Mike Veale resigns following allegations of serious misconduct

We learned yesterday that Mike Veale, chief constable of the Cleveland Police, resigned on Friday after less than a year in the post.

The Telegraph reports that he is facing an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), following allegations by two female officers that he had engaged in “inappropriate behaviour” toward them.

Readers may remember Veale from his days as chief constable of the Wiltshire Police, notable for the shambolic Project Conifer, in which the late Sir Edward Heath and others were investigated based on allegations of Satanic sexual abuse by a woman whose memories had emerged under hypnosis. At the time, Veale distinguished himself by telling a Daily Mail reporter that the claims against Heath were “120% genuine”.

In November 2016 we wrote about the concerns expressed by Dr Richard Hoskins (then known as Rachel Hoskins), a leading criminologist and specialist in ritual sacrifice who called some of the evidence being examined by Wiltshire Police “fantastical”, and a “catalogue of fabrication”.

At that time, The Guardian wrote,

(Dr Hoskins) wrote: “I have exposed a catalogue of fabrication at the heart of two major inquiries. Worse still, Operation Conifer ploughs ahead. People remain accused of things that simply never happened. Wiltshire Police insist that not all their evidence is based on claims of ritual abuse. We will see. But those cases that are based on this pernicious fallacy must be closed immediately.” …

Hoskins said she was taking the unusual step of disclosing her findings because she was concerned the police do not want to hear what she has said and will not pass her report on to senior MPs on the home affairs select committee, or the accused.

Yesterday, Hoskins commented on Twitter,

Links to Robert Green

Almost a year after Hoskins expressed concerns about Operation Conifer, in October 2017, the Sunday Times reported that Veale had sought advice from conspiracy theorist and Hollie Greig hoax promoter Robert Green.

Mike Veale… emailed Robert Green, of Warrington, two weeks ago in response to an email Green had sent him. Veale wrote: “As ever thank you Robert.”

The words suggest the pair had communicated previously and will cast fresh doubt on the evidence that Veale’s force has gathered.

…Green is an activist closely involved with fraudulence [sic] allegations in Scotland in the so-called Hollie Greig case, in which claims that a girl with Down’s syndrome had been abused were found to be false. He was jailed for 12 months in 2012 for harassment.

At the time, the blog BarthsNotes revealed,

Mr Veale was thanking Mr Green “for an email in which he expressed his glee at the Mail on Sunday‘s front-page splash about how Operation Conifer’s findings were to be passed on to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Green’s email and Veale’s reply were published on a Hollie Greig conspiracy website”.

Green confirmed in an email to BarthsNotes that he and Veale had been in “regular contact”, and that he had been feeding Veale material about Heath gleaned from the infamous “RAINS list” compiled by Dr Joan Coleman.

On 10 October 2017, the Telegraph reported that Veale was facing calls for an inquiry over why he’d shown an early version of the Operation Conifer report to Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen:

Mike Veale, who is overseeing the £1.5 million investigation into allegations Heath was a paedophile, is accused of handing the report to Andrew Bridgen, the Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire.

Some details said to be contained in the report were subsequently leaked to newspapers.

Bridgen, who had previously offered his support to Veale, calling him a “courageous and honest” police officer, described the contents of the report as “credible and disturbing”.

However, James Gray, Conservative MP for North Wiltshire, who had previously referred to Operation Conifer as an “idiotic waste of public money”, called for an explanation of the leak to Bridgen. For his part, Veale did not deny that Bridgen had seen the draft report, but said it had been shown to “a number of trusted stakeholders”.

The final report of Operation Conifer drew the conclusion that, had Heath been alive, he could have faced interview under caution regarding seven allegations.

Veale said at the time, “The report does not draw any conclusions as to the likely guilt or innocence of Sir Edward Heath. I am satisfied there are compelling and obvious reasons to investigate allegations made against Sir Edward Heath”. In the final report, no references can be found to ritual abuse, Satanic or otherwise.

Wiltshire Police faced heavy criticism for its handling of the case, under Veale’s stewardship.

The mysterious death of a mobile phone

Fast-forward a year, and in September 2018 we find Veale facing the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which stated he “has a case to answer for alleged misconduct for providing and maintaining an inaccurate account of how damage to his work mobile phone was caused”.

While Veale initially claimed that the phone had been damaged when he’d dropped it in a golf club car park and then accidentally run over it, he later admitted to IOPC investigators that he had damaged the phone when he’d swung a club at his golf bag in frustration at a bad shot.

According to the IOPC report,

On 23 November 2017, the IOPC received an anonymous typed letter dated 25 October 2017. This letter alleged that Chief Constable Veale and a Conservative MP had collaborated in leaking information about Operation Conifer, an investigation into alleged child abuse by Sir Edward Heath, in an attempt to boost public opinion of Chief Constable Veale.

