June 1994

Notorious child sex offender dies in prison

FRANK BECK, (pic above) one of Britain’s most notorious sex offenders who was convicted of abusing children in his care at Leicestershire children’s homes, has died in jail.

Frank Beck 52, died on 31 May 1994, two and a half years after his imprisonment, apparently as a result of a heart attack whilst playing badminton at Whitemoor Prison in Cambridgeshire. He was aged fifty two. Beck’s body was cremated on 9 June 1994, at a private ceremony at the Gilroes Crematorium in Leicester, attended by a small number of family members. The then eighty-eight year old Labour peer, Lord Longford, caused great controversy by sending flowers to the funeral. Longford had befriended Beck in prison and was convinced of his innocence

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Dangerous paedophile Frank Beck pictured above

Unsurprisingly, his sudden death after such a relatively short period of incarceration led to speculation that he had been murdered. D’Arcy and Gosling, in their book, ‘Abuse of Trust”, claim that fellow prisoners (some of whom had allegedly been his victims) attributed his death to speed, which had supposedly been surreptitiously added to his food over a period of months

He was convicted at Leicester Crown Court in November 1991 of 17 charges of sexual and physical abuse of boys and girls including rape, buggery, indecent assault and assault. Sentencing Beck to five life terms, the judge, Mr Justice Jowitt, told him: ‘You are a man with considerable talents and very great evil. You were entrusted with the care of some of the most disturbed children . . . many had been sexually abused already and could hardly have been more vulnerable.’

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Frank Beck, who carried out systematic abuse between 1973 and 1986 including ‘regression therapy’ in which children were forced to wear nappies, was jailed in 1991 for rape and buggery

Beck had a lonely and disturbed childhood. He was teased for being effeminate and before he was 13 he was sexually assaulted by a man on a train. He went on to become a Liberal councillor and leading childcare worker.

It was a chance remark by a mother that sparked Britain’s biggest investigation into child abuse. The conversation between the woman, accused of ill-treating her son, and a Leicestershire council officer did not take place until 1989, three years after Beck resigned as head of three children‘s homes, the Poplars in Market Harborough, the Ratcliffe Road home in Leicester, and the Beeches in Leicester Forest East.

She confided in the official, blaming her own behaviour on the abuse she suffered herself while in Beck’s care at the Ratcliffe Road home in the mid-1970s. She was advised to go to the police and detectives she spoke to noted the names of other children who also claimed they were abused. Senior police officers decided to interview every child who had been in care in homes run by Beck from when he started work at them in 1973.

Dozens of witnesses, in their twenties and thirties by the time of the trial in 1991, gave evidence during the 11-week hearing. Many of the adult victims spoke from behind screens, detailing incidents from when they were as young as eight, of being forced to perform oral sex with Beck or of being buggered or raped by him.

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But 12 social workers spoke up for Beck at the trial, saying he was caring and concerned when it came to the children. Beck was appealing against his conviction and sentence. Leave to appeal and legal aid were granted in January 1993 and Anthony Scrivener QC, one of Britain’s most eminent lawyers and former chairman of the Bar, agreed at the end of last year to take the case.

Beck is said to have used his own brand of ‘regression therapy’ as a cover for sexually abusing children in his care – supposedly a method of digging down to the roots of children’s emotional problems, by returning them to a state of infancy. Children were dressed in pyjamas and given bottles and dummies; some of the younger children were dressed in nappies. At meal times, staff would sometimes cut up the food on the plates of residents, as if feeding infants; children would be given toys designed for much younger children and sometimes bathed by staff members and Beck encouraged a culture of cuddling and bodily contact.

Beck also believed that emotions should not be ‘bottled up’ and it is said that children were deliberately provoked into temper tantrums, thereby creating opportunities to exercise violent physical restraint. Care assistants (or ‘residential social workers’ as they were known) were often hand-picked by Beck and were required to support his methods and philosophy without question. Several of his staff were also paedophiles and sadists, including Colin Fiddaman, who was to commit suicide in Amsterdam, whilst ‘on the run’, in 1991. Beck is also said to have physically and sexually abused male members of staff, sustaining ‘a regime of terror’ for thirteen years.

On 29 November 1991, following an eleven week trial at the Leicester Crown Court, Beck was sentenced to five life terms for sexual and physical assaults against more than one hundred children in his care. He was sentenced to a further twenty four years on seventeen charges of abuse, including rape. The term of five life sentences remains as one of the most severe in British judicial history since the ending of the death penalty for murder

Beck’s solicitor, Oliver D’Sa, said: ‘He was very impatient for the appeal to go ahead. His death came out of the blue. Normally the case would lapse and die with him but his family and close friends are discussing the possibility of carrying on with the appeal. This would not be unprecedented.’

Mr D’Sa said Beck was convinced there was enough new evidence and material that was not put before the original court due to non-disclosure by the prosecution which would have made the original conviction unsafe and proved his innocence.

Two damning independent reports published in February 1993 criticised police and social services in Leicestershire. One report, by West Mercia Police for the Police Complaints Authority, accused officers of ‘incompetence, negligence and prejudice’ in dealing with Beck. It said his activities should have been uncovered earlier and blamed police for tending to disbelieve children who complained because they regarded them as young criminals.

The other report followed a government-ordered inquiry into the management of the county’s social services department. It judged managers ‘inadequate, nave and out of their depth’ and afraid to challenge Beck despite numerous complaints against him.

In their book, Abuse of Trust, Mark D’Arcy and Paul Gosling suggest that in 1977, Beck and a co-worker, Colin Fiddaman, killed a twelve-year-old boy, Simon O’Donnell, by throttling him whilst he was being sexually abused, though the subsequent inquest into O’Donnell’s death concluded that the boy had committed suicide after running away from a children’s home run by Beck. The authors state that other children living in the home at that time have since given evidence to say that the injuries allegedly caused to O’Donnell were consistent with the system of physical restraint used by Beck and Fiddaman, which entailed wrapping a towel around the neck of a child during the course of abuse.

In 1998, a former resident, Peter Bastin, stated that he witnessed Beck and Fiddaman removing what he believed to be O’Donnell’s body from the home on the night before the child was found dead in a local factory.

In the same year, Bastin was awarded a rumoured £50,000 compensation for the abuse and suffering he received from Beck, which, he claimed, helped turn him into a child abuser, Bastin himself having been convicted in 1979 of raping and murdering ten year old boy. Bastin was apparently one of four Beck victims who went on to become murderers, “lending credence to experts who believe that victims of child abuse are more likely to become abusers themselves”.

The claim of D’Arcy and Gosling, that “there is strong evidence” that Beck was a murderer, received harsh criticism from the author Richard Webster, who points out that Bastin gave his evidence some twenty-one years after the death of O’Donnell, during the course of a compensation hearing from which he stood to derive massive financial gain. Bastin also claimed that the ten-year old victim he himself had murdered had died as a result of throttling techniques he had copied from Beck.

Throughout the trial and up until his death, Beck emphatically protested his innocence as a victim of mass conspiracy and sought to launch an appeal to secure his release and clear his name. Beck spent much of his time in Whitemoor prison vigorously planning his appeal and such eminent barristers as Anthony Scrivener and Michael Manning are said to have shown an interest in taking his case.

One of his most high profile supporters was the Labour peer, Lord Longford, who had for many years courted controversy in the tabloid press due to his long-standing campaign for the release of ‘Moors murderer’ Myra Hindley. “Personally I am convinced that not only did Frank Beck act throughout as an idealist, but that he did not exceed the bounds of propriety and certainly did not commit any criminal act,” wrote Longford in his autobiography, Avowed Intent. “Those that spoke against him were usually, it would seem, likely to gain financially if he were convicted.” However, Longford seems to have based this belief, not as a result of having seen any evidence, but as a result of his befriending of Beck as a prison visitor.

Longford was not alone in his belief that Beck was innocent and it is evident that for many, Beck’s charisma, charm and power of persusion was undiminished, despite the crushing intensity of his circumstances.

 

Full set of reports from the 1991 Frank Beck Trial 

June 24, 1991

THE LARGEST case involving allegations of sexual and physical abuse in children’s homes has emerged in Leicestershire, after an 18-month police investigation spanning three continents.

A former social worker who was responsible for three of the county’s children’s homes has been charged with 29 offences against children relating to allegations of serious sexual and physical abuse over 12 years.

The allegations follow a police investigation extending to the United States, Europe and the Middle East to trace former residents of the home. Two other former staff face related charges.

Many former residents have come forward to allege that between 1974 and 1986 they suffered abuse including buggery, actual bodily harm, gross indecency and physical assault. Some former members of staff claim they also suffered abuse.

Det Insp Kelvin Ashby, who is leading the Leicestershire police investigation, said last night that it was the largest case that he had heard of involving abuse allegations in children’s homes.

The main charges are against Frank Beck, 49, who between 1974 and 1986 was officer in charge variously of Rose Hill home, Market Harborough, Ratcliffe Road home, Leicester, and The Beeches, Leicester Forest East.

They were community homes with educational facilities, each catering for 12 to 15 teenage boys and girls in local authority care. The Beeches was the last of the three to close, in January.

Peter Martin Jaynes, 42, deputy officer in charge at Ratcliffe Road, when the offences are alleged to have occurred, has been charged with three lesser connected offences. George Charles Lincoln, 39, former deputy officer in charge at The Beeches and Rose Hill, faces one charge.

The trial of the three men is due to start at Leicester Crown Court on 16 September, and is expected to last six to eight weeks. Mr Jaynes and Mr Lincoln have been bailed and Mr Beck has been remanded in custody. None of the men has worked for the local authority since 1986.

A former resident approached the police early last year and named other alleged victims. After that, the case is said to have snowballed. Some former residents are in their thirties, with children of their own.

Brian Waller, Leicestershire’s social services director, said last night: ”I cannot comment on the trial. What I can state with confidence is that Leicestershire’s community homes currently provide a safe environment for children in care.”

The Government is revising draft guidelines after last month’s ”pin-down” inquiry into solitary confinement in Staffordshire children’s homes. It found that two members of a paedophile ring had visited two of the homes.

The Home Office and the Department of Health are discussing proposals for better access to police records on people convicted of sexual offences living near children’s homes.

The National Children’s Bureau is holding a conference in London today to discuss the future of residential care.

September 11, 1991

The Crown Prosecution Service has issued the following note for the guidance of editors on behalf of the Attorney General’s Chambers: “The attention of the Attorney General has been drawn to the publication of material said to be contained in reports by Barry Newell about his findings after an inquiry into Leicestershire Social Services. “Editors should be aware that the trial of Frank Beck and two others, who were charged following a separate police investigation, is due to commence on Monday September 16 1991 at Leicester Crown Court. “The Attorney General wishes to remind editors of their obligation not at any time to publish material which gives rise to a substantial risk of serious prejudice in the proceedings. “Further inquiries: 071 828 7155.

September 27, 1991

A SENIOR child care officer accused of sexually abusing children was alleged to have argued with a boy about visiting ”a man called Greville Janner”, Leicester crown court was told.

Giving evidence on Monday, the fifth day of the trial, a woman, now aged 31, claimed that she had heard an argument between the boy and Frank Beck, the officer in charge of the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester. The woman, who alleged that she had been repeatedly raped by Mr Beck when she was aged about 15, was asked by Peter Joyce, QC, for the prosecution, whether she had ever heard arguments between Mr Beck and any boys at the home.

She told the court: ”Frank Beck and Mr A arguing about Greville Janner. He (Mr Beck) was not going to let him go and visit Greville Janner.”

The woman was cross-examined on Tuesday by John Black, for Mr Beck. He asked her: ”It was an argument, wasn’t it, about him going off to see a man called Greville Janner?” The woman replied: ”He was shouting to Paul that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner any more.” Mr Black asked the woman if Mr A used to boast about being a rent boy. She replied: ”When he first came to the home, yes he did.”

The woman had claimed that she had faked pains to have an appendix operation to escape sexual abuse: ”I just wanted to get away. I was certain I would be able to tell someone and never go back, but it didn’t work.”

She told the court from behind a screen that she was petrified of Mr Beck because he had threatened to send her back to a psychiatric unit. She said that Mr Beck had had sexual contact with her about 30 times.

Some of the adults who were children when they were allegedly abused broke down when they gave evidence from behind a screen. Their evidence was relayed from a camera in front of the witness stand to the dock, where Mr Beck and two other defendants were able to see them on a television monitor.

Mr B, now 26, shouted at Mr Beck and broke down during his evidence about abuse he allegedly suffered when he was aged nine or ten. He told the court: ”It was awful. The bastards. It was a nightmare in that kids’ home.” He claimed to have suffered rib injuries when he was attacked by Mr Beck after running away. Mr C, now 20, alleged he was eight when Mr Beck began to abuse him at Ratcliffe Road. He claimed he was sexually abused during bathtime sessions.

The hearing continues today.

September 27, 1991

CHILDREN as young as eight at three Leicestershire children’s homes were subjected to a reign of terror over 13 years, involving sexual abuse, a rape and beatings by social workers, Leicester Crown Court has been told.

The Independent is able to report the case after the Court of Appeal yesterday overturned a ruling by Mr Justice Jowitt, the trial judge, who banned reporting.

Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, has told the court that the children were repeatedly buggered, sexually assaulted and beaten. Seven prosecution witnesses during seven days of evidence have testified to abuse by three senior staff at Leicestershire homes. In his opening speech on 17 September, Mr Joyce said that Frank Beck, 49, the officer in charge of the homes from 1973 to 1986 and a former Liberal Democrat councillor, had been the ”trusted supremo of children’s homes in Leicestershire”.

However, Mr Beck had perpetrated systematic sexual, physical and emotional abuse against vulnerable children and four fellow social workers by using a form of child psychotherapy to control them, Mr Joyce alleged.

Children would be provoked into fierce anger and then restrained by staff using violence, Mr Joyce alleged. After the anger had passed, subsequent comforting often led to sexual abuse.

He said that ”these children were effectively corrupted by the cruelty, which was the strength and the weapon of the tyrant”. He told the court: ”You will hear . . . that this is a man whom no one did anything to stop.”

Mr Beck faces charges relating to 17 males and one female. He denies charges of buggering nine boys and a girl, attempting to bugger two boys, assaulting seven children, indecently assaulting five children and raping the girl.

He also denies buggering two members of staff and indecently assaulting two others. The prosecution claimed that Mr Beck deliberately recruited impressionable staff at the homes: the Poplars, Market Harborough, which later moved to Ratcliffe Road, Leicester; Rosehill, Market Harborough, and the Beeches, Leicester Forest East.

Mr Joyce said: ”The zeal with which he pursued his victims was unwavering and there is no zeal like that of the pervert.”

Later, he said: ”For these young men, this was a tunnel of darkness. If they did run away, do something wrong or say something when they ran away, they were sent straight back into the darkness.

”It was no way of life for these children. There was no escape for these children. There was simply the endurance of it.”

On trial with Mr Beck is Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, who was deputy officer in charge at Poplars and then Ratcliffe Road for eight years until 1980. He has denied charges of indecently assaulting a teenage boy and indecently assaulting the girl allegedly attacked by Mr Beck.

George Lincoln, 39, from Sudbury, Suffolk, deputy officer in charge at Rosehill and the Beeches between 1977 and 1981, denies that he and Mr Beck buggered a 14-year-old boy. Mr Joyce said the cases concerned ”childhoods that have been stolen, innocence corrupted, bodies abused and minds warped, in the main by Mr Beck, aided and helped by Mr Jaynes and Mr Lincoln”.

Most of the children had been aged between 8 and 16, Mr Joyce said. Some were there because they were beyond parental control. In some cases there was no other reason than that one or other of the parents was ill.

He said: ”He has not just buggered the children. He has done the same in certain circumstances to other social workers . . . They could not stop him. They could not defy him. One of the questions the prosecution asks is: what chance did the children have if the social workers themselves did not report him?”

Mr Beck would provoke the fears and insecurities of social workers so that they would seek his counselling in private. ”He took advantage of their naivety. He took advantage of their vulnerability,” Mr Joyce said.

One evening Mr Beck took Mr E, a young social worker, into his room for a ”supervision session”, Mr Joyce said. ”Mr E was told that touching another person’s body was an important thing to appreciate when dealing with children who had been abused by those they trusted. He was told that he had to be touched. He would not be able to understand it unless something happened to him.” Mr Beck then indecently assaulted Mr E, the court was told.

Mr Joyce said that Mr Beck was important in shaping Leicestershire’s child care policy. In 1977, he chaired a council working party dealing with children’s homes.

”He had the ear of those in power. He had the faith of those in power,” Mr Joyce said.

Mr Beck had pioneered the introduction of a form of treatment for disturbed children known as regression therapy. Mr Joyce said: ”Under this therapy, these children were taken back into a state of isolation, loneliness and vulnerability in which they would be ripe to be abused.

