Saturday, 26 May 2007

the northen echo

Comment from The Northern Echo: The innocent need answers From the Northern Echo, first published Wednesday 3rd Apr 2002. WE sympathise with those individuals accused and subsequently cleared in Operation Rose. It is difficult to imagine the trauma of being suspected or charged with the abuse of children in your care. In the eyes of society, these are among the most serious of offences. Those involved, whether they are cleared or not, can be stigmatised for life. No one should make light of the fact that, of the 223 care workers who were the subject of allegations, only 32 people went on to face court action. Of these, only seven were convicted. But neither should we lose sight of the fact that seven people were found guilty of heinous crimes. Because of Operation Rose, they were duly punished. Without Operation Rose, they would have escaped justice, and possibly gone on to commit further offences. Nevertheless, those cleared deserve a full explanation of the actions taken by police. Now that Operation Rose has come to an end it is to be hoped that all relevant questions will be answered. If there were any shortcomings in this investigation, they must be fully examined so that lessons can be learned to assist future inquiries of this kind. It is up to the police to demonstrate that, despite the pain and suffering inflicted on the innocent, it was in the public interest to pursue the guilty

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