The letter alleged that Chief Constable Veale had spoken directly to one journalist on a number of occasions, and had told the MP that “he was going to cover his tracks by destroying his phone so records of contact between him and [name redacted] could not be traced.”

As BarthsNotes pointed out, it seems likely that the journalist in question was Simon Walters of the Mail on Sunday, who ran the first story in which Veale was quoted as saying that the allegations against Heath were “120 per cent” convincing. The MP, as mentioned above, was likely to have been Andrew Bridgen.

The IOPC report states that Deputy Chief Constable Paul Mills, who was Veale’s immediate subordinate, recalled his boss’s original version of how the phone was damaged:

…[S]ome time on the morning of 23 September 2017, the force media team made [DCC Mills] aware that there had been a significant leak of information from the Operation Conifer report. He stated that he tried to reach Chief Constable Veale via phone from around lunchtime that day, and throughout the afternoon into the early evening, but he did not answer. He stated that this was out of character for Chief Constable Veale, as he usually came straight back to him. He stated that it was “clearly challenging” not to be able to speak to Chief Constable Veale, as he wanted to discuss the scale, extent and consequences of the leak.

He stated that on the morning of 24 September 2017, he saw that Chief Constable Veale had sent an email from an iPad to the Chief Officer group at 6.05pm on 23 September 2017, explaining that his phone had been “ran over by an unsuspecting vehicle”.

The “significant leak of information” turns out to have been the Sunday Times article which revealed that Veale had been receiving advice regarding the Heath investigation from Robert Green.

Following its investigation, the IOPC concluded that the damage to Veale’s phone had been accidental, but that he had lied about the cause of damage to his phone as he had been embarrassed about losing his temper.

In the wake of Veale’s resignation from the Cleveland Police, we’ve begun to hear rumblings on Twitter that he was forced out due to his “courageous stance” during Operation Conifer.

Cue the inevitable cries of “stitch-up!”

72 thoughts on “Mike Veale resigns following allegations of serious misconduct

  1. Cue various conspiracy promoters (no names although Andy Decline comes to mind) that Mike Veale was investigating the ” 788 – 790 Finchley Road, Pandoras Box ” and the Freemasons set him up.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This is all very entertaining to those of us who enjoy your witty belittling of idiots like Wedger and Green but it’s also frightening to think that Veale was in a position of authority.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes, I think it’s one thing to take a slightly mocking stance, but I agree. I find it very disturbing that some of those in positions of high responsibility can be of this calibre.

      Like

      • Indeed EC, i find it quite frightening really that people in positions of power can and have fallen for stories we usually find being spouted by random online fruitloops.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for this detailed update, EC. Excellent work as usual. I can’t figure out whether Veale is evil or just monumentally stupid, though seeing as he was so ready to believe everything that the known SRA hoaxer Robert Green told him – in an investigation into, er, SRA – I’m erring towards the latter. Either way, it’s a depressing picture of our police service if Veale, Wedger and Savage are the kind of people who get promoted to positions of authority. (By the way, does anyone recall the name of that other “ex-detective” who did interviews promoting the Hampstead hoax back in 2015? He was based in Spain, if memory serves.)

    Liked by 3 people

    • I doubt evil but I think he may be one of those very “Christian” officers with a tendency to believe in claims of SRA.

      Call me spooky or even an old witch but I said on another forum that Mike Veale ( he is innocent of course as allegations are just that: not proved) seemed an odd Chief Constable as he was incredibly neat and groomed and “boasted” of how he worked out at a gym. He seemed very pleased with his appearance.
      I thought “you have a sort of aura and a tendency to believe these rather weird and exaggerated claims about someone like Ted Heath but you are in a position where you could easily be accused yourself”. No-one is untouchable.

      And thus it came to pass..

      Liked by 1 person

    • Heath’s godson Lincoln Seligman said: “Either the man is a fool or he’s a knave. It’s also possible that he started off this inquiry as a fool but became a knave during the course of it.’’

      Like

    • She doesn’t half pick them. The Book of Esther is a historical account of political machinations in the Persian court. There is a good message in it of not feeding others to a crocodile in the hope it will eat you last, but God is not mentioned at all in the non-Apocryphal versions or the original Hebrew. So does this mean the Oldcastle Horror has been practicing her necromancy with a CATHOLIC BIBLE!!! 👿👿👿

      Liked by 2 people

  4. “ALSO many will be instantly TRIGGERED by the mention of the JEWS as the people she wanted saved”.
    Announcement : Medic and smelling salts please to Aisle 6..an elderly pensioner by the name of John Paterson has fainted.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Well, there HAVE been instances of child abuse by wealthy people (like Jimmy Savile, though it didn’t come out till after he was dead). I would have thought it was unprofessional to discuss an ongoing investigation though. Aren’t the police supposed to keep such matters confidential?