”Children were told to go back to when they were last happy, to express their emotions that made them unhappy. They were provoked to be angry, so angry that they would have to be physically held down and restrained.”

During ”regression”, boys of 14 would have to wear nappies, would be bathed by adults and used babies’ bottles. Mr Joyce said: ”Regression therapy was the disguise, the veil behind which the perverts took their pleasure.”

It was also a cover for violence against children, even though corporal punishment was officially banned at the homes, Mr Joyce said. ”We are talking about children being held so tight that they cannot move. We are talking about children being smothered, children with towels twisted around their necks. We are not talking about holding. We are talking about terror.”

September 27, 1991

A former social worker claimed today that his boss had regular sex with him at a children’s home over a period of three or four years. Mr D, now 38, told a jury at Leicester Crown Court he felt he could not refuse the attentions of Frank Beck. “

He was the officer in charge and I was the lowest grade social worker in the home,” he said. “He had my career in his hands. “If I was going for another job I would have to get a reference from him. I felt I had no choice.”

Beck, of Braunstone, Leicester, denies 12 charges of buggery, one of rape, two of attempted buggery, seven of indecent assault and seven of assault causing bodily harm. The charges relate to 13 boys, one girl and four members of staff. The offences are alleged to have taken place between 1974 and 1986 when he was head of two children’s homes in Leicester and at The Poplars home in Market Harborough.

The former deputy head of two of the homes, Peter Jaynes, 41, from Chatham, Kent, has denied two charges of indecent assault and one of causing actual bodily harm.

Social worker George Lincoln, 38, from Sudbury, Suffolk, has pleaded not guilty to a joint charge with Beck of buggering a boy.

A ban on reporting the trial, which began at the start of last week, was overturned by the Court of Appeal on Thursday after representations by several newspapers and the Press Association. Mr D said he was just 21 when he got a job at The Poplars in 1974.

He became upset by problems encountered in dealing with some children and Beck cuddled and comforted him. Several times, Beck took him to his room and mutual masturbation took place. On one occasion, Beck buggered him. “

He had convinced me that I needed to develop my sexual area and this was one way of making me stronger,” said Mr D. The prosecution has claimed that youngsters as young as eight were sexually and physically assaulted at the three homes where they had been placed for their own safety during a reign of brutality and abuse that went undetected for 13 years. The trial was adjourned until Monday.

September 27, 1991

THE RIGHT of the media to publish crown court allegations that young people had been repeatedly buggered, sexually assaulted and beaten in Leicestershire children’s homes was upheld yesterday in an important Court of Appeal ruling overturning a blanket ban on reports of the trial of three social workers.

In one of the most significant decisions under the 1981 Contempt of Court Act, Lord Justice Farquarson, Mr Justice Tucker and Mr Justice Owen allowed a challenge by The Independent, The Daily Telegraph, The Guardian, the Press Association and Times Newspapers to an order imposed by Mr Justice Jowitt, the trial judge, when the case opened in Leicester on 16 September.

Although the details of the appeal court’s ruling cannot be publicised now, the overturning of the judge’s order – the making of which was likewise covered by the publicity ban – is likely to come to be a viewed as a substantial victory for press freedom.

Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, told the court on 17 September that victims of the alleged offences, which spanned 13 years, had endured a ”tunnel of darkness”. The case concerned ”childhoods that have been stolen, innocence corrupted, bodies abused and minds warped,” by Frank Beck, 49, the officer in charge of three homes, aided and helped by two co-accused, Mr Joyce said. Some of the children were as young as eight.

Mr Beck denies buggering nine boys and a girl, attempted buggery of two boys, assaults on seven children, indecently assaulting five children and raping the girl. He also denies buggering two fellow members of staff and indecently assaulting two others.

Mr Beck is a former Liberal councillor and was, the court was told, a senior figure in the shaping of child care policy in Leicestershire during the 1970s and 1980s. The prosecution has alleged he used ”regression therapy”, a form of child psychotherapy which takes children back to infant experiences, as a means of making them vulnerable and weak so they could then be sexually abused.

Peter Martyn Jaynes, 42, deputy officer in charge of two of the homes until 1980, denies charges of indecently assaulting a teenage boy and indecently assaulting the girl while kicking and hitting her. A third defendant, George Charles Lincoln, 39, deputy officer in charge of two homes from 1977 to 1981 denies a charge that he and Mr Beck buggered a boy of 14. The trial was adjourned yesterday pending the appeal court’s decision.

Of the seven prosecution witnesses who have appeared so far, two have given evidence screened from the defendants, who can observe the witness via a video link to the dock. This is a measure usually permitted only for child witnesses. However, the witnesses appearing in this case are in their twenties and thirties.

Section 4(2) of the 1981 Act allows a judge to postpone reports of proceedings where it is necessary to avoid a substantial risk of prejudice to the administration of justice.

But yesterday’s decision can be viewed as an endorsement of the need to read the section in the light of the legitimate interest of the public to information on matters of public concern and of the principle of open justice.

The five news organisations invoked section 159 of the 1988 Criminal Justice Act, passed in response to a European Commission of Human Rights ruling, which gives the media the right to challenge gagging orders or decisions to exclude Press or public from any part of a trial. Before the Act there was no avenue of appeal.

The three judges ruled that the arguments canvassed in the hearing and the reasons for the decision should not be reported by the media or by law reporters until the conclusion of the trial.

September 27, 1991

THE YOUNGEST boy in Ratcliffe Road children’s home was repeatedly raped by Frank Beck during bath-time sex sessions, the court was told last Friday.

It was alleged that the eight-year-old was buggered on about five occasions. Mr Beck denies the charge.

Mr C, now 20, gave evidence, like some other witnesses, from behind a screen. In a soft-spoken voice, he said that the abuse began in the week he arrived at the home, in 1979, when he was eight and a half. He had attempted suicide after his grandmother had died.

Mr C said that he was washed by members of staff. Mr Beck, he said, assaulted him during bathing sessions.

”He would say ‘You’re getting older’ as he washed my body and private parts. At the start he would have his clothes on. Then he’d take his trousers down and expose himself to me.” Mr C said sometimes Mr Beck would masturbate himself. Sometimes he (Mr C) would be made to do it for him, Mr C said. He also described how Mr Beck allegedly picked him up out of the bath and rubbed his own bare body against his and once ejaculated over the boy’s stomach and chest.

Mr C went on to describe how Mr Beck would allegedly lean him over the bath and enter his back passage.

”Sometimes he used to bend me over the bath. He used to hold me from underneath.”

He also claimed to have been told to stand up in the bath and bend over while Mr Beck buggered him from behind.

”Sometimes I was leaning against the wall with Beck having one arm around me and the other behind me – putting his penis in my bottom,” Mr F said. ”It hurt so much I cried and it hurt to sit down.”

Mr C denied a suggestion from John Black, for the defence, that Mr Beck had not been at the Ratcliffe Road home during Mr C’s time there.

Mr C admitted the police had come to him to inquire about any complaints he might have had from his time at the home.

He had been unable to recall Mr Beck’s name, and had identified the defendant from a set of photographs produced by the investigating officers.

On Monday, a 31-year old woman told the court that she had been repeatedly raped by Mr Beck at Ratcliffe Road and sexually assaulted by Peter Jaynes, the deputy officer in charge of the home. Both men deny the charges.

The incident began with Mr Jaynes on her second day at the home, she said.

”He started on about my sexuality. He said I was a lesbian, he repeated it several times. He said I needed a man,” the woman said, breaking down in tears.

”I was on my back. He was laying full-length, his body was on mine. He was rubbing it up against mine, his private parts,” she said.

”I just lay there. Eventually he went out of the room, and when he came back he gave me a lollipop and said I’d done well.”

The woman also said that a fourth member of staff, Colin Fiddiman, a former deputy officer in charge at Ratcliffe Road, who died recently, had used a punishment on her which was also used on young boys. ”They used to put a wet tea-towel around your neck and tighten it. Colin Fiddiman did it to me and he used a dry teacloth. The next morning all my neck was red and bruised.”

The woman said she was raped and buggered by Mr Beck after disturbing him and a young boy resident, who she named as Mr F, aged 13 or 14, in homosexual activity.

Mr Beck allegedly sent her to her room and followed on.

”He went on about my sexuality. He said I needed a man and he was going to show me what I’d been missing.

”He buggered me. I was screaming. He was hurting me and he didn’t care. I was on my knees bent over the settee. Frank Beck had his hand on my neck. He was holding my front and waist. I thought he was going to kill me,” she said.

”Then he turned me over and started fucking me, he was like an animal. I shouted at him to stop. He was hurting me, he made me bleed at both ends.”

She said that, subsequently, Mr Beck had had sex with her a further 30 times.

The woman said young boys at the home were summoned to see Mr Beck.

”When they came down they would be crying, walking funny. They’d be holding their bums,” she said.

September 27, 1991

A RESIDENT of Ratcliffe Road children’s home, who allegedly said that he had been a rent boy, was stopped from visiting Greville Janner, Labour MP for Leicester West, by Frank Beck, the court was told on Monday.

A 31-year-old woman allegedly raped and buggered as a teenager by Mr Beck at the home detailed an alleged row about 15 years ago between Mr Beck and the boy, Mr A, about going to see Mr Janner.

She was asked by Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, if she could remember hearing Mr Beck in conversation or argument with a boy.

She told the court: ”Frank Beck and Mr A were arguing about Greville Janner. He Beck wasn’t going to let him go and visit Greville Janner.” Mr H, formerly in care, is now aged 31.

On Tuesday, under cross- examination by John Black, representing Mr Beck, the woman said: ”He was shouting to Paul that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner anymore.”

Mr Black asked her: ”A used to boast about being a rent boy, didn’t he?” She replied: ”When he first came to the home, yes he did.”

Mr Black continued: ”Mr Beck, I suggest you know perfectly well, utterly disapproved of any form of homosexual contact between men and children at his home, didn’t he?”

”I cannot agree with what you say,” the woman replied.

During her evidence, the woman said that she had been sent to the home at the age of 15 from the Towers Hospital, a local psychiatric unit.

She told the court she had faked pains in her side after being repeatedly raped by Frank Beck and sexually assaulted by other staff. She had deliberately undergone an unnecessary operation to remove her appendix in a desperate attempt to escape sexual abuse at the hands of staff at the home, she said.

September 28, 1991

SEVEN former residents of Leicestershire children’s homes have told a jury of sexual abuse and violence by social workers in charge of the homes.

Three males, now adults, claimed they had been buggered by Frank Beck, the officer in charge of three homes between 1973 and 1986, and a 31-year-old woman said she had been repeatedly raped and buggered by Mr Beck and sexually assaulted by other social workers.

Two men said they had been repeatedly sexually assaulted as children in Mr Beck’s care.

Giving evidence from behind a screen, the woman told Leicester crown court that she had had her appendix removed as a teenager to escape sexual abuse by social workers.

Cross-examined by John Black, counsel for Mr Beck, she described how she had heard an argument between Mr Beck and a boy resident, who boasted that he was a rent boy, relating to Greville Janner, MP for Leicester West.

‘He was shouting to Paul (the boy) that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner any more,’ she said.

Mr Beck, aged 49, denies 29 charges of buggery, attempted buggery, rape, indecent assault, and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Two social workers who served as deputies to Mr Beck, Peter Jaynes and George Lincoln, deny a total of four charges of buggery, indecent assault and assault.

The catalogue of alleged abuse and violence unfolded during seven days of evidence given by former residents, some of whom were shielded from Mr Beck’s view by a screen.

Day one

Last Tuesday Mr G, from Blackpool, now aged 29, told the jury how Mr Beck held him face down and buggered him after he had been taken to his quarters.

‘I was telling him to get off me but he was holding me down after he’d got inside me,’ Mr G said.

He added that he felt scared and ashamed after the incident and told no one.

Mr G claimed he also received regular beatings from Mr Beck ‘for nothing’. He said up to a dozen members of staff were involved in administering summary beatings to children in the home.

Day two

Cross-examined by John Black, Mr G denied pressure had been put on him by the police to give evidence.

He admitted that he had applied for compensation from the criminal injuries compensation board but denied that he was motivated by the possibility of receiving financial compensation if Mr Beck was convicted.

Day three

Mr B, aged 26, described how Mr Beck had performed oral sex with him at the age of 10 or 11. Mr B said staff at the home would keep him away from school on days when his injuries would be noticed. He also denied a suggestion by Mr Black that he had been pursuaded to make a statement by the police.

Later Mr H, aged 32, from Dartford, Kent, alleged that he had been raped by Mr Beck at the age of 16. ‘We were just sitting chatting normal when he actually picked me up and carried me to his bedroom. He took my clothes off.

Day four

Mr C, 20, claimed he was buggered by Mr Beck on five occasions at the Ratcliffe Road home where, aged eight, he was the youngest child.

From behind a screen, he claimed this happened during bathtime homosexual sex sessions when Mr Beck would also masturbate himself or get Mr C to do it for him.

Cross-examined by Mr Black, he was asked why he had never made a complaint before.

He said he had always thought he would not be believed.

Day five

On Monday a 31-year-old woman, who claimed she had been repeatedly buggered and raped by Mr Beck and indecently assaulted by Mr Jaynes, described how Mr Beck had threatened to return her to a psychiatric unit if she did not do as he wished.

She said she was sent the Ratcliffe Road children’s home from the Towers Hospital, a local psychiatric unit, at the age of 15.

The woman also claimed she was raped and buggered by Mr Beck after disturbing him and a young boy resident in homosexual activity.

The woman said she was still a virgin when the alleged rape happened.

Mr Beck had sexual contact with her around 30 more times before she feigned illness, which led to her hospitalisation, to escape the home.

Day six

Cross-examined by Mr Black, the woman confirmed that she had overheard an argument between Mr Beck and a boy, named as Mr A, concerning Greville Janner.

‘He was shouting to Paul that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner any more,’ she said. Mr Black asked her: ‘A used to boast about being a rent boy, didn’t he?’

‘When he first came to the home, yes he did,’ she replied.

Mr Black continued: ‘Mr Beck, I suggest you know perfectly well, utterly disapproved of any form of homosexual contact between men and children at his home, didn’t he?’

‘I cannot agree with what you say,’ replied the woman.

She denied a suggestion by Mr Black that she was lying by claiming she was a virgin when she was allegedly raped and buggered by Mr Beck.

Day seven

On Wednesday Mr I, now 30, told the jury how he complained to police more than 15 years ago about sex abuse in the Ratcliffe Road children’s home.

Mr I said he told his mother that he had been abused by Mr Beck and Mr Jaynes at the end of his two-year stay in the home and the police were informed.

Giving evidence from behind a screen, he described two incidents during which he was allegedly sexually abused by Mr Beck and one in which he was allegedly abused by Mr Jaynes.

Cross-examined by Mr Black, Mr I agreed that he had previously tried to escape from a children’s home but denied that he had fabricated allegations of abuse to escape the Ratcliffe Road home.

September 28, 1991

A FORMER residential care worker in two Leicestershire children’s homes yesterday told a jury how he allowed himself to be regularly buggered by the officer in charge for more than three years, because he believed it would make him a ‘better social worker’ and that his ‘feelings would be strengthened’.

Mr D, aged 38, said Frank Beck, who ran the county council homes between 1973 and 1986, first persuaded him to engage in mutual masturbation sessions telling him that he ‘needed to develop in the sexual area’.

He also told the court how children were challenged and provoked until they ‘blew out’ as part of so-called regression therapy developed by Mr Beck. Staff repeated taunts like ‘You hate your mother’ and shook children until they lost their tempers. If they did not, they were isolated from other children.

Mr D was giving evidence at the trial of three former Leicestershire social workers. Mr Beck, aged 49, denies 29 allegations of physical and sexual abuse. His former deputies, George Lincoln, aged 39, of Great Cornard, Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, aged 41, of Beacon Hill, Chatham, Kent, deny a total of four charges.

Mr D told Leicester crown court that the incidents began shortly after he was employed as a residential careworker at the Poplars home in Market Harborough in 1974, aged 21. He said he soon felt lonely and on several occasions broke down crying and was ‘cuddled’ by Mr Beck.

On one occasion, Mr Beck told him to strip down to his underpants and masturbate. ‘He told me sex was an area I needed to work on,’ Mr D said.

Asked by Peter Joyce, QC, prosecuting why he had heeded Mr Beck’s request, he said: ‘It sounds silly now, but I thought perhaps I had to do it to become better.

‘The team of staff who were working together seemed very strong in what they were doing and I wanted to be part of that team. The assumption that was in my mind was that if Frank Beck was doing this kind of therapy with me, he was probably doing it with everyone else, so why should I feel odd about it happening?’

During the third or fourth such session, he said, Mr Beck buggered him.

‘Did you want him to?’ asked Mr Joyce. ‘No.’

