Butler-Sloss Is Character Witness For Alleged Paedophile.

Evidence, if it is needed, that I’m not infallible. A year ago I posted that I thought that Butler-Sloss should be given a chance as chair of the CSA Inquiry.

Now she’s a character witness for an alleged paedophile !

Eeeeerrrm…

I’m very pleased I have readers that are willing to point out when I’m wrong.

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A retired High Court Judge has given evidence on behalf of a man who is on trial for raping a 13-year-old girl.

Baroness Butler-Sloss told Exeter Crown Court she had 34 years experience of dealing with child abuse cases.

She gave character evidence on behalf of Philip Chard, 44, on trial for rape and sexual abuse of the girl.

The baroness was appointed in July 2014 to lead an inquiry into allegations of historical child abuse but stood down before the inquiry started.

Lady Butler-Sloss, who is a working peer in the House of Lords, said Mr Chard’s mother, Valerie, had been her cleaning lady at her home in East Devon for 20 years.

She said she knew Chard because he often took his mother to her home to work and sometimes stayed there for a couple of hours.

She said: “I had no concerns about Mr Chard. I was astonished by these allegations. I think he is a much less probable offender than many I have come across.”

Former doorman Chard, of Dawlish Park Terrace, Lympstone, denies rape and five counts of sexual activity with a child.

The girl has told Exeter Crown Court how Chard crept into her bedroom when she was staying overnight at his home.

Chard told the jury nothing sexual happened during the night or on a number of previous occasions.

The trial continues.

BBC News

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34 Comments

Filed under Abuse

34 responses to “Butler-Sloss Is Character Witness For Alleged Paedophile.

  1. nuggy

    the key word here is alleged.

    someone has been acused of denied it and she belives him she may be wrong she may be right.

    but i cant see anything wrong with what shes doing.

    • Andy Barnett

      Being a character witness for an an alleged offender would be fine, were it not for the apparent faith she has in her innate ability to spot a “probable offender”. It is not only a prejudicial belief but also a reinforcing one when held by a judge that has for many years determined the guilt or otherwise of such defendants. (When she refers to the “many [paedophiles] she has come across”, these are limited to those that she and her fellow judges found guilty, at least in part because they fit their prejudgement of what a probable offender looks and acts like).

  2. Leggy Lina

    That is true, nuggy – we should presume innocence until proof of guilt – but one wonders what value she has as a character witness given she met him under those circumstances. Hardly a close personal friend. Were he to be guilty (and I’m not suggesting he is), he would be unlikely to display deviant or criminal behaviour in the house where her mother cleaned for a judge.

  3. Fishy

    noticed you have been over cautious for some time now, you used to have some strong opinions, then things started to get watered down, has MI5 gotta hold of you.

    • dpack

      they havn’t even bothered to offer me a job or threaten me but i have got more cautious over the last few years as i hope there will be both outings and convictions in the future and avoiding being dazzled and distracted by the illusions is part of that process.

      actually i would probably be better suited working with the registry queens :)
      gi us a job .

  4. Sabre

    We are all fallible, the greatest failing is to deny it. I believe that you were wrong with regard to Butler-Sloss because of her association with Brittan, you weren’t to know that she would later give evidence of character to a defendant which isn’t even necessarily wrong.

  5. Gojam, you’re wrong about being wrong ;-)

  6. In retrospect you are right about being wrong but wrong about the reason for being wrong ( I have too much time on my hands ;-) )

  7. Lord Janner

    Oooh lovely!

    • anonymous

      If I’d been that magistrate that remark would have earned him 6 months there and then for contemptuous arrogant sarcasm .

      • anonymous

        Plus another month for turning up dressed like a down and out , he could turn out smartly when he was lording it .

      • sponge_mike

        Plus another month for being a slimy odious twat.
        No, make that three months.

      • Aardvark

        I imagine the choice of attire, with the support of his daughter in a mothering role, announcing after the outing to the court, ‘lets go home and have a nice ice cream’ audible for the reporters etc, was a very conscious decision to create an image of a man, once a ‘noble’ Lord, but now ravaged by his condition, incapable of making any decisions about etiquette, with a child like mind, just thinking about his next ice cream. Just in case the public didn’t buy his diagnosis.

      • Emm Jay

        and …. why was he allowed to enter the Court through a side door?