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    • The idea is that if a person is publicly named as an abuser, this will encourage other victims to come forwards. Sometimes this has worked, but unfortunately it has also encouraged fantasists and crooks to concoct ludicrous stories for personal gain.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Paul Gambaccini is actually trying to get a law through Parliament, that prevents people being named. I agree with him actually, and as you say, it does encourage fantasists, who don`t need any encouragement at all. Bill Maloney loves that kind of thing doesn`t he. You only have to look at what he did to Andrew Ash who had already admitted on Panorama that he made it all up. Maloney was positively reveling in what Ben Fellows was telling him, also the former MP from Birmingham, that story was all over Sky News. and now there`s Otherwise Known as Nick who has a trial coming up in March I think, that should be very interesting indeed. I`m just wondering if Mike Veal will join forces with John Wedger and have mugs and tee shirts made with his face on it.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. Interesting piece with some backstory in Teeside News, identifying those who supported Veale’s appointment who were sceptical and unhappy.

    According to their reporter Mike Brown;

    “Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said Mr Veale’s resignation “was all but inevitable”.

    “This is why I refused to get involved in the appointment process only a small number of months ago,” he added.

    “To appoint someone under investigation and under such a dark cloud nationally was more than a mistake – it was reckless and incompetent. I said this at the time but was shouted down by the Police Commissioner.

    “The Chief Constable merry-go-round must come to an end and our Police Commissioner must resign.”

    Mr Houchen said Mr Coppinger is “incapable of carrying out the role that he holds”.

    “I have today written to the Home Secretary to request an urgent meeting to discuss whether the force as we know it should continue in its current form,” he added.

    Mr Coppinger told Teesside Live he won’t be resigning.”

    read more here
    https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/how-teesside-reacted-chief-constable-15712153

    The comment section may get interesting

    Perusal of these stories may be of interest 🙂

    https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/all-about/barry-coppinger

    This piece caught my eye
    https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/tees-mayor-new-cleveland-police-14217382

    Of course Veale is facing allegations and has not been convicted of any crime, however I fully support the Mayor Ben Houchen and Simon Clarke MP in voicing concerns regarding Veale.

    Perhaps some helpful person might like to forward them a link to the Hoaxtead blog pages illuminating the friendly communications between Veale and Robert Green?

    Liked by 2 people

    • A Shurely Shome Mishtake Moment:
      “Norma Stephenson, who chairs the Police and Crime Panel involved in appointing Mr Veale, said: “There was nothing to indicate Mike’s tenure would end like this when he was interviewed.
      “It’s clear evidence that the new department [Directorate of Standards and Ethics] is working well.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • Norma Stephenson is an interesting person.

        She is someone who has been quite open about her history of suffering from a gambling addiction the 1970s.

        I have admiration for anyone who has suffered from being in the grip of an addiction and who has been able to turn their life around.

        With regards to Norma Stephenson this of course raises the issue of whether she at some point received support from a counsellor, therapist, mentor, GA sponsor or some other person who cultivated in her a belief in SRA. Just wondering what could have happened to put the idea in her mind that Mike Veale was a trustworthy person.

        The below article states that Stephenson got “support” for her gambling addiction but does not go into details.

        https://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/councillor-calls-more-help-gamblers-14962268

        Like

      • In this article
        https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/17340230.i-lost-a-months-rent-in-one-go-councillor-speaks-out-about-gambling-addiction/

        Stephenson says that she worked part time in a mental health unit when she was addicted to slot machine gambling.

        It may be that she received “support” from colleagues in the MHU and that one or more of the colleges was, or went on to be, SRA believers.

        Personally I think it is a real shame that someone who has done a lot of good work to raise the issue of gambling addiction, something I believe is a very serious issue in need of addressing nationally, had had her credibility damaged by her association with Veale.

        I have met some really wonderful, caring, decent doctors and other professionals who believed in SRA because they had been hoodwinked by the usual suspects, many of whom appear very credible and properly qualified to those unfamiliar with the satanic panic,

        Liked by 1 person

    • Here’s a video of Veale posted in October 2016:

      At 7.50 in he tells two deliberate lies as described in this Daily Mail article by Guy Adams:

      https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4979330/False-claims-police-chief-obsessed-Ted-Heath.html

      i.e.:

      “The video, which remains online, began with Veale saying he wanted to ‘set the record straight’ about Heath and ‘ensure that the current facts are entirely and unequivocally clear about this case’.

      In particular, the £150,000-a-year police chief wanted to address two highly important matters.

