The Matt Tap Report -1 Revisited
David Warcup - Deputy Chief Of Police / Acting Chief of Police - September 08 to December 2010
Mick Gradwell - D/Supt also SIO of Jersey's Historic Child Abuse Investigation (HCAE) September 08-09
Matt Tapp -
Media consultancy Talking Heads has recruited Cambridgeshire Police's corporate communications head Matt Tapp.
He joins the Cambridge-based firm as managing partner with specific responsibility for expanding its public sector client base.
Experienced consultant Mike Robinson will continue to head up the private sector media and presentation training while Tapp moves the business into new areas.
Talking Heads delivers media management consultancy and training, either in-house at its fully equipped TV and radio studio, or on-site. With presentation and message delivery expertise, it will now also expand into crisis management and specialist PR.
Tapp, 38, was persuaded to move into the business arena after a long and successful career in news journalism and police public relations.
For the last four years he has co-directed the national police press officer training programme and delivered lectures throughout Britain on media management, multi-agency response, risk and crisis management.
He is a serving member of the Home Office Counter Terrorist team, advising UK and overseas law enforcement agencies on the media aspects of terrorist incidents.
During his career Tapp has been asked to review the media handling of major incidents by a number of Police forces and is currently assisting in the review of the investigation into the murder of black musician Michael Menson in the Metropolitan Police area.
He joins Talking Heads after seven years as Director of Corporate Information at Cambridgeshire Police.
'After such a high profile job in a progressive police force like Cambridgeshire it was always going to take a dynamic, forward-thinking and exciting company to make me change tack,' said Tapp.
'Talking Heads is already well established with the private sector in the East Anglia region and has blue chip clients like WorldCom and Arthur Andersen under its belt; but the other partners felt I could put my considerable experience in the public sector to use as a consultant.
'I'm looking forward to the challenge.'
Tapp trained as a journalist in Sussex and moved on to news editing three evening newspapers in the Midlands before joining Warwickshire Police as its force press officer in 1992.
During his time there he dealt with the M40 minibus crash, cases of kidnap and product contamination and more than 30 murder inquiries before moving to Cambridgeshire in 1994.
In the last seven years he's dealt with a range of high profile national incidents including the IRA jailbreak from HMP Whitemoor, the Rikki Neave murder, the runaway foster family and the jailing of a police sergeant for a series of rapes.
Last year he was awarded a Chief Constable's commendation for his handling of the Bramley case.
Talking Heads was started in 1999 as part of the Mason's News Group, which runs one of Britain's biggest press and television agencies from its Cambridge headquarters.
Group Managing Partner Dave Moreau said: 'We're absolutely delighted to be able to offer our clients someone with Matt's experience in such a wide range of public sector issues.
'I've got no doubt the heads of private firms will also benefit from his strategic thinking on news management and how to deal with a potential public crisis.'
What I will be looking at is how the work of Police Media Consultant Matt Tapp all of a sudden became the Holy Grail in the Jersey HCAE. I have become very concerned about these consultants . We have seen what can happen with these consultants during the course of the Home Affairs Sub Panels Review into BDO's review into the financial management of Operation Rectangle.
But now we have another one that goes by the name of Matt Tapp. Im not suggesting for one moment Matt Tapp has done anything wrong. His involvement and his work must be looked at.
David Warcup brought Matt Tapp over in September 2008
What did Brian Napier say was happening behind Graham Powers back in 2008? More on that later.
How did Tapp's work end up with the Defence Team?
Are we seeing a pincer movement on the former Chief of Police who was looking in a very vunurable position with Deputy Andrew Lewis sitting in as Home Affairs Minister.
Just like I did with the BDO Review I'm following my instinct on this one. It might lead nowhere or it could lead to September 3rd 2009 I just don't know.
Before we go heavily into the reasons for his work and where he and his work ended up I first want to go back to what David Warcup said on leaving the Jersey Police Force in December 2010 and the the Statement on the closing down of the Jersey HCAE. This is very important for reasons I will be pointing out in the comment section so this doesn't end up being a long posting.
