Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious apartheid-era intelligence agency Boss

by JAMES HANNING, JONATHAN OWEN
Sunday 22 March 2015

A botched attempt by South African intelligence to blackmail Cyril Smith over his sexual abuse of boys may have helped the politician escape justice.

British police became aware of the plot in the mid-1970s while questioning a man over an art theft. He was subsequently convicted for possession of stolen goods.

The individual, who cannot be named, told police he had film footage of Smith sexually abusing boys. Detectives established that the man had links with the South African embassy in London and appeared to be working on behalf of Boss, the notorious apartheid-era intelligence agency, which was attempting to undermine Liberal MPs and others they regarded as unsympathetic to the regime.

Malicious rumours were also circulated about the private lives of former prime ministers Harold Wilson (right) and Edward Heath (left), as well as the former Liberal leader Jeremy Thorpe.

A senior source, speaking last night under condition of anonymity, revealed that in the event, Special Branch found the man had no credible evidence of Smith abusing children. The individual escaped prosecution for attempted blackmail and no action was taken against Smith. Subsequent allegations against the Liberal politician were either not proven or intentionally buried. “It isn’t clear if there was a deliberate cover-up or not,” said the source, “but after the South African episode, it seems that those who knew about it would have been inclined to dismiss claims against Smith as merely part of ‘that politically motivated South African nonsense’.”

The development comes after police were accused of dropping a subsequent investigation into Smith, seemingly under pressure from senior figures, heightening suggestions of a high-level conspiracy.

Independent on Sunday 22/03/15

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18 Comments

Filed under Abuse, News

18 responses to “Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

  1. What is it about embassies?

  2. Pingback: Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice? | Alternative News Network

  3. Gary

    How convenient.

  4. I smell a red herring.

    • Sabre

      A red herring dressed up as an orange Boer by a red white and blue spook.

      • Just read a piece in local paper where it’s been found that quite a number of victims had given birth to children as result of being sexually abused as result of long term grooming. Can’t think of anything more horrible.. “Your Daddy was a paedophile who raped me ” it’s beyond words.

        .

  5. mike e

    ‘A senior source, speaking last night under condition of anonymity….’

    In other words, ‘so all the rumours were not true, they were started by the nasty South African Intelligence agency, and I’m so sure of my facts you can quote me on that. Just don’t use my name’

  6. paul

    this is a book that is about 1970s south African intelligence in Britain allegedly trying to undermine Harold Wilson and smiths liberal leader Jeremy thorpe

    • paul
  7. The Last Of The Truffle-Snorting Heroes

    BOSS were up to some seriously murky stuff at that time but don’t forget Mossad, CIA, & our own spooks. Thorpe, Heath & Wilson were all targeted with smears. Some info was correct, some very dubious. Clearly with Smith & Thorpe, there was something to go on even though the evidence may not have been at hand. There are some colourful rumours about Heath but I’ve yet to hear specific evidence other than a possible predilection for cottaging. Wilson appeared paranoid but had good reason to be.

    Having read many works on the latter’s experience, it alarms me that so many unelected and overseas agencies were attempting to manipulate whoever was in power in whatever underhand way they could. Whatever side of politics you were on, it’s surely a matter of some concern that all sides of the political spectrum faced such internal & external threats.

    I’d consider our own state sponsored manipulators, the CIA & J J Angleton specifically to have been of more risk than BOSS.

  8. dpack

    a refusal to play ball on angelton’s team might be a motive for what happened to dickie .
    unless one thinks holistically the darkest corners of spook street can be the road to madness.
    if one thinks holistically the darkest corners of spook street can be the road to madness.

    something that does seem clear is that among both the state and privately sponsored there have been some strange alliances and hidden agendas among the more overt themes.

    it is in the nature of the game that using assets from beyond one’s camp is a basic means to maintain plausible deniability.

  9. Sabre

    BOSS had a working relationship with Israeli Intel which gave them indirect contact with UK and US intel. They would have been using good product and our security service would have known that.

    A variation of the Security Service getting their stringers to publish allegations of a ‘malicious Security Service smear campaign’ against Leon Brittan thereby protecting Brittan.