Belfast Telegraph

Historical Abuse Inquiry ignored report on paedophile doctor: Claim

A researcher who helped uncover how a paedophile doctor was allowed to continue working with children has lambasted a major inquiry after it refused to include his damning report.

Dr Niall Meehan, head of the journalism and media communications faculty at Griffith College Dublin, found that the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) was made aware in 1971 that Royal Hospital Belfast child-psychiatrist, Dr Roderick Morrison Fraser, had abused a 13-year-old Belfast boy in London.

Fraser had pleaded guilty to the sex offences in 1972, however he was not jailed and continued to work with children.

The report exposed major failings by health boards, medical professionals and the RUC after they failed to stop him working within the health service.

Dr Meehan - who produced the report entitled Child Abuse, Corruption and Collusion in Britain and Northern Ireland - said he contacted the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry (HIA) with a copy of his evidence after references to Fraser were made in its hearings in April last year.

He was told by HAI officials that the inquiry would consider matters "relevant to its terms and conditions".

However, Dr Meehan has accused the inquiry of ignoring the submission after it was not included in the report.

"I asked the inquiry to investigate why the RUC and London Metropolitan Police failed to inform hospital authorities that Fraser was under investigation since August 1971 for sexual abuse of two Belfast boys in London, aged 10 and 13," Dr Meehan said.

"But it appears that the inquiry took a very differential attitude towards RUC spokespeople as well as British security and intelligence spokespeople.

"It adapted their narratives and a kind of mindset and wasn't going to waver from it," he claimed.

Despite being a convicted sex offender, Fraser continued to remain on the medical register.

A week after his conviction, the paedophile was the main speaker at an ISPCC (Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) conference at Jordanstown.

The Kincora whistleblower and abuse survivor, Richard Kerr, claimed he was abused by Fraser during counselling at the doctor's medical offices in the Royal Victoria Hospital in the early 1970s when he was aged about 13. Mr Kerr said that Fraser had access to all of the children's homes in Belfast.

"The police could have told health authorities they were employing a child abuser," Dr Meehan continued.

He added: "The RUC knew he was a child abuser, they could have told the hospital and said that guy is a paedophile but they didn't and there is something very wrong there.

"I named the RUC officer who took Fraser's statement that led to his conviction and who was aware of what he did, but the officer did nothing.

"The officer is still alive today."

Fraser remained in post for a further year until a publicised arrest in New York in May 1973, when he was exposed as part of a nine-man paedophile-ring.

Dr Meehan claims that one week after that, a 'certificate of conviction' relating to Fraser's 1972 sex offences was sent by police to the Northern Ireland Hospital Authority.

"In other words, it was sent a year late when the police game was up," he accused.

"It is astonishing that the Hart Inquiry did not investigate why police permitted an admitted abuser to continue interacting with institutionalised children.

"If the inquiry could not accomplish even that simple task, its report is compromised," Dr Meehan added.

The HIA failed to respond to a request for comment.

BY CATE McCURRY

Belfast Telegraph

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph