General Sir Hugh Beach has branded claims he was part of a VIP sex ring ‘beyond grotesque’ at the trial of the man accused of making up allegations against top figures
One of the British Army’s oldest former generals branded claims of an alleged VIP sex ring ‘beyond grotesque’ as he gave evidence via a videolink from his own home today.
General Sir Hugh Beach, 96, was among a series of top figures accused of abuse by Carl Beech, initially known only as ‘Nick’, who is now on trial for perverting the course of justice.
Asked what he thought of claims he was part of a group who abused Beech as a seven or eight-year-old, Sir Hugh replied: ‘It is beyond grotesque. It is inconceivable.’
Prosecutor Tony Badenoch QC said to him: ‘The defendant Carl Beech has also said he was transported to other locations to be sexually abused by a group. He implicates yoou in the transportation arrangements. What do you say to that?’
Sir Hugh replied replied: ‘It’s totally untrue.’
Asked whether he had carried out the abuse with fellow leading figures Lord Bramall and Sir Roland Gibbs, Sir Hugh replied: ‘If I had done any such thing I am sure I would have a clear recollection of it.’
Earlier today, Newcastle Crown Court heard Carl Beech claimed he had been raped at a swimming pool complex in Dolphin Square, as labelled in the 1982 video for Do You Really Want To Hurt Me.
But Boy George and his bandmates didn’t actually use the pool at the exclusive Dolphin Square complex for their video, which was actually shot in Hornsey public baths at Holloway, the jury was told.
Prosecutors say the fact he misidentified the swimming pool makes a mockery of Beech’s claim that the video brought back painful memories of Dolphin Square.
Carl Beech is on trial at Newcastle Crown Court accused of perverting the course of justice
The court has been shown a series of sketches Beech produced of locations he claimed showed the Dolphin Square pool where the alleged abuse took place. The sketches were similar to the setting of a 1982 pop video by Culture Club, which wrongly claimed to have been shot at Dolphin Square
The court heard the actual video was shot at another swimming pool, undermining Beech’s claim the video brought back ‘painful memories’
The court has been told of a Facebook conversation in May 2014 in which Beech claimed to recognise the location.
He told her: ‘I was just about to post a video and realised it has a location on it so I can’t (sad face emoji). It’s a link to the video by the band Culture Club, ‘Do You Really Want To Hurt Me’.
She replied: ‘Ah yes I know that song.’
Beech went on: ‘It is a location I was taken to regularly and they had a pool party in that pool but not a good party.’
He identified the location to her as: ‘A huge apartment block in London.’
Former MP Harvey Proctor has branded Beech’s claims ‘the ravings of a fantasist’
In 2016 – after the £2m Operation Midland into his claims had been dropped – Northumbria Police were brought in to investigate Beech’s alleged lies.
In 2014, Beech had claimed he had been taken to the pool several times and was abused there by – among others – former Home Secretary Leon Brittan who would hold his head under the water.
Northumbria detectives tracked down the producer of the video and he confirmed it had been shot in the less exclusive location of a now disused public swimming pool.
Detective Sergeant Paul Johnson told the court: ‘He confirmed the video had not been filmed at Dolphin Square at all. He could not say specifically where it was but he confirmed it was a public swimming pool in London.
‘Our team analysed the video to categorise particular features of this location and try to identify where it was shot.
‘We identified the Hornsey swimming pool where we believe it was taken.’
The jury was shown shots of the now derelict pool showing various features that could be identified from the Culture Club video.
Pointing out one of them, Detective Sergeant Johnson said: ‘You can see Boy George climbing up the indented steps out of the pool.’
The jury have been shown pictures of Carl Beech aged around 10 in his final year of primary school when he claimed the abuse began
Beech has claimed that the former head of the British Army Lord Bramall and the former Prime Minister Ted Heath were among those who abused him and a host of other boys at the Dolphin Square complex near Westminster.
He is at the centre of a long-running trial accused of 12 counts of perverting the course of justice by inventing his account of abuse against some of the best known public figures of the 1970s and 1980s.
The MP Harvey Proctor – who he accused of rape, abuse and having a hand in the murder of three boys – last week described his claims as ‘the ravings of a fantasist’.
Beech further denies fraud by claiming £22,000 criminal injuries compensation for events that never happened.
The 51-year-old former nurse – who has himself admitted unrelated charges amassing a sickening personal collection of child abuse images – bought a Ford Mustang with the cash.
The court was told that when his home was raided by Northumbria Police an iPad was found on the seat of the supercar which contained some of the child abuse images.
When prosecutors laid out their claims against Beech at the opening of the trial opened, the court heard:
- Beech is a convicted paedophile who pleaded guilty after police found indecent images of young boys, including some recorded by Beech, on devices in his home
- He fled to Sweden once police closed in and lived in a remote cabin in the woods under a series of assumed identities and false names
- He claimed to have sketched the locations at which abuse took place from memory – but his laptop showed he had googled them before speaking to police
- He claimed not to have researched the men he accused – but had googled them
- He claimed his abusers mowed down and killed a boy, ‘Scott’, whom he tried to befriend – but the boy did not exist. He was shown in police footage telling officers about this fictitious incident
- He claimed a fellow victim, ‘Fred’ could corroborate his story – but in fact he made up the friend and posed as ‘Fred’, fabricating emails to police
- He claimed he had been regularly taken out of school to be abused by multiple men at ‘parties’ – but his attendance at his schools was exemplary
- He claimed he had a lifelong fear of water, abused by the men, who dunked him and threw him off boats – but photos show him snorkelling on honeymoon
- He produced an ‘abuse map’ of the places and ways his body was tortured – but his medical records show no evidence of abuse
- He claimed he was abused on beds in cabins on Ted Heath’s yacht – but the vessel was a racing yacht and only had hammocks
- He claimed MP Harvey Proctor had threatened to cut his genitals off with a pen-knife Proctor later gifted to Beech. He gave the knife to police asking for forensic tests – but his estranged wife told police he’d kept it in a ‘happy memories’ box
- He had googled how victims of Jimmy Savile received compensation
- He bought a £34,000 convertible Mustang with the compensation payout he received for the alleged abuse
- He was in debt and living grossly beyond his means, intending to make money on the international speaking circuit, speaking about his ‘abuse’
Beech’s claims led to raids on the homes of prominent and elderly people including Proctor.
Beech’s extraordinary unfounded accusations were levelled against a list of prominent men including:
- Former PM Sir Edward Heath: he said he was sexually abused at Heath’s home in London and on his yacht
- Former head of the army Lord Brammall: he said Brammall repeatedly raped him and was present at the first meeting of ‘the group’
- Former Tory MP Harvey Proctor: he said Proctor demanded oral sex, abused him with a pen knife, and murdered two children, one after tying him to a table, raping, and stabbing him
- Former head of MI5 Michael Hanley, and former head of MI6 Maurice Oldfield: said to be responsible for abuse and torture including spiders being tipped over him, electric shocks, and having darts thrown at him, culminating in threats ‘to make him disappear’
- His step-father, Major Ray Beech: he said his step-father frequently and repeatedly abused, raped, and beat him, the first time in a public toilet at a wildlife park
- Former Home Secretary Leon Brittan: He said Brittan murdered a child, describing him as a ‘mini-Harvey’ who was sadistic and enjoyed putting his head under water
Beech denies perverting the course of justice and fraud. The trial continues.
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