      ‘Fact!’ he said. ‘As part of Operation Conifer we have not spoken to the witness known as Nick.’

      ‘Fact!’ he continued. ‘Recent media coverage… referred to satanic ritual sexual abuse. Let me be clear: this part of the investigation is only one small element of the overall inquiry and does not relate to Sir Edward Heath.’

      The 51-year-old Chief Constable of Wiltshire was, in other words, using a formal PR statement to declare that two major aspects of embarrassing recent newspaper reports about Operation Conifer were entirely false.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • Crikey I haven’t seen him speak before. Not someone I’d like to run into in a dark alley.
        As for the one you mistakenly linked to- what an odd affair that is. That guy is well spoken and seems intelligent but it’s all about, as far as I can figure, something to do with 5G street lights and local residents with children whose noses have been bleeding.
        The local council deny the claims and the mad driving it has just been restrained in court from harassing council members.
        the problem with the chap commentating is that he assumes the viewer knows all about their claims when it’s very difficult to track down what it’s all about.

        Like

    • Either she likes prison food or she really thinks she will in the clutches of the person she claims is the head Satanist. Maybe this is one of her fantasies: Angie Power Disney in “Fifty Shades of Grey Hair”. It certainly won’t be like that Angie – It’ll be boring, and you’ll wonder why you threw years of your life away on such a daft obsession.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Perhaps Angie has no fear of prison as she is a qualified Super Soldier that has the skills to break out of even the most secure SuperMax style prison.

        Liked by 2 people

    • Maybe she also thinks he is drop dead gorgeous and it tickles her to be next to him like this. Sooo inverted, and in plain sight, eh, people?. People are mysteries, really.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ve been browsing Facebook’s terms & services and they are far more strict than I thought. What stands out is that all the members of Hoax Mob (c) breach those terms almost daily yet we all know how incredibly difficult it is getting offending material removed even though there are some successes.

    What stands out even more is that Facebook clearly breaches their own terms by not sticking to them. Take the example below which is sort of cleverly worded but in fact a bit too clever. It infers it will remove defamatory material but attempts a get-out clause by saying material may not be defamatory in certain locations. But Facebook can be accessed worldwide and in every country no matter what controls are put in place. Basically Facebook’s claims are disingenuous and that’s one thing Judges hate and usually rule against. When you enter into an agreement (which is what using Facebook is) you agree to honour the spirit of that agreement as well and although tricky wording is often used in contracts it can also make an agreement null & void (of course it takes great legal minds and a top QC to arrive at that position)

    The Syrian boy who was bullied in an on-line video is attempting to sue Facebook and Tommy Robinson but because they are appealing for money I’m not sure that will eventuate. I would suggest his lawyer should sue Robinson first which would be easily won and then take on Facebook. Facebook will be like Google who are rapacious and will toss $Millions to defeat a claim just as they do in Australia where defamation law has established that entities like Google are publishers but they will still put plaintiffs through the mill until the bitter end even though they will inevitably lose. But the law will catch up with that but it will take time.

    The problem is that politicians are so behind the times with all this, apart from some notable exceptions who generally are not the ones in power. A government is always more powerful than a corporation such as in France which is still battling with Facebook & Google over protections for French citizens throughout the world while FB etc make incredible demands of total freedom. They aren’t winning but these things drag on for years.

    I think the fly in the ointment for FB etc is the real problem of how they police their own terms which is by using ‘monitors’ in countries like the Philippines, India and so on (virtually no western countries bar token monitors in Ireland etc). While it’s great numerous Asian people can make a living (?) some have pointed out the difference in cultures makes it difficult for those monitors to judge standards. Even the Philippines being almost a 90% Catholic country affects the way they think and they may find a post far more offensive than an Indian monitor given the loosely worded (apparently) rules they are given when they have 5 seconds to scan a post.

    I reckon it will all come crashing down at some stage but these Net entities are so rich it won’t matter to stock holders.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I might add (I’ve gotten away with so much while the Cat is out shopping) that the famous case of Dow Jones & Co Inc v Gutnick established in 2002 settled that an action could be taken out in the plaintiff’s country of residence ( Australia in this case) which set a precedent and of course precedents can be cited in countries that build on English law.
      But it’s incredibly complex, takes a fortune and of course, Joseph Gutnick, the winner in the case is a mega – millionaire. But Angela Daisy Power – you need to lawyer up.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dow_Jones_%26_Co_Inc_v_Gutnick

      Liked by 1 person

    • They don’t exactly shout about that form either. Defamation isn’t even a reporting category that comes up when you report a post. I assume you had to search for that via one of their many help pages and that you only found said help page via a Google search (they don’t even have links to most of them on their own site).

      Liked by 1 person

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