Former Acting Chief of Police Warcup did give evidence to the Sub Panel unlike his SIO who turned into Lord Lucan
The Reason for putting up the Operation Rectangle Statement is simple
When you read it; Remember those are not figures or stats that you are reading
Those are the Innocent Children who suffered terribly in the care of the States of Jersey
Jersey Evening Post, 21st December, 2010.
RETIRED acting police chief David Warcup has said that if he had not raised concerns about the historical child abuse inquiry it is unlikely that there would have been any convictions. In his view, If a press conference had not taken place refuting claims of possible child murders at Haut de la Garenne, lawyers representing those accused of child abuse might successfully have claimed that their clients could not get a fair trial.
Speaking last week before he left the force on Friday after deciding that he no longer wanted to be police chief, Mr Warcup said that the actions he took were the right and proper thing to do. ‘I recognise that if I had not taken this action the prosecution of offenders alleged to have been responsible for serious child offences would not have succeeded,’ he said. In the interview on page 12, Mr Warcup also says that if there had been police authority in the Island when he was raising these concerns with former police chief Graham Power, the situation would not have escalated in the way it did. Mr Warcup was the victim of stinging criticism on some blogs, which he has described as ‘totally unfounded allegations’. ‘Serious consideration should be given in Jersey and the UK to how to deal with unfounded allegations made on the internet which could be distressing for those concerned.’ he said.
Warcup JEP Interview, page 12.
Warcup JEP Interview, page 12.
WHEN David Warcup stood in the Royal Court in August 2008 and took the oath of office as the acting police chief he was full of expectation about what lay ahead. The former deputy chief constable of Northumbria Police and his family had sold their home there in the belief that they would be settling in the Island. With 32 years of policing experience behind him, Mr Warcup had been led to expect when he was appointed in the acting post that he would take over from police chief Graham Power on his retirement. ‘I considered it to be a new stage in my career,’ he said, ‘and came to Jersey anticipating that I would be carrying out the job for a number of years.’ What actually happened was a far cry from his positive expectations. Last week he left the States police after deciding that he no longer wanted the top job. ‘I have not fulfilled my ambition because of matters outside my control,’ he said.
Mr Warcup said that even before he took up his post he realised, through reports and comments in the media, that there were concerns about the historical child abuse inquiry. Within a few weeks of arriving in the island he became aware, by speaking to people inside and outside the force, of public concern about the way in which the inquiry was being run.
One of the major problems in intervening was that any criticism of the supervision of the inquiry including the handling of the media by former deputy police chief Lenny Harper, was implied criticism of Mr Power, who was his boss. Mr Warcup believed that some lurid reports in the national media of possible child murders at Haut de La Garenne could seriously jeopardise the prosecutions for child abuse going to trial A review of the evidence available from the inquiry including items uncovered during the excavation at the former children’s home, led him and the new senior investigating officer, Det Supt Mick Gradwell, to believe that no such crimes had taken place ‘The more information I gathered and examined, the more I realised that there were issues which needed addressing,’ he said.
At that time, some States Members and others were also calling into question the handling of the inquiry. Mr Warcup faced the problem of persuading Mr Power that the public should be informed of the truth, and that the risk of the prosecution cases collapsing had to be reduced. ‘I could have made life easy for myself and turned a blind eye, but because of my values I couldn’t do that,’ he said. ‘In all my years of policing I have never walked away from a difficult situation, but this was one of the most challenging I have faced.’
The Attorney General, William Bailhache, was among those who raised concerns about the police’s media strategy during the inquiry and its possible prejudicial effects on forthcoming prosecutions. MR Warcup unsuccessfully tried to persuade Mr Power that a press conference ought to be staged to put the record straight. ‘It remains a disappointment to me that I couldn’t resolve that situation with Mr. Power and find an appropriate way forward, he said. It was when Mr Warcup received an interim report from the Metropolitan police which questioned the handling of the inquiry that he put pen to paper. Asked by States chief executive Bill Ogley to produce a report detailing his concerns, Mr Warcup expressed them in a letter to him which was received two days before Mr Power was suspended. That suspension took place on the same day that Mr Warcup and Mr Gradwell led a press conference refuting claims that child murders could have taken place.
