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Melanie Shaw, Beechwood Child Abuse Witness, Held in Peterborough Prison

by | Monday, 14th July 2014
The Beechwood Children’s Home abuse witness is being held in Peterborough prison after unknown police action on Thursday, 10th July, and a secret court hearing on Friday, 11th July 2014. For the personal safety of the individual and in the wider public interest we are naming the witness as Melanie Shaw. 

On Friday, 11th July, the UK Column reported that a "key whistleblowing witness and victim of child abuse at Nottingham Beechwood Children’s Home is effectively missing after sending a text to the UKColumn starting 'pls ring urgent, something has happened n I don’t trust the police and I may be locked up tomorrow.' Sent at 21:22 on Wednesday, 9th July 2014 the UK Column has been trying to locate the witness ever since."

Despite telephone calls by UK Column and members of the public to Nottinghamshire police over the weekend, we were unable to establish the precise whereabouts of Melanie. We remained concerned for her safety in light of civilian police staff claims that she was safe, without any supporting facts as to what had happened, or where she was being held. Late on Friday afternoon Melanie Shaw’s solicitor was also unaware of the police action or his clients location.

At 1127 on Monday, 14th July we received a call from a friend of Melanie who informed us that she was being held in Peterborough prison after being picked up by Nottinghamshire police on Friday and held in cells overnight. After a Court hearing the following day, for which it is still not known if Melanie had proper legal representation or the benefit of public and press attendance, she was remanded to Peterborough prison. This category B prison run by Sodexo had a reputation in 2011 for drugs, bullying and violence. As the country’s only male and female prison, it has a maximum capacity of 840 and boasts a Mother and Baby Unit for 12 mums. 

Melanie’s incarceration appears to be based on allegations that she set fire to a neighbours shed - a charge which Melanie denies. Melanie has reported to the UK Column that individuals linked to her bail conditions had been harassing her in recent weeks.

This latest punitive action on a child abuse victim by Nottingham Police and the Courts, follows the removal of her child by Social Services and disruptive action by the Local Council in respect of her home. Melanie claims she had been warned she could have her child taken when she first blew the whistle on Beechwood in 2011. 

Melanie originally approached the UK Column because she wanted to expose the truth of the vicious rapes, sexual and physical abuse, and psychological intimidation that she and some 100 other young children suffered at Nottingham Beechwood childrens home.  Clearly frightened of the police after irregularities in their investigations, Melanie strongly suspected that the police, Local Authorities and Members of Parliament, were already attempting to cover-up the Beechwood abuse.

Following Elm House child abuse London, BBC’s Jimmy Savile, and particularly in light of the ongoing exposure of the cover-up of paedophile rings within Westminster and the wider establishment, the UK Column believes that many of Melanie’s concerns are fully justified. Our opinion is reinforced by the fact that five other women known to the UK Column, who, having reported paedophile activity, have been harassed by the police and Local Authorities and later sectioned in psychiatric units. In two other UK Column cases where Social Services have been attempting to steal children, parents have also been falsely accused of arson attempts.

Three Nottingham MPs, Vernon Coaker, Lilian Greenwood and Chris Leslie have so far failed to respond to UK Column enquires as to their action to help Beechwood victims and protect other children from abuse. Their silence says much. 

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