Belfast Telegraph

Kincora: Westminster probe will see suspects 'shaking in their boots'

Clint Massey, a former resident at Kincora, was raped by William McGrath
Clint Massey, a former resident at Kincora, was raped by William McGrath

By James Hanning

A man who was raped by Kincora housemaster William McGrath has said that a Westminster inquiry into child abuse that includes the notorious boys' home will have some people in Northern Ireland "shaking in their boots".

Clint Massey, a former resident, said a local inquiry would not get to the truth of what happened at the east Belfast children's home in the 1970s.

As recently as a fortnight ago, he self-harmed, at the age of 57, slashing his wrists in frustration after it appeared that the investigation into historic abuse was to be ditched because of a lack of funds.

"It has to be done from Westminster," said Mr Massey. "If it stays local, a lot of people will be happy. There are too many people in Northern Ireland, predominantly Protestant, who don't want it looked at.

"But I hope there are people shaking in their boots. They may be old men now but I don't care. There's no statute of limitations on this. I think there are lots of people shaking. I hope they're expecting a knock on the door, but an investigation can't dig deep here [in Northern Ireland]. At Westminster, they have the authority, and they can do it if they want to."

David Cameron has been asked by First Minister Peter Robinson to bring Kincora under the broader, UK-wide inquiry, which could call MI5 to account for itself.

Mr Massey was sent to Kincora, a half-way house for boys in care at the start of their working life, in 1973. He shared a room with two other boys, who used to leave early in the morning to go to work, leaving him alone in the room.

"On my first full day there," he recalled, "McGrath came in and asked me what I wanted for breakfast, but, as he did so, he put his hand inside my pyjamas."

Mr Massey said he was abused several times a week, and often raped.

Mr Massey said claims that Kincora was allowed to continue to operate under the watch of the security services are credible.

"I strongly believe it was an entrapment operation for them. They hoped to get a handle on the people who visited, to get them to work for them and inform for them – that's the way the dirty tricks department works."

He believes McGrath and two others went to prison with lenient sentences in an arrangement to protect others. "They were the facilitators, and were protected to some degree," he said.

Meanwhile, former intelligence officer Captain Brian Gemmell has revealed that the security services may have been able to blackmail a leading loyalist terrorist after they filmed him engaged in homosexual activity.

Mr Gemmell has already said MI5 ordered him to keep quiet about Kincora after he reported the abuse.

"Some months before I was told to leave the Kincora case alone, on the grounds that the service didn't involve itself with homosexual matters, I had a meeting at a hotel on Buckingham Palace Road," he said.

"There were three members of MI5 talking about a known Protestant terrorist, John McKeague of the Red Hand Commandos, being homosexual, and they asked me if I thought he could be blackmailed over his homosexuality, because they had film of him."

Chris Massey interview from BBC Good Morning Ulster

Chris Massey interview part 2


Story so far

At Kincora boys' home in Belfast, three men routinely abused teenage boys in their care for more than a decade. In December 1981, William McGrath, the 'house father', Raymond Semple, an assistant warden, and Joseph Mains, warden, were sentenced to four, five and six years respectively for sexually abusing children. However, there have long been suspicions that MI5 allowed the abuse to go on in order to secure intelligence through blackmail, as well as an establishment cover-up in the aftermath.

Further reading

Whistleblower claims MI5 tried to blackmail Red Hand Commando 'homosexual' John McKeague

Campaigners call for Official Secrets Act suspension to allow former intelligence officers to give evidence

Secrets Act call over abuse inquiry

State can't ignore abuse at Kincora Boys Home under secret watch

Paisley's dead pastor friend linked to Kincora abuse

Kincora probe has to access secret files, says former Army officer Colin Wallace

Kincora: MP Keith Vaz backs call for east Belfast home to be included in UK-wide inquiry 

I will reveal the secrets, says ex-Army officer Colin Wallace  

How Colin Wallace's world turned upside down  

Now it's no longer merely a Northern Ireland nightmare

Chance to uncover Kincora Boys' Home truth

Kincora abuse horror: Claims not incredible: ex-police chief

MI5 knew about it but did nothing, that much is certain 

Full story of Kincora Boys' Home in east Belfast yet to be told, says child sex abuse victim

Ulster Unionist leader Mike Nesbitt joins calls for inquiry into abuse at boys' home

Baroness's brother 'tried to limit probe into Kincora'

MI5 'must hand over files on abuse at east Belfast boys' home' 

Editor's viewpoint: We must know truth of Kincora

Child abuse inquiry must look at Kincora Boys' Home, says Amnesty International

MI5 'blocked exposure of Kincora sex abuse scandal'

South African intelligence 'secretly backed loyalist paramilitary group Tara'

Kincora Boys' Home scandal: journalist Peter McKenna dies

State papers: The perjury that allowed Kincora suspect preacher to walk

Westminster’s dark secret: abuse of children, adultery, homosexuality and sadomasochism were all seemingly lumped together

Civil servant Mark Sedwill admits Home Office ‘probably’ destroyed paedophile dossiers 

Westminster child abuse dossier: Geoffrey Dickens also gave copy of file to top prosecutor Sir Thomas Hetherington - so why did DPP fail to act on evidence of paedophile ring? 

Historic child abuse files missing

Tory peer Lord Brittan defends handling of 1980s sex abuse dossier

Abuse claims police matter - Clegg

Abuse probe 'into soul of society'

From the archives

Kincora: Sex racket at children's home (Irish Independent, 1980)

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