Sunday, 16 March 2014

Bloggers to be marginalised by Child Abuse Committee of Inquiry?

Bloggers (Jersey's only independent, and most trusted, media) look to be getting sidelined/excluded by the newly formed Child Abuse Committee of Inquiry.

Regular readers of the Team Voice sites will know that we have been reporting the "evidence and facts" concerning the Child Abuse cover-up and related issues. We have published the official documents buried by the State Media, exposed the State Media, for what looks to be their complicity in the cover-up of events ,since the original Child Abuse Investigation (Operation Rectangle) went public.

The State Media has given us Tooth Fairy Tales, told us, through the discredited, and disgraced, Mick Gradwell that the cellars at Haute de la Garenne didn't EXIST.

We've attempted (unlike the State Media) to discover how a piece of child's skull containing 1.6% collagen (only found in mammals) can turn into a piece of COCONUT.

Indeed, just in one posting alone, (including its links) we blew the lid off of the propaganda being fed to us by the Establishment and its media concerning the Child Abuse (and related events) cover up which can, and SHOULD be viewed HERE.

When the State media has been BURYING DOCUMENTS, kicking Abuse Victims/Survivors in THE TEETH, or just "OPINION MANAGING" Bloggers have been bringing you the bare facts and giving the Abuse Survivors/Victims a voice denied to them by the local State Media.

Team Voice has published official transcripts of "in-camera" (secret) States (parliament) DEBATES. We have published the letter which got our most Senior ranking Police Officer, Graham Power QPM (illegally?) SUSPENDED. Not to mention the infamous supposed MET INTERIM REPORT.

We have been able to do this by gaining the trust of concerned whistleblowers who have leaked us these and many more, published (on our Blogs) documents. We have their trust and confidence to publish these documents where the local State Media clearly DO NOT. 

We have published possibly the most in-depth interview the Former Police Chief has EVER GIVEN. We have published his AFFIDAVIT.

We have also extensively, and exclusively, video interviewed Former DCO and Senior Investigating Officer, Lenny Harper who has regularly contributed to this Blog to include a GUEST POSTING. Our last video interview was published HERE although we did publish a live interview Mr. Harper gave to Sonia Poulton HERE.

Mr. Harper has been the victim of a relentless smear campaign by State Media, and paedophile protectors ever since he unearthed Jersey's dirty secrets. A five part interview with Mr. Harper covering the topic of the State Media smear campaign and much, much, more can be viewed from HERE.

We have gained the recognition of National/International Journalists and featured in a number of broadsheet publications for our researched and credible published documents. We have contributed to a number of TV Documentaries some already broadcast and others yet to be broadcast. Most important of all we have gained the trust of Abuse Victims/Survivors.

What questions has the State Media ever asked? When has the State Media ever been leaked a document..........And published it.......JON GRIPTON? All the State Media has ever done is to regurgitate Establishment Press Releases and bury anything that is uncomfortable for the Establishment. Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) have challenged "The Party Line" and not just repeated/regurgitated it.

Below are a couple of e-mails between VFC, Mike Haden (Clerk to the Inquiry) and, who appears to be, the Press Officer Peter Jones. Where it appears the COI Panel are looking to exclude/marginalise Bloggers and not allow us the same access as the local, State Media.

Thursday 13th March 2014 I wrote to Mike Haden

"Mr. Haden.

Thank you for speaking with me yesterday on the phone. However you left me with the impression that the COI website was going to be "all singing - all dancing" and would answer all my questions you couldn't/wouldn't when it went live (last night).

After being on the website I am none the wiser. It is (far from being all singing all dancing) a very basic website that could have been thrown together in a matter of hours let alone the months it has supposed to have been under construction.

You assured me that the questions I've been asking (for months) concerning inclusion/exclusion of Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) would be answered on the website..............They're not. What's more these questions, I feel, have been ducked, and dived, by yourself, and Michael De La Haye before you and STILL remain unanswered.

On the 6th February 2014 (after asking for months before that) I wrote to you, in an e-mail, the following;

"Could you please also ask Francis Oldham QC if myself, and Rico Sorda, can be included in all Press Releases from the COI at the same time as the State Media bearing in mind that we Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) have adhered to EVERY Press Release embargo, unlike the State Media, the JEP being a case in point of the last Press Release from the COI where it breached the embargo.

I have discussed this with Mr. De La Haye in the past where I pointed out that myself, and Rico, have the trust and confidence of the JCLA and Victims/Survivors of the abuse. As a whole the State Media isn't trusted by, not only the Victims/Survivors, but (according to the latest annual social survey) 60% of Islanders who also DON'T trust the local State Media.

