountbatten was known and admired in Belfast’s paedophile and pederast community. When he died, Ken Larmour, another member of the paedophile ring, cried in front of John McMahon, a boy he – Larmour – was abusing. McMahon recalled how Larmour said of Mountbatten that “he had been so good to the boys in Belfast. Ken talked about the circle as the old Greek Culture of adult men mentoring young boys.  It was an upper class view of paedophilia”.

It is inconceivable therefore that McKeague did not know about Mountbatten. Ken Larmour was part of a circle which included Alan Campbell, McKeague and other abusers. They thrived on gossip and scandal.

As sure as night follows day, MI5 would have assumed McKeague knew all about the Royal from Mains or one or more of the boys such as Stephen Waring who had been abused. Indeed, it is far more likely that they had express knowledge that McKeague knew about Mountbatten’s crimes. Moreover, research by Village  indicates that at least one of the boys molested by Mountbatten was also defiled by McKeague.

Of equal – if not more – concern to MI5, was the fact McKeague knew about the honeytrap which had been set for the “Wife Beater”.

McKeague gave an interview to the Sunday World in July of 1980. At this stage the noose was beginning to tighten around Mains, McGrath and the third Kincora staff member yet to go on trial, Raymond Semple. McKeague must have been greatly concerned about his future too but was placing his faith in his MI5 handlers to protect him. When asked if he feared assassination he replied: “At one time, yes, but now it’s the last thing on my mind. If it happens, it happens. I have no family of my own, the only person I worried about was my mother and now she’s gone. .. People say I’ve sold out, but I haven’t changed. My loyalty is to Ulster. But I could get a Loyalist bullet. If it happens the only thing I want is to be left in a Republican area so that they’re blamed”.

But his handlers could not protect him from RUC inquiries because some of the RUC CID officers were far from corrupt. He had the ammunition to blow MI5’s paedophile blackmail operation asunder and destroy their grip over people such as James Molyneaux MP, the “Wife Beater” and many others. The politicians were certain to resign and face criminal charges whereby they would become useless to MI5 who had put such effort into ensnaring them. Suffice it to say, McKeague was also threatening to destroy Mountbatten’s reputation.

If McKeague was to “go public” or even speak to the honest members of the RUC’s CID, the prospect of chaos loomed: soon members of the vice network could be fighting like ferrets in a sack and a lot of dirt could spill out.


MI5’s concerns about McKeague were solved permanently on 29 January, 1982, when he was assassinated at the shop he ran on the Albertbridge Road in Belfast by a two-man unit of the INLA. One of them shot him in the head at close range in the presence of an elderly assistant. According to Holland and McDonald, “Two men were involved, escaping on foot into the Short Strand. One of the men is known to have been working for the Special Branch, and the other is also alleged to have had security force connections”. (308)

Conveniently, the murder took place before any further enquiries were undertaken or charges levelled against McKeague by the CID.

The INLA was never able to establish why the unit which carried out McKeague’s assassination chose to do it. Furthermore, the unit acted without any sanction from their superiors.

Authors Holland and McDonald provided a further insight into the assassination by revealing details about a man called Rabbie McAllister, an INLA member who had become an RUC Special Branch agent. The INLA was a Republican paramilitary organisation which had been formed by former members of the Official IRA. McAllister was arrested on 5 February, 1982, a few days after McKeague’s assassination. He provided the RUC with a statement revealing copious details about the activities of other INLA members. Significantly, in a later affidavit he swore that, “Towards the end of 1981 as a result of constant arrests and psychological pressure I was trapped into working as an informant for the RUC Special Branch”. (p. 308)

According to Holland and McDonald, “McAllister was involved in five murders and attempted murders that took place between September 1981 and January 1982. In court, the police revealed that he had made his statements when he realised that ‘his Special Branch handlers could not help him’ (Belfast Telegraph, 4 November 1985). In November 1985, McAllister was sentenced to a total of 766 years for his part in the series of crimes, including the murder of the UDA man Bucky McCullough. This raises many questions, not the least of which is how it was that McAllister, while working for the Special Branch, was allowed to commit serious crimes, including murder and attempted murder. The McKeague killing was not mentioned by McAllister in his statement, though he is alleged to have been part of the unit that carried it out. This raises another complex problem. A former leading member of the INLA reported that no-one in the organisation knew who gave the order for McKeague to be shot. This is more intriguing still in the light of the allegation that McKeague himself was working for British army intelligence”. (p. 309)

Holland and McDonald were also able to reveal that while McAllister was in jail, “he approached a senior member of the Belfast INLA (imprisoned on the word of) another informer and told him that British intelligence had helped set up McKeague. They had guaranteed that there would be no foot patrols in the area when the assassination took place. It is also alleged that the eighteen-year-old gunman who actually shot McKeague made a long statement outlining his involvement in working for the security forces, and left it in the keeping of a Belfast priest”.

Readers interested in discovering more about the role of McKeague and his Red Hand Commando as instruments of MI5 dirty tricks – including an attempt to assassinate the former Irish Taoiseach, Charles Haughey in 1981 while he was an MI5 agent can visit: This article also describes his career before he was recruited by MI5 including his involvement in a bomb campaign which toppled Capt. Terence O’Neill as Prime Minister of Northern Ireland in 1969; his participation in the kidnap and torture of Catholics who were then murdered in “Romper Rooms”; his imprisonment in 1973 and an attempt by the IRA to murder him in 1975. The article also demonstrates how Captain Brian Gemmell was a party to MI5’s surveillance of McKeague before his recruitment by MI5. Gemmell’s revelations forced MI5 to concede to the Hart Inquiry that they considered recruiting McKeague after watching him arrange sexual assignations in London with young males in 1976. They then proceeded to deny that they actually attempted to recruit him. However, the success McKeague and his Red Hand Commando enjoyed in avoiding police attention over the next six years belies this as does his complicity in the “honeytrap” set for the “Wife Beater” and his visit to O Fiaich.


MI5 was to benefit from other convenient deaths: Joss Cardwell, Chairman of Belfast Corporation Welfare Committee – which was responsible for Kincora – was also questioned by the RUC in 1982.

Two of Richard Kerr’s social workers became aware of what was going on at Kincora and tried to get the authorities in Belfast to intervene but they met a blank wall because of abusers like Joshua Cardwell. He was Chairman of Belfast Corporation’s Welfare Committee which was responsible for Kincora. He was also a friend of Mains. Another key figure was a legal official called Young who helped suppress the scandal, also an associate of Mains.

Kerr knew Cardwell as “Joseph” Cardwell and recalls that he wore a “funny” hat and drove a blue minivan. He does not believe that he “owned the minivan but one was provided for him and others as transportation for outings out of Kincora”. Cardwell took his victims to the Adelphi Hotel in Portrush. Kerr recalls the “evening bar” was “down the stairs back then”. He was plied with alcohol by abusers at this venue.

Cardwell committed suicide in March 1982 after being interviewed by the RUC about Kincora. A door could be heard slamming in hell immediately after he took his last breath. Cardwell was one of the links between Belfast and London. On at least one occasion he sent Steven Waring from Kincora to London for sexual abuse. Again, the fact the RUC spoke to Cardwell indicates that they did not believe that the abuse was confined to the four walls of Kincora. See also


Pastor Willie Mullan, a former alcoholic and a friend of William McGrath and Ian Paisley, was another individual who was implicated in the scandal and committed suicide. Suffice it to say, he did not work at Kincora either.

Many former Kincora and Williamson House boys committed suicide including Stephen Waring. The latter’s death was particularly welcome as he had made complaints in 1977 about what was happening. Had he still been alive in 1980, he would have presented a severe problem to the architects of the cover-up: Armstrong, Duff, Smith and Jones.

While these deaths did not put the Kincora toothpaste back in the tube, they did help stem what could have been an utter disaster for the NIO, MI5 and MI6.



Another instrument in MI5’s dirty tricks toolbox was the use of fraudulent witness statements. Village has been shown one which was prepared but never signed by a British soldier who worked with MI5 and MI6 at Lisburn. The forgery was presumably prepared but never presented to him as it became clear he was not corrupt. He will be referred to as Michael Schneider (not his real name) in this article. Nonetheless, an unsigned copy survived and was furnished by the Hart Inquiry to Schneider. Its purpose was to undermine Colin Wallace

The fabricated Schneider statement contained a brief resume of his career including the fact that he had: “worked as an Information Officer in the Ministry of Defence in Northern Ireland from 1972 until 1976. The exact dates I am not sure”.

Schneider in fact worked at this post until December 1975, a date of which he was well aware. Presumably, the prevarication in the statement was designed to make him look indecisive and provide ammunition to undermine him if it became necessary to do so later.

Schneider’s relationship with Colin Wallace was introduced next: “Whilst at Northern Ireland I (worked) with the chap called Colin Wallace”.

Schneider says that he would never have used a word such as “chap”. The phrase is, however, typical of the type of language used by the upper class type of Englishman that MI5 and MI6 employed.

Significantly, Schneider’s alleged description of Wallace did not include any reference to his PSYOPS (psychological operations) role although Schneider was well aware that Wallace carried out psychological operations:

“Colin Wallace and I were serving as officers in the army cadet forces and this is where my contact with Wallace was initiated. Initially Wallace and I were both [illegible] same grade but later in my service with MoD, Wallace was promoted to Senior Information Officer. Wallace was at no time answerable to me and we were both involved at a level in similar work.”

The statement also conceals the important fact that Schneider had access to intelligence files at Lisburn. Indeed, he knew about the abuse at Kincora because he had read some of the files that were flowing into Lisburn about the home. Yet, in the forged statement the very opposite picture is painted. Schneider has described the next passage we are about to quote as a “blatant lie”: “I have been asked if I ever heard about Kincora Boys’s home in my/any capacity whatsoever. I have never seen any official document to my knowledge, on Kincora boys’s home although I do recognise as a result of the situation that prevailed in Northern Ireland at this time, it may have been discussed verbally. If Wallace may have discussed Kincora with me, I cannot remember any specific detail”.

 The statement also conceals the important fact that Schneider had access to intelligence files at Lisburn. Indeed, he knew about the abuse at Kincora because he had read some of the files that were flowing into Lisburn about the home. 

The lies which Schneider has described to Village as “balls” kept flowing:  “The names McGrath and [John] McKeague mean something to me, although I cannot connect McGrath with any verbal conversation regarding Kincora. I did not know that McGrath worked at Kincora boys home but his assumed association with the Protestant Military Organisation called “TARA” was on record”.

The overarching purpose of the forgery emerges next:  an assertion designed to undermine the authenticity of a document entitled ‘“TARA” – Reports Regarding Criminal Offences Associated with the Homosexual Community in Belfast’ dated 8 November 1974 which was written by Colin Wallace. This document revealed a deep knowledge of the abuse at Kincora. In the 1980s it was published in full by the Irish Times and featured in Paul Foot’s book on Wallace. If true, it demolishes the cover-up. According to the forged Schneider statement: “I have been shown a document marked EGM3 by Detective Inspector … ‘To my knowledge I have never seen this document before”‘.  

Schneider was never presented with the TARA memo by anyone in the RUC – nor anyone else – to ascertain if he had seen it. Had they done so, he would have told them precisely what it was they did not want to hear: that he had seen it. Not only that, he had seen other documents relating to Tara while at Lisburn including a 1973 press briefing which Wallace had shown to a number of journalists.

Schneider did not appear as a witness at the Hart Inquiry. If he had, Hart would have had to write a different report.


Another tactic in the ongoing cover-up is to conceal files from official inquiries. The RUC, MI5, MI6 and the NIO promised to provide the Hart Inquiry with all the relevant files in their possession. In blatant contravention of this undertaking, it has since emerged that a series of Kincora files were not passed to Hart and will not be disclosed to the public for a number of years, if ever. It appears they emanated from the Belfast Welfare Department and possibly other civil service departments. There are potentially many files dating back to the early 1970s when residents made complaints which were ignored. At this point in time it is not clear what files are being retained. In addition, MI5 and MI6 did not furnish the true files they hold on figures such as John McKeague, the “Wife Beater”, James Molyneaux and other influential Loyalists who were child abusers.

Some of the Belfast child welfare files may have been seen by officials in the run up to the establishment of the McGonagle Inquiry. It was set up shortly after the conviction of the Kincora staff in December 1981.  On the 17th of that month, Ed Moloney and Andrew Pollak published an article in the Irish Times which revealed that the ‘”real scandal of the Kincora Boys” home, as the Lord Chief Justice Sir Robert Lowry indicated in court yesterday, was the fact that the activities of Joseph Mains, Raymond Semple and William McGrath apparently went undetected by the authorities since the home was established twenty years ago”. The reporters then listed several occasions upon which boys had made complaints to social workers or welfare departments which had been passed to the RUC and other authorities but ignored.

On the same day, 17 December, 1981, the NI Eastern Health and Social Services Board set up the McGonagle probe. It was described as a committee of inquiry into the management of Kincora and associated matters. As more press revelations were made, additional powers were afforded to the inquiry. Its Chairman was the former North of Ireland Ombudsman Stephen McGonagle. His colleagues included Dr Stanley Worrall, Headmaster of the Methodist College, Belfast, Professor Olive Stevenson of Keele University and Professor Norman Tutt of Lancaster University.

On 13 January 1982, Moloney and Pollak published a report outlining details of the suicide of Stephen Waring in November 1977. Although not included in the article, Village has discovered that Waring was one of the boys Mountbatten had abused in Classsiebawn in August 1977. What emerged in 1982 was that Waring had made a number of allegations against the staff at Kincora before his suicide.

Three of the five members of the McGonagle Inquiry resigned quickly telling the media they had been given assurances about the wide scope of their inquiry but that it had been curtailed.

According to a source in Scotland, his father was part of an early investigation into Kincora and what he discovered shocked him. Thereafter, he and his family received protection from a friendly police officer back in Scotland. The police officer seems to have had reason to fear that the family was in some sort of danger. Details of this affair have been provided to the IICSA in London.

What is in the suppressed Kincora files that is so damaging that the British Government is still keeping them under lock and key? The answer is probably a simple one: some of the abuse victims may have provided the names of their abusers or clues as to their identities. If this is so, these statements have the potential to establish that abuse took place beyond the four walls of Kincora. Hence, their declassification would sweep aside the findings of the Terry, Hughes and Hart inquiries, all of which relied upon the cherry picked statements which did not reveal the existence of a wider paedophile ring. Such a revelation would have a domino effect. Once the British Establishment is forced to concede the existence of a wider ring, a proper inquiry would surely have to be called. Such an inquiry would have to have as part of its terms of reference a mandate to probe how the scandal was covered up for so many decades and by whom. The odds are that such an investigation, if successful, would extend beyond the lairs of MI5 and MI6 to the Cabinet Office and Buckingham Palace.


The most recent development in this sordid scandal is that Andrew Lownie has confirmed what has been long suspected by those who have followed the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring scandal for decades: that files have been destroyed. Please see the letter Lownie received from the NIO on 13 March, 2020, which is set out in full below:

What was in these files?

What was the justification for their destruction?

Is there an idiot in any village in Ireland or Britain who truly believes these are the only files which have been destroyed?

The Establishment cannot afford to destroy all of the files on Kincora and the scandals to which it is linked. A central file almost certainly exists. As indicated earlier, such a file would be kept in the massive safe in the Cabinet Office in Downing Street.



The Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF) is a Loyalist paramilitary murder gang. Its name has been misappropriated by those behind the ongoing cover-up of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring scandal in an attempt to intimidate Richard Kerr.

Kerr, who lives in Dallas, Texas, was sent an intimidating letter in November 2016 to deter him from making any further revelations about his life.

Before we turn to the threatening letter, a little additional context might assist in explicating the underlying menace of it: Richard Kerr was a close friend of Steven Waring who was also a resident at Kincora. Waring was one of those abused by Mountbatten. He committed suicide by plunging into the sea from the Belfast-Liverpool Monarch Ferry in 1977 rather than suffer any further abuse. Kerr has been haunted by his death ever since. Like Kerr, Waring had been taken out of Kincora and subjected to vile abuse on both sides of the Irish Sea.

In November 2016 Kerr received the following anonymous letter:









The anonymous letter was posted from south East Anglia. There is, however, little or no mystery about the identity of its true author.

Kerr had made a number of trips to Ireland and the UK before he received the letter. During these trips he was – as he puts it himself – “hijacked” by some very unsavoury characters whom he instinctively distrusted and to whom he decided not to provide his address in Texas. This group pretended they were interested in exposing the VIP paedophile ring but in reality wanted to find out what Kerr was going to say about it and discredit him.

They made the monumental error of taking Kerr for a fool when in fact they were the amateurs .

Instead of providing his own address, Kerr gave them the address of a trusted confidant who lived on the North Central Express Way in Dallas. Yes, you guessed it: the threatening letter was subsequently sent to the confidant.

The North Central Express Way address was also provided to the BBC’s ‘Panorama’ programme. However, since the staff at ‘Panorama’ are not known for sending vile threatening letters to child-abuse survivors, the odds must be high that it was sent by those with a vested interest in covering the scandal up.

In addition, two others were provided with the address, both of whom can be discounted as the author of the letter.

Why would the authors of this letter go to such lengths in an effort to intimidate and upset Richard Kerr? Why go to all this trouble if the VIP vice-ring had never existed? The letter is consistent with the fact that it was and is still being protected.


In July 2019 the more excitable elements of the British media got themselves in something of a lather after the conviction by a Newcastle jury of Carl Beech, 51, a former NHS manager, for perverting the course of justice, i.e. telling the police a pack of lies. He was sentenced to 18 years imprisonment in 2019. Beech’s deceit relates to the existence of an alleged  murderous  VIP paedophile ring based around Westminster involving Jimmy Savile, the former British prime minister Ted Heath, 1970-74, and others. Beech’s allegations prompted a £2million-pound Scotland Yard inquiry. Beech claimed he was a survivor of an “establishment group” which including politicians, military figures and spies. Absurdly, he claimed the group kidnapped, raped, tortured and murdered  boys in the 1970s and 1980s. This triggered an ill-fated probe that ended without a single arrest being made.

Beech was found guilty after a ten-week trial at Newcastle Crown Court of 12 counts of perverting the course of justice and one count of fraud over a £22,000 criminal compensation pay-out he received for the alleged abuse he suffered.

That Beech would be exposed as a liar amid a blaze of publicity was predicted by Village  years ago. Village  readers will be more familiar with Carl Beech as ‘Nick’. In the past he was a figure of anonymity merely referred to as ‘Nick’ in the UK press. His real name only emerged at the trial.

Beech concocted a series of grotesque lies about a VIP paedophile ring which murdered boys. An array of gullible hacks in the British media initially lapped up the claims and splashed them all over the pages of their newspapers. After his conviction in July 2019, they they flipped and engaged in a frenzy of condemnation of him.

No one, we are now told, can now believe a word Nick/Beech has ever said.  Accounts of child abuse perpetrated by the likes of Ted Heath can now be dismissed as nonsense according to the former PM’s supporters because Nick made allegations about him. What next? Jimmy Savile is innocent too? Sir Cyril Smith was a paragon of virtue?

Is there more to Nick the Deceiver than meets the eye, a lot more perhaps?

Richard Kerr, who was a genuine victim of sex abuse, concluded Beech was a fraud years ago. When Beech made efforts to contact him, he was rebuffed by Kerr. Had Kerr fallen for Beech’s lies, he  would now probably be the victim of tabloid derision.

Instead Kerr was subjected to intimidation to get him to shut up as described above, i.e. the UFF threatening letter.

One person who was taken in by Beech was the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Tom Watson. He received severe criticism for this. In fairness to Watson, he acted out of genuine concern for victims of child abuse. Ironically, one of those who abused Kerr in London back in the 1980s  while he was still a resident of Kincora Boys’ Home in Belfast  has recently voiced criticism of Watson over the Beech affair. Village refers to this man as ‘The Sadist’.

Arguably, Watson deserves much praise when the overall picture is taken into account. He was one of a handful of MPs who had the courage to take up the thorny issue of VIP abuse in the House of Commons. Watson did the world a service by highlighting the egregious case of the paedeophile Peter Righton in October 2012 in the House of Commons. Righton was subsequently convicted of child abuse. Righton was part of an abuse network that included Dr Morris Fraser who abused boys all over the world and was a member of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring of which Kincora Boys’ Home in Belfast was a part.  In his defence to the criticism he has received over the Beech scandal, Watson has stated that, “For decades victims of child sexual abuse were ignored or failed by the criminal justice system. I hope this one fraudster does not take us back to a time where people are too frightened to report serious crimes against innocent children”. How many children were saved from Righton and others by Watson’s intervention? Probably quite a lot. Watson can be proud of that fine achievement.


For years Village   warned that Nick was probably a cog in a devious plot by the remnants of a VIP abuse network to distract the public from their repulsive  crimes by getting puppets like him to make  absurd claims that were so utterly irrational no one would believe them and thereby taint genuine VIP sex abuse survivors with the same brush. We called it the ‘Dietrich Gambit’  after the celebrated film based on Agatha Christie’s ingenious play Witness for the Prosecution.  In that film Marlene Dietrich played a cunning witness for the prosecution who testified at a murder trial with the premeditated intention of being exposed as a liar and thereby discredit the prosecution. Village  published  its suspicions that equally dark forces were conducting a comparable gambit in an effort to  control and manipulate the public perception of the VIP sex abuse scandal in the UK.  This was done, we speculated,  with the tacit – if not outright – support of MI5 and MI6 who have a vested interest in covering up what went on at Kincora Boys’ Home and other institutions in Britain and Ireland where children were exploited by VIPs. For a start, they lied to the Hart Inquiry about their practice of sexual blackmail; see the article  Hart Attack and  the array of stories about the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring  on this website for further details.  We raised the possibility that these dark forces had spent years promoting manifest hoaxers like Nick. These people produced remarkably similar and far fetched yarns which were published by the media. We speculated that the strategy all along was to expose their lies at given points in time and thereby paint all claims of VIP sex abuse made by survivors as dubious if not unhinged.  Nick’s conviction and the flurry of media attention around it may be the latest success of this possible plot.

If Nick was part of a sinister Dietrich Gambit, it would offer a coherent explanation for the otherwise senseless behaviour of the British police and the BBC during the fiasco that engulfed Cliff Richard, a patently innocent man falsely accused of sexual wrongdoing. The reaction of the British public to the outrageous ill-treatment of such a beloved figure as Cliff Richard only served to diminish and undermine concern about VIP abuse rings. With the conviction of Nick, that outrage went into overdrive. The story competed with the bombastic exploits of the newly installed Boris Johnson as British PM for the lead headlines in the British tabloid press. In many instances, Johnson’s activities took second place in the pecking order.

There is a sinister pattern here as a parallel effort was made on the internet to portray Cliff Richard as a visitor to the infamous boy brothel at Elm Guest House. He was meant to have used the absurd name ‘Kitty’ on these visits. Richard never went near the place nor anywhere like it. Richard in fact spends an enormous amount of his free time working for charities and deserved a lot better than the abhorrent treatment that was meted out to him. Happily, there isn’t a sane mind in the UK that now believes any of the slurs hurled against him. Was the person or group behind the assault on Richard’s reputation linked to Nick/Beech and the group which sent the threatening letter to Richard Kerr in the name of the UFF?

Paul Gambaccini, the popular broadcaster, was another entirely innocent victim of abhorrent treatment at the hands of the British police in a fashion similar to Cliff Richard.


After Beech’s conviction there was an attempt to salvage the reputation of the former Tory PM, Ted Heath. This despite the careful, considered and credible report by the Wiltshire Police concerning the abuse of boys perpetrated by Heath. Why? Because Nick made daft claims about Heath therefore Heath must be innocent.  If you follow the logic of that argument, Jimmy Savile must be innocent too.

The case against Ted Heath does not rest on a word uttered by Beech. In August 2015 the Wiltshire Police launched ‘Operation Conifer’ into allegations that Heath was a paedophile. The force determined that there were substantial grounds to suspect him of child abuse. As a matter of law the force was not entitled to reach any conclusions about the potential guilt of Heath and it did not. The furthest it could go was to state that if Heath were alive, he would have faced further questioning about the accusations levelled against him. Mindful of this, the force has found that Heath would have faced questions under criminal caution relating to:

  • 1 incident of rape of a male 16;
  • 3 incidents of indecent assault on a male under 16;
  • 4 indecent assaults on a male under 14;
  • 2 indecent assaults on a male over 16.

The investigation spanned the period 1956-92. None of these incidents took place while Heath was Prime Minister, 1970-74.

There are some very real victims of this whole nasty mess. They include not only Cliff Richard but also Lord Brammal and Paul Gambaccini, all of whom were investigated by the British police on the basis of grotesque claims made by manifest liars and fantasists. The common denominator in each case is a British police force which – on the surface – seems to have lost control of its senses.


Who funded Beech’s expenditure in Sweden? It has emerged that Nick planned to make a new life for himself under an assumed identity in Sweden after his lies were detected and he faced a slew of criminal charges.  He purchased a riverside property in the village of Overkalix near the Artic Circle in the name of Stephen Anderson. Did he have a passport or fraudulent legal documents in the name of Anderson? If so, how did he get them? According to a report in  The Daily Telegraph,  ‘Seemingly flush with cash [in Overkalix], Beech, who was given £22,000 from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority in the wake of his claims of abuse, did not hesitate to pay 450 Krona (£38) for a haircut, £84 for a tin of paint, or £1,350 to fix the air conditioning in his car.’ The Sun is reporting how the house cost £17,000 and that Beech planned to buy a ‘large house across the road plus several cabins by the riverside, including a luxurgy villa‘. A local plumber called Patrik Elemalm has revealed how he installed a new bathroom and renovated the pipework for £4,500.  According to Par Andersson, the budget for the villa was £85,000. In the event,  Nick went on the run under yet another name, Samuel Karlsson, from an extradition warrant. He was finally caught and returned to the UK to face justice.

The £22,000 from the Criminal Injuries cannot explain the money he spent in Sweden. Beech spent £10,000 of the compensation as a deposit on a white Ford Mustang convertible. The full cost of the vehicle was £34,000. He also appears to have spent most of his life in debt and lived in a rented accommodation. While he and his former wife had once lived in a house they had acquired with help from his mother they had been unable to maintain it. At the time of his divorce he was living in a house for which he paid  £1,100 rent per month. Beech’s wife told the BBC’s Panorama that he consistently spent beyond his means.

