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WESTMINSTER WATCH - CALLS FOR TAPING IN SEXUAL ABUSE CASES

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A teacher accused of sexually abusing children has told a House of Commons inquiry how he still suffers nightmares ...
A teacher accused of sexually abusing children has told a House of Commons inquiry how he still suffers nightmares despite being cleared of charges.

Phil Craig described to the home affairs committee how last year, out

of the blue, police officers visited his house investigating allegations.

The committee is looking at how police conduct investigations into allegations of sexual abuse in care homes. MPs are particularly concerned about the practice of 'trawling', whereby officers attempt to back up an allegation by contacting ex-care home residents.

Claims have been made police officers offer the prospect of compensation to these people - many of whom are in prison - in return for testifying.

Mr Craig, a secure unit teacher, explained how he was then charged with sexually assaulting two teenage boys and sent for trial in February last year.

He was acquitted of all the charges but pressed the police about why he was charged.

The committee called for the taping of interviews with accusers to prevent any prospect of inducement and for an end to cash compensation.

In Germany, anecdotal evidence suggests there has been a 97% decrease in the number of allegations since this practice was ended, MPs were told.

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