A former Officer who worked at the Medomsley Detention Centre denied the charges against him at Newton Aycliffe Magistrates Court today.

Ian Nicholson, 74 denied 3 charges of serious sexual offences, 1 charge of indecent assault, 4 charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and misconduct in a public office dating back to the 1960’s and 1970’s. He pleaded not guilty to all of the eight charges against him.

Alexander Flavell, 86 another former Officer of the Medomsley Detention Centre is also facing charges of misconduct in a public office and sexual offences relating to his time at the Medomsley Detention Centre. He was not asked to enter pleas as the Court is awaiting the outcome of a medical examination to assess whether Flavell is fit enough to answer the charges against him.

The trial has been listed to take place at the Teeside Crown Court on the 23rd November 2020 and is expected to last for 4 weeks. Both me were granted unconditional bail.

Judge Howard Crowson told the men; I’m afraid the trial is a very long way off.” He also imposed a reporting restriction which prevents the media from publishing either of the men’s address.

Medomsley Detention Centre was a youth detention centre in Consett, County Durham, which operated the “short sharp shock” regime from the late 1960s until 1990. Inmates were subjected to brutal and indiscriminate violence from a number of officers and staff members.

The men were investigated as part of Operation Seabrook which was launched by Durham Constabulary in 2013. This is the largest investigation of its kind, with 1848 men to date coming forward to report allegations of abuse.
Earlier this year, five former prison officers – Christopher Onslow, John McGee, Alan Bramley, Kevin Blakeley and Brian Greenwell – were jailed for a total of more than 18 years for abusing former inmates at the detention centre following three separate crown court trials. Two former Officers Neville Husband and Leslie Johnson were found guilty of sexual offences against inmates in early 2000. Both men are now deceased.


Jordans Solicitors have settled a significant number of cases in relation to Medomsley Detention Centre, and currently represent a large number of clients who allege physical and sexual abuse. We are part of a Steering Group collectively handling claims for over 1,000 clients affected by abuse at Medomsley. We continue to work closely with Durham Police with their investigation.

Jordans Solicitors have a dedicated team of highly specialist lawyers who can ensure your claim is handled sensitively, enabling you to secure the best outcome from those responsible for your traumatic experiences. You can contact our team free on 0330 300 1103 or request a call back here.

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