As someone who did not possess property or other valuable assets which he could have sold and was always in debt, the source of the money he spent in Sweden is deeply troubling. Where did he get it all?

There is more: before he fled, he had become bored living in his new house – presumably while the works were taking place – and on 16 February 2019 checked into Room 110 at The Grand Artic Hotel for six nights where he told the staff he was ‘sick of microwave meals’. Significantly, he checked in under the name ‘Carl Anderson’ and, according to The Telegraph,  ‘paid by card‘. Does this mean he was able to get a credit card in yet another false name. If so, how?

There are other deeply disturbing questions about Beech. The police found 342 child abuse images on his computer some of which were rated at the A level, i.e. the most serious category on the scale. After the police found the images, Beech tried to blame his teenage son for downloading them. He has also been convicted of spying on a teenager while he urinated. He videoed the boy with the use of a secret video camera. His long suffering former wife has disclosed how Beech had very little interest in pursuing a sex life with her. Indeed, he went years without having sex with her.

Beech was well able to hide his true nature. He gave talks to children as young as five about the dangers of child abuse for the UK National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) and attended workshops attended by young children. He has visited dozens of primary schools in Herefordshire as part of the NSPCC  Speak Out Stay Safe  programme. According to Simon Murphy of  The Guardian  he ‘was also the governor of two schools…In total he volunteered at 33 schools for the NSPCC”. In the 1990s he worked as a paediatric nurse on a children’s ward in London. His former wife has revealed that she had believed he ‘loved children. He went straight onto a paediatric ward when he qualified, then did his sick children’s nurse training’. Also that  when ‘he was a student nurse, he used to go off and help at a school with children who had difficulty reading.”

Bearing all of the foreging in mind, it is reasonable to ask:   was Beech part of a paedophile network  which supplied him with the photographs found in his computer? Worse still, was  he part of a network which recruited him to make his dishonest claims so as to protect a group of VIP paedophile higher up the food chain? Village  is aware that money is no object to at least two VIPs who abused boys in the past and have provided ample funding to at least one of their former victims to remain silent about their crimes.

Are we meant to believe the police believed Heath had room for a double bed on the Morning Cloud?

How could the British police have believed a word Nick said? The ten-week trial exposed the idiotic nature of his allegations. Could the British police really have been that stupid? He claimed he had been abused by Heath on a double bed on Heath’s boat The Morning Cloud. Just where did they think he fitted it? In reality the yacht had hammocks. Photographs of the vessel were readily available on the internet.

Beech provided a picture showing where he had been beaten and claimed he had scars to prove it. Yet he has no scars. Still the police believed him.

Beech was sentenced to 18 years imprisonment on 26 July 2019. If he was indeed part of a complex plot to discredit VIP child abuse survivors and it involved the darker elements of MI5 and MI6 (including those who lied to the Hart Inquiry in 2016), he never had any chance of being allowed to settle in Sweden under an assumed name as he may have hoped. Instead, he was always destined to go on trial and become a media sensation. If this speculation is accurate, and he decides to reveal all at some stage over the next decade, no one will believe him.

In the very worst case scenario, Beech may have been an abuser and never a victim at all. He may have been bribed and cajoled into making his fetid claims by people who have something over him and access to ample funds. The carrot was the money he had in Sweden, the stick held over him was proof of some sort of wrongdoing, perhaps the possession of child pornography or something worse.

The more sinister elements in MI5, MI6, along with The Sadist, (the pederast who abused Richard Kerr while he was still a resident at Kincora) must have been cock-a-hoop, not to mention the members of the various overlapping paedophile networks which Jimmy Savile frequented. Combined, they seem to have convinced the British media that: {i} a string of fantasists including Nick, {ii} none of whom knew each other, {iii} concocted absurd stories with similar themes by sheer coincidence  {iv} all of which were treated as credible by credulous police forces who {v} all overreacted in a grossly unprofessional manner to the detriment of innocent men with high profiles such as Richard, Brammal and Gambaccini and that none of this involved manipulation by any hidden force.




Peter Wright CBE of MI5 was Britain’s most accomplished blackmailer. He was central to the surveillance and blackmail of Soviet diplomats and spies in the UK and was sent abroad to work with MI6 on overseas operations. In retirement he used the knowledge he had accumulated to blackmail no less an entity than the British Establishment with what he knew. If anyone knew about Kincora, it was Peter Wright. Indeed, it is a virtual certainty that he set up the surveillance and blackmail operation involving Kincora in the first place.

Wright reveal some – but not all – of his secrets in 1987 in his highly controversial memoirs, Spycatcher. He did so after winning a volcanic legal battle in Australia against Her Majesty’s Government which had tried to prevent its publication. Spycatcher cast MI5 and MI6 in a deplorable light: little more than organisations riddled with traitors and immersed in criminality.

Wright must have started writing the book in the mid-1980s, i.e. within four or five years after the Kincora scandal erupted (1980) and the murder of McKeague (1982), so he would have been aware of the panic that had gripped Whitehall about the exposure of the wider scandal.

In his two books Wright blithely described how MI5 used prostitutes and engaged in sexual blackmail, albeit he did not go as far as to acknowledge that children had been exploited in these operations. “It is well known that MI5 gained useful information by employing ladies who gave sexual favours to foreign diplomats and agents. .. We recruited prostitutes as agents. (The Spycatcher’s Encyclopedia of Espionage page 195)

Throughout the Spycatcher trial, HMG was put on an anvil and hammered mercilessly by Wright’s dogged lawyer, Malcolm Turnbull, who later became the prime minister of Australia. When Turnbull published his own account of the affair, The Spycatcher Trial, he recounted how he had asked Wright at their first meeting if he thought HMG feared he might reveal other secrets. “They might,” Wright replied adding mysteriously, “I spent a lot of time in Northern Ireland, you know. But I won’t reveal anything about that. Malcolm, it would be easy for me to make this book very sensational indeed.”

Wright had also cautioned Turnbull that: “I may never be able to tell you the truth about some things.” When Turnbull asked him what he meant, Wright responded: “My work in Northern Ireland, for example. Satellite surveillance. A lot of things. This is a safe book compared to what I could write.”


Wright had retired from MI5 in 1976 a disgruntled man. He and his wife Lois emigrated to Australia to live near one of their daughters, Jennifer, in Tasmania to raise horses. By the 1980s he had decided to put pen to paper.

Wright had diabetes, was frail and generally in poor health. Before the Australian courtroom drama began, Turnbull visited London where he met with a senior legal figure acting on behalf of HMG. Turnbull’s arm was seized by the lawyer and held in a “hard” grip at it. “Well you tell [Wright] from me,” the lawyer said “that he’d better seek some medical advice before he comes to court. He’ll get no quarter in the witness box on account of his ill-health.” While this was clearly not a death threat, if this was how the occupant of one of HMG’s loftiest legal perches was prepared to conduct himself, what was to be expected from the gangsters in MI5? Wright had participated in at least one – if not multiple – MI5 assassination operations and knew perfectly well what its cutthroats were capable of. It probably crossed his mind that given half the chance they might, for example, arrange a road traffic accident along a dusty Tasmanian dirt track. To avoid this, he took out a life assurance policy, one that involved a threat to reveal his unpublished secrets if he was murdered.

Peter Wright and his lawyer, Malcolm Turnbull, who later became Prime Minister of Australia

The legal wrangling dragged on for another year. On 14 June 1988, while an injunction restraining British newspapers from publishing the contents of the book was crumbling in the House of Lords in London, Wright made his threat public: “There are 10 major stories which I have not put in [Spycatcher] and there are probably others if I thought about it. I may put them into a secret report or I may do nothing. I just haven’t thought it out yet.” The next day, The Times of London reported that HMG had ‘always been aware that Mr Wright knew a lot more than he revealed in Spycatcher, particularly concerning his service as an MI5 officer in Northern Ireland’.  

From his home in Australia, Wright buoyed the story by proclaiming that the real reason HMG had gone to such lengths to muzzle him was “because of the other things I know. But I said in the beginning I wouldn’t publish them and I haven’t done it. They have always been frightened of what I know…” Just in case the message wasn’t clear, he told the BBC that his future course of action would depend on how HMG “behaved themselves”.


Spycatcher became an international bestseller shifting over two million copies and earned Wright a fortune. His ghostwriter, Paul Greengrass, went on to great success as a film director. His credits include the Jason Bourne film series.

After his publishing success, Wright retreated into virtual seclusion on his small farm near the apple-growing centre of Cygnet, at least for a while. Whereas he had once courted the media, requests for interviews were now batted out-of-court by his wife Lois. “Sorry. He won’t talk to journalists or anyone else like that,” she was quoted as saying. “He has nothing left to say.”

But he had plenty left to say, albeit that some of it was utterly innocuous. On 12 August 1990 the Sunday Times reported that he was writing another book provisionally entitled ‘Tomorrow Is Another Day” about “a tamer topic that should unsettle no government”, the rearing of pedigree animals. But at least the proposed publication provided Wright with an opportunity to remind HMG to behave itself. “Peter does talk occasionally about writing down some post-Spycatcher reflections, but I fear they may never come to fruition,” Sandy Grant, the managing director of Heinemann in Australia, was quoted as saying.

In 1991 he published a second spy book but it was a limp offering, little more than an A-Z of espionage terminology with a few stories thrown in for good measure. It was entitled the Spycatcher’s Encyclopedia of Espionage. There was, however, a hint in it at the Irish secrets he intended to carry to his grave if HMG behaved itself. ‘I spent a lot of time in Ireland’, he intoned, ‘and it was not pleasant. We also did a lot of things there which I am never going to talk about, because it would just cause more trouble.’ (114).

There is a possibility, albeit a wafer thin one, that Wright may have eventually let Turnbull have a peep inside his box of secrets. In his book, Turnbull was able to describe how Wright “had been privy to some of the weightiest secrets of the free world, he had spied on presidents and prime ministers, he was at the very centre of the fight against the ..  IRA…” (Turnbull 19). Perhaps one day Turnbull will clarify what – if anything – he learnt about Wright’s activities in Ireland and whether he knows anything about a secret dossier.


By the 1960s Wright had become MI5’s Witch-Finder General, a position he exploited to accumulate mountains of dossiers containing embarrassing secrets about the British Establishment. During the incessant mole hunts Wright undertook, he was granted access to any file he required in his search for treachery, real or imagined. His meddles ranged across universities, government departments – especially the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Home Office – Buckingham Palace, and anywhere else that took his fancy. He even interviewed Airey Neave MP, who had escaped from Colditz, about the political leanings of his fellow non-British prisoners. According to Wright, MI5’s D-G, Roger Hollis, instructed “that I myself had to conduct any interview deemed sensitive, which normally meant it was with a lord, a knight, politician, top civil servant, or spy suspect.”

As described earlier, one of those Wright interrogated was the arch MI5 traitor, Sir Anthony Blunt. Blunt was prepared to betray many of his friends to preserve his position: “Blunt, too, loved to discuss the scandalous side of Cambridge life in the 1930s. .. I soon realised that the [Cambridge] Ring of Five stood at the centre of a series of other connecting rings, each pledged to silence, each anxious to protect secrets from outsiders. There was the secret ring of homosexuals, where loyalty to their kind overrode all other obligations; there was the secret world of the Apostles [a group of Cambridge intellectuals], where ties to fellow Apostles remain strong throughout life; and then there was the ring of those friends of Blunt and [Guy] Burgess who were not themselves spies, but who knew or guessed what was going on. Each ring supported the others, and made the task of identifying the inner core that much more difficult.”


Wright personally interviewed and re-interviewed more than 100 people over a period of six years. By the end of it he could boast: “I had seen into the secret heart of the present Establishment at a time when they had been young and careless. I knew their scandals and their intrigues. I knew too much, and they knew it.” One of these was the former PM Anthony Eden. All of this gave MI5 a power over the political establishment and provides one clue – among many – as to why successive governments have mangled their reputations by covering up the criminal activities of MI5.

The control of politicians by the darker elements of the civil service has not changed much in the intervening decades. David Cameron told the family of Patrick Finucane (the Belfast solicitor who had been assassinated by British agents in NI) that he could not order a public inquiry into the scandal. (This event is discussed in more detail in the chapter about Tommy Lyttle.)


What Wright divulged in Spycatcher was hair raising enough. He described how he and an Irishman called Bill Magan had plotted to ‘neutralise’ General Grivas during Britain’s struggle against EOKA in Cyprus in the late 1950s; a treasonous plot against PM Harold Wilson; and wrongdoing by MI6.

He described how at the start of the Suez Crisis, MI6 had “developed a plan, through the London Station, to assassinate [Egypt’s President] Nasser using nerve gas. [British PM Anthony] Eden initially gave his approval to the operation, but later rescinded it when he got agreement from the French and Israelis to engage in joint military action. When this course failed, and he was forced to withdraw [from Suez], Eden reactivated the assassination option a second time. By this time virtually all MI6 assets in Egypt’s had been rounded up by Nasser, and a new operation, using renegade Egyptian officers, was drawn up, but it failed lamentably, principally because the cache of weapons which had been hidden on the outskirts of Cairo was found to be defective”. (160)

Gamal Nasser

Had the nerve gas plot proceeded, the collateral damage to Nasser’s secretarial and domestic staff, not to mention anyone happening to visit him would have been devastating. The gas would have asphyxiated the victims while melting their vital organs.

The gas MI6 had in mind to assassinate Nasser was undoubtedly developed by HMG’s team of Dr Strangeloves at a ghoulish scientific complex known as Porton Down. Wright described how he once visited it for a demonstration of a cigarette packet which had been fitted with a poison tipped dart by the staff of the Explosives Research and Development Establishment: ‘We solemnly put on white coats and were taken out to one of the animal compounds behind Porton by Dr Ladell, the scientist there who handled all MI5 and MI6 work. A sheep on a lead was led into the centre of the ring. One flank had been shaved to reveal the course pink skin. Ladell’s assistant pulled out the cigarette packet and stepped forward. The sheep started, and was restrained by the lead, and I thought perhaps the device had misfired. But then the sheep’s knees began to buckle, and it started rolling its eyes and frothing at the mouth. Slowly the animal sank to the ground, life draining away, as the white-coated professionals discussed the advantages of the modern new toxin around the corpse.” (162)

Porton Down is still open for business.

Porton Down


Before Wright’s commenced his interrogation of Blunt, he received a briefing from Michael Adeane, the Queen’s Private Secretary, who told him: “From time to time you may find Blunt referring to an assignment he undertook on behalf of the Palace – a visit to Germany at the end of the war. Please do not pursue this matter. Strictly speaking, it is not relevant to considerations of national security.” (Spycatcher p.223). Wright was hardly going to deny MI5 an insight into this mystery since Blunt had undoubtedly passed details of it to his KGB handlers. The odds are high he learnt that Blunt had been sent to Germany to recover the correspondence the Duke of Windsor had exchanged with the Nazi hierarchy after his abdication. Revelation of this nature, even in 1987, still had the potential to shake the foundations of Buckingham Palace.


One of the secrets Wright may have known about was MI6’s operation to disrupt the flow of Jewish refugees from Mediterranean ports to Palestine, codenamed Operation Embarrass, in 1946 and 1947. One of the MI6 unit was an Irishman, Wing-Commander Derek Verschoyle. The first account of the Operation emerged in The Friends, a book about MI6 published by Nigel West in 1988, a year after Spycatcher.

MI6 expert Dr Stephen Dorrill dug up additional details which he published in 2000 revealing how one former MI6 officer had described it as the “blackest page in MI6’s post-war history” and that there had been persistent rumours that one unidentified ship packed with Holocaust survivors “may have been blown up at sea, whether by accident or design”. (548)

MI6 acknowledged the existence of operation in 2010 when they let Prof. Keith Jeffery of Queens University, Belfast, include an account of it in the official history of MI6 had asked him to write. In fairness to MI6, it should be commended for the disclosure. It shows not that everyone in it is addicted to lies, deceit and cover-up and offers a glimmer of hope that it may be mending some of its ways. They should note too that MI6 survived the revelation without much condemnation.


Bizarrely, while Wright was prepared to admit that he had been involved in a plot to kill Colonel Grivas in Cyprus, he was coy about the sexual blackmail of the Colonel’s political ally, Archbishop Makarios. That operation was also exposed by Nigel West in 1988. Two years later no less a figure than Sir Dick White, confirmed that it had occurred. White sat at the summit of the intelligence community in the early 1970s as Intelligence Coordinator at the Cabinet Office. Uniquely, he had served as both Director-General of MI5 and Chief of MI6 prior to this. He was a pivotal figure in the intelligence overhaul which took place in Northern Ireland in the early 1970s.White told his biographer, Tom Boyer, author of The Perfect English Spy (1990), that MI6 had blackmailed Archbishop Makarios of Cyprus into signing the 1959 Lancaster House Agreement which had curtailed the independence of Cyprus and granted Britain a number of military bases on the island because of ‘information about his homosexuality’. (231)

Archbishop Makarios with Colonel Grivas

Wright had been directly involved in the surveillance operation of Makarios. He and a colleague from MI6 had placed a listening device on the telephone lines leading to the Archbishop’s Palace in Cyprus. MI6 also had a number of agents inside it controlled by Sir Stephen Hastings MC, who later became a Conservative MP. Wright gave no hint that any of them had discovered that the Archbishop was engaged in homosexual relations, or that this information had been used to blackmail him.


Declassified CIA records confirm that President Eisenhower of the USA ordered the murder of Patrice Lumumba, PM of the Congo. Lumumba was killed in a joint CIA-MI6 operation in 1961. He had to endure a gruesome orgy of torture and violence that lasted for five or six hours before he finally expired. A harrowing account of it appears in the towering international bestseller, The Devil’s Chessboard (2016), a biography of the egregiously evil Allen Dulles of the CIA. While the book focusses on the CIA’s involvement, MI6 played a significant part in it too, something Wright would have known about.

Howard Smith, who served as Britain’s intelligence supremo in Northern Ireland, 1971-1972, was a pivotal figure in the murder. He later became Ambassador to Moscow and, in 1979, D-G of MI5. In 1960 Smith was a senior official at the FCO with responsibility for the Congo. Daphne Park was serving as the MI6 Head of Station in the Congo. Park reported to Smith that Lumumba was allegedly trying to take his country into the Soviet camp. This was utter nonsense. Nonetheless, on 28 September, 1960, Smith circulated a memo to the Foreign Office where it was digested by a number of highly placed powerbrokers including the future Prime Minister Ted Heath who was then a junior minister at the FCO. In it Smith nonchalantly explained he could see “only two possible solutions” to the situation: “The first is the simple one of ensuring Lumumba’s removal from the scene by killing him. This should in fact solve the problem, since so far as we can tell, Lumumba is not a leader of a movement within which there are potential successors of his quality and influence. His supporters are much less dangerous material”.

Park was later appointed co-chair of the British-Irish Association (B-IA) where she became a friend of Garret FitzGerald. Charles Haughey forbade his minister attending B-IA meetings as he believed it was a British Intelligence front designed to gather information from Irish politicians and police officers. (Chief Superintendent John Fleming, the Head of the Special Branch in the late 1960s and early 1970s attended the BIA.).

By the time Wright’s book was meandering towards the printing presses, Smith was a decorated and recently retired D-G of MI5; exactly the type of person HMG would instinctively rally to protect. Meanwhile, Daphne Park was deeply immersed in MI6’s Anglo-Irish machinations. All told she was a governor of the BBC (where she interfered with broadcasts about NI) and on the cusp of becoming a life peer. She was also a friend of the then serving Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald (through her managerial role in the British-Irish Association). MI6 could not afford to allow Wright expose her part in Lumumba’s murder or other aspects of her sordid past: in the 1970s she had served as the Head of MI6’s Western Hemisphere division where – at a minimum  –  she had knowledge of the MI6-CIA  Gladio death squads active in Europe at the time and had spread smears about Charles Haughey across the globe through MI6-CIA controlled news agencies. Had she been exposed by Wright, a veritable can of Irish worms might have wriggled free just as Haughey was about to seize power back from FitzGerald and HMG was fearful about what he might do with the Hillsborough Agreement and security cooperation generally.

Incidentally, Park remained an unapologetic colonialist. When she was interviewed by the Daily Telegraph in April 2003 she stated that the “The [British] Government is too worried about speaking out [against Mugabe] because they think they will be accused of being colonialist. Well I don’t think that’s such a terrible crime.’ Before her death, Park also acknowledged that: “Yes, I have been involved in death, but I cannot speak about that”. Interested readers should purchase a copy of the fascinating Queen of Spies (2015) by the Dublin writer and intelligence expert, Paddy Hayes. One of the more interesting quotes in it is that of John de St Jorre of MI6 who worked with Park in Leopoldville: “I always thought of Daphne as a blend of Margaret Rutherford, the bosomy and beloved actress, and Rosa Klebb, the cold-eyed KGB dragon-lady with a poisonous blade in her shoe.”


Wright knew a lot more about MI6 involvement in sexual blackmail, often run in conjunction with MI5.

Christopher Herbert served as MI5’s Security Liaison Officer (SLO) with the RUC, 1968-1970. He had been educated at Trinity College Dublin where he had obtained a first-class degree in experimental science. He subsequently gravitated towards MI5’s surveillance department which employed burglars and locksmiths.

Herbert returned to London from Belfast in 1970 and was assigned to K Branch where he oversaw the blackmail of a Soviet agent in London, Oleg Lyalin. In Spycatcher Wright revealed how MI5 and MI6 placed him under surveillance with his secretary Irina Templyakova with whom he was conducting an illicit affair. When they felt they had enough material to blackmail him, he was confronted and coerced into working for them. Lyalin supplied a list of KGB officers in the UK and in September 1971 Edward Heath expelled over 105 of them from Britain.

Oleg Lyalin

Another Soviet that MI5 tried to blackmail was Sergi Grigovin. Peter Wright described how MI5 burst in on him during one of his extramarital trysts in London. The naked spy immediately claimed diplomatic immunity and demanded his clothes back while his erstwhile companion was ushered from the room. After two hours of trying to browbeat him, MI5 gave up, returned his clothes and let him go.


The Republic of Ireland was virgin territory and a playground for the dirty tricksters of MI5 and MI6 in 1972. In December of that year they organised two car bombings in Dublin while the Offences Against the State Bill was limping towards its doom inside Leinster House. Many of the deputies in the Dail who were opposed to the bill backed off after the explosions and it was ushered onto the statute books. The assumption at the time was that the bombs were the work of militant Republicans, especially as there were protests in the city that night against the arrest of the Chief of Staff of the Provisional IRA, Sean MacStíofáin. The unit most likely responsible for the attack was Brigadier Frank Kitson’s infamous Military Reaction Force (MRF). One of those involved, Albert Baker, was a British agent, a fact confirmed to Village by a military officer who read materials at HQNI about him. Baker participated in the attack by ferrying some of the explosives at an early stage of the operation.

Kitson, seen here to the right of Queen Elizabeth

As the man formulating MI5’s policy on Ireland, it is inconceivable that Peter Wright did not know everything there was to know about the MRF and the 1972 Dublin bombings. If, as suspected, MI6 and the MRF was behind it, it would surely rank as one of Wright’s unpublished secrets.

In addition, he would have known the inside story of the Littlejohn affair during which the Littlejohn brothers petrol bombed Garda stations in 1972 at the behest of MI6. The Littlejohns were caught and imprisoned in Mountjoy for a bank heist they executed on Grafton Street in October 1972. They were released from prison early by Garret FitzGerald in 1981 on “humanitarian” grounds and are still alive.


In the summer of 1970 ads began to appear in Belfast newspapers advertising massage parlours. What the customers did not realise was that the establishments had been fitted out with surveillance equipment.

One brothel, the Gemini Health Studio was located on the Antrim Road. When it opened its doors in the summer of 1970 it promised “very attractive masseuses’ in advertisements in Belfast newspapers. Another more upmarket brothel was located on the Malone Road. The Gemini was closed down after the IRA attacked it in 1972.

Peter Wright was probably the leader of the surveillance teams which set up the monitoring stations at the brothels and other honeytraps in Northern Ireland, perhaps including the boy brother at which Alan Kerr worked or establishments like it. In his memoirs he revealed that MI5’s D section employed a string of prostitutes. He was also the man MI5 used to give warnings to important people who were due to travel behind the Iron Curtain about the likelihood they would be targeted by KGB sexual blackmailers.


By the early 1970s, Wright had clawed his way to the top of MI5’s greasy, bloodstained pole. He was close to its D-G, Sir Martin Furnival Jones. When Michael Hanley, the Deputy D-G of MI5 became D-G in 1972, he appointed Wright as his special adviser. Hanley asked Wright to formulate proposals about how MI5 should deal with NI after which he spent “a lot of time in Ireland” and did the mysterious things which would have caused “more trouble” if they were ever exposed.

Furnival-Jones, Hanley and Wright


Peter Wright was MI5’s surveillance supremo during the 1950s, 60s and 70s. He described how for five years he and his team “bugged and burgled our way across London at the State’s behest, while pompous bowler-hatted civil servants in Whitehall pretended to look the other way.” The most “extensive microphoning operation [we] ever undertook was in Lancaster House … which hosted the Colonial conferences of the 1950s and 1960s.” He installed a “comprehensive microphoning system throughout the building” which was used “throughout the rest of the 1960s and 1970s, whenever high-level diplomatic negotiations took place in London.”

Wright also acknowledged that he had bugged the hotel bedroom of the Soviet Premier, Nikita Khrushchev, when he had stayed at Claridges during a visit to London in 1956.    

As MI5’s peeping Tom supreme, Wright was undoubtedly in overall charge of the surveillance equipment installed at the brothels MI5 ran in Belfast (and no doubt elsewhere) in 1970 including the Gemini in Belfast which catered for heterosexual adults. It was attacked by the IRA in 1972. After the attack, bystanders watched while cameras were hauled from the premises. Despite widespread knowledge of the affair, Wright ignored it in his memoirs. Had he included it, it most likely would have led to questions about sexual blackmail in Ireland and led to queries about Kincora. Wright hardly relished the thought that his daughters would discover that their beloved father had stood back while children were raped and driven to suicide.

Peter Wright died a rich yet bitter man in 1995 at the age of 78. He had spent his declining years referring to Thatcher as a “bitch” and those around her as “those bastards”. Assuming he compiled a secret dossier, what happened to it? After the passage of three decades it is unlikely it will now surface.