‘Did you consent to that?’ asked Mr Joyce.

‘I didn’t feel I had any choice. I was the lowest grade social worker in the house. He had my career in his hands. He was also a very powerful personality,’ Mr D replied.

He was subsequently buggered by Mr Beck around once a fortnight for three to four years.

Mr Beck had once told staff: ‘Don’t forget I know something about each and every one of you.’ Mr D said: ‘I think I’m still scared of him.’.

On Wednesday, Mr J, aged 29, a former resident of the Ratcliffe Road Children’s Home, told the jury how children were given a lollipop after they had been abused.

‘There was a lot of lollipops given out. He used to buy them in boxes,’ he said.

Mr J, who was 14 when he was sent to the home, claims he was sexually and physically assaulted by Mr Beck and other staff.

He said there were four kinds of regression therapy sessions: ‘It was happy, sad, randy or angry. If they chose a randy session then you were touched. You were touched all over. They just messed about with your head – playing mind games.’

September 29, 1991

REGRESSION therapy, practised by three Leicestershire children’s home care workers now undergoing trial on charges of physically and sexually abusing children over 13 years, is widely used in Britain.

The Observer learnt this week that a home practising one kind of regression therapy is funded by the Department of Social Security, despite a Shropshire Social Services inspectors’ report, which found that patients were sometimes tied up to staff members by rope, or made to stay in the corner of a room and ignored for up to 24 hours.

The inspectors found these practices ‘dangerous and potentially abusive’, and demanded an immediate halt to them.

Regression therapy is based on the theory that, in order to get to the root of personal problems, subjects have to be taken back to their childhood. The technique involves putting patients in nappies, bottle- feeding and standing them in corners, and alternately shouting at and hugging them so that they eventually feel like helpless children.

Social workers and therapists who use the system admit it is open to abuse and misinterpretation. Leicester Crown Court heard last week how children at local authority homes were subjected to regression therapy by Frank Beck, the officer in charge. Children as old as 13 were made to suck dummies and wear nappies, were bathed like babies and told to ‘regress’ to the time they were last happy. Mr Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, told the court the technique had left them isolated, lonely and vulnerable, ‘ripe for being abused’.

Mr D, a residential care worker, said in evidence that the children were challenged and provoked until they ‘blew out’. Staff repeated taunts like ‘You hate your mother’, and shook children until they lost their tempers. If they did not, they were put in isolation.

Frank Beck has pleaded not guilty to a total of 29 charges involving youngsters and staff at the homes between 1973 and 1986. Two other men involved also deny charges.

The Institute of Transactional Analysis, which actively promotes regression therapy amongst among psychotherapists, social workers and teachers, in this country has several hundred members and regularly organises workshops to disseminate ideas.

Regression therapy encompasses a range of controversial treatments, including so-called ‘re-parenting’, where patients are encouraged to reject their own parents and adopt the therapists as their new parents.

The institute also promotes a form of regression therapy widely discredited in the United States, where it originated, called Cathexis.

Cathexis was the brainchild of American social worker Jacqui Schiff, who developed the technique of ‘re-parenting’ for her work with schizophrenics. In her book All my Children, she describes making patients stand in a corner, restraining them with a heavy chair and spanking them. She also describes how she got a patient over his castration complex by holding a knife to his genitals.

Courts in Virginia ordered Ms Schiff never to work again, and a home she operated in California had its licence taken away. She is now living in Birmingham, where she runs a private re-parenting practice.

Nick Irving, head occupational therapist at West Norfolk and Wisbech Health Authority’s child and family unit in Kings Lynn, supports regression therapy and admits to bottle-feeding and hugging adult clients. He says regression therapy is widespread: ‘There is a potential for abuse .. the therapist has to understand what is driving him.’

A home for mentally ill adults that uses Cathexis techniques, is operating in Birmingham. The home, run by Trident Housing Association, operated in Shropshire until June. Shropshire Social Services inspectors demanded a stop to ‘dangerous and potentially abusive practices’ there, including:

Making patients stay in a corner of a room, where they were ignored for up to 24 hours.

Tying ropes to patients and carers, as a ‘symbolic umbilical cord’. Witholding mail from patients.

Encouraging patients to reject their parents in favour of their new ‘parents’, care workers.

Earlier this month, Birmingham City Council refused an application to have the home registered with the social services department. However, Nick Moreton, director of Trident, says the home will challenge this decision at an appeal tribunal.

The home is funded by the Department of Social Security to the tune of pounds 170 a week per patient. It has eight patients, but the application is for 12 places. If the appeal fails, the home risks losing its funding.

The Midlands Regional Director of the National Schizophrenia Fellowship, who visited the home, says its techniques should be monitored carefully: ‘Some methods of treatment are unproven and even rejected by practising professionals.’

Regression therapy has its casualties. Mark Stein, a council official from Bury, Manchester, says he has lost Madeleine, a former girlfriend, to regression therapy. She was admitted to the Trident Housing Association home three years ago and diagnosed by unqualified therapists as schizophrenic.

She is now ‘a completely different person ..I can’t recognise her’, said Mr Stein. ‘She has been reduced to a helpless child.

‘Before she went to the home she had a good job, her own home and a wide circle of friends. She is now totally dependent on carers at the home, whom she refers to as her mothers,’ he added. ‘Her own mother is extremely upset about it.’

She has has rented out her home and is absolutely dependent on the care workers.

Madeleine, 33, originally went into the home for just one year. After three years, she has no plans to leave.

September 30, 1991

A judge intervened in the Leicestershire child sex abuse trial today to prevent names of “people in high places” being revealed.

A former social worker was about to name a man said to have had homosexual contact with a boy in care when High Court judge Mr Justice Edwin Jowitt stepped in.

He told counsel representing former children’s homes head Frank Beck, who faces 29 charges of physical and sexual abuse: “Are names relevant? “Allegations are made, not necessarily by the people who know, and repeated second-hand against people who are not here to defend themselves.

“Counsel have a responsibility not to drag in names of people who are not here to say anything about it.” Mr Francis Sheridan, one of two barristers defending Beck, replied he would continue the questioning “in another way”.

Former social worker Mr D, 39, had said he was the care officer of a youth in care named as Mr A who had boasted of being a rent boy. Mr Sheridan asked: “Did he boast of having friends in high places?” Mr D replied: “Yes.” Mr Sheridan asked: “Did he tell you who those were?” At this stage the judge intervened.

Mr Sheridan later asked Mr D: “Did you talk about one person in high places or more than one?” Mr D replied: “One. He just knew him and had contact with him.” He said that Beck knew about the relationship and he had raised it with him. Sheridan said: “Did he not make it clear he would raise it with the director of social services, Dorothy Edwards?” “Yes,” he replied. “I think most of the conversations which took place at that time were between Paul and Frank directly.” He said of Beck: “He was certainly going to make sure that action was going to be taken to sever the contact.”

Mr D also said the person in question turned up at the children’s home, with a bicycle as a present for the boy. He said the incident happened sometime in mid-1977. Sheridan asked: “And he was sent packing by Frank Beck who told him bluntly no more contact?” Mr D said: “I wasn’t present when the person arrived but that was my understanding when Frank Beck reported back to team meetings.”

Mr D earlier alleged he was sexually abused by Frank Beck. Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, is in the dock alongside former social workers Peter Jaynes, 42, and George Lincoln, 39. Jaynes, of Chatham, Kent, denies three offences of physical and sexual abuse and Lincoln, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies an allegation of buggery. The offences were allegedly committed between 1974 and 1986. The trial at Leicester Crown Court was adjourned until tomorrow.

October 1, 1991

A High Court judge intervened in the Leicestershire child sex abuse trial yesterday to prevent the names of ”people in high places” being disclosed.

A former social worker was about to mention he name of a man feared to have had homosexual contact with a boy who was in care when Mr Justice Jowitt interrupted, asking: ”Are names relevant? Allegations are made, not necessarily by the people who know, and repeated second-hand against people who are not here to defend themselves.”

The judge told defence lawyers: ”Counsel have a responsibility not to drag in names of people who are not here to say anything about it.”

Francis Sheridan, one of two barristers representing Frank Beck, a former head of a children’s home who faces 29 charges of physical and sexual abuse, replied that he would continue his questioning ”in another way”.

Mr Beck, aged 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, is charged along with two social workers, Peter Jaynes, aged 42 and George Lincoln, aged 39. Mr Jaynes, of Chatham, Kent, denies three charges of physical and sexual abuse and Mr Lincoln, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies a charge of buggery. The offences are alleged to have been committed between 1974 and 1986.

A CHILD in care at one of the Leicestershire children’s homes where social workers allegedly operated a regime of systematic abuse and violence boasted he had been a rent boy and had ‘a friend in high places’, a jury heard yesterday.

Mr D, aged 38, a former residential care worker at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester, said he reported the information to Frank Beck, the officer in charge, who took action ‘to sever the contact’.

Mr D told Leicester crown court the ‘friend’, who was not named, came to visit the boy, Mr A, and wrote to the home.

On Friday Mr D told the court he allowed himself to be regularly buggered by Mr Beck for more than three years because he thought it would ‘make him a better social worker’.

Mr Beck, aged 49, who was in charge of three of the county council’s children’s homes from 1973-86, denies 29 charges of buggery, rape, indecent assault, and assault, relating to 17 males and one female. His two former deputies, George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, aged 41, of Chatham, Kent, deny a total of four charges.

Cross-examined by Francis Sheridan, defending Mr Beck, Mr D said he was a care worker assigned to Mr A and discussed the boy’s problems with him. Asked by Mr Sheridan what they were, he replied: ‘It was clearly that he had taken a homosexual path in life.’

Asked if he had boasted of being a rent boy, Mr D said: ‘I think so, yes.’ Asked by Mr Sheridan: ‘Did he say he had friends in high places?’, Mr D replied: ‘Yes.’

Mr Justice Jowitt, presiding, warned counsel against making allegations against ‘respected persons who are not here to say anything’.

In mid-1977, Mr D said, a letter from the friend was raised at a meeting of social workers. Mr Sheridan suggested Mr Beck had replied that the boy should have no further contact with him because he thought there was ‘a homosexual relationship’. ‘Yes,’ replied Mr D.

Earlier, Mr D admitted that in his first statement to police, dated 23 August 1990, he denied ever having been abused by Mr Beck. ‘Having gone for 12 or 13 years having not said a word to anyone it’s very hard to actually say something.’

October 2, 1991

A 29-YEAR-OLD man yesterday told a court how he plotted to kill a senior social worker in revenge for sexual abuse he said he suffered as a child.

Mr L said that in 1981 he took a youth training job as a chef at a Leicester children’s home run by Frank Beck with the intention of stabbing him.

Earlier, he had told Leicester Crown Court that he was buggered three or four times and beaten up by Mr Beck at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in the mid-1970s.

He described being taken to Mr Beck’s bedroom and forced to undress and touch the social worker’s genitals before being sexually assaulted.

Mr L also claimed that Mr Beck and other staff forced himself and other children to have temper tantrums.

”They would hold you down so you couldn’t move. They would run their knuckles up and down your ribs. They would say things like ‘express your feelings’.”

Asked by Peter Joyce, QC for the prosecution, what would happen if he did not have a tantrum, Mr L replied: ”You didn’t have a choice.”

He claimed that despite repeatedly absconding from the home and telling his mother and the police about the alleged physical abuse he was always taken back. He finally left the home after telling juvenile magistrates that he would kill himself if sent back.

He told the court that he was 18 when he hatched the plot to kill Mr Beck after learning that he was running the Beeches children’s home. ”I wanted to take revenge for what he’d done. I wanted to kill him,” he said. But Mr L never carried out the plot and left the home after six days.

Under cross-examination by John Black, for the defence, he admitted robbing a post office at the age of 10 or 11. Mr Black claimed that by the time Mr L reached the Ratcliffe Road home he was ”a significant trouble-maker, sent there as a place of last resort”.

The court also heard from a mining engineer, who alleged that Mr Beck sexually abused him while he was a teenager in care.

Mr M, 24, said he punched Mr Beck after ”finally realising he was a pervert” 

October 2, 1991

A TEENAGER who broke the law to escape being beaten by his parents, was regularly sexually abused by the officer in charge of the Leicester children’s home where he was sent, a jury was told yesterday.

Now aged 24, the man, Mr X, told Leicester crown court he had been forced to masturbate and have oral sex with Frank Beck during ‘counselling sessions’ at the Beeches children’s home.

Giving evidence at the trial of three former social workers alleged to have presided over a 13-year ‘reign of terror’ in three Leicestershire county council children’s homes, he said he was later buggered by Mr Beck, whom he had come to treat ‘like a father’.

He said violence by staff was an everyday thing at the home. Female residents, who were frequently called whore, slag, or bitch, were treated particularly badly. ‘He hated their guts,’ Mr X said.

Mr Beck, aged 49, who was officer in charge of the three homes between 1973 and 1986, denies 29 charges of sexual and physical abuse against 14 children aged eight to 16, and four former staff. His two former deputies, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, 41, of Chatham, Kent, face a total of four charges.

Mr X, who told the court he had enjoyed a career in the forces and now worked for an oil company, said he was sent to the Beeches in 1980, aged 14, after committing two crimes to escape a household where he claimed he was beaten since the age of six.

‘I was more than happy to be there. I thought it was great. I could play football. I could go out of the house without being shouted at. I could have a bath without dire consequences. That was my idea of luxury.’

During his two-year stay at the home, he said he had several ‘counselling sessions’ in which he was made to sit on Mr Beck’s knee in a darkened room and ‘talk about emotions’. During some of these sessions Mr Beck allegedly forced him to masturbate and participate in oral sex.

If he failed to become aroused Mr Beck became aggressive and threatened to have him sent to borstal. ‘He made it plain he could have me transferred within an hour.’

He said he became ‘confused as hell: after these counselling sessions began they seemed a small price to pay to be kept away from my parents’.

Mr Beck had allegedly later visited him after he left the home and buggered him, causing him to bleed for two weeks, he told the court. ‘I felt that if I showed that it was hurting, it would hurt more – he seemed to be enjoying it, the pain.’

Asked by Peter Joyce QC, prosecuting, why he had not seen a doctor, he replied: ‘I was 16 years old. I’d just been buggered – in effect just had homosexual sex. I wasn’t about to admit it to a doctor, a man of authority.’

Earlier Mr L’, formerly Mr L, 28, told the court he had taken a job as a chef at the Beeches so he could take his revenge on Mr Beck for abuse he had suffered. He said he planned to stab him with a set of chef’s knives, but changed his mind after some of them were stolen.

He said he had complained to social workers and police frequently about maltreatment.

October 3, 1991

A FORMER navy weapons expert yesterday denied handing over secret ships’ movements to the social worker who allegedly abused him as a teenager.

The man, 24-year-old Mr X, was confronted with the timetable of navy movements at the Leicestershire child abuse trial of former social worker Frank Beck.

John Black, defending Mr Beck, asked Mr X, who was a resident at the Beeches children’s home in Leicester, if he had given the document to the former head of the children’s home after joining the navy in the early 1980s.

The witness studied the handwritten list and angrily declared: ‘That is not my handwriting and I can prove it. I am absolutely sure I have never sent in advance any ships’ movements, except with the express permission of the captain, to any person – Frank Beck included.

‘That would be in breach of the Official Secrets Act and a treasonous act.’ But he told the jury he recognised a forces identification number written alongside the list.

‘I know the person whose number that is,’ he said but declined to name the sailor. The judge, Mr Justice Jowitt, ordered that the list be given into the care of the court.

Earlier Mr X, who now works for an oil company, had alleged he was buggered and indecently assaulted by Mr Beck while in care at the Beeches from 1980 to 1982.

During cross-examination he denied making up the allegations, saying they were ‘absolutely truthful’.

Mr Black asked him about what he said were discrepancies between the man’s evidence to Leicester crown court and his original statements to the police.

Mr X said there were errors in the statement on particular points but not lies. ‘I believe there is a difference,’ he said.

Mr Beck, who was officer in charge of three Leicestershire county council homes between 1973 and 1986, denies 29 allegations of physical and sexual abuse relating to 17 males and one female, 14 of them former children in his care. Yesterday he denied a further charge of buggery against Mr X.

October 4, 1991

A SOCIAL worker yesterday told the Leicestershire child sex abuse trial how he was ”humiliated and degraded” by his boss during so-called supervision sessions.

Mr K, 40, told Leicester Crown Court how former children’s home head Frank Beck, 49, subjected him to repeated sexual assaults culminating in buggery.

Mr K, now a child care officer in Scotland, said he had ”felt degraded, debased, humiliated, de-humanised”. He told the jury trying Mr Beck and two other social workers how Mr Beck would organise ”supervision sessions” at the Beeches children’s home in Leicester.