I hope this Inquiry, or Francis Oldham QC, will see the benefit in including myself and Rico in all Press Releases/conferences and will steer clear of "The Jersey Way" by excluding us, as I explained to Mr. De La Haye, It is not the trust and confidence of the Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) that is up for question. It is that of the Jersey authorities, its media and indeed the COI itself." (END)

It is now time I/we were given the answers and I once more ask you to get them from whoever IS able to answer them.

As mentioned earlier the answers are NOT on the COI website like you said they would be on the phone yesterday, and I don't know how many times I need to keep asking them and for how long?

I look forward to a prompt reply."(END E-MAIL)

Mr. Haden then phoned me and told me there is a NEW set of "correct channels", through the COI Panel's website, where I had to ask all the same questions, to the same people that he was supposed to have asked for me months ago.

I duly did this here on the same day/date.

E-mail to COI Press Person.

Dear Anonymous.

I have been attempting to get a number of questions answered concerning Blogger (Jersey's only independent media) inclusion surrounding the access to media releases/ Press Conferences/interviews coming from the COI Panel which I have been told, by Mr Haden, have been passed onto "somebody" at the COI panel. I have repeatedly been asking these questions since November 2013 and have never received any answers.

I have gone through the "correct channels" and have now been told by Mr. Haden that there is another set of "correct channels" I must go through in order to ask the SAME questions.

I reproduce (below) my latest e-mail to Mr. Haden sent this morning in the hope that you, or somebody, will finally give me/my readers the long awaited answers?

I am informed that the COI Panel read my, and Rico Sorda's Blog, and would have done sufficient research to now know that we are credible, and most importantly of all "trusted" by the JCLA, Abuse Survivors/Victims, national journalists, UK MP's, local MP's to name but a few.

The COI Panel SHOULD also be aware that the local mainstream media DO NOT share that same trust and stand accused of complicity in "The Jersey Cover-up." 

With that in mind I ask that the COI Panel allow the same media access to Rico Sorda, and myself, as the mainstream media are granted?

Please don't tell me that an announcement will be made on the 3rd of April concerning the media matters as this will give us NO chance to appeal the decision should it be concluded (as I suspect it will be) that Bloggers will be excluded.

I/we would like the opportunity to make our case before any decision is reached by the Panel and am dismayed that we (Bloggers) have not been approached by the Panel in order to make our case.

Finally it is a little off putting having to write to a media contact who is anonymous, could you please give us your name?(END)

Some 24 hrs later I received a reply from somebody called Peter Jones.

E-mail from COI Media person Peter Jones 14 March 2014.

Thank you for your enquiry about access to media releases / press conferences / interviews in relation to the IJCI.

Questions of media accreditation and access will be explained at the preliminary hearing on 3 April.  As you know, this is a public hearing. 

We are aware of the public interest in the Inquiry's work and, in the interests of fairness and impartiality, we will be making all relevant information available to everyone at the same time, by publishing it on the website.

Kind regards,

Peter Jones
Eversheds LLP
Solicitors to the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry

To which I promptly replied on the same day.

Thank you for your reply. However you have completely ignored my concerns and would like you to kindly address them?

For example I wrote, among other things;

"Please don't tell me that an announcement will be made on the 3rd of April concerning the media matters as this will give us NO chance to appeal the decision should it be concluded (as I suspect it will be) that Bloggers will be excluded.

I/we would like the opportunity to make our case before any decision is reached by the Panel and am dismayed that we (Bloggers) have not been approached by the Panel in order to make our case."

Then you wrote;

"Questions of media accreditation and access will be explained at the preliminary on 3 April."

It's almost as if I didn't ask the question when in fact I have been asking these questions since November 2013! Would you please (I did say "please" in the previous e-mail also) answer the questions, or give me a valid reason as to why Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) are not being given the opportunity to state their case as to why we should be included?

Furthermore I take issue with your assertion;

"We are aware of the public interest in the Inquiry's work and, in the interests of fairness and impartiality, we will be making all relevant information available to everyone at the same time, by publishing it on the website."

Why then, if you are to be believed, were the local State Media given an interview by Frances Oldham QC yesterday and obviously told about Ms. Oldham actually being on the Island when Ms. Oldham's presence on the Island was purposely kept hidden by Mr. Haden from myself, and as far as I am aware, the JCLA?

With that mind could you tell me, as you claim "in the interests of fairness and impartiality, we will be making all relevant information available to everyone at the same time, by publishing it on the website." Where on the website is it written that Frances Oldham QC was on the Island and available for media interviews?

I look forward to you very clear and concise answers in the interest of openness, transparency and to use your words  "in the interests of fairness and impartiality."(E-MAIL END)

Not surprisingly I have not, as yet, received a reply from Mr. Jones but will keep readers informed.