As Peter Wright knew well, MI5 and MI6 were not the only British powerbrokers who gathered information for blackmail: it was a commonplace practice at Westminster. Ted Heath, who served as Tory chief whip, 1956 to 1959, brought a professionalism to the task by assembling what became known as the Dirt Book, an encyclopaedia of embarrassing information about his colleagues, designed to stop them stepping out of line. It was exploited during the Suez Crisis.

When the Labour Party took over, Edward Short (later Deputy Leader of the Labour Party) became the new Chief Whip. He was repelled by the ‘dirty book’ and discontinued the practice. 

When the Tories returned to power again, William Whitelaw stepped into the post of Chief Whip.  He unashamedly confessed he continued the practice to the BBC in 1995: “The Dirt Book is just a little book where you write down various things you know or hear about people that may or may not be true. I think you could make a very good guess what sorts of things it contains”.

We know exactly what it contained: one of Whitelaw’s successors, Tim Fortescue MP, who occupied the post of whip between 1970 and 1973, made it abundantly clear on camera to the BBC: “Anyone with any sense, who was in trouble, would come to the whips and tell them the truth, and say, ‘Now I’m in a jam. Can you help?’ It might be debt, it might be .. a scandal involving small boys [author’s emphasis], or any kind of scandal in which .. a member seemed likely to be mixed up. They’d come and ask if we could help, and if we could, we did.”

Fortescue’s reference to ‘small boys’ implies that blackmail material was gathered about MPs who were having sex with boys who were probably a lot younger than 21, the then legal age of consent. He also confessed that “scandalous stories” were of great assistance to whips. “When you are trying to persuade a member to vote the way he didn’t want to vote on a controversial issue – which is part of your job – it is possible to suggest that perhaps it would not be in his interest if people knew something or other – very mildly”.

Ted Heath, Leon Brittan and Willie Whitelaw

William Whitelaw became Northern Ireland Secretary, 1972-1974. Hence by 1972 both the British PM and the NI Secretary were experienced sexual blackmailers, hardly a deterrent to anyone in the intelligence community such as Peter Wright who wanted to engage in sexual blackmail.



In the summer of either 1973 or 1974, when Richard Kerr was 12 or 13, and a resident at Williamson House, he was abused by a man who identified himself as “Andrew”. Kerr is adamant that the man was Blunt. If he is correct, Blunt would have been about 65 or 66 years of age. The man Kerr recalls was ‘about 62 to 65’. Whether he was indeed Blunt or someone who shared his distinctive appearance and build, the fact that a young boy in care in Belfast was supplied to an Englishman for sex is in itself a scandal.

Kerr’s journey to meet ‘Andrew’ began at Williamson House where he was picked up by two men in a car. En route, they stopped off at the Culloden Hotel on the Bangor Road opposite what Kerr recalls as the ‘Old Folk Museum’ which is clearly a reference to the ‘Ulster Folk and Transport Museum’. The adult front seat passenger went inside the Culloden, probably to make a telephone call and receive instructions. After he came out, they proceeded on to Bangor and reached a hotel which Kerr recalls was called the ‘King or Queen’s Arms, something like that’. This was undoubtedly the Queen’s Court Hotel. Kerr recalls the hotel was on the seafront; had an old fashioned lift and a few floors, just as the Queen’s Court had.

Significantly, it also had a large function room at its rear and was a popular venue for dance bands and discos in the 1970s, a factor which, in addition to its seafront location, made it ideal for a paedophile group because it was perfectly normal for young people to be on the premises and for adults who were total strangers to book rooms at it for short stays.

The Girton Lodge and Park Avenue hotels on the Newtownards Road were also used by the ring because young people were often present unescorted.

Kerr was taken inside and left to wait for a while in the lounge area. He got the feeling that a man present in the lounge was involved in what was taking place. A while later Kerr was brought upstairs by the adult passenger from the car and introduced to the man who would abuse him, a man who called himself ‘Andrew’. Kerr would spend about three hours with him upstairs. ‘Andrew’ was tall, wore a three-piece suit and came over as a ‘very unique type of’ person; someone who ‘presented himself very well and did a lot of talking’ in a refined English accent. Kerr was struck by his penchant for secrecy.  ‘We can keep this to ourselves’ he urged. ‘I am a man of my word. I will look after you’, he promised in return for the boy’s silence.

Kerr found him ‘polite’ and ‘a little more gentle’ than some of his other abusers. Kerr was, as he puts it himself, ‘abused by sharks and dolphins and I would rather be with the dolphins.’ ‘Andrew’ was not violent with him as Enoch Powell MP had been. ‘Andrew’ had a grandfather watch and chain. ‘He pulled it out and flipped it open and entertained me with it. He let me hold it’, Kerr recalls. He also gave him a box of chocolates. ‘A lot of them gave me chocolates, Black Magic, Milk Tray and Quality Street. How did they known I liked chocolates?

Despite his pretence at kindness, the man was a perfidious and calculating pervert with only one agenda – to have sex with a child. Once he had put him at a relative ease, the older man instructed Kerr to get undressed and started kissing his ears. By now this type of behaviour had become ‘natural’ for the boy; he had become, as he puts it himself, “a boy toy”. He focussed his mind on the chocolates while ‘Andrew’ continued to talk into his ears softly; repeatedly whispering that he was “safe”. He soon made his real intention clear: he wanted the boy to penetrate him and then give him a massage. Kerr did as he was bid.

Later, in the car on the way home, one of the men stressed the importance of not talking about the man in the hotel. ‘Richie, you must not talk about this to anyone’, he stressed.

It was night by the time Kerr arrived back at Williamson House after this ordeal. He was abused on at least two further occasions by ‘Andrew’ who had obviously been promised access to the boy by the men running the ring and hence ‘Andrew’ had told him in Bangor that he ‘would look after’ him. Kerr never stayed with him overnight as he did with some of his other abusers.

Kerr recalls another incident which took place in a house with a ‘library’ with a driveway leading up to it. On this occasion, ‘Andrew’ gave him alcohol, either brandy or scotch.

One day Kerr was watching TV when Blunt came on the screen and he recognised him immediately as ‘Andrew’. This was undoubtedly the press interview Blunt gave after he had been unmasked as a traitor on 20 November 1979.

In 2019 Kerr was shown a photograph of a man without any indication of who he was. Kerr said he thought he was the man who had driven the car to ‘Andrew’. That photograph (reproduced below) was of Blunt’s friend Peter Montgomery.

Peter Montgomery


MI5 and the RUC Special Branch had a clear duty and interest in maintaining an eye on Blunt’s movements in Ireland for a number of reasons. First, he was the Keeper of the Queen’s Pictures, a former member of MI5, and, like his friend Captain Peter Montgomery, the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Tyrone, a possible IRA assassination target.

Second, as a former Soviet agent, Peter Wright and others in MI5 would have felt it imperative to keep an eye on him lest he revert to his treacherous old ways. At the time they were concerned that the Soviet Union might be meddling in the affairs of Northern Ireland.

Third, Blunt remained a potent font of knowledge. Despite any lingering suspicion MI5 might have harboured about his repentance, by the early 1970s, they would have been quizzing him intently about what he knew about his political friends including those in the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) such as Knox Cunningham and his protégé James Molyneaux MP, who rose to become leader of the UUP. Suffice it to say, they would have had a particularly keen interest in any of the paedophiles and pederasts in his circle who were now influential in Loyalist circles.

Peter Montgomery

Bearing the foregoing in mind, and assuming for the moment that Blunt was indeed ‘Andrew’, it is difficult to conceive how he could have gained access to a child from Williamson House without MI5’s knowledge. While it is possible that Peter Montgomery could have arranged the assignations for him, it is unlikely that Eric Witchell would have released Kerr from the home on three occasions to him or anyone else without permission from his handlers. The odds are high that Blunt had wormed his way so deeply back into MI5’s good books they were prepared to let him enjoy this perk as a reward.


Blunt was also active in Northern Ireland politics. In one of his books, the Irish author and journalist, Robin Bryans, described how Blunt – whom he had known extremely well – had once tried to inveigle him into a scheme to undermine Ian Paisley. Unfortunately, Bryans did not reveal the details of this plot; in particular he failed to disclose the date. Nonetheless, it is abundantly clear that MI5 schemed and plotted against Paisley during the early and mid-1970s by attempting to link him with a homosexual netherworld, precisely the terrain about which Blunt was so familiar. If the plot Bryans wrote about falls into this timeframe, it raises the possibility Blunt was a cog in it, a further indication of his return to the MI5 fold.

If it was earlier, in the mid to late 1960s, MI5 would have been keen to learn the minutiae of the plot as part of its efforts to build up a picture of Paisley’s life and associations. Ultimately, it recruited William McGrath, the housefather at Kincora, who knew about Paisley’s involvement in a string of UVF explosions in the late 1960s.

Either way Blunt would have been of enormous potential to MI5 as a source in the very early 1970s when they were desperate for information about the men directing the Loyalist opposition to London. A man like Blunt would have been invaluable to them because he would have helped break their reliance on the RUC Special Branch which was loyal to the Stormont Government and, in their eyes, neither reliable nor competent.

It has been common knowledge for decades that Blunt cooperated with MI5 after it discovered his treachery but the depth of that cooperation has never been fully fathomed. If he gave them information which they used to ensnare Loyalist paedophiles, it would make sense of the strenuous efforts that a string of senior officials in Whitehall exerted to dissuade Margaret Thatcher from naming him as the traitor referred to obliquely in Private Eye. The magazine had stopped just short of naming him. One of their concerns must have been that he would blow the whistle on their dirty trick operations in Ireland.

Ultimately, whether Blunt was ‘Andrew’ and back in the MI5 fold or not, it is crucial not to lose sight of the real essence of this scandal: the existence of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring and its exploitation by MI5 and MI6 to recruit Loyalists including DUP members.



On 12 February, 1989, the UDA assassinated Patrick Finucane, a highly-regarded Belfast solicitor, at his North Belfast home. Finucane, who was 38-years-old, was shot 14 times by two masked UDA gunmen who sledgehammered their way into his house. His wife Geraldine was also injured during the attack which took place while the couple was enjoying a meal with their young family.

Prime Suspect, former PM Margaret Thatcher: she sank the Belgrano and permitted RUC and SAS shoot-to-kill operations in Northern Ireland and covered up the shooting of an acknowledged – yet unarmed – IRA unit in Gibraltar. She is now the prime suspect in the murder of Patrick Finucane.

In 2019 the Supreme Court in London ruled that the British Government had failed to investigate the murder properly. The only tenable reason for this is because the murder was organised by MI5, the intelligence service attached to the Home Office.

A retired Canadian judge, Peter Cory, investigated the murder on behalf of the British State. During his inquiry MI5 officers broke into his office and stole some of the evidence he had accumulated.

A democracy in name only: the UK is one of the few countries in the West where the State can get away with murdering a lawyer. Patrick Finucane (above) who was murdered in front of his wife and young family by MI5-controlled UDA gunmen while they ate a meal in their home.

Cory also told Geraldine Finucane that he had seen a document relevant to her husband’s case which was marked  “for Cabinet eyes only”. Mrs Finucane knows no more. This raises the distinct possibility that her husband’s case was discussed in Whitehall in sinister circumstances before the murder. These revelations formed part of BBC NI’s compelling seven part Spotlight  series,  ‘The Secret History of the Troubles’. They have been ignored by the mainstream British media.

Put simply, the finger of blame is now pointing at Margaret Thatcher. It now looks like she gave MI5 the green light to murder a perfectly respectable, law abiding lawyer. If Thatcher  and her circle did not order the murder, why are the Tory top brass so terrified of an inquiry?

MI5 was led by Sir Patrick Walker at the time the assassination was planned and executed. If MI5 was involved, it is inconceivable he did not call  the shots – literally. The pages of Village are open to Mr. Walker should he wish to rebut this contention.

When David Cameron was in 10 Downing Street he told the Finucane family that he could not order a public inquiry into the scandal. When Finucane’s brother Martin asked him why, he turned to Mrs Finucane and said: “Look, the last administration couldn’t deliver an inquiry in your husband’s case and neither can we”. According to Cameron this was because “there are people all around this place, [10 Downing Street], who won’t let it happen”. As he was saying this, he raised a finger and made a circular motion in the air.

Theresa May, who was Cameron’s Home Secretary between 2010 and 2016, before she became PM, did not order a proper inquiry either.

Now, only someone with the stature, independence, intelligence and integrity of Lord Saville, the man who led the Bloody Sunday Inquiry, can be permitted to lead one into the Finucane murder. The opportunity and duty to do the right thing has passed to Theresa May’s successor, Boris Johnson, and his Home Secretary, Priti Patel. Yet, will they prove every bit as disdainful and corrupt as Blair, Cameron and May and continue the cover-up?

Geraldine Finucane

Dignity personified: Geraldine Finucane who was told by retired Canadian judge Peter Cory that papers relating to her husband Patrick were read at Cabinet level.  Was this before the shooting?  A full judicial inquiry is required to get to the bottom of the murder including this vital new revelation. For a start the inquiry should clarify when the file Cory described to Mrs. Finucane was created, what was in it and who read it. In particular, did Thatcher know about the MI5-FRU-UDA hit in advance?

Time is fast running out to hear what potentially key living  witnesses have to offer about the Finucane case. The list includes  Thatcher’s then Home Secretary, Douglas Hurd. Born in March 1930, he published a 524 page autobiography in 2003.  Unfortunately, there is no entry under the word “Finucane” in its index. Village  also offers him the freedom of this website to inform our readers about what he know about the case, most particularly anything about “cabinet eyes only” documents.

The evidence that continues to accumulate points to the probability that Finucane, a skilful lawyer, was targeted by the British State because he had mastered the intricacies of the Diplock Court system in NI and was representing his clients to the best of his very considerable abilities. A lot of Provos were walking free from court. In the mind of Thatcher and others in London, he had to have been a Provo and his death warrant was approved. In these circumstances, the task of assassinating him was passed to Walker and his gang of cutthroats at MI5.

However, Finucane was not a Provo. On the contrary, he represented both Republicans and Loyalists. Who ever heard of a Provo securing the freedom of the Loyalist enemy? Moreover, he was married to a Protestant. Finucane was perfectly innocent of any involvement with the IRA although he was vilified as a member after his death.

Insofar as the UDA was concerned, the kill-order was issued by Tommy ‘Tucker’ Lyttle, the UDA’s ‘brigadier’ or commander in West Belfast. Ian Hurst, who served with the then top secret Force Reconnaissance Unit (FRU) of the British Army, has stated “with cast iron certainty” that Lyttle was a British agent who was “handled” by the RUC’s Special Branch (RUCSB) using the codename “Rodney Stewart”.

Lyttle himself confirmed to an internal UDA inquiry that he had been a British agent, arguing that he had exploited the relationship to help the UDA.

The RUCSB served as MI5’s foot soldiers in Northern Ireland. Lyttle also told author Greg Harkin that his RUCSB ‘handler’ had asked him: “Why don’t you whack Finucane?”.

Village has uncovered fresh information that not only confirms Lyttle’s role as a British agent but places him at the heart of the MI5 and MI6 paedophile ‘honeytrap’ operation which swirled around Kincora Boys’ Home in Belfast in the 1970s. Lyttle was working for MI5 from the mid, if not early, 1970s.


Lyttle was born in 1939. His son John, who became a journalist, has written that, “At first my father had no abiding interest in politics – it wasn’t a job requirement for machinists at Mackie’s foundry in the late Sixties – but his family was something he was fiercely protective of. The one he came from: three sisters, one brother, his adored mother and father, and the one he created and was dead centre of, as only an Irish patriarch can be: three sons, two daughters. My father and mother entered wedlock young – he was 18, Elizabeth Baird was 19 – customary at our end of the social scale. My siblings and I arrived more or less every two years – also customary”.

John Lyttle has also explained that his father was seen by his family as “smart, very smart” – he did well at school and could have gone to grammar school on a scholarship but for a shortage of  funds.

Tommy Lyttle

Lyttle became involved with the UDA after a bomb atrocity in Belfast on 11 December, 1971. John Lyttle has quoted his sister Linda, about how their father became involved:

‘’There was an IRA bomb on the Shankill and my Ma and Elaine nearly got blown up. That started me Da off’. She hesitates, then says something that makes perfect sense. ‘Two kids were killed. The first time kids were killed. Me Da took it… personally. Don’t you remember?’”. But, John Lyttle goes on, “I don’t remember. I have forgotten, or buried, much, a mountain of clippings, snapshots and unforgiven images: the gunman with the high-velocity rifle who aimed for someone else and nearly got my Da, the kidnapping that landed him on the front page of the Belfast Telegraph, a pistol to his head, midnight raids by police, various peaks and troughs as palace revolutions repetitively rocked the Ulster Defence Association. Old guard vs young turks, hardliners vs soft centres – they fall out, kill, regroup, splinter, my father somehow surviving each coup. But I instinctively know that what Linda says is true”.

Partners in crime: Loyalist terrorism came to rest on a tripod: MI5/RUC Special Branch, the Northern Ireland Office and British Military Intlligence.

By 1972 Lyttle had become a lieutenant colonel in the UDA’s ‘C’ Company, 2nd Battalion, Shankill Road. In 1973 he ran unsuccessfully for election to the NI Assembly. In November 1974 he visited Colonel Ghaddafi in Libya. In 1975 he rose to become the Brigadier of West Belfast Brigade, the UDA’s spokesman and a member of the Inner Council. He had a virtual free hand in running UDA operations in his domain and enjoyed a very high profile.


The Inner Council had come into existence after a meeting on 15 May, 1971, in the dining hall of North Howard Street school  which was attended by approximately 300 representatives from the various Loyalist vigilante groups sprinkled around NI. The Inner Council would soon organise a network of Loyalist murder gangs.

The UDA was divided into seven brigade areas: North Belfast, East Belfast, South Belfast and West Belfast, South-East Antrim, Londonderry and the Border Counties. The brigades consisted of battalions, companies, platoons and sections. The structure was ruled over by the Inner Council which was made up of the seven brigadiers and their various ‘staffs’. At one stage it consisted of over 50 people but was later streamlined.


The delegates at North Howard Street included UVF and Tara members. William McGrath, the Leader of Tara, a Loyalist paramilitary organisation, was deeply involved. He produced a document which has been called the birth certificate of the UDA.

McGrath became Housefather at Kincora Boys’ Home a few weeks after the North Howard Street meeting. It is highly likely that he had become a British agent prior to the North Howard Street convention.


Tommy Lyttle was also a ruthless and violent man. Space does not permit a description of the appalling violence meted out by the UDA to random Catholic victims in the 1970s. Davey Payne established a string of human abattoirs known as ‘romper rooms’ where random Catholics abducted from the streets were tortured and murdered, often for the amusement of drunken UDA men and their girlfriends.

Further details can be gleaned from:

Davey Payne on the right

As a senior UDA leader, Lyttle was one of the men who was fully aware of these atrocious murders.

Lyttle’s son knew just how violent his father could be. He has written how when he was a boy, he once searched “through the pockets of my father’s overcoat for loose change. We kids are not supposed to, but we do. I plunge my hand in and feel this wet, wringing wet. I drag it out. It’s a handkerchief. With an embroidered ‘T’. The linen is as red as the red hand of Ulster, soaked with blood, saturated with blood, dripping with blood. I squeeze, though I shouldn’t. The red trickles through my fingers. I watch, repelled and exhilarated. My father is in the front room. I hear football match results. He isn’t injured, hasn’t said anything about a nosebleed, a fall. He hasn’t mentioned a friend’s accident. I return the handkerchief, go to the bathroom, wash my hands”.

John Lyttle has also written about an incident when he was “nine or ten”: ‘The wee small hours of the morning. I come downstairs. I want a drink of water. In the front room a man is tied to a chair. He’s battered and bruised. My father is there with how many others? Three? Four? I stare until I’m noticed. What do you want?’, my father asks. ‘A drink of water’. ‘Get him a drink of water’. I continue to stare until my water is brought. I drink it on the spot. ‘Not so fast’, my father cautions. I hand the glass back and tread quietly back upstairs and climb into bed beside my brother Bill. By daylight, I’m certain it’s a dream. It must be: I’ve dreamt of it ever since”. Even if it was a dream, it was exactly what Lyttle got up to in real life.


Richard Kerr was a resident at Kincora Boys’ Home between 1975 and 1977. In September 1976 or thereabouts, Kerr was picked up at Kincora by two men who were driving a Volkswagen vehicle. Since the men used the front compartment boot for storage, they were undoubtedly driving a VW Beetle. Kerr was put in the front passenger seat. He was only 15-years-old yet had been a victim of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring (A-IVR) – of which Kincora was a part – since he was eight.

Kincora Boys’ Home

The two men drove to a hotel on the Antrim coastline which overlooked the sea. Kerr recalls that it was like a “big old house” with stone statutes of ‘lions or other animals at the front of it with a country road leading up to it’. His driver was called Eddie and the trip seemed to him to have taken a few hours. After the group reached the hotel, Kerr was left waiting in the lobby area while the men went looking for another man. After about 20 minutes they returned with Lyttle and the group set out in the Volkswagen again for another destination. The men addressed Lyttle as “Tommy” openly in front of Kerr. Indeed, it would have been pointless to try to disguise Lyttle’s identity due to his high profile.

Kerr was supplied with a number of glass bottles containing Coca Cola which had been spiked. The effect of the liquid – whatever it contained – was to render him drowsy. He soon “felt out of it but not fully out of it” and began to drift “out of reality like being hypnotised”.

When they reached their destination – a hotel in the “middle of nowhere” – it was still daytime. There was a field to the rear of it. He recalls seeing “cows and sheep” around it. He believes it may have been near Newtownabbey. Kerr was ushered to a small room where he was handed over to an abuser, a man in his 30s with a NI accident who used Northern slang words. Despite his drowsiness, Kerr knew full well what was going to happen to him next. The man asked him to take off his clothes and “things like that”. The rape ordeal that ensued lasted between three and five hours with breaks in between during which Kerr was provided with a sandwich and taken out of the room. Sometimes his abusers gave him gifts to assuage their guilt or in a sick attempt to ingratiate themselves with him. This man gave him nothing.

Richard Kerr

It was dark by the time the nightmare ended. Kerr was then driven back to Kincora. No stops were made on the return journey. They got back to Kincora at approximately 9.30 pm. Kerr re-entered the premises through the front door and went into the TV room. A number of boys were present. William McGrath, the ‘housefather’ was on duty. The Warden, Joe Mains, who lived at Kincora, was also present. Neither of them asked him a single question about where he had been.


Kincora was a brutal institution. In addition to being passed around to depraved perverts, Kerr was also bullied – and a lot worse – by some of his fellow residents. Some of the friction arose from the fact he was allowed out between Thursday and  Sunday although this invariably meant he was being subjected to sex attacks. Kerr must have mentioned this during his road trip with Lyttle because the UDA brigadier sent down two of his “goons” to intimidate the boys who were making life a misery for him at Kincora.

Both Mains and McGrath were present when the ‘goons’ bounded in but did nothing to impede them. The intruders set about terrorising Kerr’s tormentors. Witnesses to this event are still alive. After the intrusion of the two ‘goons’, even McGrath became wary of Kerr. This says a lot because McGrath was someone who was prepared to murder. McGrath was close to Davey Payne – the man who had invented the ‘romper room’ system – and once asked him to kill Roy Garland, the former Deputy Leader of Tara. He wanted Garland killed because he had begun to talk about McGrath’s abuse of boys in 1973.


Kerr encountered Tommy Lyttle on one further occasion. Once again he was taken from Kincora to a hotel. This time he was escorted by the two ‘goons’ who had barged into Kincora. Their destination was a bar where they linked up with Lyttle. This time Kerr was destined for a man from the North of England whom he had never met before. He described him as a “nice person”; someone who was “well-dressed’ in a fashionable pair of flared trousers. The flares were made from suede. He remembers this vividly as he got to touch them after the man asked him to remove his trousers as part of the ritual of the abuse of that day.  Afterwards, Lyttle and his ‘goons’ returned him back to Kincora.


Kerr would encounter the UDA ‘goons’ again at the ‘Whip and Saddle’ Bar in the Europa Hotel in Belfast where Mains often brought him to be abused and later secured him a job through his friend Harper Brown, the then manager of the hotel.

Harper Brown manager of the Europa hotel and friend of Joe Mains

The man with the flared trousers turned up at the hotel on at least one night.

The Whip and Saddle was well known in journalistic circles as a venue frequented by Unionist politicians with a sexual interest in juvenile males. Some of the journalists – including some from the Republic – made ribald jokes about the venue, especially by reference to its name.

Kerr would also meet the UDA ‘goons’ at a Loyalist drinking den  in Belfast.


Lyttle also socialised at the Girton Lodge hotel which was a short walk from Kincora Boys’ Home. Richard Kerr was abused by John McKeague, a notorious Loyalist killer, at the Girton on three or four occasions. As described in an earlier chapter, Kerr would receive a phone call ordering to go down to it, and would then walk down and arrive in about six minutes.

McKeague, Lyttle and their associates would gather at the hotel. There was an area where cars could park out of sight from the road. All the abuse took place on the lower level.

There is no suggestion that Lyttle himself was an abuser. Indeed, no one has ever claimed anything remotely of the sort. He presumably mixed with the likes of McKeague for network and intelligence gathering purposes, something that suited both his UDA and MI5 associates.

As also indicated earlier, Colin Wallace was aware of some of what was going on at the Girton and other hotels. Wallace wrote up and submitted this information to his superiors at British Army HQ NI in 1974 seeking clearance for the disclosure of it to the press. A second hotel was the Park Avenue, a third was called The Queens Court. One of the reasons General Peter Leng, one of the most senior British Army officers in NI in the 1970s, became worried about the Kincora allegations in 1974 was that he had been told that Kincora inmates were being lured into the UDA’s paramilitary activities. He also was aware that the two hotels where allegedly paedophile activities were taking place were also used as meeting places by the Leadership of East Belfast UDA. He also was aware that the Girton and Park Avenue were used as meeting places by the East Belfast UDA.  Indeed, the UDA had an office approximately three blocks away.

Was Tommy Lyttle one of the sources of information that reached HQ NI about these hotels?

