The Daily Mail has today reported what it calls the “full extent of the shocking links between three senior Labour figures and vile group that tried to legalise sex with children”.
The story, which first appeared in December last year, alleges links between senior members of Britain’s Labour Party and an organisation called the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE), which the Mail described as a “far-Left lobby group which spent much of the Seventies and early Eighties publicly calling for the legalisation of child sex — and the age of consent to be lowered to four.”
In December, the Mail revealed that Harriet Harman — who is Ed Miliband’s Deputy Leader of the Labour Party — were organisationally linked to the PIE group while serving as young officials for a Left-wing organisation called the National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL — now known as Liberty).
The NCCL granted PIE ‘affiliate’ status, and police are now investigating decades’ old documents with the fear of uncovering what one source called the abuse of children on “an industrial scale”.
Other Labour party figures, such as Tony Blair’s former health secretary Patricia Hewitt, and Labour’s current shadow minister for policing Jack Dromey, are reported as being involved with the NCCL at the crucial point where it affiliated with PIE.
The Mail alleges that during the 1970s and 80s, “Miss Hewitt described PIE in glowing terms as ‘a campaigning/counselling group for adults attracted to children'”. The NCCL is also reported to have lobbied Parliament for the age of consent to be dropped to ten years old, and for incest to be legalised.
One ‘information’ leaflet distributed by PIE claimed that, “Homosexuals are now widely regarded as ordinary, healthy people — a minority, but no more “ill” than the minority who are left-handed… There is no reason why paedophilia should not win similar acceptance.”
Some details of the story were first reported by the Daily Telegraph in 2009, when a spokesperson on Ms. Harman’s behalf said that that despite her employment by the NCCL during PIE’s formal affiliation, “She has always opposed child pornography and has never supported PIE and to suggest that she did is untrue and misleading.”
No explanation was offered as to Harman’s response to the Protection of Children Bill which sought to ban child pornography in 1978. She stated: “Our amendment [to the proposed law] places the onus of proof on the prosecution to show that the child was actually harmed”.
But investigations are continuing into the group’s links to the NCCL, and as to whether the organisation received any public money during James Callaghan’s Labour government in the late Seventies.
The Metropolitian Police’s Operation Fernbridge investigation is looking into allegations of child abuse at a children’s home in Richmond, West London. It is believed that the now defunct PIE group is being researched as a part of the investigation.