Lincoln Seligman, grandson of Sir Edward Heath, has condemned investigations in respect of historic sexual abuse allegations against Sir Edward Heath, saying the investigation process was flawed. Seligman is calling for an official inquiry into the investigations, conducted by Wiltshire Police. Sir Edward died in 2005 aged 89.
The £1.3m police investigation, Operation Conifer, was initiated after Sir Edward, former Prime Minister, was accused of historical child sex abuse. There have been claims that allegations were based on false information, as two people were arrested and released as part of the investigation and no charges were made.
Sir Edward’s friends have strongly criticised the investigation, and a psychologist who advised detectives claimed it was based on the allegations of a handful of fantasists.
“My suspicion is that we will learn nothing from the report except innuendo and that really takes nobody any further forward, except it leaves a dark stain over a man who can’t defend himself” said Seligman. He added that Sir Edward’s family and supporters were seeking a “judge-led review” into the investigation.
Mr Seligman said he had been prevented by police from attending the report’s release. He added:
“…protesting [Sir Edward’s] innocence is not as important as putting right the injustice that has been done…”.
In historic sexual abuse cases, the potential for miscarriages of justice is high, as there is a dependence on weak evidence, often based on faded recounts of events, and there is also a lack of scientific evidence such as we have at our disposal in recent sex abuse cases. It is the task of the defence solicitor to scrutinise and challenge all evidence brought forward. As expert sexual offences solicitors, our objective is to produce a robust defence, in order to prevent conviction and to ensure a fair trial for the defendant. Any mishandling of an investigation will also be strongly challenged.
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