In September 1975, Wallace was disciplined for allegedly passing a restricted document to a journalist. During his disciplinary hearing, he wrote to his former boss at Army HQ NI referring to “attempts made by the Security Service to discredit various Loyalist politicians, including the Rev Ian Paisley, by linking MPs with Loyalist paramilitary figures involved in homosexual prostitution at children’s homes in Belfast”. Wallace gave copies of these documents to the HIA Inquiry in 2016 though it ignored them. Hart reported in 2017. He concluded that the State did not know about the abuse at Kincora.

Joe Mains, the Warden (i.e. boss) of Kincora was involved in paedophile activities at these hotels too. William McGrath lived very close to it.


John Lyttle, who is gay, has written about the moment when his father “sat on my bed, weeping. I had just reiterated the fact of my sexuality, and my reward was deep and sore sobbing”. The revelation would contribute towards a ‘distance’ between father and son.

Tommy Lyttle’s reaction might have been prompted in part by a measure of guilt about the sexual assaults perpetrated by older men on juvenile males, in which he was complicit.


As shall be described in greater detail later, Albert Baker of the UDA was a British agent who knew about Kincora and says that the entire Inner Council of the UDA did too.

Other pieces from the UDA-Kincora jig-saw have fallen into place in recent years. In the late 1980s James Miller, another ex-British soldier, revealed to journalists that he had served as an MI5 agent inside the UDA. In 2017 the Hart Report stated that MI5 had acknowledged that Miller had been an MI5 agent and someone who knew about the sexual proclivities of William McGrath.

UDA marchers

Miller had also spied on McGrath for MI5. Unfortunately, Judge Hart made a calamitous error in his reporting of Miller. As described earlier, he concocted a speculative and nonsensical notion – purely out of his own imagination – in 2017 that MI5 had not reported what Miller told them about McGrath to the RUC – as they were obliged to do by law – because they wanted to protect Miller’s cover. Hart did not even bother to ask MI5 if his theory might be true. Sadly, it was an impossibility because Miller fled NI in 1974 when the UDA discovered his role as a spy. The Kincora scandal was not exposed until 1980. So why did MI5 keep silent between 1974 and 1980?  Unfortunately,  Hart was not a man to pay attention to detail (as other astonishing mistakes in his report attest). What is worse, is that he took every opportunity to concoct excuses for MI5 while treating victims of abuse such as Richard Kerr with disdain. Beyond question, Hart was a man deeply out of his depth when it came to dealing with the world of dirty tricks. His report – in so far as Kincora is concerned – was a lamentable disaster.


John McKeague, a long-time associate of William McGrath, was another member of the A-IVR. On 23 May 1975 Andy Tyrie, the Supreme Commander of the UDA – who is still alive –  and another UDA commander, John Orchin, held a meeting with James Allan, a senior MI6 officer posing as a civil servant at the NIO. According to declassified British files, during the discussion there were “some ribald discussions of Mr McKeague’s proclivities”. (CJ/43734; also Margaret Urwin, A State in Denial at page 139.) This clearly demonstrates that MI6 and the NIO knew a lot about McKeague’s sexual deviancy. Incredibly, although Urwin’s book came out in 2016 and McKeague featured in the index, Judge Hart ignored the research and the declassified document it was based on. His report emerged in January 2017.

Orchin (middle), Tyrie (right)

Nor did Hart ask Tyrie to provide an account of the meeting.


Tommy Lyttle told author Greg Harkin that British military intelligence had provided him with assistance in importing arms into NI from South Africa.

Greg Harkin and his book

There are other indications of the assistance NIO officials afforded to Loyalist gunrunners. In 1977 William McGrath sent a member of Tara called Colin Wyatt to Holland to procure guns for Tara. Wyatt returned home and was debriefed in McGrath’s house by someone McGrath introduced to him as an Under Secretary from the NIO. It was far more likely that the individual was an intelligence officer.


On 21 February, 1982, at the height of claims that Kincora had been transformed into a child brothel by MI5/6, the UDA told the media that its eight-man Executive Committee was scheduled to meet the following day to decide whether or not to publish documents naming Unionist politicians involved in Kincora in its newspaper. The Belfast Newsletter reported a UDA spokesman who referred to a ‘wave of revulsion throughout Ulster about this case and people want to make sure that it never happens again. … Innocent people could be under a cloud of suspicion and may remain so until the names are released.”

The UDA never released a single name. Tommy Lyttle, who was still a brigadier of the UDA at this time, knew that an effective inquiry would expose his name once the Kincora boys were interviewed (not as an abuser, rather a trafficker). In reality the statement was a warning shot aimed at MI5 and the NIO to ensure that the matter was covered-up.

Unfortunately, the Hart Inquiry did not secure evidence from the UDA, (not even from Albert Baker who was interviewed by Ken Livingstone for his 1989 book, “Livingstone’s Labour” which will be discussed later.)


Some Loyalist paramilitaries decided they would assassinate McGrath when he got out of prison. However, John McMichael, the UDA’s South Belfast Brigadier, ensured they didn’t, perhaps in return for McGrath having spilled the beans to him about what had really happened at Kincora. McGrath might have told him about Lyttle’s role in the scandal. McMichael was assassinated aged 39 by a car bomb in 1987.

McMichael believed Lyttle was a British agent. He shared his suspicions with his colleague Michael Stone, the Milltown Cemetery bomber. According to Stone: ‘McMichael constantly warned me about Tucker Lyttle and on this particular night he took the time to ram the point home. I distinctly remember him saying, “Tucker is a tout, so never tell him anything, don’t befriend him and keep him away from your UDA business”. He knew Lyttle had Special Branch handlers and was the weakest link in the UDA’s Inner Council. Also, he knew that Lyttle had a better and more intimate working relationship with the Special Branch handlers than his Loyalist associates. McMichael wasn’t telling me anything I hadn’t discovered for myself. I had first-hand experience of Tucker the Traitor”. (p.98)

McMichael was killed by a bomb planted in his car on 22 December 1987. The Provisional IRA claimed responsibility. Ever since his death, rumours have abounded that the IRA was assisted by McMichael’s enemies inside the UDA with James Pratt Craig and Tommy Lyttle cited as conspirators. No hard evidence has emerged one way or the other.


After the Milltown Cemetery bombing during which Stone attempted to assassinate Martin McGuinness and Gerry Adams while they attended the funerals of IRA members who had been killed in Gibraltar by the SAS, Lyttle visited Stone in prison. Amazingly, Lyttle managed to cancel all other visits to the prison and secured exclusive use of the visiting centre for an exclusive interrogation of Stone. He demanded that Stone tell him the names of those on the Inner Council who had approved the Milltown Cemetery attack. Stone refused and came away more convinced than ever that Lyttle was a British agent. How else could he have managed to gain control of what was taking place inside the prison?


Tommy Lyttle remained in place as a British spy inside the UDA after the killing of John McMichael. He would become central to the 1989 murder of Patrick Finucane, something that was organised in tandem with the RUCSB and MI5. The guiding hand of MI5 is the reason that Theresa May would not allow a sworn judicial inquiry into the Finucane murder when she was Home Secretary and as PM. Her lack of integrity was demonstrated after she persisted in this stance after the ruling of the Supreme Court in London on 27 February 2019. Her action was tantamount to being an accessory after the fact, politically at least.

There is no controversy about the fact that Tommy Lyttle – a British agent – issued the kill order. Indeed, we even know how he felt about it. According to the UDA’s Supreme Commander, Andy Tyrie, Lyttle was fearful that if he gave the order, he would become a target of IRA retaliation. Lyttle’s concerns are consistent with the fact that pressure was being placed on his shoulders by someone in control of him. Who else but MI5 could fill that role?


The intelligence provided for the Finucane assassination was supplied by Brian Nelson, the UDA’s then Chief of Intelligence. Nelson was a sadist who, for example, beat, tortured and electrocuted a man called Jerry Higgins. (Stakeknife p.171)

FRU whistle-blower Ian Hurst has revealed that it was Lyttle who ordered Nelson to compile the targeting information on Finucane.

Nelson was later arrested by a team led by Sir John Stevens, then serving as Deputy Chief Constable of Cambridgeshire. Stevens had been charged with investigating British State collusion with Loyalist paramilitaries. Stevens’ team confiscated Nelson’s files which contained various incriminating documents and photographs based on information supplied to him by the FRU. Nelson was put on trial for his part in the murder of various Republicans in 1992. His links to the FRU were acknowledged during the trial by no less a figure than Brigadier Gordon Kerr, the Head of the FRU.

Nelson pleaded guilty to 20 charges including five of conspiracy to murder in 1992 and was sentenced to 10 years. After his release, he disappeared. He apparently died from a brain haemorrhage aged 55 on 11 April 2011 but we only have MI5’s word for this.


The gun which killed Finucane was supplied by Williams Stobie, a UDA quartermaster who was also a British agent, something he admitted to author Greg Harkin who wrote ‘Stakeknife’.

In 1992 Stobie’s role as a British agent led to an attempt on his life by his erstwhile colleagues, or at least this was the story the RUCSB put about. Stobie was taken to an alleyway where he was shot five times in the back and legs but somehow managed to escape. His death would have been a godsend for MI5.

In April 1999 he was arrested by the Stevens’ team and charged with Finucane’s murder. The charge was later changed to aiding and abetting the murder. The trial fell apart after Neil Mulholland, the then NIO press officer, refused to take to the witness stand.

In 2001 Stobie let it be known that he was willing to testify at an enquiry into the Finucane murder and that while he would name his RUCSB “handlers”, he would not name any Loyalists. On 12 December 2001 he was shot dead outside his house.


The door of the Finucane family home was sledgehammered apart by two masked assassins while a third waited outside in a car. Ken Barret was part of the hit team. One of the gunmen shot Finucane in front of his family, 14 times. Barret later told the BBC’s Panorama programme that RUCSB officers had encouraged him to kill Finucane. The RUCSB is controlled by MI5.

During the turmoil created by the arrests made by the Stevens’ team, Ken Barrett, rose briefly to become acting West Belfast Brigadier but in May 2003 he was arrested for the Finucane killing by Stevens. In September 2004 Barrett pleaded guilty to Finucane’s murder although there is some controversy about the precise role he played in it – driver or gunman. He was sentenced to life imprisonment with a recommendation that he serve a minimum of 22 years. He was released in May 2006 after serving two years and has since disappeared.


By late 1989 or early 1990 the ‘Young Turks’ inside the UDA were withholding information from Lyttle “because he was thought to be not reliable” according to one of then quoted in Peter Taylor’s book Loyalists (p209)

According to Michael Stone, “Tucker had a secret. He was a Special Branch informer and had several handlers. He cosied up to his RUC bosses and sold out his Loyalist brothers. To those of us who knew him, he was affectionately known as ‘Tucker the Fucker’. He was despised for bringing the Loyalist cause into disrepute with his covert relationship with the RUC”. (Stone p. 105)

The UDA had been using files containing State information to target IRA members for assassination.

As Stone has written, Lyttle “brought the full force of a major police investigation on the UDA” in 1989 when he “tried to justify the shooting of a Catholic man by passing a security-forces intelligence file to journalists…The outcry led to the establishment of the Stevens Inquiry to investigate collusion between the security forces and Loyalist paramilitaries. A year later [Lyttle] was arrested after his fingerprint was found on one of the restricted files”. (107)

Lyttle was charged with receiving and passing unclassified security force intelligence files and intimidating potential witnesses.

Some of the security files had also been hung on walls in Belfast to justify the murders.

Lyttle’s arrest took place in January 1990.

Lyttle was hauled up before Belfast’s Crumlin Road Court. His son John has written about how, ‘Policemen with machine guns haunt the back of the court as the prosecution rehearses the reasons bail should be denied to this “dangerous man”. The inquiry, being conducted by Chief Detective Inspector John Stevens into RUC and loyalist paramilitary collusion in the murder of suspected IRA terrorists, is still proceeding. Mr Lyttle, m’lud, has been accused of receiving and passing on classified security force intelligence files (“Fuckin’ MI5 – they set it up, got cornered and ran,” my father will later laugh), which is a serious charge. Quite as serious, it seems, as Mr Lyttle’s likely attempts to interfere with potential witnesses”.

Lyttle later pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six years.

Lyttle did not spill the beans on MI5 in open court. He continued to keep his mouth shut about MI5 and was released in 1994 on remission. Upon his release, he was summoned to appear before the Inner Council and admitted having worked for the RUCSB but excused himself on the basis that his relationship had been to benefit of the UDA, as indeed it had.

Lyttle must have become angry at “fucking MI5” because he spoke to Greg Harkin, co-author of the book Stakeknife who went on to report that it ‘was Lyttle who ordered the murder of Mr Finucane’. Harkin adds that Lyttle, ‘was also the source of my story in 1990 exposing Brian Nelson’s existence and his subsequent arrest by the first Stevens Inquiry.’ Harkin also reported that Nelson had been ‘summonsed to Lyttle’s home in Sydney Street West and told to prepare a file on the lawyer’.

“When [Nelson] reported back to his [FRU] handlers’, Harkin has revealed, ‘rather than discourage him from taking on the operation FRU members actively encouraged him to go ahead and gave him every possible assistance. They provided photographs and map details of Mr Finucane’s home off the city’s Antrim Road. But even more alarmingly, two different handlers were involved in THREE separate reconnaissance missions at the Finucane family home’’.

Brian Nelson

Harkin also learnt that an ‘experienced FRU officer accompanied Nelson on two car trips to the street. Another officer, posing alongside Nelson as window cleaners, offered their ‘services’ to Mr Finucane’s neighbour so they could check out the rear of their target’s home. Mr Finucane didn’t stand a chance’.


Lyttle died on 18 October 1995, aged only 56 after a massive heart attack while playing pool in Millisle. Michael Stone recalls at the time ‘the young Johnny Adair was in charge of the UDA’s C Company in the Lower Shankill, and his battalion placed [a death notice] as coming from Tucker’s ‘friends in Tennent Street and Ladas Drive’, two well-known Belfast RUC stations’. (109)


As described above, in 2011 PM David Cameron’s Director of Security and Intelligence, Ciaran Martin, privately warned Cameron that senior members of Margaret Thatcher’s government may have been aware of what he cautiously described as “a systemic problem with loyalist agents” at the time of Finucane’s assassination and that nothing had been done about it.

The Finucane murder was investigated by the Stevens Inquiry after which a review of the evidence was conducted by Peter Cory, a retired Canadian judge who recommended a full-blown public inquiry. Tony Blair indicated his support for just such an inquiry.

The Finucane family met  Cameron in Downing Street on 11 October 2011. In a moment of rare candour, Cameron disclosed that there were powerful people around him – clearly more powerful than even he was in the realms of the dark world of intelligence – who were preventing a full-scale inquiry.

Instead of an inquiry, a review of the Stevens and Cory casefiles was ordered. It was conducted by Sir Desmond de Silva QC. It was released on 12 December 2012 and documented extensive evidence of State collaboration with Loyalist gunmen, including the selection of murder targets, and concluded that “there was a wilful and abject failure by successive governments to provide the clear policy and legal framework necessary for agent-handling operations to take place effectively within the law’. Significantly, however, de Silva concluded that there had not been a high-level conspiracy. The Finucane’s family denounced the Review as a “sham” and a “suppression of the truth”.

Judge Peter Cory

Cameron responded by referring to the “shocking levels of collusion” outlined by de Silva. Still, there was not going to be an inquiry.

Theresa May was Home Secretary at this time and undoubtedly knows who inside the Home Office wanted to suppress the inquiry.

De Silva


The ‘whack Finucane’ discussion with Lyttle’s RUCSB handler took place in the wake of inflammatory remarks made by Douglas Hogg, then a Tory Home Office minister, in the House of Commons. Hogg stated that “some solicitors were unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA”. A rather obvious point presumably never occurred to Hogg: without lawyers who are prepared to appear for defendants, it would be impossible to hold trials and all sorts of criminals would walk free. Did Hogg think that any lawyer who took on the defence of an individual should do anything less than his or her level best? Did he think the lawyers who acted for the Birmingham Six and Guildford Four in the 1970s  – when everyone thought they were guilty – were also “unduly sympathetic”?

Hogg was hardly so bereft of intelligence that he made these remarks knowing that a hit against Finucane was in the works. It is more likely he was used as a pawn by MI5 to create an atmosphere conducive to the hit. Indeed, after the murder, he was blamed for inflaming Loyalist anger whereby the murder looked like it was an outburst by hot heads and not a calculated plot masterminded by cold minds.

Hogg was promoted by Thatcher the following year to Minister of State at the Foreign Office. David Cameron made him a life peer in 2015 and he now sits in the House of Lords.


In 1989 MI5 was led by Patrick Walker. Before he became top gun, he had served in NI and as Head of MI5’s counter-terrorism unit.

Sir Patrick Walker

The Finucane family has repeatedly called for a full judicial inquiry into the assassination of Patrick Finucane. TPatrick Walker, the former D-G of MI5 at the time of the murder he organised is still alive. he cabinet level documentation Judge Cory came across is probably still in existence.

If a full-blow judicial inquiry is established as a result of the Supreme Court decision of February 2019, the questions it will have to address include the following:

  • What information is contained in the Cabinet level document Judge Cory told Geraldine Finucane about?;
  • What is in Tommy Lyttle’s MI5, MI6 and RUC files?;
  • What is in the MI5, MI6 and RUC files of William Stobie, Ken Barret and Brian Nelson?;
  • Is it possible that the RUCSB and the MI5 Station in Belfast arranged the slaying of Finucane behind Walker’s back?;
  • If Walker was involved, would he have acted behind the back of his superiors in Downing Street?;
  • Is there a paper trail which traces the root of advice which prompted Douglas Hogg’s statement about unduly sympathetic lawyers in Northern Ireland?;
  • Who placed pressure on Blair, Cameron and May not to call a full judicial inquiry, and why did they so act?

A properly run full inquiry also has the potential to unravel Lyttle’s entire history as a British agent including his sordid role in Kincora by simply reviewing his file.


There were some officers in the RUC who stood up to the malign influence of MI5 in the cover-up of the Finucane assassination. Foremost was Alan Simpson who led the RUC investigation into the atrocity. Simpson’s team included Trevor McIlwrath and Johnston Brown, two men with a similar mindset as him. In 2015 all three instigated proceedings in the High Court in Belfast against the PSNI, the successor organisation to the RUC. The basis of their claim – which has yet to come to court – is that the RUC obstructed the Finucane investigation to perpetrate a cover-up of a conspiracy to murder him in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Straight cops: Johnston Brown and his book; Trevor McIlwrath and Alan Simpson.

Simpson has revealed that within days of the assassination a senior RUC officer warned him not to get “too deeply involved in this one”.

In addition, they were fed misleading information about suspects.  “I do not need Special Branch coming up and organising one (murder) and then standing in a room with me keeping quiet and all the time knowing the true facts and leading me astray.”

Simpson has said that he has been left with a “deep sense of betrayal”.

Johnston Brown has written a book Into the Dark which provides his account of the scandal

Further readingvarious books which may be of interest to readers who wish to learn more about the Finucane murder.



James Molyneaux MP was one of the most significant figures in Unionist politics during the Troubles. He was first elected as a Westminster MP in 1970 for the then dominant Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) and served as its leader 1979-1995. He was also an Orangeman and a member of the Monday Club, a right-wing pressure group which was associated with the Tory Party.

According to Robin Bryans, Molyneaux was part of the paedophile gang which preyed on vulnerable boys in care in Northern Ireland.

MI5 did not hand over it files on Molyneaux to the Hart Inquiry which reported in 2017.

Of equal disappointment is the fact that the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) in London is not looking for MI5’s files on Molyneaux. It has shown no interest in him nor other MPs and VIPs who abused boys as part of an Anglo-Irish Vice Ring.

Richard Kerr,was trafficked from Belfast to London in the 1970s aged 16 to be abused by an MP who was a friend of Molyneaux. 


Robin Bryans tried to expose Molyneaux’s links to Kincora while he was still Leader of the UUP but without success.

Bryans, however, did manage to expose Sir Anthony Blunt, the Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures, who had been a KGB mole while he served inside MI5. Byrans knew Blunt well from his frequent visits to Ulster where Blunt seized opportunities to abuse underage boys. Bryans tried to expose Molyneaux in a letter he wrote on 3 November, 1989, which also made reference to Blunt’s treachery. This was six years before Molyneaux would step down as Leader of the UUP. The relevant extract reads as follows:

‘Although Margaret Thatcher’s showed loyalty to those who had eased her path, by fair means or foul, to office, her forthrightness and inexperience enraged many. While (Sir Anthony) Blunt had a cosy relationship with the security services (based on his knowledge of incriminating political and sexual leanings among the Royal family), Thatcher showed herself to be unsympathetic to this delicate quid pro quo. She unbalanced the status quo by admitting that Blunt had been a Soviet agent [in the House of Commons in 1979]. This betrayal (as Blunt saw it) risked letting all sorts of other skeletons out of the cupboard. Not the least of these was the long-standing arrangement whereby Kincora and Portora Boys’ Schools were used as homosexual brothels by many prominent figures, including Lord Mountbatten, James Molyneaux, Leslie Mackie and Blunt’s coterie of highly placed friends. Blunt, however, kept his mouth shut, and Thatcher learned her lesson well. The establishment knows best’.

Pictured above: Molyneaux never sued: this is a copy of the extract from the letter Bryans put into circulation while Molyneaux was leader of the UUP. He did not sue Bryans.


Molyneaux was the political protégé of Sir Knox Cunningham QC, MP. Cunningham was a senior Unionist MP at Westminster who rose to become Prime Minister Harold MacMillan’s Parliamentary Private Secretary, 1959-63, and as such was present at the deliberations of Macmillan’s cabinet. Macmillan recalled Cunningham fondly in his memoirs and awarded him a baronetcy in his resignation honours.

Molyneaux acted as Cunningham’s election agent and succeeded to his seat in 1970 when the older man retired.

According to Bryans, Cunningham once described the young Molyneux as ‘a pretty little thing’.

Cunningham was also a senior member of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring of which the infamous Kincora Boys’ Home was a part.

Richard Kerr has revealed that Cunningham was an abuser of Kincora boys.

A memorandum prepared by Colin Wallace a PSYOPS officer at British Army HQ Lisburn in the 1970s stated that Cunningham was ‘closely associated’ with William McGrath, the brutal child rapist and Housefather at Kincora and was ‘aware of his activities’.

Cunningham became involved in the World Alliance of Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) in 1947 and became Chairman of its National Council two years later, something which put him in charge of the YMCA in Ireland, Wales and England. Cunningham took boys from Kincora to the YMCA in England. His Wikipedia entry suggests that he became involved with the YMCA because of his “religious faith” but it is more likely he wanted to gain access to young men. Much of his interaction with the YMCA boys involved the sport of boxing. According to Bryans, he took Kincora boys to the YMCA in England.

According to Bryans, Cunningham ‘always liked to appear as the great Queen’s Counsel who knew more than anybody about everybody, especially those in my books and bed’. (The Dust Has Never Settled p.56)

Although he resigned his seat in Westminster 1970, Cunningham remained an influential figure in Unionist politics in Northern Ireland.

It is abundantly clear from Colin Wallace’s contemporaneous notes that Cunningham’s depravity was known at Lisburn HQ where a number of British military and civilian intelligence services were based. More importantly, what did they know about Molyneaux’s secret sex life? The IICSA has the power to demand all of these files but appears to have no interest in it


As indicated earlier, in 1973 MI5 planned to leak details about the sexual secrets of a group of Loyalist politicians as part of what they called Operation Clockwork Orange. It was a scheme designed to undermine Loyalist opposition to the Sunningdale Agreement and the Power Sharing Government of NI which was set up under its auspices.  Molyneaux’s name would undoubtedly have emerged if Clockwork Orange had gone ahead. However, it was aborted because Harold Wilson of the Labour Party became the UK’s prime minister. The ‘Ultras’ in MI5 such as Peter Wright actually believed Wilson was a KGB mole and decided to oust him from power. Suddenly, it suited their plans to get at Wilson by letting Sunningdale and the Power Sharing Government fail. Hence, details about the private lives of senior Loyalists such as Molyneaux were not leaked to the press. Instead MI5 threw its weight behind the Ulster Workers Council strike of 1974 which tore down the Power Sharing Government.

One of the most vicious acts of the UWC strike was the Dublin and Monaghan bombings. They were carried out by a gang of Loyalist terrorists including Robin Jackson who was an RUC Special Branch and MI5 agent. Jackson was far from the only MI5 agent involved in the Dublin and Monaghan atrocities which killed 33 people.

The British Government was asked by the Irish Government to release its file on the atrocities to assist the Barron Inquiry. The British Government refused to make the disclosure.


The Kincora scandal finally erupted in 1980. Lyra McKee states in her book Angels with Blue Faces that Molyneaux was interviewed about Kincora by “a senior [RUC] detective who’d worked on the [Kincora] investigation” and had heard stories about him. McKee interviewed the former officer during the research for her book. In it she described how:

“Various names were bandied about or alluded to by the tabloid press [after the Kincora scandal erupted], so many that a senior detective investigating the home collected press clippings and followed them up. This led him to interview [the] then UUP party leader James Molyneaux. Molyneux had protested his innocence and said he’d never been near the home. A closeted gay, his sexuality was open secret among political circles, but homosexuality would remain illegal in Northern Ireland until 1987. The detective believed his protest and that press stories linking him to the home were inaccurate. Yet Molyneaux had not disclosed his links to [William] McGrath [the Housefather of Kincora], that he’d known the political preacher and of TARA [the paramilitary organisation commanded by McGrath] and had actually visited McGrath’s home. The police investigation was concerned primarily with the abuse allegations and so the political web linking the likes of McGrath and Molyneaux and other figures within unionism were never examined. Except by journalists”. (46/7)

In his 1996 book The Kincora Scandal, Chris Moore exposed some of Molyneaux’s links to McGrath.  Moore revealed how Molyneaux had displayed an interest in one particular young man who had been involved with TARA but had left it. Molyneaux had then asked McGrath why he had departed. Molyneaux did not sue for defamation.


In her book, Lyra McKee also points out that Molyneaux had claimed that “not so loyal servants of the Crown” had been involved in the murder of Roy Bradford MP in 1981 before later backing down on the allegation. McKee wrote:

‘One day, I met with Jeffrey Donaldson, a former UUP stalwart who’d worked closely with Jim Molyneaux who had later moved to the Democratic Unionist Party and was now MP for Laggan Valley. He made an interesting claim.