    • Becky

      I doubt very much that the poor guy even knew where he was, let alone whether the “Ooh this is wonderful!” statement was uttered by him sarcastically. The idea of a judge punishing someone for having dementia is utterly abhorrent imho and an attack on all sufferers and their families and carers who live with this clearly widely misunderstood set of neuro-degenerative conditions. As with Ted Heath, I have no idea whether he is guilty or innocent. Anyone can accuse anyone of anything and if we all went around convicting and imprisoning purely on suspicion then we may as well go back to the days of the Salem Witch Trials. Then again though, guilty or not, I guess certain people won’t be satisfied until they get their “pound of flesh”, eh?

      • anonymous

        Not sure about the appropriateness of that allegory , however put me down for half a Kg.

      • AlanB

        If he managed to fasten and unfasten his seat belt without assistance, then I’d say he doesn’t have dementia. Did anyone see?

        My late father had dementia so I know what I’m talking about.

      • Aardvark

        The point is, these very serious allegations should have been dealt with in court decades ago, there was obviously enough evidence then as now. The issue is whether an establishment figure escaped conviction, because of who he is and who he knows.

      • Steve

        Becky, no one gets convicted and imprisoned on ‘suspicion’ . You are putting forward a straw man argument. Convictions and prison sentences result trials held in courts.

      • Sabre

        I’m sure that the idea is abhorrent which is why a Judge wouldn’t punish someone for suffering from dementia we’ll pass over the fact that dementia isn’t a crime. Your allusion to a ‘pound of flesh’ and the wider significance that you intend hasn’t gone unnoticed.

    • dpack

      better dressed than gigante

      as to butler sloss the security and vetting committee tenure put me off the idea of her being a impartial or competent chair for a csa inquiry

  8. Chard victim

    I was 17 and chard was 32 I was dating him at the time I use to go to dame Elizabeth butler sloss house with him she never really talked. Him and I was actually abused by this man at her home! How can she give a character witness about someone she knows nothing about? Just because the mum worker for her for many years and her character witness is given because of her persuasion. I have left the pass over 10 years ago and I wish I had said something. This man enjoyed young ladies and often dressed me as a school girl. Dame Elisabeth butler sloss is a very intelligent women I respect who she is but in this case she can not give this man a character reference and is protecting a predator of young girls! I hope her stupid character reference is not taken into account! She says he doesn’t look like a pedo… Sorry what does a pedo typically look like?…… Sicken by this all. This.man needs to be locked away and dame Elizabeth needs to stick her nose out of this she knows nothing. Charts mother who I know so well is just as sick as him!

    • Kerrie

      I Think I know who u r! It’s chard and not charts mother for one! I’ve know her for 8 years and a very lovely lady! How can u say she’s sick! Yeah sick of people like u!! I could say I’m a chard victim 2! I was his partner , more friends! I don’t know the ins and outs of all this but know rather a lot! None of know what happens behind closed doors! But the chard as u put it! Was a lovely person to me, nothing toward at all! Through out the years of me knowing him! Me I don’t think he did it!

    • trowelandtoothbrush

      Have you taken these allegations to the police?

  9. Steve

    Yet again we see how the whole system is unfit for anything,also like to add its about time we ended the house of lords also,as I’ve no doubt at all many corrupt,swindling,lying people also work in there

    • trowelandtoothbrush

      The woman was unfit when she refused to convict a Bishop “as wasn’t going to hand the press a bishop she cared about the church”. I am sure I read that on this blog.
      Personally tho in the case of this character reference, I cannot help wondering if she is very sure and has had this chap checked out comprehensively locally before agreeing to referee for him. I cannot imagine that Butler Sloss would wish to end what, to the conservative mind is an illustrious career, by defending a child rapist.
      That is NOT to say that this man has not done these things of which he is accused but my point is that Butler Sloss, herself may be acting in good faith

  10. Not forgetting her late brother Sir Michael Havers, the former Attorney General who tried to prevent Geoffrey Dickens airing claims about Peter Hayman in Parliament in the 1980s…

  11. Steve

    Character witnesses should only be heard during a plea in mitigation as they have no bearing on the offence under examination. They do not speak to the facts of the allegations.

  12. Pingback: Paedophile Philip Chard Found Guilty (Despite Butler-Sloss Supporting Him. | theneedleblog