Former Jersey Politician, 30 year Met Police Veteran, and Blogger BOB HILL B.E.M who was instrumental in forming the Terms of Reference (as were Team Voice) for this Committee of Inquiry and avid campaigner/Blogger for truth and justice for Abuse Survivors/Victims has made his own submission, as a Blogger, to the COI Panel, and as far as I'm aware has not had a reply either.

Similarly Former Senator, and Health Minister STUART SYVRET who has campaigned tirelessly for the Abuse Survivors/Victims has also made his own submission, as a Blogger, to the COI Panel but he too, as far as I'm aware has not received a reply.

We can only hope that the COI Panel DO NOT exclude Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) from the process as we are arguably the most trusted and credible news source on the Island. The State Media is not trusted and has no credibility, as the links in this Posting demonstrate.

This Committee of Inquiry NEEDS to be seen as open and transparent in order to gain credibility and TRUST and for Jersey to be able to move forward after dealing with its sordid, and ghastly past. If Bloggers are excluded, and we have to rely on the discredited, and disgraced, State Media to report the TRUTH then we will have learnt that "The Jersey Way" still prevails and NO lessons have been learnt.

It's time to start doing things differently.

The Committee of Inquiry's website can be viewed Here and there is a permanent link to it on the left hand side of this Blog-Site at the bottom of the Blog Links.

To learn more of the related Postings published by VFC simply click on any name in the labels at the bottom of this post.


  1. That exchange beggars belief. Particularly when you were able to point out the extent to which the bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) had already been discriminated against regarding the availability of Frances Oldham.

    It is quite clear that, having been forced into having an inquiry at all, the establishment will stop at nothing to control the process and the outcome. They have not spent thousands on trying to shut Stuart Syvret up for nothing. They have not breached every protocol in the book, in sacking Graham Power, QPM, and smearing Lenny Harper, for nothing. They have not successfully captured the state media and the judiciary for nothing. They have not organised the appointment on the eve of the inquiry of William Bailhache for nothing.

    These people are fighting for their lives and "reputations". Nothing is too low for them to stoop to. So there is no fence for Frances Oldham to sit on. To quote a much hackneyed, but nonetheless in this case true, phrase: those who are not with us are against us.

    The omens, as you intimated, are not good.

  2. Excellent blog VFC. It seems some just do not want to learn or change. Keep up the good work.

  3. Excellent follow up and exchange from your end. The COI is already arousing wide-spread suspicion from the start. Have they simply given up on an inquiry which won't be questioned and dismissed by all but the most deluded JEP readers? One wonders what the Law Offices have already directed.


  4. It seems Jersey is an unbelievable can of worms. Have the Nazis stopped controlling the island or are they actually still there?

  5. I have sent the email below to the press contact for the Inquiry. It might just help to reinforce the perception that people outside the Island are watching and are sufficiently aware of what is going on not to be taken in by the type of treatment meted out to VFC above.

    I do not really expect a sensible reply but there might be a subliminal effect if others were to do the same. Just a thought..

    I have been reading some disturbing correspondence on the Jersey Voice for Children blog.

    Can you confirm that you will be treating the more responsible bloggers (eg Stuart Syvret, Voice for Children, Rico Sorda) on the same basis as the "Mainstream Media" (eg BBC Jersey, Channel TV, Jersey Evening Post)?

    I take it you are aware of the conflicted position of the Island's MSM in cooperating with the longstanding cover-up of abuse on the Island, and it is very disturbing to read that you are currently giving them exclusive access to Frances Oldham. How you expect to gain the trust of victims in this way is beyond me. These victims have been let down so often that they are loath to trust anybody, particulary after the shutting down and smearing of the police investigation under Lenny Harper. Had this not been shut down, your Inquiry might not even have been necessary.

    You should also be aware that recent inquiries commissioned by the Church of England (Winchester Diocese) relating to clerical abuse in Jersey have been hopeless conflicted. In case you might think that such church matters have little to do with your (lay) inquiry, you should recall that the Church of England is the established church in Jersey and that there is intense interaction, amounting to collusion, between the church and state authorities on the Island.

    I would appreciate it if you would acknowledge receipt of this email and also reply in an adult manner, avoiding the standard platitude that all will be revealed on 3 April.

    Pól Ó Duibhir.
    Dublin, Ireland.

    1. So cool, Polo!
      Could any 'responsible bloggers' provide me with some information to help me with my work?
      I want to set out the links between people in the States-Masons-Church-Judiciary-etc network, and any chart, graph or written explanation would really help me, thanks.

  6. VFC - let's remind the world of the truly remarkable - simply jaw-dropping - contrast between the spin and omissions of Jersey's "accredited media" - and the fact-based - evidenced - work of the bloggers.

    I'm going to submit a few references to the damning - wholly damming - documentary evidence I have published.

