Coffee House

Patrick Rock arrest: Sir Jeremy Heywood’s reply to Labour letter

5 March 2014

8:53 PM

5 March 2014

8:53 PM

Dear Mr Ashworth,

Thank you for your letter.

I will try to respond to your specific questions but, as you recognise, in doing so my overriding concern must be to avoid doing anything to prejudice or undermine an on-going police investigation.

Downing Street became aware of a potential offence relating to child abuse imagery on the evening of 12 February.  I was immediately informed of the allegation and the Prime Minister was also briefed.  Officials then contacted the NCA to seek advice on how to report suspected criminality. Our subsequent actions were driven by the overriding importance of not jeopardising either their investigation or the possibility of a prosecution.


Patrick Rock resigned on the evening of 12 February. His resignation was not made public as we judged it was inappropriate to make an announcement while the NCA investigations were continuing. A few hours later he was arrested. We also arranged for officers to come into Number 10 to have access to all IT systems and offices they considered relevant.

There has been no contact from officials with Mr Rock since his arrest.

Mr Rock was cleared to the standard SC level which was appropriate for the classification of material to which he needed to have access.

You ask a number of questions about a separate sexual harassment allegation. Let me start by saying that we regard our duty of confidentiality to staff who make complaints as extremely important. Confidentiality is essential if we are to ensure that people feel able to raise issues freely, and without fear of subsequently being identified. I am therefore not in a position to provide any information that might breach our duty of confidence or allow an individual to be identified.

On the specific questions you raise in relation to what you describe as “an allegation of sexual harassment”, again let me make clear that as you would expect we take any issue raised by staff about behaviour very seriously indeed.  The complaint was acted upon immediately at a senior level and in accordance with Cabinet Office HR policy.  The issue was resolved with the consent of, and in consultation with, the individual who raised the complaint. Both civil service and special adviser line managers were involved. I was briefed on the case and concluded that the matter had been dealt with appropriately. The Prime Minister was also made aware. You imply that the member of staff who raised the complaint was moved to another Government department against their wishes. This is completely untrue – no member of staff was moved as a result of the case.

I am not aware of any other complaint about Patrick Rock’s behaviour while he was working at No 10.

Jeremy Heywood

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Show comments
  • justalittlebitofthis

    I put a list of 48 Labour Paedophiles with all the links to the newspapers reporting their convictions yesterday and this news website wouldn’t publish them. Must be a Labour news website. Might have known, trying to coverup the ‘Labour25+23 scandal.

    • ogga1
      • justalittlebitofthis

        My post is from 48 mainstream newspapers including BBC news. don’t send me links about conspiracy to throw people off the truth. Labour is a paedophile party. end of story.

        • ogga1

          Seeing it is a segment of the toxic three in one party I agree.

          • justalittlebitofthis

            Remember, when someone gives the truth, Agree like you have done. Labour is the paedophile PIE party.

  • Jambo25

    I’m afraid the Tories do have past form here. Thatcher’s old PPS, Sir Peter Morrison has been reliably named as a sexual predator on young boys by amongst others Edwina Currie and Rod Richards the ex head of the Welsh Tories. Morrison was also linked to the Bryn Estyn scandal along with the lovely J Savile and another couple of prominent Tories. There’s also the Elm Guest House scandal burbling away in the background. We keep getting told that the Met are about to make arrests or go public but, surprise surprise, they never seem to get round to it.

    There are also nasties, in this vein, in both the Labour and Lib Dem parties but that doesn’t absolve the Tories from being open.

  • english_pensioner

    Much ado about nothing.
    I just wonder who in the real world has any more than a fleeting passing interest in such matters. No doubt politicians will continue to try to exploit it, but to me, it seems trivial compared with what is happening elsewhere and especially what Guido reveals today about Jack Dromey’s contribution to the NCCL’s book arguing the case for paedophilia.