Mr K, who began his social work career at the home aged 28, said these soon turned into homosexual sex sessions.

He said ”personal growth therapy” soon began to be dominated by questions of sexuality. ”It was hugging initially, fondling . . . It ended up with either one or both of us in a state of undress.”

Mr K said the sessions began to include masturbation. ”It developed, if that’s the correct phrase, into a period of oral sex.”

Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, asked why Mr K became involved in the sex acts.

Mr K said: ”He used threats, physical assault and I felt he used his ability to manipulate the staff and residents to make life in work rather difficult for me.” He said he was threatened by Mr Beck with having his social work probationary period revoked.

The witness said he was slapped by Mr Beck in front of both other staff and children at the home.

He said once he tried to resist Mr Beck, but ”he physically took my clothes off, put my genitals in his mouth and bit very hard”.

October 9, 1991

A WITNESS told a child sex abuse trial yesterday that he was turned into a homosexual by a senior social worker. Mr F, who was giving evidence at Leicester Crown Court on his 29th birthday, told of repeated beatings and sexual abuse by the officer in charge, Frank Beck, 49.

He claimed that after leaving the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester he went to London, where he had a number of sexual encounters with other men, sometimes for money.

Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, asked Mr F: ”Why did you go with blokes?” He replied: ”Because of the way I had been treated at Ratcliffe Road. If you had put a girl in front of me I wouldn’t have known what to do. It was the way I’d been brought up by Beck. I thought it was right and I knew no difference.”

Mr F, a serving prisoner, was giving evidence on the fifteenth day of the trial of Mr Beck, who denies 31 charges of physical and sexual abuse on former members of staff and children in care between 1974 and 1986. A new charge of buggery on a former boy in care was denied by Mr Beck yesterday. A co-defendant, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, denies three offences of physical and sexual abuse on children, and a second co-defendant, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies an offence of buggery.

Mr F told the court that at 13 he was often taken to Mr Beck’s quarters at the home where he was made to perform various homosexual acts, which culminated in him being buggered by Mr Beck. The trial continues.

October 10, 1991

A MAN aged 27 told a child sex abuse trial yesterday how he was sexually assaulted as a teenager by two social workers who were waiting for him with no trousers on.

Mr N said at Leicester Crown Court that when he was 14 or 15 he was in care at the Rose Hill children’s home in Market Harborough, Leicestershire, when he was summoned to the private quarters of the deputy officer, George Lincoln, and found him and the home’s former head, Frank Beck, dressed in only their shirts.
”I think he Beck had a tea towel or a hand towel laid across his private parts.” Mr Lincoln was naked from the waist down.

Mr N said that he was beckoned to sit on Mr Beck’s lap. After a short time he was propelled on to the bed where he was buggered, first by Mr Beck and then Mr Lincoln. At some point, some sort of lubrication was applied to his backside. Since the alleged buggery, he had felt ”more than hatred to people in uniform, to anybody to do with the Government”, he told the court.

Cross-examined by John Black, for Mr Beck, he admitted there were inaccuracies in one of his police statements because he had been smoking marijuana immediately before being interviewed.

Mr Beck, 49, denies 31 charges of physical and sexual abuse against children in his care and former staff members between 1974 and 1986; Mr Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies one charge of buggery; and a third former social worker, Peter Jaynes, of Chatham, Kent, denies three charges.

October 18, 1991

THE FORMER head of a children’s home forced a girl in his care to fantasise about being a lesbian, Leicester Crown Court was told yesterday.

Frank Beck, 49, allegedly told Ms A, now 30, to talk about doing ”dirty things” with female members of staff at Ratcliffe Road children’s home, Leicester.

Ms A told the trial of three former social workers accused of physically and sexually abusing children: ”He wanted you to tell him perverted thoughts, like I wanted to be a lesbian with the women staff.”

She said Mr Beck would become violent if she refused to admit harbouring lesbian emotions. ”You’d get shaken by the hair or you’d get a towel round the throat until you admitted it.”

Ms A said she often saw boys violently treated by Mr Beck and added: ”He’s given me a black eye before. He just used to punch your mouth in. He had no mercy.”

Earlier, Clifford Savage, who worked as deputy to Mr Beck at the Beeches children’s home in Leicester in 1985, said he saw him acting violently to youngsters in care on several occasions.

Mr Savage told the court he finally contacted social services bosses after receiving two complaints about Mr Beck from junior staff members.

After the complaints, Mr Beck had never worked at the Beeches again.

Mr Beck denies 32 charges of abuse against children and former staff. Two former deputies, Peter Jaynes, 42, and George Lincoln, 39, deny a total of four charges.

October 26, 1991

A SENIOR detective investigating alleged sex abuse at Leicestershire children’s homes yesterday denied fabricating evidence against a social worker.

Detective Sergeant Michael Creedon told Leicester crown court he was one of the officers who arrested Frank Beck, 49, at his Leicester home on April 14 after allegations of sexual misconduct at children’s homes he ran in the 1970s and 1980s.

Det Sgt Creedon, giving evidence in the trial of Mr Beck and two other social workers, said he was involved in taking statements from prosecution witnesses. John Black, defending Mr Beck, asked if his team had taken a decision to ‘break the rules’ to get his client convicted. ‘Not at all, quite the opposite,’ he replied.

Det Sgt Creedon denied that witnesses were told by police that they would be able to sue Leicestershire social services for ‘substantial compensation’ if Mr Beck was convicted. ‘We had so many willing witnesses, we had no reason to try and persuade reluctant witnesses,’ he said. Referring to statements, Mr Black said: ‘I’m suggesting this is fabrication by you.’ ‘I had no need to and nothing to gain by doing it,’ the detective replied.

Mr Beck denies 32 allegations of physical and sexual abuse against children and social workers between 1974 and 1986. Two former deputies, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, deny a total of four charges. The trial continues.

October 29, 1991

A JUDGE yesterday directed findings of not guilty on five charges against Frank Beck, a former head of three Leicestershire children’s homes. Mr Justice Jowitt said that there was insufficient evidence on the five counts against Mr Beck, 49, who still faces 27 charges, including serious sexual offences, against children in his care over 13 years up to 1986.

The judge said that the charge of buggery against Mr C, when he was eight or nine years old, at Ratcliffe Road home in Leicester, could not stand because Mr Beck had stopped working there a year before the alleged offence. Mr Justice Jowitt also said that the prosecution had failed to present evidence to prove the charges that Mr Beck had buggered Mr D and Mr K, fellow residential social workers, at two of the homes. The judge said: ”There is an important difference between reluctantly letting something happen and not consenting.”

The prosecution had not proven lack of consent. Two other charges of actual bodily harm to Mr J, 14, and a woman, whom Mr Beck is also accused of raping, were also dismissed.

Earlier, Nasreen Akrim, 29, a psychologist who worked at one home with Mr Beck, said she had complained in 1982 to Leicestershire social services department that Mr Beck was hitting children and intimidating staff. Mr Beck’s behaviour made her believe ”that Hitler did not die, he came and ran this place”.

She recalled seeing Mr Beck with a 10-year-old boy who was accused of stealing. ”Frank Beck was in the front room with this little boy on his lap. He was pressing two fingers on the temple area and the boy was screaming with pain.” Mr Beck had said he learnt the technique in the Marines and that it was good because it left no mark, Ms Akrim said. Another time, she heard shouting and slapping coming from a room where Mr Beck was counselling a boy. The boy emerged with his spectacles broken and red hand-marks on his face.

Today, Mr Beck, who denies all the charges, is expected to give evidence. Two other former social workers are being tried with Mr Beck. George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies one charge of buggery, and Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, denies three charges.

October 29, 1991

A FORMER social worker was yesterday acquitted of five of 32 charges of sexual abuse at children’s homes.

The acquittals at Leicester crown court came after the prosecution had called 45 witnesses over six weeks. It alleged Frank Beck, aged 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, exercised a reign of terror at three children’s homes over 13 years until 1986, assaulting children and also young staff.

Yesterday Mr Justice Jowitt said that the evidence on five of the 32 charges was unsafe, and Mr Beck was cleared of three offences of buggery and two of assault. Mr Beck denies all the charges. Accused with him are Peter Jaynes, aged 42, and George Lincoln, aged 39.

October 30, 1991

Children’s worker denies being gay

THE former social worker at the centre of allegations of sex abuse at children’s homes that he ran in Leicestershire denied yesterday that he was a homosexual.

Frank Beck, aged 49, was giving evidence at a Leicester crown court trial, where he denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse.

The trial judge had earlier ordered the withdrawal of five other charges, three of buggery and two of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

Mr Beck yesterday told the jury at the start of the trial’s seventh week that he was not homosexual. He said that he had served nine years in the Royal Marines and would have been thrown out had he been involved in homosexuality. He denied allegations made during evidence for the prosecution that he had been an interrogator and had boasted abou torturing prisoners.

Two of Mr Beck’s former deputies, George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of Chatham, Kent, deny a total of four charges.

October 30, 1991

Labour MP Greville Janner sexually abused a boy in care over a two-year period, the chief of a children’s home told a court today.

Frank Beck made the allegation while giving evidence at Leicester Crown Court, where he is denying 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse of children and former members of staff at children’s homes over a 13-year period up until 1978. He said many of the youngsters in his care at Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester, had had sexual experiences. “A number had been abused,” he said. “A lot of them felt they were responsible for that abuse and suffered a great deal of guilt. “I only ever got caught up in spontaneous chats with one child where a great deal of sexual activity was discussed. No, I would say two children.” He added: “One child has been buggered and abused for two solid years by Greville Janner. “That child felt guilty and it was important that it should be talked about so he did not suffer the guilt.”

Beck, 49, said he encouraged children to talk about sexual matters because so many had been abused. He admitted, under questioning from Mr John Black, defending, that he had told children to go and masturbate themselves. “Two children had been seriously abused – the one I’ve already mentioned, he was abused over two years – and another one who had spent long periods in London,” Beck said. “It was necessary to discuss with them what they had been through.”

He denied encouraging any boys to behave homosexually, adding: “I think I did more than most to try and prevent it.” He had acted angrily when boys at the home were caught together in a homosexual act, he said.

Earlier in the trial a woman who claimed Beck raped and buggered her said she overheard an argument between Beck and a boy resident named as Mr A. “It was an argument about him going off to see a man called Greville Janner?” Mr Black asked the woman, who is now 31. She replied: “He was shouting to Paul that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner any more.”

She said Mr A boasted of being a rent boy when he first arrived at the home. Beck, formerly of Leicester, was close to tears as he denied physically abusing children. He said he had slapped children. Quoting from a phrase in a report on control of children in care he wrote in the 1970s, Beck said: “Punishment without love is bitterness, punishment based on fear destroys.” He added: “I don’t believe anyone has the right to hit anyone unless they love them.”

Stephen Pollard, of Kingsley Napley, lawyers for Mr Janner, said in a statement to the Press Association: “All we can say within the constraints of the Contempt of Court Act is that since the trial is continuing at Leicester Crown Court the matter is sub judice. We have therefore advised Greville Janner that he is prevented from making any statements at this stage.”

October 30, 1991

FRANK BECK, the former head of three Leicestershire children’s homes who is accused of buggering 11 children, has been framed, Leicester Crown Court was told yesterday.

Accusations had been made by witnesses of questionable integrity, John Black, counsel for Mr Beck, told the court. He suggested the police had become carried away with the belief that ”they were dealing with a monster”.

Later, Mr Beck, giving evidence for the first time, denied ever abusing children. He occasionally slapped them but only within the corporal punishment regulations. He denied ever being a practising homosexual. He defended his use of ”regression therapy”, which involves taking a person back to their infancy in an attempt to repair emotional damage.

The prosecution alleges the therapy was a cover for Mr Beck’s ”reign of terror” when he sexually and physically abused children. Mr Beck said that staff had cuddled children on their laps and bathed them during regression therapy, when they would drink from babies’ bottles. When children flew into tantrums, he would control them by wrapping his arms and legs around them, but he never used violence nor, as alleged, did he wrap towels around their necks. He denied that children ever wore nappies.

Opening for the defence, Mr Black said: ”There is one significant and emphatic question mark hanging over this case in relation to the integrity of the police and the integrity of some of the witnesses.”

He said certain witnesses had proved unreliable. For example, Mr Beck had left one home nearly 18 months before he was alleged to have buggered a child there, Mr Black said. Another who complained that Mr Beck had buggered him, had in the past made complaints but about other members of staff, never Mr Beck.

A third, Mr F, had written to Mr Beck in prison wishing him well at the trial, months after signing a police statement alleging that he had been buggered and assaulted by Mr Beck. Prosecution witnesses had returned, years after leaving the children’s homes, to see Mr Beck.

Mr Black asked how such witnesses ”can make allegations against Mr Beck which the defence would say are palpably and demonstrably untrue? How comes it that Mr Beck’s name was put in the frame? The jury will have to ask themselves whether there was some overzealous reason. Did something untoward happen in the investigation or were people carried away with the belief that he was a monster?”

Mr Black said that in six weeks of prosecution evidence horrific allegations had been made. ”They are, if true, a catalogue of man’s inhumanity to children and man’s inhumanity to other men. It is a litany of disgusting and depraved behaviour. There are not any words to excuse the conduct, which, if it is true, will be rightly condemned by you when you bring your verdict. The allegations are horrific and terrible. Let there be no bones about it.”

However, Mr Black questioned how such abuses could have gone on for so long unnoticed. He said: ”This is a man who had a distinguished career in social services who went from one home to another because they wanted him to. He was widely regarded.”

During his evidence, Mr Beck said councillors and Dorothy Edwards, Leicestershire’s then director of social services, frequently visited homes he ran. Virginia Bottomley, now the Health Minister, had visited once.

October 30, 1991

THE FORMER officer in charge of three Leicestershire children’s homes, alleged to have systematically abused and assaulted children and staff during a 13-year reign of terror, was framed, Leicester crown court was told yesterday.

Opening the defence of Frank Beck, aged 49, John Black said there was a ‘significant and emphatic question mark hanging over this case in relation to the integrity of the police and some of the witnesses’.

He asked the jury to consider how Mr Beck’s name had been put into the frame. ‘You do not have to find that the police or any one policeman behaved in such a disgusting way, but you may like to ask how it came about. Was there some over-zealous or malign reason why people were carried away by the belief he was a monster?’

Mr Black said the allegations against Mr Beck were a litany of disgusting and depraved behaviour. ‘They are, if they are true, a catalogue of man’s inhumanity to children and to other men. If there is anything worse than this, imagine what it is like to be accused of it if it is not true.’

On Monday, after the court had heard six weeks of evidence from 45 witnesses, Mr Beck was acquitted on five of the 29 charges against him.

He and his two former deputies, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, 41, of Chatham, Kent, had faced a total of 32 charges of abuse and sexual abuse against children aged between eight and 16, and former members of staff. They denied all charges.

Referring to one of the prosecution witnesses whose evidence was ruled unsafe by Mr Justice Jowitt, and two others who cannot be named, Mr Black asked how they could have made allegations which were ‘palpably and physically untrue’.

He urged the jury to question the evidence of former residents who may have had ‘horrible memories’ of hated regression therapy. ‘You will have to consider do they have motives. Have they been encouraged or enticed to give evidence.’

Mr Beck had enjoyed a distinguished career in the social services, he had become a ‘victim of time whose word would have to be assessed against the testimony of other witnesses in the absence of firm evidence’.

The jury would have to ask why former residents who claimed to have been abused later visited Mr Beck voluntarily ‘sometimes with their wives, girlfriends, and children, in some cases years later’.

He said the reign of terror was a nonsense. ‘Could you really accept that nobody would stop Mr Beck when everybody could see what was going on, or is the truth very different from what has been brought before you.’

Giving evidence, Mr Beck denied ever physically or sexually abusing children or staff at the homes where he was officer-in-charge between 1973 and 1986: The Poplars, Market Harborough, and the Ratcliffe Road and Beeches children’s homes in Leicester.

Mr Beck also denied being a homosexual, an MI6 spy, or an interrogator during his nine years of service in the Royal Marines.

After training as a social worker Mr Beck was appointed officer-in-charge of the Poplars in 1973. He said regression therapy, which he had taught while working at a Northampton residential home, was introduced when the unit moved to the Ratcliffe Road home in Leicester.

He said a child’s emotional development was like climbing up a ladder. Some children had rungs missing, and regression therapy worked by going ‘back down the ladder and finding the rungs that were missing and hopefully replacing them’.

Children were regressed to their early childhood by removing their responsibilities; they might be dressed and bathed by staff and given a baby’s bottle. He denied that children were forced to wear nappies.

Asked about an alleged practice of inducing temper tantrums in children, Mr Beck denied that violence or tickling was used to provoke them. ‘We didn’t have to encourage them to have tantrums, 90 per cent were very aggressive and at the drop of a hat would blow. Our only encouragement was that once they’d blown we wouldn’t say ‘stop it’.’