    Let's note that the Jersey established media - who the public inquiry want to conspire with - have failed to report any of the following damning documentary evidence.

    Have a read of this:

  7. And once the evidenced published at the previous link has ben read, then let the world read and take note of A.C.P.O 1 - published here:


  8. Hi VFC,

    Looks like they are trashing it before it's even begun. Was wondering with all the inquires that have taken place, for all kinds of reasons has there been any that have included Bloggers and if there has, then there has been a president set. So you should be aloud to be included along side the Discredited Media.

    Best of Luck, it sounds as if you'll need it.


  9. And then let the world read A.C.P.O 2 - here:

    Let us be blunt - if the Jersey child-abuse public inquiry works with Jersey's traditional media - all of which is, on the evidence, complicit with decades of child-abuse - of human suffering - instead of working with the bloggers who have exposed the truth - then the public inquiry is, in-its-self, a part of the apparatus that facilitates the concealment of child-abuse.

    And in that case - well - we proceed to do what it takes to secure a real inquiry - a meaningful, a lawful inquiry.


  10. Dear VFC,

    A great blog posting, and I fully support your commitment to getting the Jersey blogs placed on an equal footing with the mainstream media in Jersey, for the reasons you cite.

    In the interest of accurate and detailed reporting on your blog, I checked the Eversheds website for the biographies of the three staff mentioned on the inquiry website. You should be aware that Peter Watkin Jones is not just some media person. He would appear to be a very experienced solicitor, and I suspect, if you are prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt, probably one of the good guys:

    His bio says:

    “Peter is the partner who leads the firm's Inquiries and Investigations practice. He is a mediator accredited with CEDR and the ADR Group, and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. He is one of the leaders of the firm's Central Government Sector group.

Peter is currently leading a team of lawyers acting for the high profile and crucially important public inquiry chaired by Robert Francis QC into possible regulatory and commissioning shortcomings at the Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust. This is an inquiry established by the government under the 2005 Inquiries Act, and was the quickest such inquiry on record, completing its evidence gathering and assessment within 12 months from start to finish. He is also currently acting for the Metropolitan Police Authority, and the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime in the current Leveson "hacking" inquiry.

Peter and his team specialise in acting for public inquiries, and in managing, collating and assessing all evidence for such inquiries. Past major public inquiries include the Bloody Sunday Inquiry, where Peter led a team of over 30 lawyers for 7 years, and the Shipman Inquiry, where the team was 20 lawyers. Peter and his 20 strong team also acted for 4 years for Sir Michael Morland's public inquiry into the killing of Northern Ireland solicitor Rosemary Nelson. Peter has also acted for interested parties in Child Abuse inquiries, and in relation to e.coli outbreaks in schools. He has acted for the Children's Commissioner for Wales, and has conducted an investigation and reported on the need for reform in the area of school exclusions.”

    (End bio quotation)

    His colleagues are Sarah Garner and Isabelle Mitchell

    My point is, you have the attention of a senior lawyer on the inquiry. You are not being fobbed off my some media spokesman.

    I appreciate it must be very frustrating not to get direct answers to direct questions, especially from a lawyer. My advice would be to keep pressing, exactly as you are, as politely as possible, in the knowledge that you are obviously being taken seriously.

    The Francis Inquiry into Mid Staffs was groundbreaking and widely respected. It sent shockwaves through the NHS. As a Jersey resident who has followed the child abuse inquiry and all the blogs since 2008, I am prepared to give Mr Jones a fair crack of the whip. We must judge him on what is announced on 3rd April, but also on his response to your valid question as to why the blogs (and their video cameras) were not told that Frances Oldham was available to speak to the media in Jersey….and that means all media.

    1. Absolutely spot on!! I too have read up on this Lawyer and he seems to be a good guy. I suspect that they are inundated with e-mails and letters from all sorts of people wanting to get answers both from bloggers and probably from Jersey's judiciary warning them off certain areas of the enquiry. They appear to be keeping all their cards close to their chest and are not allowing themselves to be influenced by anyone. Please give them a chance, wait for the open meeting on 3rd April and listen to what they have to say. Then and only then, depending on their answers should you let rip or phrase their approach to this very delicate situation. Do not scare off the witnesses, they trust the bloggers and if you say this is a cover up, they will not come forward. We need as many witnesses as possible to come forward. We know that those accused, their family and work colleagues are going to come forward, don't let them outnumber the abuse victims!! Gently does it!

    2. "lawyer"......"good guy"......? Oh for Christ's sake.

      Just how many more years of this do we have to go through before we all start wising up?


    3. FFS Stuart, not all Lawyers are in the pockets of the establishment!! People have to start trusting someone sooner or later or this is going to go round in circles for decades to come!!! Lets just wait and here what they have to say on 3rd April and then start screaming cover up, white wash, what ever takes your fancy if they don't come up with the right answers!! I suggest that as many people as possible attend that meeting and let their feelings be known!

