A convicted paedophile has been found guilty of making up claims about a VIP paedophile ring in Westminster. Carl Beech, a former NHS manager known as ‘Nick’, was convicted of 12 counts of perverting the course of justice. He was also found guilty of fraud after he received a £22,000 criminal compensation payout in relation to the allegations.
Beech’s claims – which included allegations of three child murders – led to a £2.5m Metropolitan Police investigation. Edward Heath, Leon Brittan, Lord Bramall and Harvey Proctor were among those falsely accused by Beech.
Here are four people with questions to answer following Beech’s conviction:
Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe:
Operation Midland was set up as a result of the claims made by Beech, who was the single alleged victim to come forward. The 16-month inquiry involved 31 officers. It collapsed in 2016 without a single arrest being made. Harvey Proctor, who was wrongfully accused by Beech, called for Bernard Hogan-Howe – who was in charge of the Metropolitan Police when the investigation was set up – to resign back in 2016. Hogan-Howe retired a year later and now sits in the House of Lords.
The deputy leader of the Labour party allegedly met Beech at Watson’s office in Westminster to discuss his allegations. Beech later told police that Watson was among a ‘little group supporting me and putting my information out there to encourage other people to come forward’.
Detective Superintendent Kenny McDonald led the initial inquiry and called the allegations made by Nick ‘credible and true’ on TV back in December 2014. He retired from the Met Police on the eve of the trial after 30 years in the force.
Exaro reporter Mark Conrad became Beech’s most trusted confidant. Newcastle Crown Court heard during Beech’s trial that Conrad showed him dozens of pictures of high-profile people “to see if there was anyone I recognised”. Beech subsequently told police that the catalogue of pictures helped him “fill another blank” in his memory. Beech’s claims formed the basis of allegations published on Exaro in 2014.