‘He said senior members of the UUP had harboured suspicions about Bradford’s murder. “I worked with Enoch Powell as his Constituency Agent and later as Personal Adviser to the Party leader Jim Molyneaux,” he said. We were sitting in a coffee shop on the outskirts of Belfast City Centre. “Both of them felt that there were suspicious aspects to the circumstances of Robert’s death. Jim always felt strongly that Robert had been investigating something that he was about to go public with when he died. He thought it might have been something connected with the Royal Victoria Hospital. He just always had the feeling that Robert had been set up by someone, elsewhere. I’m not one for conspiracy theories but when it is people you respect like Enoch Powell and Jim Molyneaux who expressed such suspicions, then they cannot be lightly dismissed.” (66)

It is far more likely that Molyneaux was being coy in front of Donaldson and that the “not so loyal servants of the Crown” he suspected of having killed Bradford were members of MI5 in control of the IRA gang which carried out the actual assassination and had done so because of Kincora, not because of irregularities at the Royal Victoria Hospital. At the time of his assassination Bradford had been making inquiries into Kincora. (For more details about his inquiry, click on the Lyra McKee tab/button at the end of this story.)


In March of 2016 journalist Bimpe Archer of The Irish News published an exclusive interview with Christopher Luke. Luke had become Molyneaux’s boyfriend in his later life. Luke described how he had met the UUP politician in 1984 when he was 17 and the politician was 64 at a meeting of the Conservative Party’s  ‘Monday Club’  in London. Despite ‘the age gap, the pair bonded over their passionate belief in Northern Ireland’s immutable position within the UK, mutual hatred of Tory Europhile Edward Heath and admiration for controversial firebrand Enoch Powell’.

Luke described how the connection between them had been “instant”.

According to the report, ‘Mr Luke is openly gay, but, when asked about how intimate the two men became, said: “I don’t wish to talk about that”, but acknowledged “I had a very, very close relationship with Jimmy”, describing it as a biblical “David and Jonathan relationship”’.

Molyneaux spent an enormous amount of his time in London, first as an MP and then in the House of Lords. He kept a flat in South Kensington where, according to Luke, the pair would meet regularly. ‘The London flat was where we developed our own personal relationship beyond politics,’ he revealed.


The Belfast Telegraph later reported that: ‘It is also understood that Mr Luke has a side-line as the author of gay corporal punishment fiction, and writes under the name ‘Clansman Chris’. Luke did not deny the claim, ‘saying only that it was “a private matter”’.

Harvey Proctor, a friend of Molyneaux who liked to beat rent boys.

Harvey Proctor, the former Conservative MP and member of the Monday Club was  a friend of Molyneaux. Proctor would undoubtedly have enjoyed the work of ‘Clansman Chris’. In May 1987 Proctor pleaded guilty to four acts of gross indecency with two men and was fined a total of £1,450. The press reported how he liked to spank rent boys aged between 17 and 21. He also used a polaroid camera to take pictures of them.

Enoch Powell would have enjoyed the work too for he – Powell – was a violent abuser of the boys. Powell abused Richard Kerr sexually and by beating him with a belt and buckle.


As described earlier, the Anglo-Irish Agreement was signed at Hillsborough on 15 November, 1985. Earlier that month, Lobby Correspondents in London were given an unattributable briefing from Margaret Thatcher’s press office claiming she had ordered the Ministry of Defence to open a fresh inquiry into Kincora. This can only have had a chilling effect on the then Unionist leadership in Northern Ireland, especially Molyneaux.

Christopher Luke’s sudden arrival in Belfast after the Anglo-Irish Agreement was signed can only have unsettled Molyneaux’s nerves further. Luke was active in Conservative politics and had a keen interest in Northern Ireland. According to Bimpe Archer, after the signing of the Anglo-Irish Agreement, Luke  “immediately resigned membership of the Conservative Party” and flew to Belfast in a rage. Having taken a bus to the UUP’s HQ at Glengall Street, he met Molyneaux and his colleague Harold McCusker, also a Westminster MP. ‘Jimmy [Molyneaux] was totally surprised to see me and said “Chrissie, what brings you here?’”

Luke was taken inside the UUP HQ and McCusker contacted the Rev. Martin Smyth, who organised a place for him to stay with ‘party members of the Windsor branch’. Smith was Grand Master of the Orange Order, 1971-96, and one-time Vice President of the Monday Club. He was also a Westminster MP having succeeded to Robert Bradford’s seat in the 1982 by-election after the latter’s murder. After Molyneaux stood down as UUP leader in 1985, Smyth was defeated by David Trimble in the ensuing leadership election.

Ian Paisley faced a drubbing too if he was ever to be hauled before any sort of a tribunal. He would have had to explain under oath why he had done nothing about Kincora after his secretary, Valerie Shaw, had informed him about it in 1973. Moreover, Paisley had once been very close to McGrath and had officiated at the marriage of one of McGrath’s children.

Enoch Powell MP was vulnerable to political annihilation over his abuse of Richard Kerr and no doubt other boys MI5 knew about.

Suffice it to say, the threatened MoD inquiry never took place.

The Lobby briefing indicates that Thatcher was fully aware of what had taken place at Kincora and MI5’s deep knowledge of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring of which so many senior Loyalist politicians were members.


Christopher Luke became a member of the Orange Order. The Belfast Telegraph revealed in 2016 that he was expelled from it ‘following what he at first described as a “personality clash”, but later admitted was sparked by his publication of the home address of David Trimble who had succeeded Molyneaux as Leader of the UUP.

Bimpe Archer also reported that the last time Christopher Luke ‘saw his beloved “Jimmy” it was heart breaking’ because Molyneaux then 94 didn’t recognise him and ‘tried to shove me off hugging and kissing him – again perhaps he thought the time wasn’t right’.  However, at a later stage of the visit to the nursing home where Molyneaux was living, recognition ‘came back to him’ and the pair were able to share a final moment of understanding. Molyneaux, died a few months later, on March 8, 2015.

Luke placed a memoriam notice in a Belfast newspaper in which he described himself as Molyneaux’s ‘close companion’ and paraphrased the Book of Samuel to say: ‘I grieve for you .. you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women. I love you more today than I did yesterday, but less than I will tomorrow, my dear Jim, your eternal protégé Chrissie.’



A photo which Enoch Powell allowed Michael Cockerell to broadcast during his documentary about his career, Odd Man Out, to illustrate his dislike of getting his hair wet

In 2015, the late Enoch Powell MP, was named in a Church of England review into historical child sex abuse concerning the 1980s. One of its spokespersons told the press that: “The name Enoch Powell was passed to Operation Fernbridge on the instruction of Bishop Paul Butler”. The information originally came from a cleric who has counselled child abuse victims in the 1980s.

Powell’s sexual interest in younger men was a long-standing trait. In 1937, having graduated with a double first from Cambridge, Powell had become a classics professor at the University of Sydney. He was only 25 and held the post for two years during which he wrote to his parents describing his infatuation with his male students. He told them how he was repelled by his female students, while feeling “an instant and instinctive affection” for Australian males between the ages of 17 and 23. This, he added, might be “deplored, but it cannot be altered”, and therefore had to be “endured – and (alas!) camouflaged”. Somewhere along the line Powell developed an interest in much younger boys.

After serving as an intelligence officer during WW2, Powell went into politics and in 1950 became a Tory MP and later served in Cabinet. In 1966 he ran unsuccessfully for the leadership of the Conservative Party against Ted Heath, another paedophile with a taste for young boys. His career went into decline after his infamous 1968 ‘rivers of blood’ anti-immigration speech. Eventually, Powell relocated to NI where he became a UUP MP in 1974.

After he died in 1998, his friend Canon Eric James, a former chaplain at Trinity College, Cambridge, and Extra Preacher to the Queen, revealed that Powell had confided in him ten years earlier that he had engaged in a homosexual relationship as a young man. Powell gave him a copy of a collection of his poems called ‘First Poems’ (1937). He highlighted some verses where he had “tried to put into words what a homosexual relationship had meant to him”. It had been assumed by many that they had described Powell’s feelings for Barbara Kennedy whom he had taken on his first date with a woman to a music hall in 1948 when he was 35 or 36 years old. Canon James explained that Powell did not identify his male lover but said the relationship was “the most painful thing in my early life’. The individual in question was probably Edward Curtis, a fellow male undergraduate at Cambridge. The Canon revealed he had promised Powell he “would not disclose what he had said to me about the homosexual basis of certain of his poems until after his death. Then it would be a matter of literary history”.

One of the lines read as follows:

“I love the fire/ In youthful limbs that wakes desire…”.

Another of his poems leaves little to the imagination: It described how he, as an “unknowing boy” was “led to sin”.

‘I did not speak, but when I saw you turn

And cross your right leg on your left, and fold

Your hands around your knee, I felt a flow

Of white-hot lava seething up the old

Volcano shaft. That self-same attitude,

Though not of yours, it was which long ago

Fired me, an innocent, unknowing boy,

And led me on to sin and on to learn

and onwards to the very font of woe’


Richard Kerr was abused by Powell. He recalls how a man called ‘David’ and his accomplice came to take him away to be abused by Powell on a summer’s day in either 1973 or 1974 when Powell was 61 or 62. By this stage of his life, sexual abuse by adult males had become “normal” for him.

Kerr was taken to Barry’s Amusements in the seaside resort of Portrush, Co Antrim. It was opened in 1926 and became – and remains – the largest theme park in NI. Located in the centre of Portrush, it is a 50-mile drive from Belfast. Kerr was either 12 or 13 at the time of the trip. The group went unnoticed as they mingled with the crowds of children who were laughing and shouting all around them. He vividly recalls being taken on bumper cars. “Maybe I am just having a fun day today”, he allowed himself to think for a spell. However, the visit to the arcade was a cynical ploy. The children at Barry’s provided the perfect cover for what was about to happen: the handover to Powell. If the kidnappers had waited at a cross-roads or outside a hotel for such a high-profile politician, it might have attracted unwanted attention.

When Powell made his rendez-vous with the group, he was in the company of another two men. Powell spirited Kerr away on his own to a guest house near Portrush where he had booked a bedroom. Inside it, he sat him on a chair and then lifted him onto the bed and placed his head on the pillow. Next, he undid his shorts. After this he threw him on top of his chest and started to abuse him. Kerr wasn’t shocked at what was happening since he had been violated by countless men by this stage; nor was he unduly surprised when Powell began to beat him with a leather belt and buckle. The abuse involved a variety of other acts of degradation including oral sex and masturbation but no penetration. Powell smiled a lot during the encounter, he recalls.

Grinning paedophiles: Enoch Powell enjoying the company of fellow paedophiles Jimmy Saville and Ted Heath


Long before the Kincora scandal erupted, the Whip and Saddle Bar at the Europa Hotel had become notorious as a meeting place for older men who were sexually interested in younger men. The bar was the object of ribald jokes among the international array of journalists who stayed there, including some from the Republic. Joseph Mains, the Warden of Kincora, supplied Kerr to abusers at the hotel and, in 1977, asked his friend Harper Brown, the then manager of it, to arrange a job for Kerr as a bellhop. As it transpired, Kerr’s real function would be to provide sexual services to men who drank at the Whip and Saddle. Enoch Powell was one of them.

One night at around 10:45 pm, a man approached Kerr while he was behind the concierge’s desk. Powell was with a group of men inside the bar. The man who approached him was a friend of Powell. He “definitely did not have a Northern Ireland accident”, Kerr recalls. He told him that he had a ‘gentleman’ he wanted him to meet upstairs. “Can you go up to see him”, the man asked, but it was more an order than a request. He gave him the room number and told him to go up half an hour after the bar had closed. Meanwhile, Powell remained in the bar with his associates.

At the designated time, Kerr went upstairs to the room and found Powell waiting for him in it. He recognised him as the individual who had abused him in Portrush. He says he had the same distinctive accent and smiled a lot. On this occasion he wanted masturbation and oral sex.

Kerr recalls that after Powell had finished with him, he went into the bathroom to wash the towels that had been soiled “to hide evidence”. Powell stayed behind while Kerr returned to the bellhops’ station downstairs. Powell’s friend came up to him not long afterwards saying, “Here’s a tip for you”, and gave him a half crown.

Barry’s Amusements

Powell was playing a dangerous game. Homosexuality was outlawed in NI and many of his constituents would have condemned him for any hint of it. Only heterosexual sex between consenting adults was legal. Powell was acutely aware of these facts. In May 1965 he had co-sponsored an unsuccessful bill on homosexual law reform at Westminster. In 1967 he had voted for the Sexual Offences Act which had succeeded in decriminalising homosexuality but only in England and Wales. On 13 March 1982 he would give a speech in Ilford calling for the law to be reformed in NI (and allowing parents the right to forbid school-teachers to administer corporal punishment to their children, a mercy he had not afforded Kerr in Portrush when he had beaten him).

Kerr went to live in London in the early 1980s. One night while he was watching television he recognised on the screen Powell who was at a political rally with Ian Paisley.


As described earlier, in early November 1985, Lobby Correspondents in London received an unatributable briefing from Margaret Thatcher’s press office claiming she had ordered the Ministry of Defence to open a fresh inquiry into Kincora. This can only have had a chilling effect on the then Unionist leadership in NI including Powell.


By the early 1980s, Colin Wallace was beginning to reveal some of what he knew about Kincora to the public. As the decade proceeded, more information began to emerge including the fact MI5 had compiled information on the sex lives of MPs such as Cyril Smith, Ted Heath and William van Straubenzee.

On 29 October 1986 Powell wrote to Wallace’s solicitor, James Morgan-Harris, on headed House of Commons notepaper, with a request to see him. Wallace was still in prison at this time. Powell could have spoken to the solicitor on the phone if he had wanted to. Instead, he journeyed all the way to West Sussex a while later for a face-to-face meeting. At it, Powell sought general information about Wallace and his case. He appeared most interested in learning about Operation Clockwork Orange which had been run in various phases during the early and mid-1970s by both MI5 and MI6. Part of Clockwork Orange had concerned the gathering of information about the private sexual activities of MPs. Wallace was not released until 5 December 1986 after the meeting between Powell and Morgan-Harris.

Was Powell trying to find out what Wallace might have learnt about him and might yet pass to the press? As it transpired, Wallace new nothing about his private life.

Powell was defeated in the June 1987 British general election. He died in 1998.


Powell had bizarre views about women. When asked by broadcaster Michael Cockerell about his time as an undergraduate at Cambridge for a documentary about his life entitled Odd Man Out, he stated, “I had no social life as an undergraduate”. When asked about women, he responded, “They didn’t exist”. While he was aware of their presence, “I wondered what they were doing there because I didn’t think they would approach advanced learning in the same mood or manner as a man would”.

And the reason for this? “Because the analytical faculty is underdeveloped in women”.

Powell’s wife Pamela told Cockerell how hopeless he was at remembering women’s faces, even her own. He married her at the age of 39 and the couple went on to have two daughters. “We married. We had a three-week honeymoon and then within four weeks she found herself going to meet him in the Central Lobby of the House of Commons where a number of women had gathered and ‘watched him go all the way around wondering which one he had married and been on a honeymoon with”.

By 1968 Powell was making visits to Northern Ireland where he was active in the support of the Unionist cause. His interest was intense, so much so that by 1972 – if not long before – he was giving speeches at meetings of the British Army in England. Fred Holroyd, the military intelligence officer and whistleblower who worked for MI6 in NI, recalls being at one in England where Powell advocated taking a “robust” approach to defeating the “enemies” of the British Empire. Holroyd came across Powell again at the Seagoa Hotel in Portadown where he found him personally amiable but his wife to be openly racist. He claims she referred to black people as “n***ers”. Powell was elected as the Westminster MP for South Down in October 1974.

Powell had a number of female admirers including Margaret Thatcher who said of him, “Enoch was the best parliamentarian I ever knew”.


An MI6 witness at the Hart Inquiry admitted that it monitored the sex lives of important individuals. ‘Officer A’, was quoted as having acknowledged that since “homosexuality would make others vulnerable to blackmail it would be of interest” to it (paragraph 237 of Chapter 28).

Presumably, the London branch of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring kept Powell supplied with boys while he was in England too. It is unclear how many victims he beat, abused and raped during his lifetime. It would be in the public interest to establish what is in the Church of England counselling notes referred to by Bishop Paul Butler.

Did MI6 keep a file on the sexual habits of Enoch Powell, Ted Heath, Greville Janner, James Molyneaus, Cyril Smith, Peter Morrison, Jeremy Thorpe, Knox Cunningham and others during those dark times? MI5 definitely did as is clear from Colin Wallace’s Clockwork Orange notes.



Witchell in the mid 1970s

Eric Witchell, a serial paedophile, was a key figure in the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring. He now lives in London and is in his early 70s, safe in the knowledge that a succession of senior MI5 figures have gone to extraordinary lengths to cover-up what he and his associates did in Belfast, London, Manchester, Liverpool and elsewhere as they – MI5 – benefited from the existence of the Anglo-Irish paedophile network of which he was a key member.

Witchell, who hailed from England, was born in 1948. He became a Franciscan at the age of 19. Before his appointment to Williamson House, he had been a housefather in an English boys school attached to the Franciscans. He became the Officer-in-Charge (OiC) of Williamson House in May of 1975 at the age of 27.

The small boys Witchell abused were abandoned, vulnerable and powerless waifs. A select few were later sent to Kincora Boys Home where they were used as bait in MI5 ‘honey trap’ blackmail operations.

Witchell betrayed the trust bestowed upon him by Belfast’s child welfare authorities but also by the Anglican Franciscan Order of which he was a member. He was, however, a godsend to MI5 and MI6.

The Williamson House scandal is worse than the outrage at Kincora insofar as younger children were abused at it.

Witchell’s sordid branch of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring supplied very young children to VIPs including Enoch Powell MP.

Witchell did not appear before the Hart Inquiry. Had he done so – and told, or been made to tell, the truth – Judge Hart would have reached a wholly different conclusion to the one he published in his lamentable 2017 report.


Witchell secured the post at Williamson House despite the fact his tutor at the National Children’s Home Training College in England had advised the appointment panel of Belfast‘s Welfare Department that at “this stage I would have some doubt in commending him to be the Officer- in-Charge… I would commend him to you for employment, but I would not commend him to you for employment as Officer-in-Charge”. It was fortuitous for MI5 that Witchell became OiC despite this because he was the vilest sort of paedophile, someone who was prepared to farm out the children in his care to a wider network of child molesters.

This suited MI5 because it enabled them to manufacture blackmail opportunities and ensnare Loyalist politicians, paramilitaries and Orangemen and force them to do their bidding.

After Witchell became OiC at the home, he moved into an apartment in the attic. It had a TV, sofa, sleeping quarters and a drinks cabinet. This was where he abused the young boys. He would usher his chosen victim upstairs and lock the door behind them. Physically, he was tall, thin and imposing. He wore glasses and had black longish hair. He was an exceptionally cruel and violent man with an insatiable sexual appetite. His preference was for prepubescent boys but he assaulted teenage boys too. His taste ranged from masturbation to anal rape. At least three of his victims would never recover from the assaults he and his associates perpetrated, and committed suicide; another two attempted to kill themselves.

Officially, he held the post of OiC at Williamson House until 1 March 1980 but he actually left before then as the RUC and MI5 were losing control of the secrecy surrounding the scandal.


By the early 1970s MI5 had probably gained control over all of the key figures in the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring including Councillor Joshua (Joss) Cardwell, a Unionist politician and paedophile, who was also Chairman of Belfast Corporation Welfare Committee. The Committee was responsible for both Williamson House, Kincora and other homes in Belfast where sexual violence was commonplace.

Witchell was also close to Joe Mains and William McGrath at Kincora.

Another key figure who aided Cardwell and Mains in running the Ulster branch of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring was the Town Solicitor, John A Young. He was involved in deliberately losing some of the complaints about abuse that were sent to his office in August of 1971.


In February 1990, Robin Bryans told this author that: “The Kincora thing will be covered up. I would love to go on talking if I thought it was going to come out, but it’s not, because I know how the Establishment works. Be careful of the word Kincora, because you are going to limit it. There were other homes involved. There were three homes. There was one for boys from 12 to 16, and then there was one for younger ones”.

Williamson House looks suspiciously like it was the ‘one for younger ones’.

Williamson House is now long gone. It was closed in October 1983 and knocked to the ground in the mid-1980s. It had consisted of two buildings, numbers 446 and 448 on the Antrim Road. It was originally opened by the Belfast Welfare Authority in 1957. Until 10 March 1976, it was run as two separate units. Thereafter the two houses were managed as a single home, catering for up to 18 boys and girls usually aged between 4 and 18. It was not unusual, however, for the older teenagers to leave before they reached 18.

Some of the boys went to Bawnmore where abuse also took place; some of the girls to boarding schools, one of which was located in Derry. Other unfortunates were consigned to the hell of Kincora where Witchell’s close friends and fellow paedophiles, Joe Mains and William McGrath, were in charge and abuse and bullying was incessant, violent and terrifying.


According to Bryans, children at a home in Portadown were also abused. The list of care homes in NI where it is known abuse took place includes:

  • Nazareth Lodge Children’s Home in South Belfast;
  •  Bawnmore Boys Home, Newtownabbey, which was opened by Belfast Welfare Authority;
  • Palmerstown Reception and Assessment Centre, Belfast;
  • De La Salle Boys’ Home, Rubane House Kircubbin, Co Down (where one of Jean McConville’s sons was abused after the IRA had murdered her);
  • Barnardo’s Sharonmore Project;
  • Manor House Home, Co Antrim.

As described earlier, Bryans also revealed that boys from Portora Royal, Northern IrelandI’s elite public school, located in Enniskillen, were abused by members of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring. The Portora boys were in demand by abusers such as Mountbatten whose appetite extended to working class children too..


Richard Kerr was a resident at Williamson House where he was abused by Witchell and many others. Kerr entered the care of the Belfast Welfare Department when he was enrolled at Brefne Residential Nursery for a short while. He was transferred to Williamson House in 1969 and remained there until 1975 when he was 14 and was transferred to Kincora. His brother Alan and a sister also resided at Williamson House and other homes.

Richard Kerr reveals that the abuse at Williamson House had begun before Witchell’s appointment as OiC. This implies that the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring already had some sort of access to it, and Witchell’s appointment was designed to open the doors further.

Kerr recalls that as a very young child, perhaps when he was only 8 or 9, he was abused late one night in the dark by a man whose face he never saw. He slept in a room on the first floor with other small boys. His bed was closest to the door and next to a wall. The abuser appeared as if from nowhere and violated him before disappearing. The figure materialised out of the darkness again on a number of occasions, never once revealing his face. Kerr had a small teddy bear which he gripped and bit while he was being raped. During these assaults, his face was pressed up against the wall. The experience was not only excruciatingly painful but psychologically devastating.

The intruder may or may not have been Witchell who was a visitor at Williamson House before he became its OiC. Kerr’s belief, however, is that the faceless night-time intruder was not Witchell. He has been haunted by the experience ever since.


Witchell is the first individual Kerr can positively identify as one of his abusers. He has informed Village that before Witchell took up his post at Williamson House “he was visiting it and from my memory he was working part-time. He was living in Liverpool at a church but had his own place in Belfast that he would go to when he would visit Williamson House”.

When Witchell visited Belfast in the days before he became OiC, he stayed at a premises owned by the Anglican Franciscans. He may also have had access to a flat in the city.

There were plenty of opportunities to save Kerr and his fellow victims but none were availed of. In Kerr’s case, a gym master at his school once noticed that there was blood on his shorts and a bruise on his groin; yet even that didn’t bring his nightmare to an end.

“My school records from Mt. Vernon”, Kerr has told Village, “were destroyed because they contained information indicating that I was being abused at Williamson House. The staff at the school suspected I was being abused but when asked, I would not answer their questions because I was afraid of my abusers”.

On another occasion, a member of staff at Williamson House also noted bruising to his groin which had been inflicted by one of his rapists.

One of Kerr’s relative’s – still alive – can confirm that he sustained bruises at this time.

Kerr’s childhood was extinguished by the abuse that engulfed him and would drive him to attempt suicide on a number of occasions.

A very short and incomplete list of those Witchell abused includes Richard Kerr, his brother Alan Kerr, ‘Charles’ and three boys who went on to commit suicide. Village is not naming the boys who killed themselves lest it upset their families.


Kerr was taken out of Williamson House and supplied to paedophiles at various venues in NI and later, when a resident at Kincora, to some locations in the Republic. A few gave him cheap presents including ‘large pennies’ and chocolates. It was common for him to receive boxes of Black Magic. Another boy at the home ‘E’ was also taken out of it and delivered to child rapists. He later committed suicide. On one occasion both of these boys were taken away together on an appalling abuse marathon which lasted two or three days. A story was later concocted to cover their absence that they had run away from the home.

Kerr recalls that two men, one of whom used the name “David” took him out of Williamson House and ferried him to his abusers. They were in their late 20s or early 30s. Both had NI accents. They would usually arrive at about 2 o’clock and return him by 10 o’clock when the other children were asleep. They were very cautious about the manner in which they approached the home. As indicated earlier, Williamson House consisted of two buildings. There were two separate driveways that led up to them with an area of green grass in the middle. When the kidnappers came to remove their victims, they would proceed up the driveway on the right-hand side and park at the side of the house. This would conceal them from the rest of the complex. In this way they could spirit their victims away and return them without unduly alerting the rest of the staff who might otherwise have begun to ask awkward questions. It was they who ferried Kerr to Enoch Powell described in the chapter on Powell.



Another abuser of boys from Williamson House (and elsewhere) was Dr Morris Fraser, a high-profile child psychiatrist who published books and appeared on TV in the 1970s. He abused boys in Ireland, the UK and the US. Fraser, however, is one of a tiny number of the Belfast abusers who was convicted for his crimes, or at least a tiny fraction of them. He now lives in Holland, or did until recently.

He did not assist the Hart Inquiry either, yet another reason for its failure to establish the truth about the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring although Hart did include what purported to be a commentary about him. Not for the first time, Hart made fundamental factual mistakes. Dr Niall Meehan of Griffith College has carried out a forensic dissection of Hart’s sloppy reporting on Fraser. He has pointed out that Hart, “ignored evidence that from 1971- 73 an accused and then convicted serial child-abuser named Dr Morris Fraser continued to work with vulnerable institutionalised children. The [Hart Inquiry] also refused to examine how and why police protected the internationally-known child psychiatrist from exposure and from professional censure, for a year after he was found guilty of abuse”.

