IICSA accepts Wedger as core participant

In a surprising turn of events yesterday, self-styled whistleblower and ex-MET police officer Jonathan Wedger was granted “core participant” status by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.

This decision appears to reverse a Notice of Determination issued in October 2018, which read in part:

An application was made on behalf of retired Detective Constable Margaret Oliver, retired Detective Constable John (sic) Wedger and retired Detective Superintendent Peter Jackson for core participant status in the Accountability and Reparations Investigation on 14 May 2018. While this application was made outside the window for core participant applications, the application provides reasons for this and I am satisfied that I should proceed to consider the application despite it being submitted late

I provisionally declined the application on 7 August 2018. All three applicants were provided with an opportunity to renew their application by notifying the Solicitor to the Inquiry of their intention to renew and providing written submissions in support of their application by 4 September 2018. The application was not renewed. This notice sets out my final determination of the application. …

…I am not satisfied that Ms Oliver, Mr Wedger and Mr Jackson have played, or may have played, a direct and significant role in relation to the matters to which the Inquiry relates, or that there are other good reasons to designate them as core participants in the Accountability and Reparations investigation.

In the same document, IICSA Chair Professor Alexis Jay OBE noted that the Accountability and Reparations investigation would pertain specifically to experiences of people who had been placed in children’s homes in England and Wales. She wrote,

On the information placed before me, the experience of Ms Oliver, Mr Wedger and Mr Jackson does not appear to relate specifically to one of the five cases studies (sic).

However, in yesterday’s opening session of the preliminary hearing in the Investigation into Child Sexual Exploitation by Organised Networks, Oliver and Wedger were introduced as “national level core participants”, along with Sarah Champion MP, Parents Against Child Sexual Exploitation, Ofsted, the Home Office, and the National Police Chiefs’ Council.

It’s our understanding that rejection of an application for core participant status in one thread of the IICSA does not necessarily mean rejection from others, which would explain this apparent reversal. However, our readers will know that we have some serious concerns about Wedger’s activities.

From ITNJ to IICSA

We cannot help but wonder whether the IICSA is aware of Wedger’s participation in last year’s ITNJ loon-fest, where he hauled out the case of “Foxy” (real name: Fiona Walsh), claiming she had “connections with high-ranking police officers and magistrates”, as well as a high-ranking executive at the BBC.

Wedger has claimed on multiple occasions to have “exposed” Foxy’s “sexual racket”, with the result that his senior officers “shut him down” and made various threats against him, claiming they would ruin his life if he didn’t shut up about what he knew.

In addition, he says he was accused of gross misconduct related to data protection violations—which he believes was a consequence of his whistleblowing.

The SRA connection

Setting aside Wedger’s claims about the police, though, we have a particular reason for our consternation at his becoming a core participant in the IICSA: he is a vocal proponent of the myth of Satanic ritual abuse. We’ve discussed in the past his close relationship with SRA-pushers such as Bill Maloney and Brian Gerrish, and more recently we wrote about his link to Wilfred Wong.

And a few weeks ago, Wedger and his publicist Anna Brees attacked journalist Rosie Waterhouse over two articles she’d written for Private Eye, concerning inconsistencies in a misery memoir published by Brees Media.

Brees and Wedger resurrected an old allegation made by Dr Joan Coleman, the Senator Joe McCarthy of Satanic panics, who’d placed Waterhouse’s name on the infamous RAINS list—a “grudge list” created by Coleman, in which she accused people whose views offended her of being Satanic paedophiles.

All of this is deeply concerning, the more so in the context of Wedger’s acceptance as a core participant in the IICSA hearings on child sexual exploitation by organised networks. Given his rather extraordinary views on such “organised networks”, we wonder what his contribution will be to the hearings, and whether they will affect its direction in any way.

It’s almost as if Dr Jean LaFontaine’s hard work debunking SRA had never happened.

36 thoughts on “IICSA accepts Wedger as core participant

  1. Then IICSA needs to question Wedger about his serious claims including his support for the Hampstead satanic hoax. Their investigators must have Wedger’s many statements forwarded to them because if they do not rigorously question him then they risk making a joke of the whole thing.
    And he claims he is a whistle blower so he won’t be at risk of libel claims so this is an opportunity to blow that alleged whistle.

    And this is interesting as it reminds me of a New Zealander who claims to be the King of Britain and all her Dominions (except the State of Victoria and Scotland ?) who is also selling paper “shares” and exchanging his form of currency for those shares:

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/geezer-sovereign-citizen-on-the-lam-for-fake-money-scam?ref=home
    Geezer Sovereign Citizen on the Lam for Fake Money Scam

    Winston Shrout gave his followers fake bills and raked in real money, until the feds cracked down on his scam. Now the 70-year-old conspiracy theorist is on the run.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Well if the IICSA wants to descend into farce…..I mean, why have they left Mr Wong out ‘cos he’s really sensible? (That’s sarcasm for those in doubt.)