He said many children placed in his care had been abused and often had a history of violence. ‘All the children had worn their parents out so that parents had rejected the child out of sheer helplessness.’

He said it would have been impossible to run the homes with a reign of terror, but admitted losing his temper on occasion: ‘I’m afraid I’m not a saint.’

October 31, 1991

A FORMER children’s home boss yesterday told a court that he counselled a boy in care who had been sexually abused by Greville Janner, the Labour MP for Leicester West. It was alleged that the youngster was sexually assaulted by the MP over a two-year period.

The claim was made by Frank Beck, aged 49, who was giving evidence at Leicester crown court. Beck denies 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse of children and former members of staff over a 13-year period up until 1978.

He said that a lot of youngsters in his care at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home, Leicester, had sexual experience.

”One child has been buggered and abused for two solid years by Greville Janner,” he said.

Beck, formerly of Leicester, denied he had physically abused children. The trial continues today.

Kingsley Napley, lawyers for Mr Janner, said in a statement to the Press Association: ”All we can say within the constraints of the Contempt of Court Act is that since the trial is continuing at Leicester crown court the matter is sub judice.

”We have therefore advised Greville Janner that he is prevented from making any statements at this stage.”

October 31, 1991

A former children’s homes chief broke down in court today as he told how he wrote to Labour MP Greville Janner in an attempt to stop his alleged relationship with an orphan boy in care.

Frank Beck, 49, wept as he told how he contacted the Leicester West MP at the House of Commons to try to end his contact with 15-year-old Mr A. “The boy had been abused something chronic and I wasn’t going to have it,”

Beck told Leicester Crown Court. Asked by John Black, defending, whether Mr A had ever tried to visit people outside the home, Beck said he had, adding: “I wrote to the person concerned in 1977 or 1978.” Mr Black asked him: “Who was it you wrote to, Mr Beck?” Beck replied: “Greville Janner at the Commons in London.”

Mr Black asked: “Why did you write to him ?” Beck, still weeping, said: “I had spent two years putting right the damage that man had done to that boy and he (Janner) had the bloody audacity to complain to me because the boy had been down to London and met him accidentally. I was incensed.” Beck said Mr Janner had written to him after the accidental meeting and the letter had been put on the boy’s social services file. He said Mr A had shown a friend round the House of Commons during a visit “because he knew it very well”. Mr Black asked if he had reported the incident to anyone and Beck replied: “Yes I did, the director of social services, Dorothy Edwards.” Beck, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, is accused of 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse on children in care and former members of staff. He denies the charges allegedly committed at three children’s homes over a 13-year period up until 1986. Describing how Mr A had been admitted to the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester that he ran in 1975, Beck said: “He had major sexual problems. He thought he was a girl and behaved in a homosexual manner. “He would basically offer his body to anyone who wanted it.” Asked by Mr Black to describe the boy’s general behaviour, Beck replied: “I suppose ‘sophistication’ would be the right word.

“He was used to mixing in top-class company and had picked up many of the good manners and practices from there.” Beck said a man visited the home with a bicycle for the boy.

“It was attempted to be delivered,” he said. “The man who delivered it was told it was not appropriate and should be taken away. “I believed it was a bribe and I did not want to encourage the relationship at all with the person concerned.”

Asked if he had a homosexual relationship with Paul, Beck replied: “No. I say that very strongly indeed.” He added: “Mr A to my knowledge did not indulge in homosexual activity after he left the home. He is now a happily married man with three children.”

Beck said he had kept in touch with Mr A and had attended his marriage and the christening of his first child. 

October 31, 1991

A MAN named Greville Janner sexually abused a boy in care over a two-year period, the chief of a children’s home told a court yesterday.

Later, Stephen Pollard, of Kingsley Napley, lawyers for Greville Janner, the Labour MP for Leicester West, said in a statement to the Press Association: ”All we can say within the constraints of the Contempt of Court Act is that since the trial is continuing at Leicester Crown Court the matter is sub judice. We have therefore advised Greville Janner that he is prevented from making any statements at this stage.”

Frank Beck made the allegation while giving evidence at Leicester Crown Court, where he is denying 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse of children and former members of staff at children’s homes over a 13-year period up until 1986.

He said many of the youngsters in his care at Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester, had had sexual experiences.

”A number had been abused,” he said. ”A lot of them felt they were responsible for that abuse and suffered a great deal of guilt.

”I only ever got caught up in spontaneous chats with one child where a great deal of sexual activity was discussed. No, I would say two children.”

He added: ”One child had been buggered and abused for two solid years by Greville Janner. That child felt guilty and it was important that it should be talked about so he did not suffer the guilt.”

Mr Beck, 49, said he encouraged children to talk about sexual matters because so many had been abused. He admitted, under questioning from John Black, defending, that he had told children to go and masturbate themselves.

”Two children had been seriously abused – the one I’ve already mentioned, he was abused over two years – and another one who had spent long periods in London,” Mr Beck said. ”It was necessary to discuss with them what they had been through.”

He denied encouraging any boys to behave homosexually, adding: ”I think I did more than most to try and prevent it.”

He had acted angrily when boys at the home were caught together in a homosexual act, he said.

Earlier in the trial a woman who claimed Mr Beck raped and buggered her said she overheard an argument between Mr Beck and a boy resident named as Mr A.

”It was an argument about him going off to see a man called Greville Janner?” Mr Black asked the woman, who is now 31.

She replied: ”He was shouting to Mr A that he wasn’t going to see Greville Janner any more.”

She said Mr A boasted of being a rent boy when he first arrived at the home.

Mr Beck, formerly of Leicester, was close to tears as he denied physically abusing children. He said he had slapped children.

Quoting from a phrase in a report he wrote in the 1970s on control of children in care, Mr Beck said: ”Punishment without love is bitterness, punishment based on fear destroys. I don’t believe anyone has the right to hit anyone unless they love them.”

October 31, 1991

A BOY at a children’s home was abused and buggered for ‘two solid years’ by a man named as Greville Janner, the Leicestershire child abuse trial heard yesterday.

Frank Beck, aged 49, the former officer in charge of three homes, who is accused of buggering 11 children during a 13-year ‘reign of terror’, made the allegation during his second day of evidence at Leicester crown court.

Asked by John Black, defending, why he had engaged in conversations about sex with children in the home, he replied: ‘A lot of children had some pretty bad experiences. A number had been abused. A lot felt they were responsible for it.

‘One child had been abused and buggered for two solid years by Greville Janner. That child felt guilty, and it was important that it should be talked about so he did not suffer the guilt.’

Earlier in the trial, a 31-year-old woman who claimed she had been raped and buggered by Mr Beck, told the jury she had overheard Mr Beck and a boy at the home arguing ‘about Greville Janner’. She said Mr Beck forbade the boy, who said he was a rent boy, from visiting Mr Janner.

Greville Janner, QC, aged 63, has been Labour MP for Leicester West since 1974. He was president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews from 1979 to 1985 and is married with three children.

Mr Beck, who was officer in charge at The Poplars, Market Harborough, and the Ratcliffe Road and Beeches children’s homes in Leicester between 1973 and 1986, denies 27 charges of abuse and assault against children aged between 8 and 16 and members of staff.

In the dock with him are two former deputies, Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of Chatham, Kent, who denies indecently assaulting a teenage boy and indecently assaulting and assaulting a girl; and George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, who denies buggering a 14-year-old boy with Mr Beck.

Mr Beck told the jury that sex was an ‘open subject’ in the homes. Children would be encouraged to talk freely about subjects like masturbation and nudity using ‘behind the shed’ language.

He would, on occasion, tell children to masturbate themselves when their behaviour indicated that they ‘wished to express their sexuality’.

He had discussed sexuality in detail with two children, including the one he said was abused for two years.

Mr Beck denied detailed allegations made by eight former residents of homes where he was in charge. He said he had never met a man called Mr C, whose allegation that he was buggered by Mr Beck was thrown out by Mr Justice Jowitt on Monday.

The jury was shown a photograph of one of the boys, Mr F, which Mr Beck said had been taken shortly after Mr F alleged he assaulted him, causing him two black eyes and a bruised lip. He said the photograph showed no injury. He said a 31-year-old woman’s allegations that she had sexual contact with him while at Ratcliffe Road contained ‘not a single word’ of truth.

The trial continues.

- Last night Stephen Pollard, of Kingsley Napley, lawyers for Mr Janner, said in a statement: ‘Since the trial is continuing at Leicester Crown Court the matter is sub judice. We have therefore advised Greville Janner that he is prevented from making any statements at this stage.’

November 1, 1991

A FORMER children’s homes chief wept in court yesterday as he told how he wrote to the MP Greville Janner in an attempt to stop his alleged relationship with an orphan boy in care.

Frank Beck, 49, said: ”The boy had been abused something chronic and I wasn’t going to have it.”
He told Leicester Crown Court that the 15-year-old boy, Mr A, had tried to visit people outside the home, adding: ”I wrote to the person concerned in 1977 or 1978.”

Asked by John Black, for the defence, who he had written to, he replied: ”Greville Janner at the Commons in London.”

Mr Black asked: ”Why did you write to him?”

He replied: ”I had spent two years putting right the damage that man had done to that boy and he Mr Janner had the bloody audacity to complain to me because the boy had been down to London and met him accidentally.”

He said Mr Janner had written to him after the accidental meeting and the letter had been put on the boy’s social services file. He said Mr A had shown a friend round the Commons during a visit ”because he knew it very well”.

Mr Beck said he reported the incident to the director of social services, Dorothy Edwards.

Mr Beck, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse of children in care and former members of staff. The charges cover a 13-year period up until 1986.

Also in the dock are two former social workers, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Beacon Hill, Chatham, Kent, who is accused of three offences of sexual and physical abuse of children, and George Lincoln, 39, of Carsons Drive, Great Cornard, Sudbury, Suffolk, who is accused jointly with Mr Beck of buggery.

November 1, 1991

THE former officer in charge of three Leicestershire children’s homes, who is accused of beating and abusing children and staff, told a jury yesterday how he tried to stop an alleged homosexual affair between a 15-year-old boy and the Labour MP, Greville Janner.

Giving evidence for the third day at Leicester crown court, Frank Beck, aged 49, said he reported the affair to the then director of Leicestershire social services and wrote to Mr Janner.

In tears, Mr Beck told the jury that the boy, an orphan placed in his care at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home, had been ‘abused something chronic’.

He said he had prevented Mr Janner from visiting the boy and ‘stopped the supply of goodies’ to him.

On Wednesday Mr Beck told the jury that an unnamed boy had been abused ‘for two solid years’ by Mr Janner, aged 63, a barrister who is married with three children.

Mr Janner has been MP for Leicester West since 1974 and a Leicester MP since 1970. His lawyers said they had advised him not to comment on the allegations while the Leicestershire abuse trial was in progress.

Mr Beck denies 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse against children, aged betwen eight and 16, and staff, between 1973 and 1986.

He said yesterday that the boy ‘thought he was a girl and behaved in a homosexual manner’ when he was admitted to the Ratcliffe Road home in 1975. ‘He had major sexual problems. He would basically offer his body to anyone who wanted it and would rub his body up against any male person and children.’

Mr Beck said he counselled the boy regularly because of his problems. He had picked up sophisticated manners from mixing in ‘top class’ company and boasted that he ‘knew somebody who would put me in my place, if necessary.’

Asked by John Black, defending, how he had stopped the boy getting his own way, Mr Beck replied: ‘I actually stopped the person from coming to see him and stopped the supply of goodies. He had more toys and goodies than I had ever seen.’

On one occasion a man had visited the home with a bicycle for the boy. Mr Beck had prevented him from delivering it because he ‘believed it was a bribe’ and did not want to encourage the relationship with the person.

Asked if he had ever tried to visit people outside the home, Mr Beck said that he had, and added: ‘I wrote to the person concerned in 1977 or 1978.’

Mr Black: ‘Who was it you wrote to, Mr Beck ?’ Mr Beck: ‘Greville Janner at the Commons in London.’

Mr Black: ‘Why did you write to him ?’ Mr Beck: ‘I had spent two years putting right the damage that man had done to that boy and he had the bloody audacity to complain to me because the boy had been down to London and met him accidentally. I was incensed.’

Mr Beck said Mr Janner had written to him after the accidental meeting and the letter had been put on the boy’s social services file.

He said he had also reported the incident to the director of social services, Dorothy Edwards.

Asked if he had a homosexual relationship with the boy, Mr Beck replied: ‘No. I say that very strongly indeed.’

He added: ‘To my knowledge he did not indulge in homosexual activity after he left the home. He is now a happily married man with three children.’

Mr Beck said he had attended his marriage and the christening of his first child.

Also in the dock are former social workers Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of Chatham, Kent, who is accused of three offences of sexual and physical abuse on children, and George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, who is accused jointly with Mr Beck of buggery on a boy.

November 2, 1991

THE head of three Leicestershire children’s homes yesterday denied attempting to blackmail the Labour MP Greville Janner over his alleged two-year relationship with a teenage boy.

Frank Beck, aged 49, told Peter Joyce QC, prosecuting, at Leicester crown court: ‘I have never asked Mr Janner for anything . . . that I can think of.’

He claimed instead that Mr Janner had sent the boy pounds 50.

He denied an allegation that he had tried to bring Mr Janner and the boy together in 1989. Mr Beck said he had contacted Mr Janner to inform him ‘that he had failed, and the boy he buggered now had a son’.

He said that ‘Greville Janner phoned me at home and wrote one letter to my knowledge’.

Mr Janner has been MP for Leicester West since 1974 and a Leicester MP since 1970. His lawyers said they have advised him not to comment on the allegations while the Leicestershire abuse trial is in progress.

Mr Beck denies 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse between 1973 and 1986 against children, aged between eight and 16, and against staff.

Earlier in yesterday’s hearing Mr Beck denied persuading one of his co-accused to have homosexual sex with him.

Defence counsel for Peter Jaynes, aged 42, claimed Mr Beck used staff supervision sessions as a cover for buggery while Mr Jaynes was his deputy at a children’s home in the 1970s.

Mr Jaynes denies three charges of physical and sexual abuse against two children in the Ratcliffe Road home in Leicester.

Graham Buchanan, defending Mr Jaynes, said: ‘Jaynes was supervised by you up the stairs and into your bed, wasn’t he?’

Mr Beck replied: ‘That is not true. Peter Jaynes asked me to be the best man at his wedding.’

Mr Buchanan claimed Mr Beck was overbearing, aggressive and violent towards Mr Jaynes and other junior social workers. He said Mr Jaynes was publicly ridiculed by Mr Beck and encouraged to become a homosexual.

Mr Beck said the suggestions were ridiculous. ‘I had no idea about his private life.’

When asked how he did run the homes, he said: ‘It was very democratic. It wasn’t a dictatorship.’

Mr Buchanan, referring to Mr Beck’s service as a Royal Marine, said of the Ratcliffe Road home: ‘It was run like a commando group.’ Mr Beck said: ‘I think you have to be in a commando group to realise how ridiculous that was.’

Mr Beck also denied setting himself up as a ‘petty psychiatrist’ who would sort out the problems of his staff.

Mr Buchanan claimed Mr Jaynes was an ‘emotional ruin’ when Mr Beck arrived and naive enough to fall under his control.

Mr Beck said: ‘I’ve never thought about it. He was highly qualified in residential social work.’

Mr Buchanan, reading from a statement made by Mr Beck to police, asked him why, when asked if he was homosexual, he had replied, ‘I don’t think so. I intend to see a psychiatrist.’ ‘

Mr Beck said the remark was ‘partly out of context. I was under quite a shock at the time.’

November 5, 1991

Police covered up MP’s sex with boy, ex-children’s worker alleges

FRANK Beck, the former children’s home chief accused of abusing children and staff, yesterday accused the police of hiding an affair between a 15-year-old boy and the Labour MP, Greville Janner.

Giving evidence in Leicester crown court, Mr Beck, aged 49, claimed the boy, an orphan placed in his care at a Leicester children’s home, had had sex with Mr Janner, a QC and the MP for Leicester West, during an overnight stay at an hotel.

Earlier, Mr Beck claimed Mr Janner had buggered the boy for two years.

He said yesterday he did not include the allegation in his police statement in February this year because ‘it was never my intention to drag Mr Janner into court’.

He claimed police knew about the allegations. ‘The police told me they knew about Janner and they have covered it up as you have,’ Mr Beck told Peter Joyce, QC, prosecuting.

Mr Janner’s lawyers say they have advised him not to comment during the trial. Mr Beck denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse on children and former staff, allegedly at three Leicestershire social services children’s homes over 13 years until 1986.

Cross-examined by Mr Joyce, Mr Beck said the boy told him he had stayed with Mr Janner at the Holiday Inn in Leicester.