    4. I agree with this sentiment absolutely. Too much negativity at the moment. It may be justified, it may not, but a bit of patience until 3rd April will do no harm given the time it has taken to get to this point. It will also rub off on survivors and others who may be dithering about giving evidence and sway them the wrong way, and that is exactly what is NOT wanted at this moment in time. We need to be encouraging and positive, and take each day as it comes, until it comes.

    5. Nobody is saying there is going to be a white-wash or cover up. Stuart has made a pretty fair point and that is DO NOT trust lawyers.

      I agree that EVERYBODY, who can, should give as much evidence as possible to this COI and encourage all to do so.

    6. Agree with VFC @16:04
      The more evidence, the harder it is to bury.

      However Stuart is correct to point out that lawyers are not paragons of virtue (gasp!)

      A lawyer firm is business like any other. It's purpose is to convert professional services into fees and profit.

      The establishment make the appointment and and pay for the show.

      Peter Watkin Jones is just a career lawyer, so the question is not if he is a good guy.

      A more relevant question is whether he is okay or whether he is a bad guy.

      "we will be making all relevant information available to everyone at the same time" when the Frances Oldham QC visit was publicised only to the very media who have failed victims not a good start.

  11. Perhaps Leah McGrath Goodman, on behalf of the respected Newsweek magazine & bloggers, could be encouraged to apply for full accredited media status from the COI?

    Would they be so stupid as to deny this?

    Probably, but oh my, how that would backfire!

    1. Good point. Is Leah going to apply? Is she writing a book on this or not? If so, I'd expect her to come over and cover the inquiry.

  12. Another good posting with a number of useful links which should be helpful to new readers. On reading the email exchanges I get the feeling that Mike Haden and the Jersey link is being eased out and all communication will be via Eversheds but that can be clarified on 3rd April.

    Last week I emailed Eversheds with a message along similar lines to that of Voice, it was acknowledged but at that time they were unable to give a time for the meeting. Their Website has now been updated and readers should note that the meeting starts at 1030am.

    It does appear that the COI has got off on the wrong foot and has not done sufficient home work to understand how Jersey functions. I hope that the meeting on 3rd April will be of sufficient length to allow for time to be given for a mounting list of questions that will require answers.

    1. "It does appear that the COI has got off on the wrong foot and has not done sufficient home work to understand how Jersey functions."

      The latter is a fundamental point. The fundamental point.

      Although we as locals are aware of the sometimes perversely self-serving manner in which the Jersey Establishment operates, the stranglehold it has upon the government and judiciary of Jersey, commonly unchallenged and often aided by the Fourth Estate, is a state of affairs utterly unique within European democracy.

      You would probably have to travel to a Third World banana republic to find a similar set-up.

      The situation is so extremely at odds with anything vaguely similar in Europe that its existence most likely doesn't even figure on Eversheds' radar.

      Evershed needs to be clearly and accurately informed of that situation. Only then will he understand its potential ramifications to the COI, and begin to see the true relevance of local Citizens' Media to this enquiry.

    2. Evershed are a City of London law firm - servicing a global client base of HNWIs and corporations.

      Eversheds understand perfectly - just perfectly - the thing that is "The Jersey Way".

      If there were the remotest danger they didn't - and didn't understand the requirements of the client who is paying them - they would not have this brief.

      The framework of the report will already be written by them.

      It's now their task to shoehorn what goes before the CoI into that final "product" desired by their paymasters with the minimal possible need for revisions.


    3. Perhaps. I can see some possible mileage in that theory.

      I'm the author of the comment at 23:24. I completely understand your replies, given your experience. I do share 99% of your disdain for lawyers, from my own bitter personal experience. Nevertheless, I do hold out just 1% hope that some lawyers are good people. You can't get away from the fact that this guy has the Shipman inquiry and the Francis report on his CV. Neither of those were establishment whitewashes.

      Ultimately, you Stuart will have to come up against a good, honest lawyer or judge eventually, if you are to succeed. I know most of them are completely unethical but I do hold out the hope that at least 1% of them are decent human beings who care about the truth. Hence my original comment "probably one of the good guys". I'll judge whether he is or not by how VFC's very reasonable follow-up questions are handled.

      VFC - why don't you just circumvent all this accredited/non-accredited bull**** by joining the NUJ as an associate member? See It says "If you have a full-time job outside journalism, but prepare factual written, visual, or audio material of public concern for dissemination through public media, and support trade union rights and journalistic standards, then you can apply online to join the NUJ as an associate member."

      If the money is a problem, I'll pay your first year for you. Imagine the logo on your website - "Team Voice - NUJ members".