An independent report by the Wiltshire Constabulary seriously criticised Mr Power’s supervision of the inquiry - the biggest policing operation in the island in living memory - and recommended that he should face disciplinary action. Mr Warcup believes that raising his concerns about the inquiry and staging the press conference to refute claims of child murders were the right and proper things to do. ‘I recognise that if I had not taken this action, the prosecution of offenders alleged to have been responsible for serious child offences would not have succeeded he said. Several months after that press conference, some defence lawyers unsuccessfully argued In the Royal Court that because of lurid media stories about the case, there had been abuse of process.
In Mr Warcup’s view it would have been a travesty if those prosecutions had not gone ahead. ‘Fortunately all the lurid claims were addressed at the police conference, the prosecutions went ahead and justice was gained for a number of victims,’ he said. With the inquiry ending with just seven convictions for child abuse out of a total of 192 victims being identified during police inquiries, Mr Warcup said he realised that some abuse victims would be disappointed that those who assaulted them had not been prosecuted. ‘The small number of prosecutions reflects similar cases in the UK, where there have also been very few people brought to justice following a major historical child abuse inquiry’ he said. Problems faced in these investigations he said, included the need to secure enough evidence for a prosecution to go ahead, and the lengthy time which had passed since the alleged offenses took place. ‘It is essential for an effective criminal justice system that the proper standards of assessment of evidence are applied’, he said. With Mr Power remaining suspended d until he retired in the summer, Mr Warcup took on the reins of the force during that difficult time. But after two years of running the force in an acting role, Mr Warcup no longer wanted to be appointed as police chief. He attributes the decision to the uncertainty over whether his appointment as police chief would be confirmed. While that went on. he was unable to buy a house in the island. ‘It was a very upsetting period which was clearly affecting my personal life, he said.
He was taken aback by criticism by some States Members about his involvement in Mr Power's suspension, although he had the full support of Home Affairs Minister Ian be Marquand, who believed he should become police chief.
Mr Warcup said that policing could be challenging and that it was important to receive a broad mandate to do the job. ‘It became clear that not all States members supported me in becoming police chief. Although It was a small group, that situation could have made my tenure very difficult,’ he said.
He added that he respected the right of politicians to challenge public servants and call them to account, but in some cases those people did not have the right of reply he said. Mr Warcup was the victim of stinging comments on some Internet blogs about his role In Mr Power's suspension. ‘In some public-service roles you must have broad shoulders, but in this case my integrity was being called into question by totally unfounded suggestions and allegations’ he said.
In his view, serious consideration needed to be given in Jersey and the UK in how to deal with unfounded allegations made on the Internet which could be very distressing for those concerned. It is wrong to treat people in this way particularly those who are not in a position to defend themselves.’ Mr Warcup said that had there been a police authority in the island when he had faced the dilemma about what to do about his concerns over the inquiry the situation could have been prevented from escalating so much. ‘A police authority which has the trust of the public and able to challenge the force over how they are delivering policing to the community would have examined the concerns being raised in some areas’ he said. Mr Warcup’s role in Mr Power’s suspension came in for some criticism from employment law expert Brian Napier QC in his report on the way It was carried out. Mr Napier said, however, that Mr Warcup had found himself in an extraordinarily difficult situation and was genuinely concerned to do the right thing.
Mr Warcup absolutely rejects Mr Napier’s criticism, saying that he failed to raise issues he mentioned in the report to him during their three hour discussion, and did not make clear in his report exactly what he meant by his criticism. ‘I don’t think the Napier report is a complete assessment of the full circumstances which existed at the time, or that Mr Napier was in possession of all of the facts,’ Mr Warcup said. He counts among his achievements while in the post as working with acting deputy police chief Barry Taylor to introduce an improved system of succession planning and leadership training. There had also been improved efficiency in managing calls from the public, more effective use of resources, and levels of crime had dropped. And public satisfaction of police services, shown in surveys, remained high, he said.