He admitted he wrote to Mr Janner after the boy had married and become a father.

‘I thought (Mr Janner) might have felt guilty enough to try to help find (him) employment.’

Mr Joyce asked: ‘Does that sound like blackmail to you?’

Mr Beck: ‘I asked for practical help.’

Two other former social workers are in the dock. Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of Chatham, Kent, denies three charges of sexual and physical abuse of children in care, and George Lincoln, aged 49, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies one offence.

November 7, 1991

A LANGUAGE expert told the Leicestershire child abuse trial yesterday that police statements in the prosecution of a social worker were the work of more than one person.

Andrew Morton, of the University of Glasgow, said patterns of language used in some prosecution witness statements against Frank Beck, 49, were inconsistent.

Mr Morton analysed the statements using the ”cusum” technique which he pioneered, and claims can show if a piece of writing is the work of one or more people.

Leicester Crown Court was shown cusum graphs of several statements given to police by former children in care at homes that Mr Beck ran.

Of two statements made by a woman alleging she was raped by Mr Beck when she was a girl, Mr Morton said: ”There is certainly more than one source for this statement. We’re not talking about smudged lipstick, we’re talking about broken ribs. These are fundamental differences. Neither statement is the simple utterance of the woman.”

He claimed the statements of two former boys in care, Mr G and Mr F, also showed ”multiple sources”.

But under cross-examination, Mr Morton agreed the results of his tests were also consistent with a policeman listening to a witness’s account and arranging it in chronological order.

Earlier in the trial, the defence counsel for Mr Beck claimed police officers investigating the case influenced statements given by witnesses.

Mr Beck denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse against children and staff members between 1974 and l986. Two former deputies, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, and George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, deny a total of four charges.

November 9, 1991

A FORMER boy in care at a children’s home alleged at Leicester crown court yesterday that he had been sexually abused by Greville Janner, Labour MP for Leicester West, during a two-year relationship that began when he was aged 13.

Mr A, now 30, claimed that he had been fondled when he slept with Mr Janner at the MP’s London home after meeting him at the House of Commons, and that later he had been buggered, once in a double bed at a hotel in Mr Janner’s constituency and twice during a lecture tour in Scotland. He also alleged that the MP had had simulated sex with him.

Mr A told the court that he had been given money, toys, clothing and tickets for concerts by the MP during their relationship, and said: ”I had become accustomed to the gifts I was receiving and the expensive restaurants, so I went along with it.”

Mr A, married with three children, was giving defence evidence yesterday for Frank Beck, the former officer in charge of three children’s homes run by Leicestershire social services, at which Mr Beck is alleged to have conducted a reign of terror. Mr Beck, aged 49, has denied 27 charges alleging sexual and physical abuse, including buggery against children and social work staff over a 13-year period. Two other residential social workers have denied a total of four charges.

Mr A claimed in court yesterday that it had been Mr Beck who had ended his relationship with Mr Janner, aged 63. He admitted that he had stolen from Mr Janner and that, since Mr Beck’s arrest, he had spoken to two national newspapers, but he denied that he had tried to sell his story. He claimed that he had regularly slept with Mr Janner in a suite at the Holiday Inn, Leicester, when the MP visited the constituency.

Mr A said that he had been in foster homes and children’s homes all his life. When he was 12 or 13, he had met Mr Janner while he was staying in a children’s home in Wigston, Leicester.

Mr A said he had been a volunteer for a community project that Mr Janner had launched and that he and other children had later been invited to the Commons. After the visit, the MP had seen him again and invited him back to the Commons by himself, arranging train tickets for his journey to London. He said that he and Mr Janner had corresponded regularly and there had been at least one telephone call a week.

Mr A said that he usually met Mr Janner at the Holiday Inn and sometimes stayed overnight in a suite. They would use the hotel swimming pool, sometimes, with the agreement of the management, when it was supposed to be closed. They would be naked when they showered together afterwards and washed each other down.

He said that, during the relationship, he had stolen money from Mr Janner’s wallet. He told the court: ”It was my own way of getting back at him for what he was doing to me.” Mr Janner had found out and had been annoyed and later wrote Mr A a letter asking why he had done it. Mr Janner had warned him that he would stop seeing him if he stole from him again.

Mr A said that, after that, there had been no more sexual incidents because there had been no more overnight stays.

November 9, 1991

Man tells of sex sessions with MP while in care

A FORMER child in council care testified yesterday that Greville Janner QC, the Labour MP for Leicester West, buggered and sexually assaulted him for two years until he was 15.

Mr A, now 30, told Leicester Crown Court that he was buggered twice by Mr Janner, while travelling alone with him on a two-week lecture tour in Scotland.

He also described spending weekends with Mr Janner, 63, arranged by a social worker, during which he was sexually abused at the MP’s London home and in a bedroom at the Holiday Inn Hotel, Leicester. He told the court that he was sent letters signed ”Love, Greville”.

Mr A detailed swimming sessions which took place alone with the MP in the hotel pool when it was closed to the public. ”I was fondled in my private area. It seemed at first like a bit of fun, being thrown around in the water, but he would hold me close.”

He was giving evidence during the trial of Frank Beck, 49, of Braunstone, Leicester, who denies 27 charges of physically and sexually abusing children and members of staff at three Leicestershire children’s homes he ran between 1973 and 1986.

Mr A told the court that Mr Beck had stopped his relationship with Mr Janner when he moved, aged 15, to the Ratcliffe Road home, run by Mr Beck, who also blocked Mr Janner’s letters. Mr A said that he had been infuriated when Mr Beck returned a Christmas present of a 10-speed racing bicycle the MP sent to him.

Earlier in the trial, Mr Beck, 49, said he reported the alleged relationship between Mr Janner and Mr A to Dorothy Edwards, the then Director of Social Services for Leicestershire.

Mr A told the court that he was 13 when he first met Mr Janner, who has been an MP since 1970, during a school visit to the House of Commons.

Subsequently, Barbara Fitt, then Officer-in-Charge of Station Road children’s home, Wigston, Leicester, arranged weekly trips for Mr A to the MP’s London home and to the Holiday Inn where Mr Janner, who is married with three children, often stayed.

However, Mr A accepted under cross-examination that Mrs Fitt did not in fact take over the home until four months before he left it and could not therefore have arranged the first visits.

He described one weekend when he went alone to London and spent the evening at Mr Janner’s home, during which he spent time in bed with the MP. After that there were regular weekly meetings.

However, Mr A said that his own behaviour deteriorated. He had sex at the home with both boys and girls and ran away frequently. Eventually he moved to Ratcliffe Road home.

Under cross-examination he confirmed he had named Mr Janner after the MP had refused his request to help Mr Beck, when abuse charges were first brought last year. Two of Mr Beck’s former colleagues; Peter Jaymes, 42, of Chatham, Kent and George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, deny four related charges.

Later Mr Janner’s solicitor, Sir David Napley, said he could not comment on the allegations made in court as the matter was sub judice. But a statement made before the start of the trial denied all the accusations made by Mr Beck.

November 9, 1991

Abuse case witness tells of sex with MP: Beck ‘rescued boy from affair with Greville Janner’

A MAN who was in care as a boy told a jury yesterday how he was sexually abused by Greville Janner, QC, the Labour MP for Leicester West.

Mr A, aged 30, was called as a witness by Frank Beck, aged 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, who denies 27 charges of sexually and physically abusing children in care and former staff members at Leicester children’s homes in a 13-year period until 1986.

Mr Beck has claimed he rescued Mr A from sexual abuse by Mr Janner and prevented further contact.

Earlier, Mr A said Mr Beck put him on the right path as a teenager. He claimed he counselled him over his relationship with the MP, and stopped him seeing him. He also said Mr Beck returned a bicycle the MP sent him for Christmas and intercepted his letters.

Mr A, now a married father, told the jury at Leicester crown court that he was 13 years old when he slept with Mr Janner at his London home.

The trial had heard earlier claims Mr Janner had been Mr A’s ‘befriender’ – someone who took children outafter vetting by social workers.

Mr A said he was invited by Mr Janner for a weekend stay and during the evening was alone in a bedroom. He said the MP came in to reassure him as he was crying, then came back and said ‘if I was that upset I could sleep with him. We ended up in his bed together and he cuddled me . . . Eventually we lay beside each other. We cuddled and fondled together. I didn’t like it and told him to stop it.’

He said he was in care at the Station Road children’s home in Leicester when he was recruited, with others, by the MP to tidy up an estate. On a school trip to the House of Commons they were met by Mr Janner. Afterwards, Mr A said Mr Janner went to his school and he accepted an invitation to visit the Commons.

He claimed he was again invited to London where the alleged fondling took place.

He claimed he saw Mr Janner regularly when he was in Leicester on constituency work. He would stay in his hotel, sleeping in his bed. He also claimed he was once fondled by Mr Janner in the hotel’s pool.

John Black, counsel for Mr Beck, asked what happened when they were in bed. Mr A replied: ‘Petting and fondling.’ Asked if it ever went further than that, he said Mr Janner ‘simulated sex’ with him ‘five or six times throughout the period I knew him’.

Asked if it ever went further at Mr Janner’s hotel, he replied: ‘Only on one occasion. I cried and tried to push away from him.’ Mr A said he was 13 1/2 when this occurred. He said the MP bought him toys, clothes and concert tickets.

He later told the jury that during their alleged two-year relationship – when he said he saw the MP ‘most weekends and sometimes during the week’ – he accompanied Mr Janner on a two-week lecture tour of Scotland, when they stayed in hotel rooms together. He said he was twice buggered by the MP on the tour. Asked if he liked what happened, he said: ‘No, I did not, and I tried to stop it.’ He said he stole money from the MP’s wallet, as ‘my way of getting back at him’.

After returning to the children’s home he said Mr Janner rang the head of the home, Barbara Fitt, who then handed him the receiver. He said the MP told him he would give him ‘another chance’, to which he agreed. But their contact became less frequent, and there was no further alleged abuse.

On trial with Mr Beck are Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of Chatham, Kent, who denies three charges and George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, who denies one charge. Both are former Leicestershire residential social workers

Mr Janner, aged 63, married for 36 years with three children, has been a Leicester MP since 1970.

November 12, 1991

MP ‘sent letter to boy, 13′

GREVILLE Janner, the Labour MP, sent a 13-year-old boy a letter after they allegedly slept together, a child sex abuse trial at Leicester crown court was told yesterday.

The letter, signed ”Safe journey, Love Greville” and dated July 7, 1975, was produced in court while Mr A, now aged 30, was giving evidence.

Mr A said that he had kept other letters from the 63-year-old MP during their affair, which had lasted for two years.

Mr A told the court that he was sexually abused by Mr Janner, a QC, while in the care of social services. He claimed that sex acts took place at Mr Janner’s London home and at hotels.

He was giving evidence on behalf of Frank Beck, aged 49, a former head of children’s homes, who has denied 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse of children and former members of staff. Mr A said that he was never ill-treated by Mr Beck and that he was transferred to a home run by him after the alleged abuse by Mr Janner.

Asked why he had written to Mr Janner after Mr Beck’s arrest, he replied: ”I believe Mr Beck to be innocent and should not be treated in the way he is being treated, and Mr Janner may have been able to help him in some way.”

Also in the dock are Mr Beck’s former deputy, Peter Jaynes, aged 42, who denies three offences involving children, and George Lincoln, aged 39, who denies one charge.

November 12, 1991

A former child care worker told a court today he never saw any youngsters being sexually abused during the six years he worked at a children’s home. Richard Loweth was giving evidence at the trial of three former residential social workers accused of abusing children in care.

It is alleged that The Beeches, in Leicester, was one of three Leicestershire homes where the abuse took place during a 13-year period up until 1986. But Mr Loweth, now a registered firearms dealer, told Leicester Crown Court there was never even a hint of sexual abuse of children by any member of staff during the time he worked there.

One of the accused is former children’s homes chief Frank Beck, 49. He allegedly abused children while officer in charge at three homes including The Beeches. Asked by Mr John Black, defending Beck, if there had been any sexual abuse, Mr Loweth replied: “No, and I would go further than that. I didn’t hear, see nor gain information, neither was it ever suggested or spoken of any sexual abuse of children by staff at the home.”

November 12, 1991

Witness in abuse trial ‘kept letters from MP’

THE LABOUR MP Greville Janner sent a 13-year-old boy a letter after they allegedly slept together, the Leicestershire child sex abuse trial was told yesterday.

The letter – signed ”Safe journey, Love Greville” and dated 7 July 1975 – was produced in court when Mr A, now 30, was giving evidence.

Mr A said he had kept other letters from the 63-year-old MP for Leicester West during their two-year affair.

Leicester Crown Court was told by Mr A that he was sexually abused by Mr Janner, a QC, over a two-year period while he was in the care of social services.

Mr A said he twice stayed at Mr Janner’s home in London, and that various sexual acts took place there and at hotels around the country.

He was giving evidence on behalf of former children’s homes chief Frank Beck, 49, who has denied 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse on children and former members of staff.

Mr A, who was transferred to a home run by Mr Beck after the alleged abuse by Mr Janner, said he was never ill- treated by Mr Beck.

He was asked why he had written to Mr Janner after Mr Beck’s arrest for a reference for the defendant.

He replied: ”I believe Mr Beck to be innocent and should not be treated in the way he is being treated and Mr Janner may have been able to help him in some way.”

Also accused are Mr Beck’s former deputy Peter Jaynes, 42, who denies three offences involving children, and George Lincoln, 39, who denies one charge.

November 12, 1991

‘Janner letter’ in court

A LETTER said to have been written by Greville Janner to a 13-year-old orphan boy in care after they allegedly slept together at the Labour MP’s home was produced at Leicester crown court yesterday.

The letter was signed ‘safe journey, love Greville’ and dated 3am, July 7, 1975, the court was told.

Mr A, now aged 30, was giving evidence at the trial of Frank Beck, 49, who denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse of children and former members of the staff when running children’s homes in Leicestershire.

Mr Beck’s counsel, John Black, had handed the letter to the court.

Mr A alleges he was sexually abused by 63-year-old Mr Janner, a QC, over a two-year period while in care of social services.

He said he twice stayed at Mr Janner’s London home and claimed sex acts took place there and at hotels around the country.

Last Friday Mr A had suggested there was only one stay at Mr Janner’s home.

‘I was very nervous and upset at having to appear (in court) and may have got one visit mixed up with another as I had visited the home more than once,’ he said.

Mr A also claimed he was nervous when he made a statement to police about Mr Janner.

In the statement he did not allege buggery but told the court last Friday that intercourse, as well as simulated and oral sex, took place.

He claimed he told police of the buggery allegations in a later statement.

Mr A, who said he had kept other letters from the MP,

told the court he was transferred to a home run by Mr Beck after the alleged abuse by Mr Janner.

He said he was never ill-treated by Mr Beck.

When asked why he had written to Mr Janner after Mr Beck’s arrest for a reference for the defendant he replied: ‘I believe Mr Beck to be innocent and should not be treated in the way he is being treated and Mr Janner may have been able to help him in some way.’

November 15, 1991

Social worker ‘ashamed’ of his care conduct in children’s homes

A SOCIAL worker accused of child abuse said yesterday he was ‘thoroughly ashamed’ of his conduct in children’s homes in the 1970s.

Peter Jaynes, aged 42, told Leicester crown court he had become involved in cruelty to youngsters in care under the influence of his boss, Frank Beck.

Mr Beck, aged 49, denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse over a 13-year period when he was head of three Leicestershire children’s homes.

Mr Jaynes – Mr Beck’s deputy at two homes between 1973 and 1978 – told the jury that Mr Beck’s philosophy was to ‘break children before caring for them’.

He denies two charges of indecent assault against a boy and a girl and one of assaulting the same girl causing her actual bodily harm.

Mr Jaynes earlier gave evidence about so-called regression therapy which was used at the Leicestershire homes. It has been alleged during the trial the therapy was the guise behind which sexual abuse of children took place.

He said Mr Beck was the co-ordinator of the therapy and everybody else learned from him. Children were provoked, he said, by ‘aggravated tickling’, blowing in the child’s ears, calling them names and discussing their family. He had taken part in this.

‘I thought at the time and for my own part I was doing good,’ he said. Some children had responded to the therapy and ‘appeared to function better’.

November 16, 1991

Abuse claims against MP ‘a red herring’

ALLEGATIONS against an MP made in a child sex abuse trial were a red herring and should be ignored, a jury was told yesterday.

Peter Joyce QC, for the prosecution, said claims that Greville Janner, MP for Leicester West, sexually abused a boy were to ”divert attention” from Frank Beck, 49.
During the trial Mr A, a witness, claimed he was buggered and molested by Mr Janner as a boy until Mr Beck stopped it.

At Leicester Crown Court, Mr Beck denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse over 13 years when he ran three children’s homes in Leicestershire.