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I wonder if Mr Wedger is being invited so he can’t claim he was sidelined – though by all means if people have concerns contact IICSA to express those concerns.

    Sam, conspiracy theories seem to be alive and flourishing in the USA though we have a few people in the UK spouting them now. I’ve even come across a couple of Australian conspiracy theorists – JungleSurfer (earth is flat/famous people are secretly transgender) and Mary40 (the illuminati/and famous people are transgender).

    I can’t find the online article now but I did find something once about the Salem Witch Trials (which I’m reminded of by the Truthers). Anyway, things got to a stage where the wife of the (then) Colony was accused of something and not long after people were told to knock it off. Of course, it’s not so possible to tell people just to knock something off in the modern world.

    As has been noted previously on this blog there is something of a cult about the following of some conspiracy YouTubers. I commented something about not wanting to study numerology and gematria once and one of M40’s fans called me a “dipsh*t” – that was Christian for you, was it not?

    Someone had said that the bomb going off at the Ariana Grande concert was a “false flag”. Why can’t these people think of the folk who have lost members of their families instead of jumping on every bandwagon?

    I do try to stay away from the nutty side of YouTube now – a conspiracy theory video popped into my recommended list once (not sure if I remember how) and I watched it in a puzzled fashion.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. That is a disgrace! Has any of them seen the farce of the ITNJ, the money blagging, the fact that they were warned not to mention SRA!

    More importantly, that Neelu supports it!

    This decision could let a lot of survivors down badly besides making Wedger privy to confidential details of people, that he could possibly use for his own campaigns.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Some people think everything is a “false flag” nowadays. They aren’t so much opposing the establishment as being contrary. In the words of Monty Python “This isn’t an argument, it’s just contradiction.”

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I wonder whether some of these knee-jerk false flag proclaimers even know the definition of the term? It’s a “covert operation intended to deceive”; it doesn’t mean the thing didn’t happen. However, good luck telling that to a troofer.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. You’re right Lucca, I hadn’t thought of the confidentiality issue, though I’m not sure what documents would be shared with a core participant in any given strand of the IICSA. But just the fact that he has embraced life on the conspiranoid side, and publicly spews allegations of SRA against anybody who offends him, should be more than sufficient to make Prof Jay go, “Hmm”.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Of course, there is nothing to stop an interested citizen from bringing their concerns about Wedger’s causes to the attention of the IICSA. Please be polite and civil if any of you do so.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Wedger’s participation as a core participant is very concerning particularly because of the potential access it will give him to unredacted versions of documentation ahead of evidence sessions.

    At the end of the final public session in the Westminster strand of the Inquiry, on March 29th, Brian Altman the Counsel to the Inquiry reported that material had been leaked to a journalist in advance of the evidence sessions which dealt with it, and that it was suspected that a core participant was responsible.

    (The journalist was not named but Mark Watts subsequently outed himself. He was also reported, on Barbara Hewson’s blog amongst other places, as appearing to be acting as some kind of lay advisor to Esther Baker at a 15th April hearing in the ongoing mutual libel actions between her and John Hemming).

    Altman pointed out that breaches of the undertakings about confidentiality, which core participants are required to give, may be a criminal offence under section 1 of the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 1992 if it leads to publication of the identities of people with lifetime protection. There are few other sanctions apparently. He announced that core participants to the Westminster strand would henceforth only be able to access unredacted documentation by request and that reasons would need to be supplied. While that only applied to the Westminster strand he also announced that there would be a review of access arrangements in respect of future strands of the inquiry, and that steps would be taken to make future leaks traceable to their source.

    Even if this review of access to unredacted documentation limits what protected information Wedger has access to, his activities to date in attempting to establish himself as an entrepreneur of tales of abuse, and associated conspiracy theories, must raise concerns about access of any kind which helps him further this revolting career path.

    (Delurking for the first time to post that. May I add how much I appreciate the work done by you all).

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Indeed. A copy of the Private Eye article would be a start!

