Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Investigated care home man dies

A former Jersey children's home worker who was investigated by social services into child abuse there in the 1980s has died from cancer.

Alan Maguire, who ran the former Blanche Pierre children's home with his wife, Jane, died in France.

An internal States inquiry into care at Blanche Pierre found Mrs Maguire had carried out "gross acts of physical and psychological abuse".

Mr Maguire was also mentioned in a covering letter for the inquiry.

Insufficient evidence

The Maguires were later allowed to "retire" from Blanche Pierre. Jane Maguire was moved onto another job within social services and still allowed to work with vulnerable people.

She was not finally recommended for dismissal from social services until 1999 in a confidential social services report into Blanche Pierre from 1999, which was obtained by the BBC in 2008.

The report looked at alleged abuse in the home between 1986 and 1990 when the home was run by the couple. It found Jane Maguire guilty of gross misconduct.

Mr Maguire, who was not employed by the States, was accused of carrying out acts of abuse by former residents of Blanche Pierre.

The couple's actions were twice investigated by Jersey Police, but on each occasion it was decided there was insufficient evidence for the case to proceed to court.

Mr Maguire had been diagnosed with liver cancer and Jersey Police had believed he was already dead at the time of a previous investigation.

He was subsequently found to be alive and living with his wife in France in 2008.

The couple were the focus of a BBC Panorama and BBC Inside Out South West programme last year in which they were challenged about their activities as carers in Jersey.

When confronted by reporters, they made no comment.

BBC Jersey contacted the French authorities directly, who confirmed his death.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Two historic abuse cases dropped

Two cases in the Jersey historic abuse enquiry will not be prosecuted after they were dropped "for legal and evidential reasons".

The first case involved an employee who used to work at the former Haut de la Garenne children's home.

The second case involved house parents of a former St Clement children's home.

Jersey's Attorney General, William Bailhache said he had not found sufficient grounds to prosecute in either case.

Nine alleged victims gave evidence about the Haut de la Garenne case but Mr Bailhache questioned the credibility of some of it.

He also said the complaints did not support each other enough.

The couple who ran the former St Clement children's home, now live in France and attempts to interview them have been unsuccessful.

Charges against the couple were dropped by the island's Attorney General in 1998 and the current Attorney General said he had not found sufficient evidence for overturning his predecessor's decision.

Those claiming to be victims in the two separate alleged abuse cases which have now been dropped were notified by police on Wednesday night that their cases would not be going any further.

Historic abuse investigations are still ongoing in Jersey however, with three cases currently going through the island's court system.

(BBC Jersey)

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