Mr Joyce, in his closing speech to the jury, said: ”It is put forward as a great pretence that Mr Beck was the great protector.”

He said the allegation against the MP had been ”blurted out” in commital proceedings by Mr Beck, but an earlier statement by Mr A had made no reference to it. ”Why did he Mr A get in touch with the News of the World and The Sun?” he asked. ”You know why and he knows why.”

Mr Joyce claimed the theory that Mr Beck had been the victim of a huge conspiracy had been ”blown into oblivion” by the evidence. Any conspiracy would have had to involve not just the police but former children and staff.

Two of Mr Beck’s former deputies, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, and George Lincoln, of Sudbury, Suffolk, deny a total of four charges.


The Guardian
 (London)

November 19, 1991

MP’s letter to boy ‘extraordinary’

LENGTH: 309 words

ALLEGATIONS that an MP sexually abused a boy are a powerful piece of evidence in the trial of a former head of children’s homes, a jury at Leicester crown court was told yesterday.

John Black, summing up the defence case for Frank Beck, aged 49, said: ‘When it came to the crunch, Mr Beck did not abuse children. He stopped the abuse of children.’

Mr Beck denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse over 13 years when he ran three Leicestershire children’s homes. During the trial, the defence claimed that he put a stop to two years of abuse of a former boy in care, Mr A, now aged 30, by Greville Janner, the Labour MP for Leicester West.

Mr Black said of the evidence given by Mr A: ‘It is to try and help you decide where the truth lies about Mr Beck. Did he (Mr A) know Mr Janner? Did he visit Mr Janner’s house in London? Have you any doubts? He described Mr Janner’s house. He described the circumstances. He described a meeting.’

Mr Black said the jury had been shown an ‘extraordinary letter’ written by the MP to Mr A: ‘I did not read that letter in open court. You have seen it, you have the opportunity to read it.’

Two other witnesses had referred to the alleged abuse apart from Mr Beck and Mr A, said Mr Black.

‘It is a powerful piece of evidence in this case. If Mr Beck really did put a stop to that relationship, he was doing no more than his duty as officer in charge of that home.’

Mr Black claimed the evidence of the former director of social services, Dorothy Edwards, proved there was no ‘reign of terror’ at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in the 1970s, as the prosecution alleged.

Two of Mr Beck’s former deputies, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, and Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, deny a total of four charges. The trial continues.

November 20, 1991

The judge in the trial of Frank Beck, 49, and two other social workers accused of abusing children in Leicestershire children’s homes began his summing up at Leicester Crown Court. Mr Justice Jowitt told the jurors to view the evidence coolly and dispassionately.

November 26, 1991

Jury retires

The jury has retired to consider its verdicts in the trial of a former head of three Leicestershire children’s homes and two residential social workers at Leicester crown court.

Frank Beck, aged 49, has denied 27 charges of sexual and physical abuse of children in care and social workers. Peter Jaynes, aged 42, and George Lincoln, aged 39, have denied other charges.

November 26, 1991

Child abuse trial jury out

The jury in the trial of three former Leicestershire social workers accused of abusing children in care retired to a hotel last night having failed to reach verdicts after more than six hours of deliberation.

Frank Beck, aged 49, denies 27 charges of physical and sexual abuse of children and former colleagues between 1974 and 1986. Peter Jaynes, aged 42, denies three offences, and George Lincoln, aged 39, denies one offence.

November 26, 1991

FOUR GUILTY VERDICTS ON EX-CHILDREN’S HOME CHIEF

The former head of three children’s homes was today found guilty of sexually and physically abusing youngsters in his care.

Frank Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, was convicted on two charges of buggery, one of attempted buggery and one of actual bodily harm.

He was cleared at Leicester Crown Court on one count of buggery, one of indecent assault and one of actual bodily harm. The jury was spending its second night at a hotel while it considered the remaining 20 charges against Beck.

It is alleged he physically and sexually abused youngsters during a 13-year “reign of terror” at three Leicestershire children’s homes. The prosecution said when the trial opened in September that children at the homes Beck ran in Ratcliffe Road and The Beeches, Leicester, and The Poplars in Market Harborough were trapped in “places of darkness”. Peter Joyce QC, prosecuting, said: “There was no ray of light for those children. There was no escape for them.”

Beck’s deputy, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, was also found guilty of one charge of indecent assault on a boy and one of causing actual bodily harm to a girl while they were in care. He is also charged with another indecent assault.

Social worker and former policeman George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, faces one charge of buggery which the jury is still considering.

The jury later found Jaynes guilty of one charge of indecent assault against a boy and one charge of actual bodily harm against a girl. Beck was also found guilty of a charge of attempted buggery on a boy.

November 27, 1991

Children’s home head guilty of sexual abuse

A FORMER senior social worker accused of running ”a reign of terror” at three council-run children’s homes was yesterday found guilty at Leicester crown court of sexually abusing three boys in his care and physically assaulting one.

Frank Beck, aged 49, who was officer in charge of residential homes run by the social services department of Leicester county council between 1973 and 1986, was acquitted by the jury of three further counts of alleged sex abuse, indecent assault and causing actual bodily harm to children formerly in his care.

The four guilty verdicts came after the jury had been deliberating for almost two days. The trial of Beck and two co-defendants is in its 11th week.

Peter Jaynes, aged 41, of Chatham, Kent, Beck’s former deputy during part of the 13-year period during which offences were alleged to have been committed, was found guilty of one charge of indecent assault on a boy and one of causing actual bodily harm to a girl, who cannot be named for legal reasons. Jaynes was also found guilty of causing actual bodily harm to a girl. The jury still has to return a verdict on one other charge of indecent assault on the girl.

George Lincoln, aged 38, a former residential social worker, of Sudbury, Suffolk, faces a joint charge with Beck of serious sexual assault.

The jury has still to return its verdict on a further 20 charges against Beck, a former Royal Marine. Eight of the charges relate to allegations of serious sexual assault, six to indecent assault, three to grievous bodily harm, and one to rape. The alleged victims were children in care and two social workers.

The jury retired to consider its verdicts on Monday. It will resume deliberations today after a second night in an hotel. Beck has denied all the charges. Earlier, he was found not guilty of five charges on the directions of Mr Justice Jowitt.

The prosecution has alleged that Beck sexually and physically abused children as young as eight at the three homes in Leicester and Market Harborough. Beck, in his defence, alleged that Greville Janner, the Labour MP for Leicester West, had sexually abused a boy in care. During the trial Mr Janner’s solicitor issued a statement in which he said that he had informed the MP that the proceedings were sub judice and that he should not comment at that this stage.

Beck was found guilty of seriously sexually assaulting Mr G while the teenager was in care during the 1970s at the Ratcliffe Road Home in Leicester. Beck was also convicted of causing actual bodily harm to Mr G, now aged 29. Mr G had told the court that he went into care when he was only ten because his mother could not cope. Mr G said he had been taken by Beck to his private quarters, stripped and sexually abused. He also said that he had been physically assaulted after failing to work out a calculation for a rabbit hutch design.

Beck was further convicted of indecently assaulting another boy, Mr H, now aged 32 and married.

The former head was also found guilty of attempting to indecently assault Mr J when he was a teenager. Mr J alleged during the trial that Beck had abused him in his room at a care home.

November 27, 1991

Beck found guilty of sexual abuse of children in care

A SOCIAL worker accused of a 13-year ”reign of terror” at three Leicestershire children’s homes was yesterday convicted of sexually and physically abusing children in his care.

Frank Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, who ran the homes between 1973 and 1986, was convicted of buggering and assaulting a 13-year-old boy and of buggering a 16-year-old boy. Both were in his care at Ratcliffe Road children’s home, Leicester.

He was also found guilty of attempting to bugger a 14-year-old boy at the same home, where he was officer in charge for three years from 1975.

Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, Beck’s deputy at the home, was convicted of indecently assaulting a teenage boy and assaulting a 15-year-old girl at Ratcliffe Road. He faces a separate charge of indecently assaulting her.

The jury has still to decide on a further 20 charges against Beck, including nine of buggering children and one of raping a 15-year- old girl. Jurors will continue their deliberations on those charges today, after a spending a second night in a hotel. Beck has denied all the charges. He was cleared of assaulting and sexually assaulting Mr B, now 26, when he was 10 or 11 at Ratcliffe Road, and of additionally buggering the 16- year-old boy without consent.

Mr G, now 29, from Blackpool, had told the jury how, when he was 13, Beck held him down and buggered him after he had been taken to Beck’s quarters at Ratcliffe Road. Mr G, who was in court to hear the two guilty verdicts in relation to his allegations, had said he had felt scared and ashamed, and had told no one about the incident. He had also described how, late one night, Beck had dragged him out of bed, stripped him, shaken, punched and slapped him, leaving his nose damaged and bleeding.

Mr H, now 32, had told the jury how, as a 16-year-old on a visit to Ratcliffe Road, Beck had taken him to private quarters, stripped and buggered him. He said he still suffered nervous disorders and in 1986 had consulted a clinical psychologist. ”Over a period of time, it became clear to me that the events in the home were the reason why I was there. It was hidden, deeply hidden. I had to be hypnotised to get it out,” he told the court.

Mr J had said that when he was 14, Beck took him to his room after suggesting the boy was ”feeling randy”. Beck had tried unsuccessfully to bugger him after pushing him to the floor, he said.

A 31-year-old woman attacked by Jaynes as a 15-year old had described how she was grabbed, kicked, hit and had knuckles rubbed into her ribs by Jaynes. She said Jaynes had said her mother and father did not want her because she was a lesbian and a bastard.

The defence alleged that Beck had been framed and questioned the integrity of the police and witnesses. Counsel suggested that witnesses had been enticed with the promise of payments from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board. Beck told the court that the police were trying to cover up alleged sexual abuse of a teenage boy in council care in the mid- 1970s by Greville Janner, Labour MP for Leicester West. Beck said that he had put a stop to the alleged abuse, so proving the falseness of the charges he himself faced.

November 27, 1991

Head of home guilty of abuse

THE former head of three Leicestershire children’s homes and his deputy were yesterday found guilty of six charges of sexual and physical abuse against children in their care.

Returning six unanimous verdicts after 11 hours of deliberation at Leicester crown court, the jury found Frank Beck, the former officer in charge of the homes between 1973 and 1986, guilty of buggering two boys and assaulting one of them causing actual bodily harm.

The jury later unanimously convicted Mr Beck, aged 49, of attempting to bugger another boy and his former deputy, Peter Jaynes, aged 42, of assaulting a girl causing her actual bodily harm.

Mr Jaynes was also found guilty of indecently assaulting a boy by a majority verdict.

The jury unanimously cleared Mr Beck of an alternative buggery charge as well as charges of indecent assault and assault causing actual bodily harm.

Members of the jury were last night spending a second night in a hotel to consider a further 18 charges.

Mr Beck had been said to have presided over a 13-year ‘reign of terror’ in the homes, The Beeches and Ratcliffe Road in Leicester and The Poplars in nearby Market Harborough.

Mr Beck denied 32 charges involving 14 children and four former social workers. Last month Mr Justice Jowitt ruled that evidence on three charges of buggery and two charges of assault was unsafe.

During the trial, a former resident of one of Mr Beck’s homes alleged he had been regularly abused by a Labour MP, Greville Janner.

Mr Janner is to issue a statement on the allegations after sentence has been passed.

Mr Jaynes, of Chatham, Kent, pleaded not guilty to two charges of indecent assault and one of causing actual bodily harm, and George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, denies one joint charge with Mr Beck of buggery.

A third defendant, George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, who was Beck’s deputy at the Beeches home, denies one charge of buggering a 14-year-old boy with Beck.

November 28, 1991

Social worker raped teenager

FRANK Beck, the former Leicestershire social worker convicted of sexually and physically abusing boys in his care, was yesterday found guilty of raping a teenage girl and abusing two other boys.

A jury convicted him on a majority verdict of raping the girl, now a woman in her 30s, at the Ratcliffe Road children’s home in Leicester. He was also convicted on a unanimous verdict of buggering her.

Beck, aged 49, a former Royal Marine, was in charge of three children’s homes for 13 years until 1986. The prosecution has alleged that he conducted a reign of terror involving abuse of children and social workers. The homes were run by Leicestershire social services in Leicester and Market Harborough.

The woman told Leicester crown court earlier in the proceedings that she faked symptoms and had her appendix unnecessarily removed to escape sex abuse at the home. She said that Beck had repeatedly raped her and threatened to have her committed to a psychiatric unit if she did not comply.

Beck was also convicted yesterday of indecently assaulting Mr I, now aged 30, and of buggering Mr F, now aged 29. He was cleared of causing Mr F actual bodil harm.

The four convictions, on the third day of the jury’s deliberations in a trial that started 11 weeks ago, bring to eight the total number of convictions against Beck for sexual and physical assaults. The jury has still to return verdicts on a further 15 charges against him, including indecent assault, buggery, attempted buggery and actual bodily harm. He has denied all the charges.

The jury yesterday acquitted Peter Jaynes, aged 41, Beck’s former deputy, of indecently assaulting a girl. On Tuesday, Jaynes, of Chatham, Kent, was found guilty of indecently assaulting Mr I and causing actual bodily harm to a girl. He had denied the charges.

The jury has still to return a verdict on a joint charge of buggery against Beck and George Lincoln, aged 39, a former residential social worker of Sudbury, Suffolk, who has has denied the charge.

November 28, 1991

MP WITHDRAWS DEBATE ON CONTEMPT LAW

Labour’s Greville Janner, who has been mentioned in the sex abuse case at Leicester Crown Court involving Frank Beck, the former head of three children’s homes, tonight withdrew his proposed short debate in the Commons on the contempt of court law. Mr Janner (Leicester W) told the Press Association: “I have withdrawn it because the case is not over. “I hope that it will be possible for me to make my statement as soon as possible in the House of Commons, which will probably be next week.” The debate was due to have taken place on the adjournment of the House tonight.

November 28, 1991

A former head of three children’s homes was today found guilty of five further charges of sexual and physical abuse of children in his care. Frank Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicestershire, was convicted at Leicester Crown Court on one charge of buggery, two of indecent assault and two of actual bodily harm. He was also cleared of two further buggery charges. The jury has now returned to a hotel for the fourth night to consider remaining charges against him. So far Beck has been found guilty of one rape, five counts of buggery, one count of attempted buggery, three counts of ABH and three indecent assaults.

He has been cleared of four charges. It is alleged he physically and sexually abused youngsters during a 13 year “reign of terror” between 1973 and 1986 at three Leicestershire children’s homes. The prosecution said the children’s homes involved – Ratcliffe Road, and The Beeches, Leicester and The Poplars, Market Harborough, were “places of starkness”.

Beck’s deputy, Peter Jaynes, 42, of Beacon Hill, Chatham, Kent, has been convicted on one count of indecent assault and one of actual bodily harm. He has been cleared of one charge of indecent assault. Social worker and former policeman, George Lincoln, 39, of Great Cornard, Sudbury, Suffolk, also faces one charge of buggery which the jury are still considering.

The trial is in its 11th week.

November 28, 1991

Children’s homes head convicted of raping girl in care

THE FORMER head of three Leicestershire children’s homes was convicted yesterday of raping and buggering a 15-year-old girl in his care.

The victim, now 31, said she was raped so often by Frank Beck, who ran the homes, that she felt like a machine. She said that after being repeatedly raped by Beck she had faked pains in her side and had deliberately undergone an unnecessary operation to remove her appendix in an attempt to escape sexual abuse.

Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, gasped ”no” as the jury at Leicester Crown Court returned a 10-2 majority verdict on the rape charge.

Between 1973 and 1986, Beck was officer-in-charge of the Poplars, Market Harborough; the Ratcliffe Road children’s home, Leicester; and the Beeches, Leicester Forest East.

The offences occurred at Ratcliffe Road home, where Beck was officer-in-charge for three years from 1975. The woman had told the court that Beck raped and buggered her after she disturbed Beck and Mr F, who at the time was 13, during homosexual activity.

She said that Beck sent her to her room and followed on. ”He went on about my sexuality. He said I needed a man and he was going to show me what I’d been missing.

”He buggered me. I was screaming. He was hurting me and he didn’t care. I was on my knees bent over the settee. Frank Beck had his hand on my neck. He was holding my front and waist. I thought he was going to kill me.”

Then Beck raped her, the woman told the court. She said that Beck had sex with her about 30 times while she was resident at Ratcliffe Road. She had been taken into care at the age of four, having been sent to the home from the Towers hospital, a local psychiatric unit.

Beck was also found guilty of buggering Mr F, now 29, who said he was turned into a homosexual by repeated abuse. He was also convicted of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy after waking up the child.

Mr F, a serving prisoner, had told the court that he had been buggered by Beck and subsequently went to London where he occasionally had sex with men for money. Mr F said: ”If you had put a girl in front of me, I wouldn’t have known what to do. It was the way I was brought up by Beck. I thought it was right and I knew no different.”

