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July 5, 2019updated 30 Sep 2022 8:01am

Westminster ‘VIP paedophile ring’ source ‘Nick’ first contacted by detectives after blogging about child abuse, court hears

By PA Mediapoint

A man charged with inventing a Westminster paedophile ring was contacted by interested detectives because his blogs about being abused as a boy were picked up by an online news agency, he told jurors yesterday.

Carl Beech told Newcastle Crown Court he started to write journals about his experiences in 2012 while going through counselling and switched to blogging in 2014.

He used a site for survivors called This Tangled Web, writing: “I wanted to get some of my own experiences and the experiences of my friends out there, and start my own healing process as well.

“I hoped it would help others come to understand their own experiences.”

After starting his blogs, he was contacted by Mark Conrad, a journalist from the Exaro News online agency, and they met on several occasions.

At one meeting Conrad showed him a photographs of VIPs, Beech told jurors, some of whom he identified as being members of the paedophile ring.

After Exaro published his story, the Metropolitan Police made contact with Conrad asking to speak to Beech.

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Collingwood Thompson QC, defending, asked Beech why he agreed to speak to detectives.

He said he had been encouraging other survivors to speak out about their experiences.

“It was a bit two-faced I suppose to do that and not to do it myself,” he told the court.

The 51-year-old from Gloucester denies 12 counts of perverting the course of justice and one of fraud.

He also tearfully told the jury how he tried to save a boy who he claimed was strangled and raped by the former Tory MP Harvey Proctor.

Beech claimed another boy was deliberately run over by “The Group” and denied the assertion it was a “figment of his imagination”, saying: “I know it took place”.

He also spoke about another incident in which he alleged Sir Michael Hanley, then head of MI5, told a group of young victims they had to chose which one of them was to die, before a boy was picked out and beaten to death.

The jury has heard the Metropolitan Police spent £2m on Operation Midland to investigate his claims that three boys were murdered and that a high-profile paedophile ring operated in the 1970s and 1980s. The probe ended without making a single arrest.

During the seven-week trial Proctor has vehemently denied the claims that he was involved in a paedophile ring, branding them the “ravings of a fantasist”.

Beech told the jury he was taken to a London town house with another boy he now thought “possibly” was the teenager Martin Allen, who went missing in 1979.

The defendant claimed Proctor and another man tied the boy to a table and the ex-MP stabbed the boy in the arm then cut his chest and legs before the men left the room.

Beech, sounding upset, said: “I tried to untie him, but I couldn’t.

“There was a lot of blood, he just kept saying sorry.”

The men came back into the room, he claimed, and he alleged Proctor raped the other boy.

Thompson asked: “While that was happening, what were you doing?”

Beech replied: “Begging for him to stop and he kept saying sorry, but they didn’t listen.”

He claimed he held hands with the other boy while they were both being raped as the other victim was being strangled.

After the ordeal Beech said: “I tried to wake him up but I couldn’t.”

He also claimed a boy named Scott was run over as a punishment for Beech making a friend – in defiance of The Group’s orders not to.

The jury has heard how the police investigated his claims that the boy was knocked down and killed and failed to find any trace of such an incident in the Kingston-upon-Thames area at the relevant time.

Thompson asked Beech to respond to the assertion that the incident with Scott’s was a “figment of your imagination”.

Beech replied: “I know what happened, I was there, and I know it took place.”

He said he had not told anyone about it at the time, not even his dog.

And he went on to allege that a third boy was savagely attacked by paedophiles after they tried to force four boys to decide who was to die at a London town house.

Beech claimed Hanley, Proctor, Leon Brittan and another man were present.

The victims refused to pick, making the adults angry, Beech claimed, so eventually the men singled a child out and Hanley and Proctor knocked him to the floor and beat him.

Beech claimed: “He didn’t move, he was just like a doll.

“They stopped hitting him and left, and the three of us got down on the floor with him but we didn’t know what to do.”

The boy was not breathing by the time they were taken out of the room, he said.

Beech claimed not to have told anyone about these incidents for decades, explaining it was: “A combination of things, scared, fearful for what might happen if I did say something, ashamed, guilt.”

Earlier, he told the jury how he was driven to meet Sir Edward Heath on a yacht, and burst into tears when the former prime minister said he intended to sail with him out to sea.

Beech claimed Sir Edward was “very kind, very concerned, comforting” before taking him into a cabin where “he just comforted me and cuddled me”.

Lord Brittan, the former home secretary, “liked violence”, Beech told the court.

He added: “He liked to see us in pain… he liked to watch that.”

He said Lord Brittan raped him over a bath while holding his head under water.

He made a similar claim in court on Tuesday about the disgraced TV presenter Jimmy Savile.

Beech also claimed in court to have been abused at pool parties, at Christmas get-togethers and at Remembrance Day events where poppies would be pinned onto his bare skin.

Picture: Crown Prosecution Service/PA Wire

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