Edward Heath pedophile investigation: Former UK prime minister would have faced questioning

Edward Heath pedophile investigation: Former UK prime minister would have faced questioning

Former UK Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath would have been questioned over allegations of rape and indecent assault of boys, police say.

Wiltshire Police said in a statement that they had a "legal duty" under the European Convention on Human Rights to investigate criminal allegations, even ones against the dead.

Wiltshire Police listed seven claims that would have merited an interview under caution, including the alleged rape of an 11-year-old boy in 1961 when Heath was the MP for Bexley.

In a further statement, Bishop Holtam said: "The investigation by Wiltshire Police has been very challenging".

October 1970: British prime minister Edward Heath chatting with U.S. president Richard Nixon (1913 - 1994) at Chequers in Buckinghamshire, the official country residence of the British PM.

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Heath was ousted as Conservative Party leader in 1975 but remained a backbencher MP until 1992. Sir Edward Heath's reputation should not be left in limbo. These relate to separate people who did not know each other, each in a different location and time period. Heath was MP for Sidcup at the time. It had gone "where the evidence took us".

The seven cases for which Sir Edward, who died in 2005, would have been interviewed included the alleged rape of an 11-year-old boy "during a paid sexual encounter in private in a dwelling".

Operation Conifer was launched in 2015 after Sir Edward was named as a suspect in an investigation into historical child sex abuse.

It said more details could compromise the anonymity of the victims and "inadvertently lead to an inference as to the guilt or otherwise of Sir Edward Heath". He was the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. It was just not of interest to him, ' he added. He used to come on holiday with our family and I and my siblings had every opportunity to observe him at close hand. "I knew him to be a man of great integrity and not so idiotic to jeopardise his career by indulging in anything so pointless and unsafe".

The inquiry has proven controversial ever since it began when a senior police officer made a television appeal outside Sir Edward's former stately home, Arundells, urging potential victims to come forward.

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A former solicitor-general accused Wiltshire police of turning the inquiry into a "game show" following the publication of a report on Thursday.

" I think this whole flourish today of [Wiltshire police] saying there are seven outstanding matters is about self-justification".

In December chief constable Mike Veale wrote a public letter to "set the record straight".

The force had been heavily criticised for its role in the investigation into historic sex abuse but the panel tasked with scrutinising investigation decisions said the inquiry had been "fair, sensitive and rigorous with regard to both victim and suspects".

The findings will be passed to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, which is being chaired by Professor Alexis Jay, and which will likely consider the report as part of its efforts to see whether powerful people have been spared criminal investigation.

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Last year, the probe found no evidence that a prosecution against brothel-keeper Myra Ling-Ling Forde was dropped because of threats to allege publicly that Sir Edward had been involved in sexual offences.

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