      As far as I'm concerned, you do "prepare factual written, visual, or audio material of public concern for dissemination through public media, and support trade union rights and journalistic standards". So what's stopping you from joining?

      VFC, you should email this thread to Peter Watkin Jones and say "Look at the controversy that your stance has caused. People want to believe in you, but the past actions of the Jersey judiciary (in whom only 50% of residents have confidence, according to the latest social survey) make people think that this will be a whitewash. Please prove us wrong, by treating bloggers the same as the MSM for a start"

    4. Also, before jumping to too many conclusions about the legal staff of the inquiry (btw, don't forget, States Assembly Standing Orders were changed to allow non-Jersey lawyers to do this work, with one dissenter, namely Philip Bailhache...) perhaps we should have a look at the other bios of Patrick Sadd and Harriet Jerram

      Patrick Sadd

      "Practice summary
      Compensation claims : personal injury and Fatal accident claims, mostly claimants – inquests and CICA; abuse claims – historical ( adults suing for abuse when children ) and recent abuse of vulnerable adults in psychiatric or residential care; suing religious orders, social services, schools, institutions; acts for Irish claimants in Dublin before Redress Board and Review Committee: 20 page submission to Commission into Child Abuse – group actions. Clinical negligence – claimant and defendant including inquests – medical device assessor – appointed counsel in Leicester epilepsy claims; professional negligence – suing solicitors/barristers for mishandling compensation/clinical negligence actions...."

      Harriet Jerram

      "Practice Summary
      ....Harriet has extensive experience of public inquiry work. In the Shipman Inquiry, she was part of the team representing the families of Harold Shipman's victims. She appeared in the Richard Neale Inquiry for all of the patients treated by him."

      On the whole, you would hope that decent people who care about victims have been appointed. As long as they get educated in how The Jersey Way works (which is what the bloggers are trying to do) then they should do a good job.

      I still completely agree that it is the duty of the bloggers to make sure that the victims own this narrative, and I fully support your efforts in trying to obtain a standing that is equal to the MSM.

    5. Correction to the first para above, it was actually two dissenters, my apologies. Senator Bailhache and the Constable of St Martin Michel Le Troquer both voted against allowing non-Jersey lawyers to act for the inquiry. It wasn't just Senator Bailhache

      One more thing (sorry to go on). Perhaps in your communications with Peter Watkin Jones, when you explain The Jersey Way to him, you might quote Senator Bailhache to him, given that Senator Bailhache did not want non-Jersey lawyers as counsel to the inquiry. This is from Hansard on the 4th February, 2014:

      Sir Philip Bailhache: "...The amendment to Standing Order 151 troubles me rather more because this is to be a Committee of Inquiry that is to take place in Jersey, subject to Jersey law. The members of the Committee of Inquiry may very well find it difficult, because of the nature of their terms of reference, to take any advice from the Attorney General or from the Attorney General’s Department, because the functioning of the Attorney General’s Department is going to be a matter that is within their remit to a certain extent. I am very uncomfortable about the notion that the Committee of Inquiry should appoint, or the Greffier should appoint on their behalf, a foreign lawyer to advise the committee on matters which, as I say, fall under the jurisdiction of the law of this Island. I am not sure that I see any necessity for that. If the committee really does seek specialist opinion I am sure that specialist opinion can be sought by some other means, but so far as the task of counsel to the inquiry is concerned, which as I understand it is really the function covered by Standing Order 151, it seems to me that should be a Jersey lawyer. The committee will need advice on Jersey law and if they have advice from somebody who assumes that English law is always the same as Jersey law, they may very well go astray. So I am not persuaded at the moment that Standing Order 151 should be amended in this way and I propose to vote against that amendment."

      This is deftly countered by Senator Le Gresley:

      "With reference to Senator Bailhache’s comments about the Greffe appointing a person to assist the Committee of Inquiry, I have not unfortunately got the proposition with me but from my memory - and Deputy Tadier is back in the Chamber now so he will probably be able to confirm - we had a long discussion about the issue of the Committee of Inquiry being able to appoint U.K. counsel to examine the decisions of the Law Officers’ Department to prosecute or not to prosecute certain offenders. I seem to recall that one of the requirements of the Committee of Inquiry was to examine the decisions made in the Law Officers’ Department of the day. Clearly that does need to be done by somebody totally independent, not in Jersey, and I think that is why the report from P.P.C. says, and I need to read it: “But it is clear that the forthcoming Committee of Inquiry will wish to appoint a counsel to the inquiry from outside Jersey to avoid any possible perception of conflict of interest.” From my memory of the debate on the terms of reference, that was exactly what was required and so P.P.C. are basically carrying out the wishes of the Assembly when we approved the terms of reference. If Deputy Tadier is able to speak - he has not spoken yet - perhaps he can confirm my understanding."