Mr Warcup’s experience of life in Jersey has been far from totally negative, however and he has enjoyed many of the other challenges which his job brought with it. ‘I hope I have left a positive legacy and a platform on which the new police chief can build a force,’ he said. He also has a fondness for the island which he regards as a safe and pleasant place in which to live. Returning with his wife to the northeast of England, he will be seeking a new role outside policing and from time to time, they intend to come back to the island to visit friends they have made here.
Following the conclusion of the trial involving Morag and Tony Jordan, the States of Jersey Police confirm that there are no further Court cases outstanding in relation to the historical abuse enquiry, known as Operation Rectangle carried out by the force between September, 2007 and December, 2010. The completion of this case marks the end of a thorough and detailed enquiry into allegations of historical abuse within the child care system in Jersey during the period from 1941 to 2009.
The scope of the enquiry, the details of which are set out below, dealt with offences committed in children’s homes, institutions and private residences within the Island. A major part of the enquiry focused on matters at the former children’s home Haut de la Garenne, where enquiries covered the period between 1960 to 1986, when the home closed.
During the lifetime of Operation Rectangle:
1,776 statements were taken.
9,874 documents were collated during the enquiry, with 4,620 exhibits seized.
533 offences were reported and recorded under the National Crime Recording Standards. Under these standards, one offence is recorded for either a single offence or series of similar offences against one victim by the same alleged offender.
Of the total of 533 offences, 274 were alleged sexual offences; 238 were offences of assault, ill-treatment or neglect, 17 were offences of Grave and Criminal Assault and there were four other offences.
315 offences were reported as being committed at Haut de la Garenne; 66 at other homes or institutions and 152 at places where children were fostered or in private addresses.
43% of all offences allegedly committed at Haut de la Garenne were sexual offences. 84% of all offences in foster care or private residences were sexual offences.
Eight people (seven men and one woman) have been charged and tried before the Courts in Jersey with seven successful prosecutions resulting from these cases.
The eight people were prosecuted for a total of 145 offences (27%).
As a result of the complaints received, 151 named offenders were identified, 41 other offenders were not identified.
A total of 192 individual victims were identified.
30 of the named offenders were identified as having died before the enquiry was undertaken.
The total policing costs of the Historical Abuse Enquiry to date is £7,574,636, of which £5,088,328 is staff costs and £2,486,308 comprising non-staff costs (e.g. accommodation, travel and forensic costs).
Where appropriate, legal advice was obtained to determine if there was sufficient evidence to justify proceedings. In recent months, the investigating team has also undertaken a detailed and thorough re-examination of all of the evidence to ensure that there were no potential lines of enquiry which remained outstanding. David Warcup, Acting Chief Officer of the States of Jersey Police, said: “Investigations of this nature are particularly difficult and protracted, especially for the victims, and officers have worked hard to ensure that the needs of victims have been met. Every allegation or complaint has been given full and proper consideration and all possible lines of enquiry have been pursued. “At this point in time, there is no evidence from which it would be possible to mount any further prosecutions. “Should evidence become available then the force will review this to determine what, if any, further action should be taken.
The States of Jersey Police will continue to investigate all allegations of abuse, whether historical or current, thoroughly and sensitively. The force has highly skilled, specialist officers trained in this area of work, and the States of Jersey Police remain committed to bringing offenders to justice.”
The NCRS is the method by which forces record crime to ensure standardisation throughout the UK and Channel Islands. Under these rules, if a victim is repeatedly subjected to the same offence by the same offender it counts only as one offence for recording purposes. However, if an independent person commits a second crime, then this should be counted separately. The test to be applied in respect of recording a crime is that of the balance of probabilities i.e. is the incident more likely than not the result of a criminal act? In most cases, the belief by the victim (or person reasonably assumed to be acting on behalf of the victim) that a crime has occurred is sufficient to justify its recording, although this will not be the case in all circumstances. In a number of cases victims were unable to clarify or recall how many times they had been subject to violence or assault