    • Tom Tom

      I am sure there are young children who wish someone cared……

      • english_pensioner

        Which is why I’m far more concerned about those who argue the case for the reduction of the age of consent to 10 or lower and who promote paedophilia. Looking a pictures seems to me to be minor in comparison, it’s those who provide the pictures who need to be caught.

  • Rockin Ron

    Why call in the NCA and not the Met?
    Why brief Cameron before calling the NCA?
    Why, following Rock’s arrest were the media not informed and told about possible reporting restrictions because legal proceedings were pending?
    Why not say how many allegations of sexual harassment have been made without giving details that could breach confidentiality?
    Questions, questions…….
    Often it is not the original actions but the cover up that catches people out. So much for Cameron’s “sunshine is the best detergent claim”.

    • wycombewanderer

      Because the NCA is the investigatory body for suspected child sexual abuse cases..

      The rest of your tosh is just tinfoil hat twattery on a scale that only a leftie could come up with and is explained in the letter above.

      • Rockin Ron

        Abuse just diminishes the abuser and reveals lack of an ability to marshall an argument.
        I am not a leftie. The Met. Police have a special unit to investigate such allegations and it would have been appropriate to involve them.

        • wycombewanderer

          The met are part of the NCA the N stands for national.

          Go back to conspiracy theories about 9/11

          • Rockin Ron

            Let’s wait for more details to emerge and then you can agree I was right.

          • ButcombeMan

            The Met are not part of the NCA.

            • wycombewanderer

              Met officersd are seconded to the NCA to investigate national crimes and crimes at the highest levels.

              You can’t get much higher than an allegation of criminal activity in No10 so it is entirely appropriate that the NCA investigates.

              • Rockin Ron

                That should tell you they are 2 organisations. The Met. Police is not part of the NCA as you have stated.

              • ButcombeMan

                You are just wrong. This is not a place to be fundamentally so wrong about something and not expect to get corrected.

                The NCA are certainly likely to be more secure than the Met, they do not have the same culture of corruption and leaking that we saw in Plebgate. They also have more investigation staff vetted to DV level.

          • Rockin Ron

            This is incredibly ignorant. The Met. Police and the NCA are two separate organisations. Still early for you is it?

      • ButcombeMan

        The NCA is not THE investigatory body for such crime it does however have within it the CEOP command. That may have caused your confusion.

        Any Constabulary can carry out such investigations.

        The Met could have been called in, to this investigation, I can understand why they were not, but they could have been.

  • Pip

    I don’t believe Heywood and it doesn’t surprise me that yet another Cameron advisor has been found to be a suspected criminal, birds of a feather etc, utterly disgraceful.

    • Whyshouldihavetoregister

      Well, you are, that’s for sure.

    • GnosticBrian

      Do you take the same line with Milliband and his failure to act over Harmon and Dromey’s links to paedophile propagandists? Rock resigned with immediate effect; Dromey and Harman refuse to even apologise – birds of a feather, utterly disgraceful laughing stock indeed.

      • Tom Tom

        Rock was A R R E S T E D

        • Holly


      • Pip

        Yes I concur, They are all crooks. fraudsters, liars, cheats, and self serving traitors.

    • justalittlebitofthis

      google Labour25 scandal or Labour25 dot com

  • HookesLaw

    So the only lie came from Labour. What a set of toerags.

    We must assume (always dangerous I know) that the way the govt behave after the arrest was driven by the advice they received after they sought ‘advice on how to report suspected criminality’.

    • Rockin Ron

      Just as plausible to consider lies are not the sole prerogative of one particular party. If you believe that, you really are as naive as you come across. Probably members of both parties have lied.

  • starfish

    Meanwhile Labour’s bandwagon jumping has probably prejudiced a trial

    • Nicholas chuzzlewit

      Well Labour is the party of lies, lying and liars.

      • justalittlebitofthis

        check this out

    • Tom Tom

      There will be no trial…….

      • justalittlebitofthis

        Like the 48 convicted Labour paedophiles of the Labour25 scandal.
        check it out.

  • computeruser

    Patrick Rock spider