      You can read it all here yourselves, from page 107, item 14 -

    6. In one sentence, we see Jersey's entrenched power structure at work:

      "The members of the Committee of Inquiry may very well find it difficult, because of the nature of their terms of reference, to take any advice from the Attorney General or from the Attorney General’s Department"

      What possible reason could there ever be for the Inquiry to even need to consider seeking advice from the Attorney General's department?

      In an island with more lawyers per capita than is healthy, alternative advice is plentiful.

      In one sentence, we see the almost Pavlovian "get advice from the AG's office" response that is the CAUSE of so many of Jersey's historical problems.

      It is madness and must stop.

  13. I see you operate a staunch policy of refusing to publish any dissenting views. What better demonstration of why your claims to be Jersey's only independent media are absolute nonsense.

    1. Dissenting views are welcome but when you ignore all the “evidence and facts” that are published on the posting just to leave a comment attacking this Blog and its contributors it will not be published.

      Stay with the “evidence” as to who, between the Bloggers (Jersey’s only independent media) and the State Media has been asking the questions of The Party Line, publishing official documents rather than burying them, been trusted with leaked documents. Who WILL report the uncomfortable truths and so forth?

      Just as importantly, stay away from the personal insults and don’t try and drag the thread into the gutter of the State Media’s level.

    2. VFC, can I add to what you say about dissenting views, and evidence and facts. I agree with your policy and have always adopted the same approach with my blog: -

      Your experience may be the same, but I've noticed over the years since January 2008 when I first began writing against Jersey's corrupt establishment, how vanishingly rare it is to ever receive comments that even attempt a rational, fact-based, disputation of the published evidence or reasoning.

      Take for example the three postings I have submitted links to in comments made above.

      Each of those postings contains important public interest evidence.

      So maybe those who oppose us - who have dissenting views - would like to submit comments that take issue with that published evidence? And let's face it - there are many hypothetical ways in which they could do so - if they had a robust fact or logic based argument.

      For example, perhaps someone reader disputes the authenticity of the published documents? Perhaps they think I forged them, and that they're not real? Well, ok - write a civilised comment raising that possibility - and we'll discuss it.

      Perhaps some readers think the e-mail by the Police Officer who was trying to investigate Jervis-dykes is unreasonable? OK - write in and explain why - and we can have a discussion about the surrounding, supporting evidence.

      Perhaps some readers believe the two A.C.P.O Reports were not fact-based? Perhaps it is believed they were not competently written? Perhaps it's believed that the A.C.P.O team were not competent?

      Very well - explain why, and these blogs will carry the rational debate.

      Speaking for myself - what I won't publish on my blog are comments that attempt to falsely depict the state of evidenced public knowledge - and the status of the debate - by making empty assertions as though the above documentary evidence - and many similar examples - just didn't exist.

      The debate has moved on - moved on over the years - with the discovery and publication of evidence.

      I'm more than happy to discuss that evidence - and the rational conclusions to be drawn from it.

      What I won't do is be diverted by trolling and PR campaigns that seek to ignore that evidence.


    3. Well said. The most notable single aspect of the dissenting views over the past five years can be summarized in one of two categories: insults without evidenced basis and criticism without evidenced basis, with both types ignoring the facts which can be objectively and logically agreed upon as irrefutable. Instead of evidence, these critics of the independent Jersey journalism blogs cite easily discredited state media, PR or politician statements in line with the propaganda of the oligarchy. Objective, factual evidence is not their ally.

      For the COI to be seen as fair and thorough and not conflicted, is a key issue at this time. That is a high bar for Jersey because conflicted officials have held the key positions of power and have previously removed those who were independent of The Jersey Way.

      One hopeful aspect is that any attempt by the COI to whitewash the already available evidence published and/or linked to by the independent bloggers is how quickly that whitewashing will be documented and then reported. The oligarchy is already challenged by a wealth of evidence of dishonest or corrupt behaviour relating to the original
      abuse itself and then in the radical interference with the primary Operation Rectangle investigation and with the subsequent release of evidence by, well.. anybody who tried to establish the facts.

      Perhaps the panel does recognize the inherent risk of any failure to be impartial. This shall be interesting to a wider world to observe. At the very least, we can see that your blogs, some decent foreign reporting, and a host of interested outsiders will still be pressing the documented truth forward. As those on the Committee should understand, that fact-based reporting won't and can't be stopped.

  14. Hi VFC,

    We move towards the end game - the Committee of Enquiry.

    There are concerns and I hope all of these will be addressed at the meeting on April 3rd.

