The Independant Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is investigating 187 potential police failings in dealing with historical child abuse cases in England and Wales.
To date, 18 forces are being investigated about their handling of child abuse complaints and what the IPCC has referred to as, “potential high level corruption”. Fifty six cases relate to the failings of South Yorkshire Police regarding their investigation into sexual exploitation in Rotherham, 46 relate to the Metropolitan Police and 58 against Essex Police.
Some of the cases go back decades and there are claims that investigations were closed as the suspects were well known people. Professor Jay, who was chairwoman of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse revealed in 2014 that the South Yorkshire Police had withheld evidence about the sexual abuse of teenagers in Rotherham and failed to arrest abusers.
The IPCC has stated that they are, “committed to investigating the most sensitive and serious incidents of alleged police wrongdoing and many child sexual abuse cases fall within that remit.”
Thirty seven completed cases have resulted in disciplinary proceedings against 15 officers. The IPCC have created a directorate of major investigations and are working closely with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse and Operation Hydrant, which is a team of Police co-ordinating child abuse investigations.