Dr Meehan’s devastating demolition of Hart’s “error-strewn commentary” on Fraser can be read at:

Thus far, IICSA in London has displayed no interest in questioning him either despite the crimes he committed in the UK.



During the summer of 1977, Richard Kerr, a resident at Kincora Boys Home in Belfast, was summoned by the man in charge of his welfare, Joseph Mains. Mains, who ran Kincora, told Kerr that Joss Cardwell had called and wanted him – Kerr – and another Kincora resident, Steven Waring, to proceed down to Belfast Harbour.

Joss Cardwell was a paedophile as was Joe Mains. Cardwell was also Chairman of Belfast Corporation Welfare Committee and in overall charge of Kincora and other homes such as Williamson House in Belfast. He was also a key figure in the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring (A-IVR) which Village has been writing about for the last year. Many of the participants in the A-IVR are still alive and have never been brought to justice.

Kerr knew exactly what Cardwell’s ominous edict entailed for him: he would be going to England to be sexually abused yet again. On this trip, he would be delivered into the grubby hands of a TV star in London.

Kerr knew Caldwell as ‘Joseph’ Cardwell and – as Village reported last year – recalls how he wore a ‘funny’ hat and drove a blue minivan which he used to take boys out of Kincora. Some of these trips terminated at the Adelphi Hotel in Portrush where the boys were abused.


Stephen Waring and Richard Kerr boarded the ferry to Liverpool. In Liverpool they were met by Michael ‘A’. Kerr was familiar with him from Manchester where he had been abused at the Rembrandt Hotel. Michael ‘A’ was in the company of a man called Derek.

The group headed to a premises in Liverpool near Lime Street train station. By now it was well into the morning of the following day. The boys were ushered down a flight of steps into a basement with mattresses strewn across its floor. Approximately five others boys were being held. They were aged between 11 and 13. Kerr and Waring were kept with them for three or four hours.


Later that morning, Michael ‘A’ and Steven ‘J’ brought the two Kincora boys to the train station. The other – younger – boys did not travel with them.

Steven ‘J’ served the A-IVR in a number of ways, one of which was to take salacious photographs of the boys ensnared in the vice-ring. Stephen ‘J’ also knew Joe Mains and Eric Witchell who was the first member of the A-IVR to have abused Kerr – while he was only 8 at Williamson House. During the 1970s Witchell resided in both Liverpool and Belfast. Witchell was later put in charge of Williamson House where Kerr resided before being sent to Kincora in 1975.

Witchell and Cardwell supplied boys from Williamson House to abusers favoured by the A-IVR. Kerr was one of these boys. Village has the names of others. Some of them went on to commit suicide.

On this trip, Kerr and Waring reached Manchester with their two escorts, alighting and switching to another train. They were confined inside a first-class compartment on the final leg of the journey – which would take them to London – and were abused by Michael ‘A’ and Steven ‘J’ en route. The abuse was perpetrated in a clandestine manner and was manual.


After they reached London, the boys were separated and Kerr was brought to the Wimpy Bar in Piccadilly Circus. Piccadilly was notorious for the presence of so-called Dilly boys, unfortunate urchins who had been groomed, bullied and manipulated into becoming male prostitutes. Kerr was escorted to the upstairs floor of the Wimpy Bar and placed behind a table. There were two men inside the Wimpy Bar who were running the Dilly Boys at the time. Kerr recalls that one of them was the late Jack Murry, a well dressed Englishman who smoked cigars and wore glasses. He does not know who the second man was.

Later, Kerr was ordered to go back downstairs and delivered to a TV star who was waiting outside for him. The man , who was much taller than Kerr, beckoned him to follow and walked approximately two feet ahead of Kerr in case anyone saw them together.

Kerr and the TV star walked up to a very well-known street. The man opened a door on street level with a key. The door led immediately to a flight of stairs. He was brought upstairs. The man had a small room on the left-hand side of the stairs. It was sparsely furnished. Kerr was then abused in a degrading manner.

The adult gave Kerr £20 and he was then ushered downstairs, put back on the street and told to find his own way back to the Wimpy Bar.

What the adult did not realise was that Kerr was seething with resentment at the men who abused him and had perfected the practice of memorising detail about his abusers. He sometimes even managed to take photographs away with him as proof of their identity. Some of the photographs were of cars with their registration plates clearly visible and are now in the possession of Village. On this occasion, although the room was barely lived in, he managed to remove an item which he has described to Village.

Kerr later recognised the man from a guest appearance on the then hugely popular ‘Minder’ TV show, one of the actor’s numerous TV appearances in hugely successful BBC and ITV programmes, some of which were made for children.


The TV Star is alive and plying his trade as an actor. He has contributed to the activities of numerous charities including at least one involved with child welfare. He has stated that some rape victims are liars who are only after money.

It is not known if Michael ‘A’ and Stephen ‘J’ are still  alive.

Steven Waring committed suicide in November 1977, a few months after the trip to England described in this article. Waring jumped to his death from the Belfast-Liverpool Monarch Ferry. His body was never recovered. Despite the passage of 40 years, an inquest into his death has yet to be convened.




The links between the key suppliers of children to the ring such as Eric Witchell at Williamson House and the trio of abusers at Kincora were strong. The Kincora trio consisted of Joe Mains (an MI6 and later MI5 agent); William McGrath (also an MI6 and MI5 agent); and Raymond Semple (who did what Mains told him). All of them were visitors to Williamson House. Mains sometimes stayed overnight. At one stage Mains ran Williamson House for a few weeks, presumably because Witchell or some other member of staff was on holiday or ill.

In 1975 a group of 14-year olds under the care of Witchell at Williamson House was transferred to Kincora. Up to this point, Kincora had normally housed 16 –18 year olds. Some, if not all, of the new influx from Williamson House had already been crushed and remoulded to the point where they were fearful and compliant sex drones; probably the very reason for their transfer. They were now earmarked as bait for an MI5 ‘honey trap’ operation based at a series of hotels in Belfast and at least one in Bangor. Over time, some of the boys, especially Richard Kerr, would begin to resist, but not at this stage.

Most, but not all, of the new boys installed at Kincora hailed from Williamson House. They included Richard Kerr who arrived in August 1975; ‘F’, who is still alive; ‘B’, who later shot himself, and ‘S’.

Steven Waring, who had not been in Williamson House, joined a few months after. He committed suicide in 1977.

The reinvigorated Belfast and Bangor hotel ‘honey trap’ operation recommenced in September 1975, a few weeks after Kerr’s arrival at Kincora.

Another young boy, ‘D’, would be consigned to the hell of this existence the following year.  He is still alive. Collectively, these boys will be referred to as the Hotel Victim Group.

Kerr, who has described what took place to Village, was the first of the Hotel Victim Group to arrive at Kincora. On the surface, there was no logical reason for the transfer of the new residents. Ian Cameron and MI5, however, were the beneficiaries of the new arrangement because it allowed them to replenish their ongoing “honey trap” blackmail operations in Belfast and Bangor with a fresh batch of younger teenagers who were sexually compliant. In addition, MI5 was in complete control of Kincora, a detached house which was smaller and more manageable from their perspective than Williamson House which consisted of two buildings. Kincora was also controlled by three men, all of whom were paedophiles. Witchell – as a paedophile – was very much on his own at Williamson House, at least at that point in time. In a nutshell, MI5 could remove the members of the Hotel Victim Group from Kincora at will.

Members of the Hotel Victim Group were also shipped to England and Scotland by Mains on the orders of Joss Cardwell, an influential Loyalist politician.


The account Richard Kerr has provided about the defilement of boys – including himself – at hotels in Belfast and Bangor is independently confirmed by contemporaneous British Army notes.

One of MI5’s darkest projects in Northern Ireland was entitled Operation Clockwork Orange. It went through a number of phases. It was primarily designed to counter Loyalist anti-State activities. It involved, inter alia, the collection of damaging information about DUP and other Loyalist politicians as well as paramilitaries.

Colin Wallace, a British Army PSYOPS officer, was asked by MI5 to assist Clockwork Orange. Towards this end, he was provided with information which he recorded in his notebook. Forensic examination has proven that his notes are authentic. In December 1974 Wallace recorded the following: “Joseph Mains may be extensively involved in a prostitution ring supplying boys to hotels in Belfast and Bangor. The hotels include: Girton Lodge, Park Avenue; Stormont; Europa and the Queen’s Court in Bangor. [John] McKeague is said to use the Royal Avenue Hotel for the same purposes. Bearing in mind that the East Belfast UDA leadership use the Girton Lodge and the Park Avenue for their meetings, it is simply [not] credible that they did not know what is going on there. Note: Mains has a brother in the RUC. He also has a questionable relationship with Belfast Corporation Welfare Chairman (Cardwell) and Legal Adviser (Young)”.

In September 1975 Wallace wrote a letter to his former boss at British Army HQ in Northern Ireland which referred to “homosexual prostitution at a children’s home in Belfast”.  The relevant extract reads as follows: “My concern now is that there may be an attempt by the Ministry [of Defence] to deny any form of official ‘dirty tricks’ organisation existed within the Security Forces. For example, in the Ministry’s summary of my oral representations made [at an employment tribunal] to John Groves and Mr Fairbairn on 10 May reference is made in paragraph 3 to ‘actions’ which I was asked to launch during the [Ulster Workers Council anti-power-sharing] strike. The word “actions” appears to have been used by MOD to conceal the fact that I referred to the attempts made by the Security Service [i.e. MI5] to discredit various Loyalist politicians, including the Rev Ian Paisley [of the DUP], by the use of forged documents and by linking the MPs with loyalist paramilitary figures involved in homosexual prostitution at a children’s home in Belfast”.

Wallace’s Clockwork Orange notes and his September 1975 letter were furnished to the Hart Inquiry which clearly did not appreciate the significance of either. On their own – and at a minimum – they confirm that MI5 knew about the existence of a paedophile network involving Joseph Mains and John McKeague in Belfast and Bangor five years before it was exposed in the Irish Independent, yet did nothing to interfere with it.


When Kerr’s social worker rang Kincora looking for him while he was out of the home being defiled, Joe Mains would brush her off by saying he had gone on some sort of an outing. She was not fooled and would eventually expose the scandal through the Irish Independent in the Republic of Ireland.

Others, beguiled by State lies, have not demonstrated the same penetrating insight as Kerr’s social worker. To cover his tracks, Joe Mains would enter false destinations for the boys into the Kincora logbook, or make no entry at all.  While Kerr refused to appear in person before the Hart Inquiry in 2016, it examined a written account he had provided concerning his trips to England. Hart ultimately decided to {i} accept the veracity of the Kincora logs maintained by Joe Mains at face value and {ii} use them to dismiss Kerr’s account of his trips to England and {iii} dispute his credibility.  Does it need to be stressed that the organisers of paedophile rings have never been known to {i} make accurate and incriminating records of their crimes, {ii} preserve them and {iii} ultimately furnish them to the police?



Alan Kerr was sexually abused by three men at Williamson House, a Belfast Corporation Welfare Department care home in Belfast. He was only six years of age when it started.  One of his abusers was Eric Witchell.

Alan is the younger brother of Richard Kerr. Alan did not realise he had a brother until he met Richard at Williamson House when he was six. He also met his sister at it and learned that he had another brother, and two other sisters; moreover, that both of his parents were still alive.

Later, he was moved to Shore House where he was abused by another two men, one of whom may have been Witchell’s friend, William McGrath.

Alan eventually fled from institutional care for a life on the streets of Belfast but it was no more than jumping out of the frying pan and into the fire. Having been neglected, groomed and abused throughout his childhood, and finding himself desperate for food and shelter while on the run, he fell into the hands of a network of calculating paedophiles who abused him. At one point in time he was manipulated into working for a while at a brothel off the Lisburn Road where boys as young as 13 were made available to Belfast’s paedophile community.

Later again, he was trafficked to Birmingham and thence to London by Billy ‘B’, one of his abusers. Out of desperation and with neither an education nor any sort of a qualification, he would end up being exploited as a ‘rent boy’ at Victoria Station;  as  a ‘Dilly boy’ on the ‘Meat Rack’ at Piccadilly Circus;  and for approximately a year in a brothel in Earl’s Court alongside other boys who were younger than him; possibly even as young as 13 or 14. He also had a bizarre encounter with two members of the Royal Family.


Alan Kerr was born on 8 May, 1968, and was taken into care at Breffni Nursery when he was only a few months old, sometime in late 1968 or early 1969.

There was a lot of sobbing at night time in Breffni, a care home which catered for infants and pre-school children. Alan recalls how, if a child in the dormitory began to cry out loudly at night, some of the more brutal member of the night staff would put the child in a boiler room, well out of earshot. They were often left for hours alone in the pitch black. Alan often found himself crying because he was surrounded by cold strangers; had no family ‘to love me’; and had to cope with the unrelenting stress of a threatening environment. He too ended up in the boiler room on a number of occasions. He recalls one particular night when two of the night staff marched into the dormitory, hauled him out of bed and carried him to it, then pushed him inside and left him alone in the darkness four hours.


Acaveat must be entered before we proceed any further: Alan Kerr does not have access to his institutional records from Belfast and therefore cannot provide precise dates. Instead, he has done his best from memory.

Alan left Breffni Nursery when he was about six, sometime in 1974, or thereabouts, and took up residence at Williamson House for the next two or three years. He describes it as being ‘worse’ than Breffni. ‘Things did happen there which I still can’t talk about.’

Alan would be abused by men who were not members of the staff at Williamson House; yet more proof of an organised child abuse ring operating in Northern Ireland at this time.

‘The abuse began on my first night at Williamson House when a man climbed into my bunk bed. I didn’t understand what was happening.’ The event was so traumatic, Alan manages to black it out most of the time and certainly prefers not to talk about it.

Alan’s brother Richard and his sister were at Williamson House. Prior to his arrival, he had no idea that he had any family. He also discovered he had two other sisters and a brother. Alan, Richard and his sister were together for about a year before Richard was shipped out to Kincora Boys Home, perhaps the most concentrated cesspit of child sex abuse in Ireland at that time. Alan’s sister remained with him at Williamson House. He received his first visit – or at least the first visit he can remember – from his parents at the home.

One of Alan’s abusers at Williamson House was Eric Witchell. He was a friend of Joe Mains, the Warden of Kincora, and William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora. Although Witchell’s title was that of Officer-in-Charge, his responsibilities were confined to one of the two buildings at the institution, each of which was administered separately. Alan was not a resident on Witchell’s wing. Nonetheless, Witchell managed to lure him across to his attic room where he groped him sexually.

Witchell, he recalls, ‘always had a grin on his face’.

Alan hated the place from the word go. ‘Sometimes when things went wrong we were starved for no good reason.’ On more than one occasion, he was sent to bed without having been fed although he had done nothing wrong but someone else had  –  but had not owned up to it –  and everyone was punished. ‘It was very hard to be happy at Williamson House. There was no joy there. It was scary in these places’.

Williamson House was not investigated by the Hart Inquiry although a number of other care homes were.


Alan left Williamson House around 1977. He was about ten and took up residence at Shore House, also in Belfast. He stayed there until was 11, perhaps even 12. ‘It was not a nice place either. One of the staff, [NG], was very physical from the start. He would grab you by the throat, lock grab you; and drill march you up to the dorm and throw you into it. When you were in a lock, you couldn’t breathe properly’.

One lady beat the children with a wooden spoon on the legs and put soap and mustard in their mouths. “She was the worst female member of staff. If a child was making noise at night, she came upstairs and pulled the cover off and took your pyjamas down and beat you on the bum or the legs. It was pure physical hitting; hard-hitting. She could get furious.’

“One thing the staff had to do was to make you afraid of them. This was how they kept control. They couldn’t ever lose control”, Alan emphasises.

Sadly, a lot worse than this lay in store for Alan.

A man Alan refers to as ‘Joe Soap’ abused both him and another boy at Shore House. Village is withholding the second child’s name. Alan had known him earlier at Williamson House.

‘Soap’ was a man who ‘smelt and was dirty’. He materialised at Shore House one day out of the blue, a complete stranger to Alan. Yet, ‘Soap’ knew exactly who he was. At the time Alan’s parents were both alive. ‘Soap’ knew about them too. Clearly, someone must have furnished him with the relevant details about Alan, most likely someone with access to his welfare file. ‘Soap’s’ opening gambit involved telling the staff that he was a friend of Alan’s parents. This was accepted at face value. ‘One of them came in and told me that there was someone outside who was a friend of my family and I was brought outside to meet him. It was as simple as that.’

Many years later Alan was looking at a picture of William McGrath, the notorious Housefather at Kincora Boys’ Home, when he realised he knew him; and then it came to him: McGrath was ‘Joe Soap’. If his recollection is accurate, this would explain how ‘Soap’ knew so much about his background and where to find him. For a start, McGrath and Witchell were friends. Witchell even had his own nickname for McGrath, ‘Master McGrath’, after a then popular dog food. Witchell, of course, knew all about Alan’s background from his time at Williamson House. McGrath might also have picked up Alan’s trail from his visits to his brother Richard at Kincora. Richard had entered Kincora  in 1975 and stayed there until 1977.

McGrath was also known to abuse very young boys. One of his Kincora victims, James Miller, has described how he had an appetite for boys ‘with no hair between their legs’. Miller told the Hart Inquiry how the staff at Kincora ‘each had their favourites and they kept those boys for themselves. However, McGrath wasn’t that fussy about who he abused. He said himself he ‘liked’ all boys as long as they weren’t too old’.

Miller also stated that the abuse he suffered at Kincora ‘started within the first week. It continued over the entire two years I was there. I have thought about it and I would say McGrath abused me on 325 occasions, ranging from getting in to bed with me to buggery. He used to bring me downstairs behind Mains’ office and down to where the freezers were. It was quieter for him down there. The things he used to do to me were sick. He would try to get me to have an erection but I wasn’t old enough. I wasn’t even developed which was the way McGrath preferred it. He used to say he liked boys with no hair between the legs.’

Alan was about 10 or 11 at the time ‘Soap’, the man he believes was McGrath, began to abuse him.

McGrath occasionally wore glasses, just as ‘Soap’ did, although all the published photographs of him depict him in spectacles. McGrath did not always wear them while he working at Kincora according to Richard Kerr who saw him every day for nearly two years. In a similar fashion, ‘Soap’ did not always wear spectacles inside Shore House.

The defilement perpetrated by ‘Soap’ began after the second or third visit. ‘Soap’ could hardly have acted so confidently unless he knew that Alan had already been abused and had not complained.

‘Soap’ became a frequent visitor to Shore House. The early encounters involved Alan being raped in the upstairs toilets while the staff were downstairs in the living room unaware of what was going on. ‘I didn’t talk to them. You couldn’t talk to them. I was so scared of them. I thought I would get into trouble if I said anything to them.’

Later, ‘Soap’ took him to a derelict house to defile him.

The second boy was also abused in the upstairs toilets. Alan was instructed by ‘Soap’ to stand guard outside them while it took place. The other child was later rescued from the care system by a relative. Alan has neither seen nor spoken to him since.

One day ‘Soap’ disappeared never to turn up again at Shore House. Although Alan cannot be specific about dates, this may have been early in 1980 which is at the time the Kincora scandal erupted and McGrath’s reign of terror came shuddering to a halt.

Whether ‘Soap’ was McGrath or not, the essential point is that a paedophile was provided with confidential details about a boy at Shore House who had been broken and moulded into a sexual plaything at the age of six by Eric Witchell and others at Williamson House. Clearly, a paedophile network was operating in the shadows. Yet every State-sponsored probe into the Kincora scandal has concluded that an organised network of paedophiles did not exist in NI.

Shore House was not investigated by the Hart Inquiry either.


The staff at Shore House had access to a property in County Down where the children were occasionally taken on what should have been happy and memorable excursions. Alan went on one trip led by ‘G’, the man who was given to grabbing children by the throat. Alan was the only boy on the trip. That night the girls were shepherded into one of the bedrooms while Alan was instructed by G to join him in another room. When the doors were closed, G “took off his clothes and stood in front of me naked with his erection on display and began pleasuring himself’, Alan recalls. ‘Then he got into his own bed and continued. I told another boy about this and we were probably overheard and the story [eventually] leaked back’ to the other staff at Shore House.

Something similar happened during a subsequent visit to Portrush with G. On the second occasion, ‘he got into the shower with me erect. Then he masturbated himself in the bathroom. He was probably about 27-28 at the time”, Alan recalls.

Alan was attending a meeting of the Boys Brigade in a hall near to Shore House one day not long after these events had occurred when a member of staff called him out early and brought him back to see Miss Kavanagh, the woman who ran the institution. She was in her office with the Area Head social worker who was seated. She quizzed Alan about G’s behaviour. At first, he was afraid to talk but she persisted. She used hand gestures to depict what she understood had taken place. Alan was eventually able to confirm what had transpired. The RUC were then called in and took a statement from him. A prosecution was pursued in a court in County Down. The presiding magistrate was male in his 50s or 60s.

Alan, who was 10 or 11, recalls that he was ‘set upon by [G’s] lawyer and I started crying. The defence tore into me. I was accused of making it up. I denied I had lied. I was accused of being the one who had exposed myself to others on the trip’. That, of course, was a blatant and malicious lie.

On her way out of the court after Alan’s cross examination, Miss Kavanagh said that she was convinced that G was lying about Alan’s alleged behaviour because she was the person in authority to whom any such misbehaviour would have been reported and not a word of it had reached her ears.

Kerr was the only prosecution witness to testify about what had transpired inside the bedroom. In the event, her colleague was found not guilty by the magistrate. However, he soon lost his job at Shore House.

Alan never received any counselling after the trial. Shortly afterwards, he was fostered by a family in the community. The arrangement lasted approximately two years before the relationship broke down and he returned to Shore House, albeit for a brief spell only before he was moved on to Bernardo’s Sharonmore Project.


Alan stayed at Sharonmore for about two years, 1980-81, where he was not abused sexually. Nonetheless, the trauma of his childhood had caught up with him and he was now a troubled child. He was transferred to Rathgael Training School in Bangor, Co. Down, which catered for difficult children. So intense was his dislike of it, he absconded at any given opportunity, perhaps up to twenty times. His first break-out occurred shortly after his arrival. This began a pattern of traipsing ‘across fields that took me into Dundonald in East Belfast’. When he was caught and hauled back, he would be put into a lock up unit for absconders in ‘House 4’ which had shatterproof plastic windows. All told, he spent about a year at Rathgael before his final and permanent break for freedom.

When he was in Belfast the inevitable happened: he was preyed upon by predators on the lookout for ‘runaways’. ‘Two men  – Martin Cassidy and Davey Martin  – bumped into me and it started from there. They hung around the town centre a lot picking up boys, especially boys in school uniforms. They often went to the toilets in the city and other places. Cassidy had a beard in those days and wore an earring. He was dirty and badly dressed. Martin was more into suits, snappy suits’.

Alan recalls how Cassidy was ‘a monster’ who asked him to perform grotesque sexual acts on him.

Alan became something for them to show off, to dangle and pass around to other predators. Among those to whom he was circulated was ‘Fanny’ who was a ‘dirty pervert’, as a well as Roy, Hugo and Billy B ‘who all had their own kinks’. Roy is still alive and living in Belfast. Billy ‘B’ is dead as, it appears, is Hugo.

‘I slept with men because I had no choice. I needed food and a bed’, Alan explains. Suffice it to say, by this time his desperation had made him easy prey for Belfast’s calculating paedophiles. He was escorted around the paedophile haunts of the city such as the Whip & Saddle Bar in the Europa Hotel while it was run by Harper Brown, a friend of Joe Mains, the Warden of Kincora. The Europa was where Alan’s brother Richard had been abused by Enoch Powell MP while he had ‘worked’ there as a bell hop for Brown; in reality a flimsy cover for his role as a plaything for pederasts.

While Alan was in the Whip and Saddle, he met some English paedophiles. Some of them knew their depraved NI counterparts who drank in the hotel while the ‘Northern Ireland paedophiles definitely all knew each other. It was a close-knit group; really close.’ The members met in a series of pubs and often exchanged information about boys, especially new boys, ‘the fresh meat or chickens as they called us’. Alan Kerr was also taken to the Crow’s Nest on Skipper Street. It was quite close to the Albert Memorial which was then a ‘cruising ground’ for paedophiles.  It was later renamed the ‘Custom House’. He also went to the ‘The Red Barn’ on Rosemary Street which was opposite the Royal Avenue Hotel bar which was also frequented by paedophiles, notably the terrorist and MI5 agent John Dunlop McKeague.

The official line is that network of paedophile abusers did not exist in NI at this time.


During another foray from Rathgael, Cassidy and Martin brought Alan to a gay brothel on a street off the Lisburn Road. ‘From the outside it looked just like a house’, Alan recalls. ‘13 and 14-year-old boys were working in it as well as older boys. I knew one of them from Williamson House. He was sitting in the living room on a settee with some other lads when I walked in the first time’.

The existence of this brothel is a new revelation; and this despite countless police, local authority and state-sponsored enquiries into child sex abuse in Northern Ireland over the last four decades. The brothel was within walking distance of Belfast City Hall which was a meeting place for the members of paedophile network.

How did all the enquiries fail to uncover this child brothel?

How many other child brothels were open for business in Northern Ireland at this time?

Alan recalls that the brothel was ‘run by an ugly fat character. I sort of worked a bit in it. I met [name withheld] who was the same age as me. He was a Catholic. I’m Protestant. He lived with his family in the Divis flats.’ Alan disliked the fat man and soon decided to give the brothel a wide berth.

According to Alan, the brothel was frequented by a large number of Belfast’s ‘close-knit’ paedophile community. What are the chances that the men who were involved in the Kincora, Williamson House and Park Avenue Hotel branches of that community never once visited the boy brothel, nor knew of its existence? Did Mains, McGrath, McKeague and Alan Campbell – all British agents – never tell MI5 about it? Did Ian Cameron of MI5, the evil force who protected the ring, and his successors, never learn about it?

At the very least, the brothel enjoyed a measure of shelter from the protective wall built around NI’s paedophile community by the NIO, MI5, MI6 and the RUC Special Branch. In order for their overarching paedophile exploitation/blackmail operation to thrive, it was necessary for the NI paedophile community as a whole to flourish. If one child abuser was ever to be arrested, it was always likely that others would follow and the deprecations at Kincora, Williamson House and the Park Avenue Hotel would ultimately be exposed.

