'Police dropped case against brothel madam to cover up paedophile claims against former PM Ted Heath': Wiltshire force being investigated over allegation by 'very senior' former officer
Wiltshire Police accused of ignoring sex abuse claim in the 1990s
Man may have been let off prosecution after threat to expose Sir Edward
Sir Edward Heath served as Tory prime minister between 1970 and 1974
One alleged victim claims he was sexually abused aged 12 by Sir Edward
Police are being investigated over sensational claims they covered up child sex allegations against former prime minister Edward Heath.
The probe was launched after a retired ‘very senior’ officer raised concerns that a criminal trial was derailed in the 1990s to protect the former Tory leader.
As a result, it is alleged, he was never interviewed by police – let alone arrested – and his home was not searched.
Last night, in a bizarre televised scene, a senior Wiltshire Police officer stood outside Sir Edward’s former home and urged victims not ‘to suffer in silence’ and to contact them if they had been abused by the politician.
One alleged victim claims he was sexually assaulted aged 12 by Sir Edward in a Mayfair flat in 1961, after the MP spotted him walking the streets alone.
The 65-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, claimed he was unaware of Sir Edward's identity until four years later when he saw a picture of the then Tory MP alongside future Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
According to the Daily Mirror, the alleged victim burst into tears and told his mother: 'The man in this picture raped me, mum.'
He claimed he had reported the alleged attack two months after it is said to have happened but was dismissed as a 'fantasist' and a liar.
Scotland Yard has been informed of the allegations and detectives reportedly plan to interview the man.
Meanwhile, sources described the police whistleblower, who reached chief officer rank, as a man of high integrity whose testimony is being treated ‘very seriously’.
Last night, a retired senior Wiltshire Police officer said he was sure the allegations made by his former colleague were true.
The officer, who was at the heart of some of the force’s most sensitive inquiries in the 1990s, told the Daily Mail: ‘I have no doubt that the allegation that a prosecution was stopped in suspicious circumstances, because of a potential link to Sir Edward, is true.’
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) investigation centres on whether charges against a woman, accused of running a brothel, were not pursued when she threatened to expose Sir Edward – the highest-profile figure to be embroiled in historical child sex abuse allegations.
The IPCC is also examining whether Wiltshire Police ever subsequently took steps to probe the allegations against the man who was premier for four years from 1970.
The moves, ten years after his death aged 89, prompted renewed claims of an Establishment cover-up to protect VIP paedophiles. Labour MP Tom Watson revealed he handed information about Sir Edward to police three years ago.