    I was at first alarmed by this but on reflection, given “Nick” is just about to [redacted so as not to fall foul of contempt of court 😉] , I’m wondering whether this is a move by IICSA to lance the boil and completely discredit conspiracy nuts whilst being able to hold up accusations that have supporting evidence.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Oh God, Neelu is live with Devine this past hour, they are the arrowheads that are going to get through the black ice, well so Neelu says! The bull is flying. UFO’s flying across, missiles, the UFO’s were protecting them, a fire in Dagenham that took 200 weeks to put out and more. 😴

    Liked by 2 people

  12. @Lucca, it is crazy they are involved with anyone who was in the itnj sham, money was firmly at the forefront of that disgraceful proceeding, one in particular I think she will go down as the biggest bs,r ever recorded, anyone linked to her should be avoided

    Liked by 2 people

  13. But a full inquiry should also note the false allegations of sexual abuse that are central to 2 enormous botched police operations. I suspect there’s more going on than we are privy to and it’s all part of a larger plan than we perceive right now.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. There is so much I could say about this appalling event but I’m going to restrict myself, at least for now, to posting this link to a cache of a PDF document re an earlier, failed application for Core Participant status from Wedger and Maggie Oliver.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20190504110447/https://www.iicsa.org.uk/key-documents/7370/view/2018-10-12-notice-determination-core-participant-application-dc-margaret-oliver-dc-john-wedger-%26-si-peter-jackson.pdf

    According to the text the application, which was made in 2018, was made “outside the window for core participant applications”, (too late to be considered?), however “the application provides reasons for this” so it was considered.

    What is fascinating about this is that the application was declined because the applicants were not considered to possess experience of CSA relating to specified children’s homes that were the subject of the inquiry.

    So what has changed between then and now?

    Presumably of the earlier, rejected application was late / “outside the window”, then the more recent application is even more late.

    I think that what might have changed is that the IICSA is now going to examine cases of child sexual abuse within religious settings

    “Inquiry announces new investigation into child protection in religious organisations and settings

    2 May 2019
    The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has announced a new investigation into child protection in religious organisations and settings.

    The investigation will be thematic and will review the current child protection policies, practices and procedures in religious institutions in England and Wales.

    Organisations falling under the remit of this investigation will include non conformist Christian denominations, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Baptists, Methodists, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism, Hinduism and Buddhism. This investigation is separate from our investigations into the Anglican and Roman Catholic churches.

    Religious settings such as mosques, synagogues, churches and temples are in scope. Places of faith tuition such as Muslim madrassahs and Christian Sunday schools and places where children and young people gather in connection with their religious beliefs, including youth groups and camps will also be investigated by the Inquiry.

    More than one in 10 survivors of child sexual abuse (11 per cent) who shared their accounts with the Inquiry’s Truth Project reported sexual abuse in a religious institution. Of this group, almost a quarter (24 percent) told the Inquiry they were abused in institutions in scope of this new investigation, including Jehovah’s Witnesses, Baptists, Methodists, Judaism and Islam. Not all participants provided details about the religious denomination of the institution or perpetrator.

    Organisations and individuals are being invited to apply for core participant status. Core participants must have a significant interest in this investigation and have special rights defined by legislation.

    A preliminary hearing will take place at 2pm on 23 July 2019 and public hearings will take place in 2020.”

    https://web.archive.org/web/20190504111354/https://www.iicsa.org.uk/news/inquiry-announces-new-investigation-child-protection-religious-organisations-and-settings

    Of course, as someone ho has studied cults, I welcome the decision of the IICSA to expand its inquiry into child abuse within religious organisations. However I wonder what kind of information regarding abuse in religious settings Jon Wedger could possibly claim to have information about?

    Said absolutely nobody who is at all familiar with his SRA promoting antics.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I made a long post earlier, more than 1 link so may take a while to show up

    I am not sure when this page appeared on the IICSA website

    https://web.archive.org/web/20190504112208/https://www.iicsa.org.uk/victims-and-survivors/whistleblowers

    It may be that Wedger and Oliver had their previously rejected application was accepted due subsequently to the focus on whistleblowers, or, as I explained at length in my earlier post, it may be to do with the expansion of the IICSA mandate to include CSA within religious institutions

    I have so much more to say about whistleblowing but will bite my tongue for now

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Wedger’s recent YouTube video in which he interviews self proclaimed SRA survivor Carolyn Bramhall is very interesting.

    A comment in a review of one of Carolyn Bramhall’s books is fascinating

    “I don’t doubt that Carolyn had severe mental problems. I don’t doubt that she has healed. I don’t doubt that she had a very troubled and difficult childhood, and I don’t doubt that the memories she has of her childhood traumas are as real to her as anything she has experienced in her life; I just doubt that they are all accurate memories and I am concerned that some of her experiences may have been created through unintentional manipulation by third parties who have helped her recover (her psychologist Dr Christopher Rosik and Freedom in Christ ministries).”