There is also a deeply disturbing – yet highly likely – possibility, namely that the brothel was a constituent element of the MI5-run operation that also permitted the abuse at Kincora, Williamson House, the Park Avenue Hotel and elsewhere to fester.


Alan went to stay with the Catholic boy from the Divis Flats he had befriended at the boy brothel. ‘I stayed with his family on and off. I slept on the floor of his bedroom. It was very small and stuffy. His brothers were very Republican. I don’t think they ever realised I was a Protestant.’

During an escapade with his newfound feral friends from the Divis flats, Alan found himself riding as a passenger in a stolen car one day. Suddenly, two jeeps with armed British soldiers started tearing after them. ‘The soldiers always had these large SLR rifles. Our car stopped and everyone jumped out. I didn’t know where to go. The rest went over a footbridge into Divis and got away. I knocked on the door of a house where an old couple lived. I brushed past them and hid inside. But someone saw me and a few police and soldiers came in. They brought me outside and threw me into the meat wagon and took me to a police station. I can’t really remember what I said but I may have admitted to being in the car. The staff at Rathgael were called and came to take me away. When we were going out, I bolted. I got past the barrier. They chased me but I got away. The police jumped into a car and caught up with me but I kept running backwards and forwards and turning around; they couldn’t get me in a corner as their car wasn’t able to turn as fast as I could. Then one of them pulled out his revolver and pointed it at my face and said he would shoot me. I was scared so I stopped. I was taken back to the police station but the staff from Rathgael had gone. They came back later and brought me back to it. At that stage, I just thought of [Rathgael] as somewhere to eat. I didn’t want to be in the system any more. I escaped again and returned to the Divis.’


Alan was not charged with an offence by the RUC, something that roused the suspicion of some of the Republicans in the Divis flats. They were also suspicious at the speed with which he had regained his freedom. ‘They wanted to know if I was an undercover agent’.

Ultimately, they accepted Alan’s friend’s assurance that he was simply an ‘orphan’ and things calmed down.


Alan remembers one particular individual who preyed on him and other urchins in Belfast, a man called Hugo who was fond of displaying his wealth. ‘He was known as the Money Man. He always wanted people to see that he had money. He would never take out a note; always a roll of banknotes. He drank in the pub opposite the Europa Hotel. He had grey hair and was middle-aged.’ Although he was from Northern Ireland, Alan believed he was living in Dublin. All the signs are that he is the same man as an individual who was the subject of a story in the Evening Herald on 6 November, 1986. It exposed the vile behaviour of a paedophile from Northern Ireland who was spending a lot of time in Dublin. It reported that:

‘Every weekend an affluent businessman from Northern Ireland travels to Dublin by train to hire young boys for sex.

‘Described as middle-aged and grey-haired, his favourite haunts are the public toilets on O’Connell Street and Burg Quay, where there is an alarming number of boys often as young as 10 or 11, who are available for sexual services.

‘Nicknamed ‘Moneybags,’ he uses an elderly Dubliner scout on his behalf procuring the boys and acting as a lookout while business is conducted in the cubicles.

‘In one particular case, a 12-year-old boy was paid £3 for 15 minutes with him.

‘In other cases, he will take boys back to Belfast and spent most of his time in a top hotel where he is well-known.

‘The boys, who are usually from a poor background or even homeless, receive as much food and drink as they can consume, sometimes new clothes and are even promised holidays abroad.

‘‘Moneybags’ comes to Dublin every weekend to indulge himself and he rarely uses the same boy twice’’

The ‘top hotel’ was most likely the Europa where Hugo often stayed.

Alan was later told by Roy, one of the abusers, whom he met by accident on the street that Hugo, had been murdered in Dublin.


Alan was abused by Billy ‘B’, a man he describes as a “toilet creeper”: “I met him out of the blue one time [in Belfast] while I was on the run from Rathgael [Training Centre]. He followed me into the toilet and smiled at me”, Alan recalls. B would prove to be one of Alan’s most prolific abusers.

When Alan was 15 or 16 B took him to London via the Belfast-Liverpool car ferry in his silver BMW. At the time Alan was subject to a care order which was not due to expire until he was 21. Alan stayed in London after B headed back to Belfast because he did not want to return to Ireland but this proved no more than jumping out of the Belfast frying pan and into a London hellfire. With no support, trade or qualification, he would spend his youth as a “rent boy” at such places as Victoria Station and on the ‘Meat Rack’ at Piccadilly Circus, also known as the “Dilly”. Over time, he would get to know boys from all over Ireland who were in the same dire straits as he was. The men who abused the young teenagers referred to them as ‘chickens’; the boys called their abusers ‘punters’. Alan would never return to live in NI again.

Victoria Train Station was an infamous hunting ground for paedophiles. “There were pubs inside the station in those days. Some of the men who went to them were only there to have sex with the boys. There was another pub nearby, the Shakespeare, which was similar. Soldiers used to go there a lot. At the weekends there would be a lot of military police outside it”.

The police knew perfectly well what was going on at Victoria Station. Not long after his arrival, Alan was approached by a British Transport Police (BTP) officer who asked him who he was and then went away to make inquiries about him. When he returned, he told Alan that since he wasn’t in trouble in NI, he wasn’t going to do anything about him. Clearly, the officer had been able to make enquiries with Belfast – presumably through the communication facilities in the BTP office in the station – and must surely have discovered that Alan was still under a care order. Nonetheless, he abandoned him to a life as a rent boy.

Finding somewhere to sleep was a priority for Alan, and the Victoria Station offered some shelter. “In those days, the station was open all night. It is unrecognisable now. I slept on trains that pulled into it for the night”. Sometimes he found himself drenched in so much sweat that his clothes would be wet, even in winter. Then, as the night and early morning crept in, he would begin to freeze while still damp if not actually wet. He recalls having to go to the toilets to try and warm himself up by using the hand dryer. ‘In the morning the police would come onto the trains and turf you off”.

One of the visitors to the toilets at Victoria Station was John Imrie, an MI5 officer named by Ken Livingstone in the House of Commons in connection with the Kincora scandal. Imrie was arrested at the station and convicted for exposing himself.


During his early years in London, Alan was assaulted by police officers on a number of occasions. Typically, this happened as he was being escorted towards Vine Street Police Station from the Dilly. “They would start pushing and pulling you to make it look like you were causing them trouble. They would use this as an excuse to punch you in the stomach; always in the stomach; up against the wall outside the station. They never bruised your face as you might be going up before the Bow Street magistrates”.

One British Transport Police officer Alan got to know was a pederast, something that would explain how the abuse was able to thrive at the station. He developed a liking for Alan and frequently abused him, even taking him back to his flat. Some of the officer’s colleagues suspected what was afoot and attempted to persuade Alan to talk about it but he refused. The abusive officer has long since died. He operated out of the Transport Police office at Victoria Station. Alan didn’t reveal the nature of the relationship he had with this officer when he was interviewed by his colleagues because he was “afraid of the police”.


One night Alan was approached by an Oriental man called Peter, in his 30s or 40s at Victoria Station. He escorted him to a house at 51 Longridge in Earl’s Court which masqueraded as a ‘clinic’. What Alan didn’t realise at first was that he was being sampled to see if he might be suitable to work for the man at his brothel; one that catered for older men who exploited teenage boys. “Peter always tested the boys himself to see if they were any good. He gave me a few quid the first time we had sex but never again. He never felt he had to pay for sex and had sex with the boys whenever he felt the urge. You couldn’t say no to him”.

Pictured above: the premises in Earl’s Court which once housed the ‘Earl’s Court Clinic’, an Oriental style brothel run by a Thai man called Peter. The room to the right of the black door in the picture is where the boys were kept.

“Peter was friends with another Thai man who ran a brothel on Sydney Street. They were always looking for chickens for their places. When I first started working for him, he was in a house in Earl’s Court called the ‘Earl’s Court Clinic’. It was all done up in an Oriental fashion with Oriental statues and flowers. Oriental boys and some Australian boys worked in it. Some of the Oriental boys looked about 13 or 14 but you had no way of knowing their age. Mainly, the boys were around my age. There was one older lad who was in his late 20s but he was more like Peter’s right-hand man. He would take over running the place when Peter wasn’t there”.

Peter later moved the Clinic to a basement at Nevern Place, also in Earl’s Court.


By the time Alan had arrived in London in the mid-1980s, Elm Guest House, an infamous boy brothel, had been raided and closed down by the police. Until 1982, the Elm was where the likes of Sir Cyril Smith MP abused boys. Once inside the doors, abusers could mingle with each other. There was, for example, a sauna which was available to all of its patrons. Cyril Smith once reportedly trapped himself inside it due to his obesity.

Haroon Kasir (above left) was part of the ring which ran the Elm Guest House. He is seen in the photograph above being confronted by Irish correspondent Paraic O’Brien of Channel 4 News. Up to now, it has been assumed that Kasir and his wife Carol ran Elm Guest House but Peter, the Thai boy pimp who ran a brothel in Earl’s Court, may also have had an interest in it.

The closure of the Elm did not put an end to child abuse in London. It just moved – or intensified -at other establishments. One venue where underage boys were exploited was the Philbeach Hotel in Earl’s Court. Both Alan and his older brother Richard were abused at it. Richard had been held in the hotel by two men after he came to London. Richard had also been exploited at the Elm. A return visit he made to Elm guesthouse as an adult with a team from Channel 4 news is available on YouTube.

Sir Cyril Smith

Richard Kerr says that Peter, the Thai child pimp, was involved in both the Elm and the Philbeach. Richard recalls a picture of Peter which hung on one of the walls in the Philbeach. It featured him amid a group of men.

On the surface, the Philbeach was nothing more than a raucous party venue for consenting homosexual adults. Suffice it to say, many of those who frequented the hotel had no part in the abuse of underage boys. The LGBT Archive recalls it fondly in the following terms: “Philbeach Hotel in Philbeach Gardens, Earl’s Court, was a gay-owned hotel, catering for a gay clientele. Long before Soho became So-Homo, Earl’s Court was the gay capital of London. And if the walls could talk at the Philbeach, London’s most in-your-face gay hotel, they’d have some saucy tales to tell. It’s typically English B&B material, if a bit grubby. But people [didn’t go to it] for the chintz. For the Philbeach had gained a reputation as a cruisy hotel. If you don’t enjoy being propositioned in the bathroom, request a room with ensuite facilities. The Philbeach Hotel was open for 27 years and was one of the largest gay hotels in Europe. The Philbeach hotel was the only gay hotel in London that was owned by homosexuals and run by homosexuals. The hotel closed on January 31, 2008. It had 35 rooms on three floors.”.

The Earl’s Court Clinic and the brothel on Sydney Street run by Peter’s friend, form the third and fourth parts of a London abuse circuit. No doubt there were many other venues in the city.


The ‘Earl’s Court Clinic’, was a far more discreet establishment than the Elm. “The punters who visited it came up the steps outside it and through the front door and into a hall. There was a door inside the hall with a bit of glass in it that acted as a one-way mirror because the hall was kept in semi-darkness but the room next to it – where we were – was well lit. The punters would peer through the glass at us – we would be sitting inside – and pick one of us out. In the first building – the house – Peter would walk into the room after the punter had made his choice and call out the name and shout “upstairs”. After we moved to the basement [premises], we would be sent to a room along the corridor. There was also a darkened window in the basement for the punters to look through at the lads. Peter would make recommendations about who was suitable for the punters who didn’t make up their mind immediately”.


Peter allowed the ‘punters’ to assault his boys if they were prepared to pay enough. “The most I ever got was from a man who wanted to lash me with a leather belt. He paid me £20 per slap. I made a few hundred quid that night”, Alan recalls.

“We always got a cash payment but the commission was half. Peter always took half”.

‘The punters were rich. Most of them wore suits. There were no roughs. Most of them were in their 40s and upwards. The oldest was about 70. The older men were the worst. They were dirty down below. Some of them had already got cum in their pants they were that excited. They made me sick but you just had to get on with it. You had to be good to stay in the Clinic. If you didn’t make money, Peter got rid of you. I worked for him for about a year. Then I went back on the streets again. I haven’t seen Peter in a long time. The last time I saw him he was old and had grey hair”. Assuming the competence of the Independent Statutory Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse (IICSA) led by Professor Alex Jay to look into high-profile instances of non-recent child sexual abuse, it will have long since found out about Peter. If he is still alive, it will have asked him searching questions about what he knows about VIP paedophiles. It is hard to imagine a potentially more important witness for its work.


After his time at the Clinic, Alan went to the Meat Rack on the ‘Dilly’ at Piccadilly Circus. One night, Greville Janner, then a Labour MP, “came up behind me and started talking to me”. A short while later, he escorted Alan to the bar in Dolphin Square. Alan slept with Janner each night during the week that followed. “I was desperate for somewhere to live at the time. I wanted accommodation, food and security”.

Janner would throw him back on the street in the morning and then hook up with him at night. Janner made no attempt to hide who he was or what he did. One morning Janner warned him he had “a late sitting” that night but that he was to wait for him. This, presumably, was a reference to a late sitting in the Commons.


During the course of the week, Janner invited him to go to a show in Earl’s Court. Alan was surprised but happy to accept. Janner then told him that he had to submit his – Alan’s – name for security clearance as they would be on Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson’s guest list. Alan obliged by providing his full name and his sister’s address. Janner subsequently told him that everything was “fine” with the security people.

Shortly afterwards, they attended The Prince and the Pauper at Earl’s Court‘s Olympia with the Royals. Janner and Alan sat directly behind the Royal couple who were in the front row, or very close to it. While they were waiting for the show to begin, Alan and Prince Andrew conversed. They also chatted during the intermission. “I had a good conversation with him. He had character. He was a cheerful guy. He was not snobby or anything. He told me he was going to open a hospital in Northern Ireland. I didn’t feel I had to bow down to him. I wasn’t nervous. Janner let me do the talking. They seemed to know each other quite well. That’s why I was able to talk to him. Sarah Ferguson didn’t speak much. She really just ignored us.”.

The guest list and the vetting records relating to this performance should still exist in an archive somewhere.

Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson were engaged on 19 March 1986. Prince Andrew told Alan that he was going to open a hospital in Belfast. These events help identify Kerr’s age at the time he was being abused by Janner. Prince Andrew visited the City Hospital and then went to Hillsborough with Northern Ireland Secretary Tom King on 25 June 1986.  The Prince was married on 23 July. This means that Kerr was aged 17 or had possibly just turned 18 at the time of the performance as he was born on 8 May of 1968. Janner’s defenders still persist in the claim he had no interest in young males.


Janner obviously knew Alan was from Belfast and that his name would be run by MI5 and the RUC Special Branch during the security vetting process. It must have occurred to him that Alan could easily have had one or more convictions for male prostitution under his belt. And Alan did indeed have a number of convictions. He believes – but is not certain – that he incurred some of them before he met the Prince. So, why was Janner prepared to submit his name to the officials responsible for protecting the Royals? Had he reason to believe he had nothing to fear from MI5 and the police?

Why did Janner – a married man, politician and author – take a male prostitute aged 17-18 to the performance instead of his wife or some other friend? There must have been many influential people who would have been indebted to Janner for just such an invitation. 

If the tabloid media in the UK had discovered that Prince Andrew had enjoyed a social interaction – however fleeting and innocuous – with the brother of a Kincora boy, that fact alone could have generated waves of negative publicity for him, especially with the unrelenting reports about Kincora which the heavyweight campaigning journalist Paul Foot was publishing in Private Eye and the Daily Mirror.

There are other puzzling features about the event. Janner was a great communicator, so much so that he published multiple editions of a book entitled, ‘Janner’s Complete Speechmaking’. So why did he sit back – literally – and let Alan dominate the discussion with Prince Andrew?


If MI5 had done its homework properly, it would have realised that Alan was the younger brother of Richard Kerr, the courageous boy who had exposed the Kincora scandal. Significantly, it was Richard’s social workers who had informed the Irish Independent about it. The link between the brothers was hardly a secret: when he had lived in Belfast, Alan had occasionally visited Richard at Kincora.

MI5 certainly kept an eye on the sexual antics of VIPs in the 1980s. It had a dedicated unit which monitored the sexual antics of Tory VIPs. It was called the ‘Dolly Mixtures’. In February 1985 Frank Doherty reported in the Phoenix magazine, that the ‘Dolly Mixtures’ had been set up on the “personal orders” of Margaret Thatcher to avoid embarrassing Tory sex scandals. It is highly likely that it or a parallel unit also monitored the young Royals. Indeed, the so-called ‘Squidgygate’ tape featuring Charles and Camilla is suspected of emanating from an MI5 leak. There is no space to analyse the Squidgygate affair in this article but it is discussed at length elsewhere, e.g. Wikipedia.

Frank Doherty’s Phoenix article about the ‘Dolly Mixtures’ (published five years before the Squidgygate scandal erupted) revealed that the ‘Iron Lady’ had ordered the establishment of the unit on account of “her fear of a repeat” of the Profumo scandal. ‘Since 1981, on her personal orders, an elite section of MI5, operating from Gordon Street, W1, has kept a discreet eye and an attuned ear on the personal and sexual indiscretions of Tory MPs. This section, known as the “Dolly Mixtures”, is composed of tall, blonde males, green-wellied Sloane Rangers, Young Fogie homosexuals, and young blue-chip ‘wets’ who together form a unit superbly equipped to socialise with and report on the morale, morals and mores of Tory MPs”.

MI5 certainly appreciated the real and present danger posed by Richard Kerr to the British Establishment, and had done so for years before the performance at the Earl’s Court Olympia which his younger brother attended. In the early 1980s Richard had lived in Preston and later in London. He had become the target of heavy-handed officials at both locations. In 1981 he had been warned by the RUC, who visited him in Preston, not to return to Belfast to give evidence at the Kincora trial. Later, a group of police officers had assaulted Richard in London to keep him quiet. On one particular occasion, he was assaulted by an undercover officer who had been listening to what he was telling his friends about Kincora in a fast food restaurant in London.

There have rumours for decades that the Prince occasionally engaged in homosexual sex. Some of these rumours involved his time in the Royal Navy. This raises the the hideous possibility that Janner was acting as a pimp for the aristocracy and that Alan was brought to the show to see if Prince Andrew might fancy him.

The BBC had an opportunity to ask the Prince about his relationship with Janner during the tepid interview they conducted with him at Buckingham about his abuse of girls supplied to him by Jeffrey Epstein. In the event not a single question was put to him.


Janner knew that Alan occasionally got into trouble with the law. When Alan found himself up before the magistrates at Bow Street on another charge later on, he informed the MP – with whom he had now become quite friendly – about his looming appearance. Janner, who was also a barrister and friendly with a number of judges, penned a letter for him. Janner attended the hearing but didn’t have to move from his seat during the hearing. In the event, Alan was found not guilty.

Alan is aware that at least one of the magistrates Janner knew also visited the Dilly to procure sex from the rent boys at it.

Overall, Alan was impressed by Janner. “He came across as a very intelligent man”, he says.

Others were impressed with him too: Janner was later made a member of the House of Lords.


The only occupation Alan has ever had is that of a male prostitute and a brief moment as a model for a pornographic gay magazine. He now lives in a small flat in London. A report from his counsellor states that his experiences have left “him feeling extremely isolated and [he experiences] regular traumatic flashbacks and debilitating bouts of anxiety and depression”. He is a poor sleeper and becomes physically shaky when agitated.

He has attempted suicide by inhaling gas. On another occasion he punched his hand through plate glass resulting in severe injuries. He has engaged in other bouts of self-harm.

He is not in a relationship and has no children.


One of the striking features of the photographs taken of Alan Kerr at various stages during his life is the number of dogs that feature in them. Despite all the adversity he has faced, he has always found time to help neglected and stray canines. He has saved many dogs from neglect and destruction. The one he talks about most nowadays is ‘Kano’, a bullmastiff, who originally belonged to a drug dealer in a nearby estate to where he lives in London. ‘A lad from the estate brought him to me and asked me to look after him or else he was going to have to be destroyed. He had been neglected and beaten badly. His ribs were broken and his ears were blocked with filth.’ Alan’s friends at the Blue Cross and Battersea Dogs Home were a great help. ‘The Blue Cross fixed his ribs. I couldn’t manage to clean his ears out because he was so frightened – he didn’t trust me at that stage. So, the Blue Cross put him out for a while and cleaned his ears.’

Part of Alan’s regime was to take Kano for swims in the sea at Brighton. They went there by train. ‘He had never been on a train before and was frightened at first. But we got to the sea. It was a great way of cleaning his skin. I got him mentally better after about a year; just love and attention and kindness.’

Battersea Dogs Home took Kano after his recovery. ‘He is now in a nice place with a handicapped lady in Sussex. I can’t go to see him because it is in his best interest not to see a previous owner when he has moved on. That’s what the experts all say. But he is happy and I am pleased.’



After the departure of Kerr and the others from Williamson House in 1975, Witchell found a set of new victims to torment. ‘Charles’ (not his real name) was a few years younger than Kerr. His ordeal began in 1975.

Charles recalls how Witchell presented himself as “plausible”, and how he ‘hoodwinked people into thinking that he was a man of God”; how he “wore a cloak, portraying himself as a man of God but was a paedophile”. Witchell, an Anglican Franciscan, should not have worn the habit of his Order as it was a condition of his employment that he would not.

Witchell and some of the staff and children at Williamson House

Witchell’s horrific abuse of Charles lasted five years, only ending when he left Williamson House at the age of 18.

Charles had been abandoned by his parents at Brefne Residential Nursery in Belfast as an infant. He was transferred to Williamson House at the age of 4 at the end of the 1960s.

Charles’ motive for talking to Village  is to tell the story of what happened at Williamson House on behalf of the victims who took their own lives. Richard Kerr shares this identical motive, as does his brother Alan Kerr.


Charles has many happy memories of Williamson House but they all pre-date 1975. For a start, the children were always well fed and clothed, and the home boasted a full complement of staff to mind the children. Charles remembers games of tennis and football; playing in a recreation room which had a television; visits from well-wishers. Christmases were memorable too for all the right reasons: Charles and his friends spent time with kindly families who welcomed them into their homes over the festive season. There was also a string of Christmas celebrations around Belfast to which they were taken.

The children were integrated into the wider community by being enrolled at various primary and secondary schools nearby. Some of the Catholic boys, for example, went to a Christian Brothers school.

Charles recalls how the Catholic and Protestant children got along perfectly well with each other. ‘The Catholics were like my family”, Charles, a Protestant, recalls.

Charles got to spend time with two other families in the community who treated him kindly. He went with one of them to the Martyrs Memorial Church on Sundays where Ian Paisley gave his sermons. Charles recalls having chatted to Paisley, something that occurred a few times as the family he accompanied to Paisley’s church often turned up half an hour before the sermons began, when Paisley came out to mix with them.

Charles enjoyed Paisley’s captivating style of preaching. “He was charismatic”, he recalls. Paisley would quote scripture and make the occasional reference to Catholics but, insofar as Charles recalls, he didn’t really dwell on the issue. “The implication was that the Catholics were going to go to hell. He didn’t say so in so many words”  but that was what he meant. Charles, who clearly had a mind of his own from a young age, took no heed of Paisley’s bigotry and continued to get on perfectly well with his Catholic “family” at the home.

What Charles did not know was that Paisley knew what was going on at Kincora from at least 1973. Paisley – one of the best informed men in Ireland about the seedy underbelly of Loyalist politics and paramilitarism – must have learnt or at least suspected that Kincora was not an isolated aberration and that similar violations were being perpetrated at other homes. Yet, while he occasionally visited care homes and orphanages in Northern Ireland  – including Williamson House – he never once lifted a finger to end the suffering of a single victim at any of them.


Eric Witchell used the existence of Kincora to intimidate and control the children he abused at Williamson House. “He threatened us with Kincora,’ Charles has explained. “If you are a bad boy, you’ll end up in Kincora”, he would warn.

William McGrath, the Housefather at Kincora, was a familiar face to the children at Williamson House. Witchell introduced him to them as “Master McGrath”, his idea of a joke as Master McGrath was then a popular dog food.

He described McGrath as “his friend, someone who worked in another home” but he did not tell them it was Kincora. To the best of Charles’ recollection, Witchell never once mentioned that McGrath worked at Kincora. “They were often together having cups of tea and biscuits. [McGrath] would chat with Eric in a room”. He saw them together “many, many times”.

Richard Kerr confirms what Charles has to say about McGrath’s regular visits to Williamson House.

Raymond Semple, the third abusive staff member at Kincora, also visited Williamson House. However, he may have been visiting a relative who worked there, a ‘lovely’ person who was not involved in any abuse’, according to Charles.

Mains, McGrath and Semple were all convicted of child abuse in December 1981.

Raymond Semple

How and when did Witchell first become acquainted with Mains and McGrath and what did they discuss? Some of their deliberations must have involved the selection of suitable candidates for the transfers from Williamson House to Kincora. These are questions Witchell will have to answer if he is brought before the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in London. Professor Alexis Jay, who is now in charge of it, can hardly be expected to understand the full extent of the sexual abuse which took place in England, Scotland and Wales – much of which was successfully concealed by the Special Branch on orders from MI5 – if she chooses to ignore the research and evidence available about the modus operandi of MI5 in Ireland. Unfortunately, she cannot rely upon the Hart Report as an accurate account of what happened in NI. At the very least, she should conduct interviews with the many witnesses – whether victims or perpetrators  – who did not contribute to the Hart Inquiry, especially Eric Witchell.

Witchell, if he chooses to tell the truth, will be able to provide details about the trafficking of Richard Kerr to Enoch Powell MP, something that is definitely within her remit. Witchell should also be asked about what he knows about Anthony Blunt, again something within Professor Jay’s remit.

Unfortunately, at the time of writing, all the indications are that the inquiry has no interest in any of this.




The darkness becomes visible: Alan Oliver who is refusing to talk about his time as a UVF assassin (top left) Laurence Maguire (top right) a man haunted by his past. It involved a series of murders he carried out for the British agent, Billy ‘King Rat’ Wright, of the UVF (bottom left). Robin ‘The Jackal’ Jackson (bottom right).

