View all newsletters
Sign up for our free email newsletters

Fighting for quality news media in the digital age.

  1. News
July 16, 2019updated 30 Sep 2022 8:04am

Exaro journalist told ‘VIP paedophile ring’ source ‘Nick’ how to hide internet activity, court hears

By PA Mediapoint

A journalist told the man accused of lying about a Westminster VIP paedophile ring how to hide his internet activity and set up a secure email account, a court heard.

An investigative reporter with the now-defunct Exaro news agency told police he informed 51-year-old Carl Beech about The Onion Router, known as TOR, and secure Proton Mail accounts in 2014.

Beech (pictured), a divorced father from Gloucester who denies 12 counts of perverting the course of justice and one of fraud, is accused of lying to the Metropolitan Police about being abused as a child by powerful figures in the 1970s and 1980s, and witnessing three child murders.

A former NHS manager and Care Quality Commission inspector, Beech has admitted using the internet to download indecent images of young boys and a voyeurism charge, the jury at Newcastle Crown Court has heard.

One of the perverting the course of justice charges relates to him allegedly using a Swiss-based Proton Mail account to trick police into believing there was a corroborative witness who saw one of the murders and who was considering coming forward to speak to detectives.

Ray Tully, defending, told the jury that Exaro reporter Mark Conrad gave a statement to police in March this year to say that he had discussed using TOR with Beech.

In a written statement to investigators, he said: “I also noted at this point a secure way of communicating with Carl to reassure him that we would do everything we can to protect his identity.

Content from our partners
New technology from EX.CO helps publishers double on-site video revenue
Five ways to fail in media job interviews
How Germany's Ippen.Media mastered content planning across 86 newsrooms

“I mentioned using TOR in order to mask online identity and scramble IP addresses.”

Conrad said they also discussed setting up an email account using random letters and numbers with TOR “to further secure communication”.

He added: “Along the same lines, but possibly on another date, I told Carl about Proton Mail, a secure email service.

“Carl set up a Proton email account and we used it for a short period of time, however, we reverted back to normal emails.”

Conrad showed Beech a series of photos of potential abusers before he came forward to police with a list of 12 names, the jury has heard.

The reporter was also present when Beech first met detectives from the Met, the court has been told.

The case continues.

Picture: Crown Prosecution Service/PA Wire

Topics in this article :

Email to point out mistakes, provide story tips or send in a letter for publication on our "Letters Page" blog

Select and enter your email address Weekly insight into the big strategic issues affecting the future of the news industry. Essential reading for media leaders every Thursday. Your morning brew of news about the world of news from Press Gazette and elsewhere in the media. Sent at around 10am UK time. Our weekly does of strategic insight about the future of news media aimed at US readers. A fortnightly update from the front-line of news and advertising. Aimed at marketers and those involved in the advertising industry.
  • Business owner/co-owner
  • CEO
  • COO
  • CFO
  • CTO
  • Chairperson
  • Non-Exec Director
  • Other C-Suite
  • Managing Director
  • President/Partner
  • Senior Executive/SVP or Corporate VP or equivalent
  • Director or equivalent
  • Group or Senior Manager
  • Head of Department/Function
  • Manager
  • Non-manager
  • Retired
  • Other
Visit our privacy Policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications.
Thank you

Thanks for subscribing.

Websites in our network