    There is a lot at stake. The dropped cases being one issue as it was then Attorney General William Bailhache, working with so called independent lawyers, that came to these conclusions. William Bailhache will be named Bailiff in January. I will wait to see what happens at that meeting. I want the Committee panel to maintain its integrity even under the impossible watching eye of the Jersey Law Office. After years of cover-up we would be foolish to think that they will just sit back and watch it all unfold.

    When the time comes, and I'm sure it will, I look forward to watching Stuart Syvret at last be given the chance to disclose all the hard evidence he has amassed over the years in an open and transparent public hearing. This is what we have all been waiting for. This is the one chance. No need for London, lets get it done in Jersey. Yes, there are assurances needed regarding the integrity of this enquiry but everyone must be ready to deliver. I hope the survivors of abuse find the strength to do this. This is the last chance. Let this enquiry here everything. Let them be under no doubt what they are dealing with. Decades of abuse covered up and then covered up again once exposed.

    Everyone just stay positive. Give this enquiry a chance. They deserve to be given this chance but know they will be under scrutiny.

    All stay strong positive.


  15. Great comment, Rico. I understand concerns about it being a whitewash but hope everyone with with evidence (including Bloggers) submits it.

  16. I have now received a reply from Mr. Jones (to the last e-mail published on main posting)

    Mr. Jones wrote;

    "Apologies if my reply was not clear.

    At the preliminary hearing on 3 April, the Inquiry will explain how applications can be made for media accreditation and access, with applications being accepted thereafter. No decisions will have been made by 3 April in relation to such applications and any applicant will have an opportunity to make out their case before a decision is reached.

    You are right to say that no entry was made on the Inquiry's website in relation to the Chair's presence on the island and availability for media interviews. The only purpose for any interviews taking place was to draw attention to the newly launched website and issue a call for witnesses to come forward.

    We should mention in any event that all public communications will be published on the Inquiry's website so that they are accessible to all."(END)

    I have responded here;

    "Thank you for your reply. Could I please ask, as it seems a conscious decision was made to keep Ms. Oldham's presence on the Island a secret from me/Rico/Bloggers and we were not afforded the same access as the State Media. Who made the decision to exclude Bloggers (Jersey's only independent media) and on what basis the decision was made?"(END)

    Am waiting for the answers and will keep readers posted.

    1. I would expect an answer on the lines of the following.;

      As the matter of press accreditation for the inquiry has not yet been determined, and without prejudice to the outcome of that process, recourse was had to the existing mainstream media on the island, as would normally be the case on the mainland.

      Or some such. And that could be acceptable, in the sense, that what they did does not indicate any pre-existing prejudice against the bloggers as potential accredited media.

      The proof of the pudding will be in the eating on 3 April.

    2. Incidentally, it might be as well, when submitting material, to recall the sham visit of the UK Parliamentary Justice Committee, and let the Inquiry know that this is their starting point as far as earning credibility is concerned.

    3. Got a reply (but no answers) from Mr. Jones who wrote;

      "Thank you for your further email.

      I don't quite follow the point you make about the Chair's presence on the island being kept a secret. The Chair's presence is being declared by way of the preliminary hearing and was made public via the public appeal for witnesses.

      I repeat that no decisions in relation to accreditation, or exclusion, have been made by the Inquiry." (END)

      To which I have responded;

      "Mr. Jones.

      I didn't think I could be any clearer but perhaps you are not paying attention to the e-mail thread so will attempt to explain as best I can.

      Quite simply Ms. Oldham QC was on the Island, and gave interviews to the State Media on 13 March 2014. It might help you to understand a little easier if you were to read the e-mail I sent you on 14 March 2014 at 14:55hrs.

      My questions remain; Who decided to include the State Media (Chair's visit, and interview, on 13 March) and exclude the Bloggers? What basis was that decision made on?"

    4. Maybe I should apply for his job. I think my reply was better.

      He is revealing a marked reluctance to acknowledge where you are coming from which does not bode well for his future understanding of "The Jersey Way".

  17. VFC - "I didn't think I could be any clearer but perhaps you are not paying attention to the e-mail thread so will attempt to explain as best I can." - It is very early in the day, so why be so condescending, it certainly is not going to help your argument. Far better to be polite, take account of where he may be comming from, do not assume he is being negative to blogger's. Your frustration in getting straight answers from various States Members is being aimed at this guy without good cause. Your already guilty of pre-guessing Bloggers will be excluded, without any evidence!!

    Incidentally, I am a long term supporter of what you and others have done to keep us informed.

    1. Bloggers have already been excluded. If they hadn't, they too would have been informed of Ms Oldham's presence in the island, and would have been able to interview her.

      And let's face it - so many key potential witness - the abuse survivors - would be better reached through Jersey's bloggers - who they trust.

      It is simply impossible - a hopeless task - to place any good spin upon this behaviour by the Committee of Inquiry.

      It's a dark omen.

      And a sadly predictable one.