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/customer-reviews/R2Z5TANWTXKJ9R/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_viewpnt?ie=UTF8&ASIN=1854247247#R2Z5TANWTXKJ9R

    No time to research Dr Christopher Rosik however Freedom in Christ Ministries are a notorious SRA promoting Christian cult.

    further reading

    https://web.archive.org/web/20180712185601/http://www.equip.org/PDF/DA080.pdf

    The cult’s very own website is great for lols

    “The dark side of Satan’s version of spiritual knowledge and power mentioned by Moses – ritual sacrifice, witchcraft, sorcery – is also thriving in our culture, though not as openly as some of the more socially acceptable New Age practices. Our police departments are trying to tell parents today “Wake up! Your kids are not just into drugs and illicit sex. They’re into Satanism. We’ve seen the blood and the mutilated animals.” It’s getting so bad that one of the animal control agencies in our area will no longer release a black dog or cat at Halloween for fear that it will become the victim of satanic ritual abuse.”

    https://web.archive.org/web/20190504115905/http://www.ficm.org.uk/content/021-wake

    The 1980s called and they want their hysteria back!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I did exactly that yesterday morning.
    I pointed out Wedger’s monetising of child abuse, associations with criminals, including Sacha Stone who is facing multiple allegations of sexual impropriety including allegations involving minors
    I also pointed out that the ITNJ was a rival organisation to the IICSA

    however I have pointed out and attempted to whistleblow about a load of concerning things to the IICSA regarding ETSD conferences and SRA hoaxes all without it making any difference whatsoever

    I wonder whether their whistleblowing inquiry will include my whistleblowing reports that the IICSA failed to take any notice of?

    Liked by 1 person

  18. We live in a post-truth era in which hoaxes relating to child sexual abuse coverups and satanic ritual abuse are weaponised and used for the purposes of undermining democracy and social engineering.

    Given that the IICSA has core participants who endorse SRA (not including Wedger) it seems like it will be easy for any hostile foreign power to claim that there is a coverup whatever happens.

    Either the IICSA drinks the koolaid and buys into hoaxes regarding SRA and elite satanic paedophile rings in which case the UK appears to be a country of cannibal satanist paedophiles, or it takes a rational, sceptical position based on evidence in which case it will have to acknowledge that its core participants include people with delusions about SRA, which itself is indicative of some kind of conspiracy, especially as the IICSA has been warned repeatedly about the SRA promoters in its midst.

    Also, even more seriously, given that leaders and disciples of religious and personal development cults do sometimes abuse children sexually, it makes it very difficult for real survivors of CSA in cults to trust in the IICSA. The reason for this is that the very same cult members, “healers” and “shamans” who sexually exploit children and vulnerable adults also not infrequently claim to be fighting and whistleblowing against SRA.

    Whatever happens the IICSA and the UK end up looking really bad, which is a terrible shame and al could have been avoided had the relevant people at the IICSA only paid proper attention to the many warnings they were given

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Thanks, Salad, and welcome. You make some excellent points. I think you’ve nailed it regarding Wedger’s new career as a misery memoir entrepreneur: giving him access to unredacted confidential documents strikes me as foolhardy bordering on criminally irresponsible.

    Like

  20. Barrister Barbara Hewson touches on this.
    https://barbarahewson.org/2019/02/25/a-note-on-lord-brittan/
    Looking at the overall picture of child abuse allegations it cannot be ignored that it’s a matter that has consumed the UK in it’s intensity yet surely the British are no more or less criminal or prone to abuse children than other races.

    There is a legitimate line of thought that foreign actors have successfully blown child abuse allegations, both current and historic out of all proportion in the USA & UK. Along with other matters like Brexit no matter what side you are on, it’s almost fractured society in both countries and opened up deep schisms which may never be repaired.
    I can think of one major world power this benefits and the name Vladimir comes to mind.
    One reason I went right off Wikileaks is they were pushing the @pizzagate hoax relentlessly which, with other actions took them from being “journalists” as they claim to partisan political players.

    The more I think about Wedger getting official status at IICSA the more worrying it becomes. He and Oliver have presented themselves as the “experts” but this surely is bordering on ridiculous seeing they were junior officers.
    There must be 100s of current serving police officers involved in investigating child abuse accusations.

    All Oliver & Wedger have done is proclaim that they somehow are the only experts via tabloid stories and blog posts and YouTube videos whilst repeating exaggerated claims about M15 and incorporating all the conspiracy madness we see from “truthers”.
    Even if the final report eventually criticizes some for their unproved claims it will be used to claim “cover-up” because we know with the promoters of SRA and other such stuff, they are never ever satisfied.
    Real evidence of malfeasance is used by them to prove their allegations (even if they have nothing to do with exposing something) and the lack of evidence or proven accusations is also used by them to claim cover-up. It’s a no win situation.

    It’s why I believe IICSA is becoming a giant lawyers boondoggle where £100Ms will be hoovered up by the legal fraternity when it could be better spent on the millions of real live children who today badly need help.
    And those who promote lunacies like SRA don’t appear to give a stuff about the either.

    Liked by 2 people

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