Beck was acquitted of assaulting Mr F, but convicted of sexually assaulting Mr I, who told the court that he complained to police 15 years ago about sexual abuse at the Ratcliffe Road home.

Mr I, now 30, who gave evidence from behind a screen, said that Beck woke him up, removed the bed clothes and ”worked himself up” on him.

When the jury retired yesterday for a third night in a hotel, Beck had been convicted on four counts of buggery, one of rape, an attempted buggery, an assault and a charge of sexual assault.

He has been cleared of four charges and faces another 15, including buggering six children. He has denied all the charges.

The prosecution has accused him of a ”reign of terror” at the homes, but the defence has said Beck has been framed in a police cover-up and that witnesses have lied.

Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, Beck’s deputy at the home, was acquitted yesterday of sexually assaulting the woman after being convicted of assaulting her.

Jaynes has also been convicted of sexually assaulting Mr I.

George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, Beck’s former deputy at the Beeches home, denies a joint charge with Beck of buggering a 14-year-old boy.

November 28, 1991

Head of children’s homes guilty of rape: Abuse case jury’s third night in hotel to ponder charges

FRANK Beck, the former head of three Leicestershire children’s homes, was yesterday found guilty of raping and buggering a 15-year-old girl in his care.

He was also convicted of buggering a teenage boy who said that abuse by Mr Beck had turned him into a homosexual, and indecently assaulting another 15-year old boy.

All four were in care at the home in Ratcliffe Road, Leicester, where Mr Beck was officer-in-charge between 1975 and 1978.

On Tuesday, the jury at Leicester crown court convicted him of other abuse charges. After more than 18 hours of deliberation, the jury yesterday convicted him of assaulting the 15-year old boy causing him actual bodily harm. The jury retired to a hotel for a third night to consider 15 further charges against Mr Beck and one charge of buggery against his former deputy George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk.

Mr Beck is alleged to have systematically abused and beaten children and staff at the homes where he was officer-in-charge between 1973 and 1986: the Beeches and Ratcliffe Road in Leicester and the Poplars in nearby Market Harborough.

Mr Beck, aged 49, has now been convicted of one charge of rape, three of buggery, three of causing actual bodily harm, and one of indecent assault. He has been cleared of one charge of buggery, one of indecent assault and two of causing actual bodily harm.

A 31-year-old woman who cannot be named said she had been raped and buggered by Mr Beck after discovering him abusing another child at Ratcliffe Road.

Peter Jaynes, his deputy at the Poplars and Ratcliffe Road, was yesterday cleared of indecently assaulting her. On Tuesday he was convicted of assaulting her and indecently assaulting a teenage boy.

Mr Jaynes took over from Mr Beck as head of Ratcliffe Road before leaving to work in Kent in 1980. After studying in Chatham, he became deputy then head of a small children’s home in the county until his arrest last year. He insisted he abandoned Mr Beck’s cruel methods after leaving Leicestershire.

He told the jury he took part in cruelty on Mr Beck’s instructions. ‘Bad things happened at both the homes which should never have happened to young people,’ he said. He claimed his fear of Beck and his own weak personality led him to take part in the cruelty.

November 29, 1991

Five more verdicts on Beck

A former social worker in charge of three Leicestershire children’s homes was yesterday convicted of sexually abusing a boy who said that the experience had driven him to attempt suicide.

Frank Beck, aged 48, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, was found guilty of buggery, indecent assault and causing atual bodily harm to Christopher McGuire. Mr McGuire, now 21, had told Leicester crown court that, after being abused, he had attempted suicide. ”I did not want to go on,” he said.

The jury also convicted Beck of two charges of indecent assault and physically assaulting boys. He was cleared of two charges of buggering boys.

Jurors resume deliberations today. Beck, guilty of 13 charges, faces eight more.

November 29, 1991

‘PSYCHO-NONSENSE’ OF BECK’S REIGN OF TERROR

Frank Beck’s 13-year reign of terror was carried out under the cloak of a form of “treatment” known as regression therapy. He preyed on youngsters by returning them to the “time they were happiest”, often a vulnerable baby-like state.

This involved making them wear nappies and feeding them from bottles, the court was told. The treatment, which has been dismissed as a “fad”, centred on the importance of bonding between mother and child. It is based on the belief that the first five years of life are most important, and emotional growth is seen like a ladder. Failure to complete any stages is felt to lead to deprivation.

In reality, children would be told they were unloved and unwanted by their parents, driving them to despair. Beck would then “comfort” children, especially boys, with touching which often resulted in abuse. Leicestershire social services director Brian Waller described the treatment as “pyscho-nonsense”, adding: “It is a million miles from being acceptable.”

Psychologists claim the bottle-feeding and dressing of children in nappies is unethical and claim the therapy is “extremely doubtful”. Nick Barlow, psychology services manager for Rugby, who specialises in the use of psychology in social services, said he feared it could be going on elsewhere. “While the Children Act gives rights to youngsters in residential establishments, adults can still misuse their power. The Act is not going to stop this happening again. I fear that something like Leicestershire is going on.”

Children should have to give their consent to treatment which should be properly recorded, he said. In addition homes should be monitored and scrutinised.

November 29, 1991

MP DRAWN INTO WEB OF SEX ABUSE ALLEGATIONS

Labour MP Greville Janner’s lawyers advised him not to comment during the trial of the former children’s home chief accused of sexually and psychologically abusing children and staff.

The name of the Leicester West MP, barrister and Queen’s Counsel, who was alleged to have taken part in sex sessions with an orphan boy, figured prominently in the two-month case at Leicester Crown Court. Defendant Frank Beck, said to have conducted a 13-year reign of terror in three children’s homes of which he had charge, accused police of covering up the alleged affair between the MP and the boy in council care.

The public gallery was packed for the testimony of Mr A, now 30, who claimed Mr Janner sexually abused him over a two-year period and showered him with expensive gifts. Police interviewed the MP in Leicester last March after an outburst by Beck during a preliminary trial hearing.

In a statement at the time, Mr Janner’s lawyers said he vigorously denied the allegations. Mr A, married with three children, told the jury he was 13 years old when first sexually assaulted by Mr Janner at his London home after a visit to the House of Commons.

More serious sexual assaults took place at Leicester’s Holiday Inn hotel where they allegedly frolicked naked in a swimming pool and shared a double bed on five or six occasions.

Mr A maintained he was sexually assaulted twice by the MP while accompanying him on a two-week lecture tour of Scotland. He said he put up with the two-year homosexual affair because he had “grown accustomed” to the toys, cash, concert tickets and visits to expensive restaurants provided by Mr Janner.

The alleged relationship cooled after Mr Janner caught the lad stealing money from his wallet. Mr A, who was called as a defence witness, told the jury: “It was my way of getting back at him for what he was doing to me.”

He said after he was moved to a childrens’ home in Ratcliffe Road, Leicester, where Frank Beck was the officer in charge, Beck put a stop to what had allegedly been going on. Mr A insisted that he was never abused by Beck and had not seen him abuse anyone else. When Beck gave evidence, he broke down and wept as he described his efforts to halt the “relationship” after Mr A had confided in him.

He said he wrote to Mr Janner at the Commons and complained to the then director of Leicestershire Social Services. “I had spent two years putting right the damage that man had done to that boy and he (Janner) had the audacity to complain to me because the boy had been down to London and met him accidentally. I was incensed.”

Beck told prosecutor Peter Joyce QC: “The police told me they knew about Janner and they have covered it up as you have covered it up.”

The prosecution claimed that children as young as eight were subjected to brutality and sexual abuse in council homes where they had been placed for safety.

Mr Joyce told the court: “Childhoods were stolen, innocence corrupted, bodies abused and minds warped. Some of the weakest, most helpless and most troubled in society were corrupted.

“They had their lives totally distorted and twisted by those whose responsibility it was to help them. “These young people were polluted by the poison. Many social workers at the homes ought to have helped but did nothing.” He alleged one 13-year-old girl was raped so many times by Beck that she “felt like a machine”.

Mr Joyce said Beck found out she was a lesbian and attacked her “to show her what she had been missing”. When she helplessly called out for her father Beck allegedly told her: “He won’t help you – he hasn’t so far.”

Mr Joyce said the social workers Beck abused were young, inexperienced and vulnerable. He claimed that Beck managed to produce in them fear, insecurity and a sense of helplessness and then “counselled” them in private, which resulted in indecency taking place. Beck had introduced “regression therapy” at the homes as a thin disguise for sexual abuse.

Children, even teenagers, were given babies’ bottles and read Mr Men bedtime stories. “Children would be taken back into a state of isolation, loneliness and vulnerability in which they were ripe to be abused,” claimed Mr Joyce. “The children were corrupted by cruelty which was the strength and weapon of the tyrant.”

Any child who resisted was beaten and sometimes tortured by having a towel twisted hard round the neck. One alleged victim of the treatment wept as he described being raped by Beck when he was about 12.

“I can remember taking my head out of the pillow and telling him to get off me,” he said. “But he head-butted me and told me it was what I wanted.”

Turning to the dock the witness, now aged 29, shouted: “You know what you did to me, you dirty bastard.” The prosecution said many of the children had returned to Beck even after abuse because they had nobody else to go to. “It’s rather like the puppy that is kicked crawling back to the master that feeds it,” said Mr Joyce.

One woman, now 31, told the jury that as a 15-year-old teenager she faked pains in her side and deliberately had her appendix removed in an attempt to escape repeated rape by Beck and sexual assaults by other staff members.

Investigating officers denied telling witnesses that they would be able to sue Leicestershire social services for “substantial compensation” if Beck was convicted. “We had so many willing witnesses, we had no reason to try to persuade reluctant witnesses,” said Detective Sergeant Michael Creedon.

Beck denied ever physically or sexually abusing children or staff at the homes between 1973 and 1986. He also denied being a homosexual. Defence counsel John Black called the allegations, if true, “a catalogue of man’s inhumanity to children and to other men. “If there is anything worse than this, imagine what it is like to be accused of it if it is not true.”

Mr Black challenged the integrity of the police in the case, urging the jury to consider how Beck’s name came to be put into the frame.

Was there some over-zealous or malign reason why some people were carried away by the belief he was a monster? he asked.

Beck claimed it was often necessary to discuss sexual matters with the children in care, but this was done in an open manner. He agreed that he sometimes had told sexually frustrated boys to masturbate but denied encouraging any form of homosexual relationships between the boys or with outsiders.

The police investigation into allegations of abuse took 18 months and led detectives to three continents. Former children’s homes residents were traced in Europe, the Middle East and the United States.

Detective Superintendent Tim Garner, who led the police inquiry, said afterwards it had been the biggest case of its kind he knew of.

November 29, 1991

Victims in the case could receive thousands of pounds in compensation for the treatment they received at the hands of Frank Beck. But Brian Dodds, a solicitor representing several of those involved, said a legal hurdle had to be overcome. High Court consent must be obtained for those now aged 21 or over as the abuse took place between 1973 and 1986 and the time limit of three years for submission of claims has expired. Once consent has been obtained, Mr Dodds hopes compensation claims may be settled within 12 months.

November 29, 1991

SEX MONSTER WAS CHILD VICTIM

Frank Beck had a lonely and disturbed childhood – and grew up to become a sex monster.

In his youth he was teased about being effeminate. Before he was 13 he was sexually assaulted by a man on a train. Friends at agricultural college dubbed him “Mrs Beck”.

But he appeared to overcome childhood traumas, joining the Royal Marines and later going on to become a Liberal councillor and leading childcare worker. But from an early age, he had not had a normal life.

The son of a train-driver, he was the youngest of five children, with three sisters and a brother. He was jealous of the youngest of his sisters, who had his father’s looks.

He was also the only one of the five who was unable to cry at his father’s funeral. Two days afterwards, he left home.

Between the ages of nine and 14 he went to three different schools. He left school at 15 without any qualifications and went to a farming school where he was dubbed “Mrs Beck”. He stood out from the other boys as he did not drink, swear, or know anything about girls.

After training to become a pig-keeper, he joined the Marines, spending 18 months in Malta. He went on to serve in North Africa, Singapore and Borneo, where he fell in love with a Chinese girl and a “big Austrian woman”. He spent 12 months in Aden, where he decided he wanted to become a professional Marine and improve the quality of life for younger men.

But in June 1969, he left the Marines, advertising himself for work in the Daily Telegraph. For a time he worked as an assistant warden in a probation hostel.

Then he moved to Northampton where he wed a Czech girl in a marriage of convenience to enable her to remain in Britain. They divorced later.

Beck went on to work with disturbed children in Northampton, where he came into contact with regression therapy. While doing his social work training at Stevenage College he met his second wife Sandra, who was on the same course.

But he also remembers being shocked by “wife swapping and political in-fighting” on the course. Soon after the course, Leicestershire appointed him as officer in charge of one of its children’s homes.

November 29, 1991

Beck convicted of sexual abuse at second home

FRANK BECK was yesterday convicted of physically and sexually abusing children at a second Leicestershire children’s home, offences which drove one boy to attempt suicide.

Beck, the former head of three homes, was found guilty at Leicester Crown Court of buggering, indecently assaulting and assaulting Mr O, now 21, at the Beeches, Leicester Forest East, where he was officer in charge between 1978 and 1986.

He has already been convicted of nine offences during the previous three years when he ran Ratcliffe Road home, Leicester, including the rape of a 15-year-old girl and buggering four children.

Mr O told the court: ”I did not want to live. I felt it was not right. I cut my wrist. I felt I had to do it. I did not want to go on.” He said he had run away several times, but had always been returned to the home. Mr O had been in care since he was 10 and moved to the Beeches when he was 12 or 13.

He said that he would engage in glue sniffing and Beck would put him under the shower, wash him roughly and bugger him. At other times, Beck would wake him up, put his hand inside his pyjamas and sexually assault him. Beck would threaten to stop him seeing his parents and to send him to prison if he did not comply, Mr O said.

Beck, 49, formerly of Braunstone, Leicester, was also convicted yesterday of assaulting Mr L, also known as Mr L’, at Ratcliffe Road. A verdict is awaited on a charge that Beck buggered him.

Mr L had told the court that in 1981 he took a youth training job as a chef at the Beeches home, after learning that Beck had taken over there as officer in charge. He intended to stab Beck. He told the jury: ”I wanted to take revenge for what he had done. I wanted to kill him.”

However he never carried out the plot, and left the home six days later. Mr L said he had repeatedly absconded from Ratcliffe Road and told his mother and the police about the physical abuse. But he was always taken back. He finally left the home after telling a juvenile court that he would kill himself.

The jury, which yesterday retired to spend a fourth night in a hotel, further convicted Beck of indecently assaulting a teenage boy during several ”counselling sessions”. The victim, now 24, said he had to sit on Beck’s knee and was forced to participate in oral sex. He said that if he failed to become aroused, Beck threatened to have him sent to borstal: ”He made it plain he could have me transferred within an hour.”

The jury has now convicted Beck of rape, buggering five children, attempted buggery, three counts of indecent assault and three assaults causing actual bodily harm. He has been acquitted of six charges, including, yesterday, two counts of buggery.

Additionally, the judge directed the jury on 28 October to return not-guilty verdicts on five other charges. Beck faces a further eight charges, including buggering three children and indecently assaulting two former colleagues. He has denied all the charges.

George Lincoln, 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk, Beck’s former deputy at the Beeches, denies buggering a 14-year-old boy with Beck. Peter Jaynes, 42, of Chatham, Kent, Beck’s deputy at Ratcliffe Road, has been convicted of indecently assaulting a 14-year-old boy and assaulting a 15-year-old girl.

November 29, 1991

Beck found guilty of five more abuse charges

THE JURY in the Leicestershire child abuse trial will embark on a fifth day of deliberation today after finding the former head of three council children’s homes guilty of five more charges of sexual and physical abuse against children in his care.

After more than 27 hours of consideration, the jury at Leicester crown court yesterday found Frank Beck, officer in charge at the homes from 1973-86, guilty of buggering a teenage boy who said abuse had driven him to attempt suicide.

Mr Beck, aged 49, was also found guilty of indecently assaulting and assaulting the boy, now 21, who was in care at the Beeches home in Leicester.

In addition, he was found guilty of sexually assaulting a boy of 14 at the Beeches, and assaulting a teenager in care at the Ratcliffe Road home.

After the 10-week trial, Mr Beck has now been convicted of 13 charges – five of buggery, three of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, three of indecent assault, one of attempted buggery and one of rape.

He was yesterday cleared of buggering two boys, and has now been cleared of six charges.

The jury, who last night retired to a hotel for a fourth night, have to decide on a further eight charges against Mr Beck and one against his former deputy, George Lincoln, aged 39, of Sudbury, Suffolk.