Theresa May’s refusal to shut down a child sex abuse inquiry into the late Lord Janner was a ‘political mistake’, his son said today.
Daniel Janner QC made the comments before the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse began hearing evidence from alleged victims of a paedophile sex ring comprised of high profile politicians and civil servants.
It was set by the then Home Secretary Theresa May in the wake of the Jimmy Savile sex abuse scandal.
Before the hearing, Mr Janner QC said the refusal by Prime Minister Theresa May to
shut down the inquiry was due to her “saving face”.
He said: “It’s Alice in Wonderland. Mrs May should have shut this down but it’s her inquiry.”
Asked if he believed her refusal to do so was her “saving face” and a “political decision”, he said: “Yes. I think this was a huge mistake and it has gradually unravelled.
“It’s a political decision and a political mistake. Tom Watson whipped it up and she should have shut it down.
“This is why it’s gutless and this is why it’s extremely hurtful for members of the families of Lord Brittan, Edward Heath and my family.”
He added: “This inquiry is attacking the reputations of dead politicians who cannot answer back. People like my late father who were accused but never convicted.
“It’s a discredit to genuine complainants and it’s a discredit of the inquiry and it’s contrary to British justice.
“We cannot trust this inquiry – I know we cannot trust this inquiry. One of the members is compromised in respect to my father and they take no notice.
“How should it be fair that their names can be besmirched? And it’s extremely upsetting to their families such as my family.
“It discredits the work of the rest of the inquiry.
“My father’s innocence was proved with the collapse of all the civil claims.
“Alright if you’re going to have an investigation to do in relation to people who were convicted but this is an absolutely overpaid scandal what’s going on behind us.
“It’s an unfair process, we are not allowed to cross examine witnesses – those who give these false allegations who hide under the cloak of anonymity.
“These false claims have already been investigated, it throws mud on dead politicians who were never convicted of any offence.
“It throws mud based on dodgy dossiers and tittle tattle and it’s a huge waste of money.”
He explained he was a criminal barrister QC and asked where he would criticise the legal process of the inquiry, said: “It’s hugely unfair and one sided. We have no right and we have been refused the right to cross examine witnesses.
“How can that be right? It goes against the principles of British justice because of that, because it’s not fair.”
Asked to describe his feelings today, he said: “My feelings are one of upset and annoyance and trust that they will see sense.
“Yes they should shut down the strand in relation to my late father and we would welcome an apology from this inquiry.”
He said his family did not want compensation or an apology from the Prime Minister.
He also read the following statement outside the IICSA building: “This beleaguered inquiry has turned into a witch hunt against dead politicians, such as Sir Edward Heath, Lord Brittan and my late father, Lord Janner.
“It will unjustly trash their reputations. They cannot answer back from the grave.
“Yet the allegations have already been fully investigated, and shown to be based on tittle tattle, false rumours and dodgy dossiers.
“In my late father’s case, the compensation driven allegations proved false as the collapse of all the civil claims established.
“The inquiry was set up following the hysteria in the wake of the Savile scandal, whipped up by Tom Watson and others.
“Now it will give credence to false accusers. And undermine genuine victims.
“It is a huge waste of money and a shameful disgrace. It is contrary to the basic principles of justice.
“Dead people of impeccable character will be presumed guilty.
“It is also extremely upsetting for the families of those named.”
By Berny Torre