In the early 1980s two whistle-blowers, Capt. Fred Holroyd and Capt. Colin Wallace, both of whom had inside information about State collusion with Loyalist murder gangs, went to the press with what they knew. While they received a lot of positive attention in the Republic of Ireland and elsewhere, they were denounced in some quarters in the UK by journalists. This was a tragic lost opportunity as their allegations about collusion –  and a lot more besides – have been confirmed repeatedly ever since, most recently by the BBC NI’s excellent Spotlight  series. There is no doubt they knew what they were talking about: the highly regard Barron Inquiry produced by Irish Supreme Court judge Henry Barron, confirmed that in 1974 Wallace had prepared a list of most of those who participated in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings including Robin Jackson, also known as ‘The Jackal’.  Allegations about ‘The Jackal’ –  based on details provided by Wallace and Holroyd – appeared in the Dublin based magazine The Phoenix as early as 25 May 1984 in a piece written by Frank Doherty. Jackson was named in the piece.  Despite all of this and more, no one was ever charged with the Dublin bombings and ‘The Jackal’ was left free to murder at will. He died in May of 1998 from lung cancer aged 49. Overall, State collusion with Loyalist murder gangs deepened.

Jackson is outed as ‘The Jackal’ by journalist Frank Doherty in the Dublin based magazine The Phoenix. This picture can be expanded so that the article can be read.

Vindication: Wallace’s complaint about The Independent to the Press Council was upheld.

The high point of the push back against Holroyd and Wallace was an article in The Independent – the now defunct UK newspaper – by an Irish journalist called David McKittrick in 1987. Wallace complained The Independent to the British Press Council. His complaint was upheld.

Two declassified 1987 documents from the Northern Ireland Office provide an insight into McKittrick’s scepticism and are reproduced here. They were written by Brian. A. Blackwell of the Law and Order Division of the NIO and sent to other government departments including MI5.

Blackwell (now deceased) was a Colonel in the Royal Signals.  He had been stationed at Thiepval Barracks in Lisburn during the 1970s when he commanded 233 Signals Squadron as a Major. The Law and Order Division, as name implies, liaised with the various elements of the Security and Intelligence Services.  The Division was later renamed the Security and International Liaison Division.

Above, a further report  about David McKittrick by Blackwell for MI5 and others

One of the exceptional high points of The Spotlight series was Mandy McAuley’s interview with Laurence Maguire, a former UVF assassin, about the murders of innocent Catholic families by Billy Wright’s UVF gang. Wright, better known as ‘King Rat’ was a British agent.  His murder spree continued long after the likes of McKittrick and The Independent had attempted to debunk Holroyd and Wallace in respect of the earlier phase of collusion. Grotesquely, one of those who helped ‘King Rat’  was the notorious serial killer Robin ‘The Jackal’ Jackson. Holroyd and Wallace quite literally risked their lives in outing Jackson. Despite naming him to journalists and police, Jackson continued his murder spree.

Wright and William McCrea who was appointed to the Lords by Theresa May

Alan Oliver, another member of King Rat’s UVF murder gang refused to talk to Many McAuley when she confronted him at his place of business. He is presently refusing to talk about his past unless he is given immunity from prosecution. At the same time he claims that he has discovered God.

Poisoning the well of truth with lies: Above, Thatcher’s letter to Sir Terence Higgins MP (Conservative) denying collusion and other dirty tricks.

Ironically, Margaret Thatcher was one of those who told MPs in the House of Commons that collusion was not taking place. One letter – reproduced above – gives an indication of the type of assurance she fed her fellow Tory MPs. It is addressed to Sir Terence L. Higgins MP and dated 12 March 1987.



There may be another organisation with a comprehensive dossier about Kincora and the other homes: a group of aging corrupt former RUC Special Branch officers who assembled a file with everything they knew about Kincora in the 1980s. It is probably still in existence and available to blackmail the Cabinet Office in London if any of their colleagues are ever to face charges such as collusion with the UVF, UFF, McKeague’s Red Hand Commando, or other Loyalist paramilitary murder gangs. The odds are high that RUC Special Branch officers who helped MI5 assassinate Patrick Finucane know all about the MI5 cover-up of the vice ring scandal and are using this and the dossier as leverage to ensure they are not used as scapegoats. Indeed, it is possible that this was why David Cameron was unable to call an inquiry into the Finucane assassination.

In 2015 two honest RUC officers who had been involved in the inquiries that led to the conviction of the staff at Kincora disclosed the involvement of a Tory MP at the home. On 23 January 2015 the late Liam Clarke reported in the Belfast Telegraph that they had told him that a Tory MP had “visited Kincora during the 1970s”. Both officers, he reported, were “willing to help any inquiry into Kincora either here or in England. They revealed that the MP died before they could arrange to interview him”. One of the officers revealed that the MP had been “coming over to the Northern Ireland Office quite regularly… We were told by criminal records in Scotland Yard London that he had a conviction many years ago for indecent behaviour or something in a gents’ loo against another boy but his death meant we never got a chance to question him”.


As indicated above, the RUC Special Branch’s former partners in the UDA also maintained a Kincora file which has never surfaced. Significantly, in February of 1982 the UDA threatened to name names. In reality the threat was a warning to the NIO and Cabinet Office in London. No one was ever named by them, at least not in public. Their knowledge of the ring and collusion with the RUC, NIO and MI5 in murder has kept many of them safe from prosecution for serious crimes.

The Inner Council of the UDA knew about the sex attacks on children at Kincora from at least 1972. Lyttle and his goons were hardly their source of information.

We know that the Inner Council knew about Kincora from Albert ‘Ginger’ Baker. He was a British soldier who infiltrated the UDA for the British Army’s Military Reaction Force (MRF). The MRF was created by Brigadier Frank Kitson who is still alive. Kitson was obsessive about intelligence gathering. No fact was too small for his attention as a string of books he wrote about intelligence gathering attest. It is inconceivable that he did not know about Kincora through the MRF, Baker and MI5/6. Kitson is being sued by the family of one of his victims who was murdered by Baker and his gang in 1973.

Albert Baker is still alive and living in Belfast. He was not interviewed by the Hart Inquiry.

According to Baker’s family, his handler was a ‘Capt. Bunty’ whom he met in a Belfast coffee bar. Not only did Baker succeed in joining the UDA, he became a bodyguard to its Inner Council and monitored its leaders including Tommy Herron.

In July 1988 Baker told Ken Livingstone who was then an MP (and later Mayor of London) what he knew about Kincora. “The whole Inner Council of the UDA knew about it”, he revealed, “but no Inner Council members were involved in it. There were politicians and senior Northern Ireland Office officials involved in it. I know one who’s in the House of Commons. He’s one of your own men [i.e. the British Labour Party].” He also revealed that: “Well, as far as they were concerned it was being organised by British Intelligence and they kept away from that. They knew the intelligence services were running it.”

William McGrath was particularly well known to the Inner Council. He was friendly with UDA men like Davey Payne and John McMichael. Indeed, McGrath had been pivotal in establishing the UDA. He also ran his own paramilitary organisation called TARA and had connections to the UVF. The UVF fell out with McGrath in 1971 because of his boasts about his links to British Intelligence. All of this made it likely – if not imperative – for the UDA to monitor McGrath who had been assigned a job at Kincora in 1971 and was close to other paramilitaries and politicians such as Ian Paisley, James Molyneux and Knox Cunningham. Hence, Baker’s assertion that the Inner Council knew about Kincora is entirely credible.

“I know for an actual fact that a Conservative MP was involved”, Baker further informed Livingstone. “The Inner Council members discussed Kincora and knew who was there because they had them under surveillance. The UDA have photographs of the people going into Kincora, of politicians, Unionist politicians. The Inner Council knew who was operating behind them. They knew they could be arrested, but given what they knew they could never be charged or face imprisonment for any length of time”.

It is interesting to note that Baker made reference to a Tory MP nearly three decades before Liam Clarke published a story in January 2015 in the Belfast Telegraph describing how a pair of whistleblowing RUC officers had revealed their knowledge of visits to Kincora by a Tory MP to him.

The Inner Council’s knowledge of Kincora would also explain the precautions Tommy Lyttle took in and about the transport of Richard Kerr to his abusers: he used his subordinates to collect Kerr and only met him en route to his abusers.

Sir William Radcliffe Van Straubenzee MBE was Deputy Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in the early 1970s to William Whitehall. Like Heath, Van Straubenzee was a lifelong bachelor and a paedophile. His role as a child molester emerged in July 2015 when ‘formerly’ missing files about paedophile politicians were ‘discovered’ in London at the Cabinet Office. The files, which included details about Van Straubenzee, were sent to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse in London.

Van Straubenzee is the most likely candidate for the Tory MP who visited Kincora who was known to Baker and the UDA. Indeed, Baker’s probable knowledge about Van Straubenzee’s visits and his – Baker’s – work for the MRF offer likely explanations as to why Baker was able to secure a meeting in prison with Van Straubenzee after his conviction for murder in 1973. Baker had suffered some sort of a nervous breakdown and had confessed to a string of killings and had been sent to prison in 1973. At the time Baker was trying to secure a deal with Van Straubenzee about where he would serve his prison sentence.

The UDA probably also knew about visits by James Molyneaux MP.

The name of the Labour MP Baker mentioned to Livingstone has yet to emerge.

Above, an extract from a note made by Colin Wallace in 1974 while he worked at Lisburn British Army HQ as a PSYOPS officer. They reveal British Intelligence knew Van Straubenzee, Molyneaux and others were potential targets for attack on account of their sexuality. Dr Julius Grant, an international documents expert, verified these notes as authentic in 1987.  The notes were based on information supplied by MI5 for Operation Clockwork Orange which was cancelled when MI5 decided to let the Ulster Workers Strike against Power Sharing in Northern Ireland proceed and thereby undermine the authority of Harold Wilson whom they hated. Peter Wright of MI5 has written about how he and others in MI5 believed Wilson was a Soviet stooge.



The various Kincora inquiries have all been failures.

The first – McGonagle – collapsed almost immediately.

The second, the Terry Inquiry, was led by a bent cop from Sussex who lied in his report.

The third inquiry – Hughes – had its terms changed secretly to prevent it looking at the intelligence services.

The fourth – Hart – was a mistake riddled mess that even managed to contradict itself on purely factual matters.


There was, however, one thoroughly honest inquiry. It was led by Sir David Calcutt QC and probed the dismissal of Colin Wallace from his post with the MoD.

A government inquiry was set up by Thatcher under great pressure in 1990. It was led by Calcutt who established that Wallace had worked as a PSYOPs officer and had been forced out of his job on the basis of fraud, namely a false job description designed to conceal his covert role in psychological warfare. Calcutt also found that Ian Cameron of MI5 had manipulated the disciplinary proceedings taken against Wallace. Wallace was duly awarded £30,000 compensation.

Jim Nicol, who acted as solicitor for Wallace, referred Calcutt’s report to the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, on the basis that the conclusions indicated that the MI5  officers who had manipulated the proceedings had attempted to defraud Wallace. The Metropolitan Police referred the matter to the DPP for guidance. The DPP concluded that it would not be in the public interest for the police to pursue the matter.

Although not discussed in this book (yet) Wallace was convicted of manslaughter in 1980 on the basis of false evidence from a deceitful witness who later turned out to have links to the CIA, i.e. the partners of MI5 and MI6. The conviction was later overturned by the Court of Appeal.

Paul Foot’s book ‘Who Framed Colin Wallace’ is recommended to readers interested in this miscarriage of justice.

Another essential book is The Kincora Scandal  by Chris Moore.


The ongoing Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) in London has gone through four chairs. It has had a rare and valuable opportunity to shed some light on the roles played by Eric Witchell, ‘The Wife Beater’ and the TV Star – all of whom are still alive – yet  thus far – has dropped the ball. None of these men were asked for a statement. The chances that the inquiry will act at this late stage is virtually nil.

IICSA was kind enough to contact Village last year after a report we published included an error about Carl Beech having received core participation at IICSA. The error was corrected. What is significant is that the contact demonstrates that the IICSA has been monitoring our reports. Yet, we have not been asked to identify the real identities of ‘The TV Star’, ‘The Sadist’ or ‘The Wife Beater’.

The inquiry was not interested in the evidence of Richard Kerr either despite the fact he was abused in London by one of Thatcher’s ministers, a man once tipped for leadership of the Tory party.

They could have asked MI5, MI6, the NIO and British Military Intelligence for their files on the likes of John McKeague and Tommy Lyttle but didn’t.

They could have asked MI5, MI6 and military intelligence for a list of the agents they had recruited inside the DUP with all due regard to preserving any of those still alive from danger. The objective should have been to see if they were recruited via sexual blackmail. One known agent, a former lover of William McGrath, who was a cross dresser was probably recruited by either McGrath or via blackmail. While his identity is no secret in DUP circles, no one has ever bothered him. The list of DUP and Official Unionist Party (OUP) agents should not have been limited to those who attained elected public office. None of this was done.

All this despite the fact it was it was assigned the task of probing allegations about the existence of a VIP child abuse vice ring that revolved around Westminster.

They could have asked Albert Baker (who is also alive) about the Tory MP who visited Kincora – probably Van Straubenzee. Baker could also have told them about the Labour MP who abused boys in Belfast too. They didn’t do this either.

They could also have spoken to the two RUC whistle-blowers who spoke to Liam Clarke about yet another another Tory MP who died in the early 1980s (and therefore was not Van Straubenzee who died in 1999).


In 2020 the IICSA produced a limp report on the abuse at Westminster which, inter alia, confirmed that Sir Peter Hayman was a child abuser – hardly news to anyone. The report hardly made a headline in a national paper. Clearly, Carl Beech had done his damage and the British public is not concerned about VIP abuse anymore.

Unfortunately, the IICSA did not clarify if Hayman had served as Deputy Chief of MI6 under Oldfield nor discuss his links to the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring which – despite a full compliment of staff, massive resources and a budget of millions – it has yet to discover ever existed.

The failure to clarify if Hayman was a deputy chief under Oldfield, or at any time, or even linked to MI6, demonstrates that IICSA has not grasped the fundamental importance of the intelligence community’s sinister role in the protection and exploitation of these paedophile networks. This lapse alone renders IICSA a lamentable failure. It is a direct result of IICSA’s refusal to look at the mountain of evidence that has accumulated in Ireland about the NIO/MI5/MI6 exploitation of paedophile networks. MI5 and MI6 – or at least out-of-control elements in them – did exactly the same thing in the UK as they did to exert control over politicians. Overall, their targets in Britain and Ireland included Ted Heath, Sir William Van Straubenzee, Sir Peter Morrison, Sir Cyril Smith, James Molyneaux, Sir Knox Cunningham and others. One reason was to ensure support for NATO during the Cold War and to protect intelligence agencies from interference as they engaged in dirty tricks at home and abroad, sometimes in conjunction with the CIA. Other NATO allies, such as Belgium experienced similar excesses. The Marc Detroux scandal in Belgium was one which was exposed to some public scrutiny. (See also next section.)

The other beneficaries of IICSA’s staggering ineptitude are the surviving abusers. People such as Eric Witchell, a key figure in the vice ring, must be delighted with the IICSA. Witchell was not interviewed by the inquiry. He lives in London and could have been asked to hop on a tube to give evidence at anytime over the last number of years. He was responsible for the system of raping and grooming of young boys – some, like Alan Kerr, as young as six – at Williamson House. Since Village began reporting on him he has removed his presence from social media.


What the Kincora and other survivors really want is recognition that they were fed into a meat grinder by the State for its own nefarious purposes and an apology to enable them to heal. As long as their experience is denied, they will suffer psychological torment. Quite a few have already committed suicide. Others have died prematurely from stress and ill health. Few have made a success of their lives. Those who have committed suicide include Stephen Waring from Kincora and ‘E’ from Williamson House. There are others.

It is now too late to see justice done for Clint Massey who died February 2018. Mike Nesbit, the then leader of the Ulster Unionist party described how he had had “to live his entire adult life carrying the burden of abuse which was forced upon him through no fault of his own, by those who were charged with protecting him. His story is one of ultimate failure by the state and those acting on the state’s behalf. Yet Clint not only waived his right to anonymity in his efforts to secure justice for fellow survivors, he spoke publicly without an ounce of self-pity”.

Ken McCallum is about to become the next director-general of MI5. He was a very young child when the Kincora scandal erupted. By all accounts he is an able and brilliant security professional who has done much to protect Britain from her real enemies, internal and external. Let us hope he does not view Irish abuse survivors and their small number of allies in the media who are determined to prove the truth about the vice ring as enemies of the realm.

Some of Village’s writers have spoken to Fred Holroyd from time to time. Holroyd worked with the British Army and MI6 in Ireland, 1973-75, and has written a book about his experience, War Without Honour. Incredibly, British spies are still meddling with his post. In 2016 Holroyd furnished us with a photograph of an envelope he had received from us. It contained an academic book about the origins of the Troubles something that interests Holroyd. To protect the book from damage, it had been placed inside a bubblewrap cover and then slipped inside an ordinary white envelope. Somewhere along the line someone pierced both layers of the package with what was undoubtedly a micro camera wand to see what dangers to the Realm lurked inside.

MI5 has admitted that it does not have the resources it requires to thwart terrorists and that some have managed to slip through the net to murder people on the streets of Britain. Are its resources best deployed by monitoring Fred Holroyd’s post?

MI5 will not cease to exist if McCallum lets the truth emerge. Time will tell if he is man enough or will succumb to the corruption described by Anthony Cavendish.

Outgoing D-G of MI5, Andrew Parker. He did not upset the Queen by rooting out the MI5’s file on Mountbatten and sending it to the Hart Inquiry nor to the IICSA. However, he did find time to give lectures on ethics.




The possibility that Vladimir Putin and his intelligence services know embarrassing details about the scandal is extremely high. Sir Anthony Blunt was a senior member of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring while also one of the Cambridge Ring of traitors which was made up of him, Philby, Burgess, Maclean and Cairncross. These men betrayed British secrets to the KGB. Village has written extensively about Blunt’s links to sexual abuse on both sides of the Irish Sea. Blunt undoubtedly told the KGB all about the sexual misconduct of VIPs in Britain. The perceived wisdom – in Britain – is that he stopped working for the KGB when he left MI5 after WW2. However, if Christine Keeler was correct, Blunt was still working for the KGB in the 1960s. Worse again for MI5, he was working in tandem with Sir Roger Hollis, the Director-General of MI5 at the time and Stephen Ward. (Interested readers can consult “Keeler Concealer” Keeler described how Stephen Ward was interested in Peter Montgomery, one of those who procured boys for Mountbatten. She was adamant Ward – who was half Irish – was a KGB agent.)

Ironically, it was almost certainly Blunt who led MI5 to the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring too. Blunt’s treachery was uncovered by MI5 in 1963. The following year he agreed to make a confession in return for immunity and the wholescale betrayal of the secrets of everyone he knew. Peter Wright of MI5 was assigned to interrogate him. In return for his co-operation, Blunt was given a pardon and his treachery was concealed from the public. The pardon was not limited to his treachery; in addition it afforded him blanket immunity for any crime he had ever committed, something undoubtedly designed to cover his sexual transgressions.

When Peter Wright sat down with Blunt in 1964 he was determined to smoke out any member of the intelligence community, military, civil service or Parliament who – like Blunt – was homosexual: in short anyone of importance who might have been susceptible to blackmail by the Soviets. Homosexuality remained a crime in England and Wales until 1967.

Blunt must’ve felt he had smashed a mirror for bad luck. His face-to-face encounters with Wright would drag on for seven years. They were still proceeding apace during the early years of the Troubles by which time MI5 was keen to find any mechanism to gain control and influence over Loyalist politicians and paramilitaries. Blunt was in a pole position to assist them with his knowledge of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring of which he was a leading light. The opportunities for sexual blackmail were immense.
For seven years Wright and MI5 pored over the careers of the Oxbridge graduates of the 1930s and anyone else of possible interest known to Blunt. Ostensibly, the pair became so friendly they exchanged Christmas cards. In reality they did not trust each other. Wright wrote later: “We had to adopt a subtle approach, in an attempt to play on [Blunt’s] character. I could tell that Blunt wanted to be thought helpful, even where it was clear that he was not. Moreover, he disliked intensely being caught in a lie. We had to extract intelligence from him by a slow process of cumulative pressure […] Often we drank, he gin and I Scotch; always we talked, about the 1930s, about the KGB, about espionage and friendship, love and betrayal. They remain from me among the most vivid encounters of my life”.

And even if Blunt said nothing to the Soviets, his friend and fellow traitor Guy Burgess must have told them what he knew after he fled to Moscow with Donald Maclean in 1951. Burgess’ links to Ireland were described in another book by Andrew Lownie, “Stalin’s Englishman”. Village’s favourable review of it described how Burgess fitted into the vice network. See

By all accounts Blunt acquired his taste for ‘rent boys’ from Burgess, with whom he once lived. Burgess was addicted to them. While Burgess purported to be concerned for the downtrodden, he made jokes about the children he exploited from their ranks. On one occasion he wrote a nauseating adaptation of La donna e mobile which he thought was hilarious: “Small boys are cheap today, cheaper than yesterday”.

And even if Blunt and Burgess said nothing, there is still the supremely ironic possibility that Sir Maurice Oldfield, the Chief of MI6, was blackmailed by the KGB which must have known he had a lust for young men. The Provisional IRA, who attempted to assassinate him in London in the mid-1970s, certainly knew of his sexual predilections. See “Maurice The Mole?”

And even if Blunt, Burgess and Oldfield kept their mouths shut, Michael Bettaney might have spilt the beans. In 1983 Bettaney, a senior MI5 officer who had served in Northern Ireland in the 1970s, was arrested after having furnished internal MI5 information to the Soviets. It is inconceivable he did not know the truth about Kincora. Indeed, the exploitation of the children may very well have been what turned him against MI5. If he didn’t hear about it while serving in Ireland, he most certainly would have been at the centre of the panic and gossip that gripped MI5 in 1980 when the scandal erupted, a panic that intensified in 1982 as a judicial inquiry loomed on the horizon. Bettaney was so disgusted with MI5 that he passed information to the IRA about its activities in Ireland while in prison. He also learnt Russian while in prison and remained a Marxist for the rest of his life. He was released in 1998 and died in 2018 so he had plenty of time to disclose what he knew about the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring to the Russians.


And if none of the above uttered a word to the Soviets, the odds are stratospherically high that Geoffrey Prime did. Prime was a KGB mole employed at a high rank by GCHQ (the UK’s signals intelligence service). He was also a paedophile and a member of the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE), and the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBA). PIE wanted to reduce the age of consent for sex with children to 4 years of age. Astonishing as it may seem, PIE was an affiliate of the National Council for Civil Liberties( NCCL).

Prime began betraying Royal Air Force secrets to the KGB while working in Berlin in 1968. Few believed his claim that he did so for ideological reasons. For a start, he never displayed any sort of left-wing leanings. Second, he lived a modest life and received a comparative pittance from the Soviets, so he hardly did it for money either. The KGB encouraged (or blackmailed him) to join GCHQ after he left the RAF. After his arrest in 1982, UK intelligence investigators told the press they believed he had been blackmailed over his sexual deviancy by the KGB.

Prime lusted after young girls. When arrested for three assaults, the police found files on 2,287 school girls in his house along with PIE literature.

Prime retired from GCHQ in 1977, yet at least one file which post-dated his resignation was found in his house. This and other factors gave rise to a concern there was at least one other mole in GCHQ who was passing secrets to him. Newspaper reports at the time indicated that Prime had amassed blackmail material on 16 other employees at GCHQ so there might indeed have been other traitors inside the organisation. Five GCHQ employees were demoted or fired as a result of the information MI5 found in Prime’s files on them.

A massive review was undertaken by MI5 to see who else he might have compromised. In the US, the FBI found out that he was a member of NAMBA under the name Jacques Dugay which prompted an investigation into the names of VIPs he had discovered in America.

PIE and NAMBA members exchanged paedophile pornography so it would have been easy for Prime to have discovered a network of perverts for the KGB. One of the more high profile deviants of this era was Sir Peter Hayman, KCMG, CVO, MBE, the reputed Deputy Chief of MI6 under Oldfield. Hayman was a member of the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring. He abused Richard Kerr, a former resident of Kincora, at Elm Guest House and elsewhere. Hayman had other links to Ireland: he was a former boyfriend of Sir Gilbert Laithwaite, the Dublin-born, Clongowes Wood and Trinity College Dublin-educated, British Ambassador to Ireland in 1950. Hayman rose to become High Commissioner to Canada and also worked for MI6.

According to Robin Bryans’, while he was ambassador to Ireland, Laithwaite procured boys from the Masonic School in Dublin.

In October 1978 Hayman accidentally left a package of child pornography on a bus in London. Detectives traced it to a man called “Peter Henderson”, at an apartment in Bayswater, London, where they found 45 diaries describing six years of “sexual fantasies” about children, activities with prostitutes, articles of female clothing and obscene literature. “Henderson” turned out to be Hayman. The detectives also learnt that he was a member of a group of seven men and two women who were corresponding with each other and swapping photographs. One of them shared fantasies about torturing children to death with yet another paedophile. The police prosecuted two of the group but let the others go because they were consenting adults who were not making money from pornography. Hayman was given a warning not to send obscene material through the post.

In March 1981 Geoffrey Dickens, an independent minded Tory MP horrified by VIP child abuse, used parliamentary privilege to expose Hayman in the House of Commons. Before he named him, Michael Havers, the Attorney-General, had pleaded with him not to. Dickens was widely condemned for this, even accused of abusing parliamentary privilege. Thatcher’s Attorney-General, Sir Michael Havers, took up the defence cudgels on Hayman’s behalf. He argued that Hayman’s collection was not extreme and had not warranted prosecution.

Despite all the chances he was given, Hayman failed to curb his impulses and was caught in a public lavatory in London in 1984 with a boy and convicted of gross indecency.

In January 2015, Sky News in London obtained a file relating to him which had been prepared for Margaret Thatcher entitled “SECURITY. Sir Peter Hayman: allegations against former public official of unnatural sexual proclivities; security aspects”. One part of it concerned Hayman’s sexual fantasies about children.

Hayman is exactly the type of target the KGB coveted. All of these cases reinforce the need for the Cabinet Office to keep a file on the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring lest it emerge that Hayman or some other Establishment figure was compromised by the KGB.  

Hence, it is likely that comprehensive files about the Anglo-Irish Vice Ring are maintained in London, Washington and Moscow. As indicated above, the London dossier would be locked away in the safest place for it in the UK: the Cabinet Secretary’s safe.

Imagine how simple it all could have been if the State had simply arrested the paedophiles as it became aware of their crimes.

Readers interested in learning more about the issues and people referred to in this article can click on the various buttons/tabs below this story, albeit that most of the information contained therein has been drawn upon for this composite article.

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