In 2014, a series of articles, in The Times Newspaper, in which former pupils made allegations of physical and sexual abuse at St Paul’s School in Barnes, South-West London, was named as one of 130 schools across the UK where pupils had been physically and sexually abused by staff members over the course of five decades.
As a result of the stories published in The Times Newspaper, the Metropolitan Police launched a criminal enquiry, named Operation Winthorpe, into the allegations of abuse at St Paul’s School.
The allegations of sexual abuse lead to an independent review by Richmond Safeguarding Children Board, which was set up in 2017 to look into an increasing number of abuse allegations at St Paul’s school.
Following the police investigation into allegations of historic child sexual abuse, 5 former members of staff have been convicted over sexual abuse offences and two further staff members are still being investigated.
It has now been disclosed that pupils had their heads smashed on desks, were made to get drunk and sleep in teachers’ beds and engage in sex acts with them and now as adults they still bear the scars of the abuse they suffered and will do so for the rest of their lives.
The Metropolitan Police, who are carrying out the investigations, said that they were “aware” of The Serious Care Review Report published by Richmond Safeguarding Children Board on the 13th January 2020 but would not comment due to the ongoing investigations.
The five members of staff that have so far been convicted are:
The head of history at St Paul’s school was convicted of possessing indecent images of boys and received a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years.
Alan Doggett, director of music was named as a teacher accused of historic sexual abuse. It has been revealed that he was allowed to resign from St Paul’s school after allegations emerged of serial abuse of a young pupil was exposed, but was then allowed to teach at the City of London School. Doggett committed suicide in 1978 shortly after being charged with indecently assaulting a boy at another school.
Michael Ellis, was convicted of 2 counts of indecent assault against 2 boys and 4 counts of possessing indecent images of children. He is serving an 8 year sentence.
David Sansom was found guilty of abusing 4 children; one was a pupil at St Paul’s School. He is serving a 14 year and 9 month sentence.
Patrick Marshall was jailed for 18 years for 24 counts of indecent assault on 10 former pupils at St Paul’s and another school during the 1970s and 80s.
If you have been a victim of child abuse and would like to speak to one of our specialist abuse lawyers in confidence, please do not hesitate to contact us. We can advise you on the available options for pursuing a civil damages claim. Jordans successfully represent and secure compensation for numerous victims of abuse and are experts in overcoming the particular challenges that arise in these sensitive cases. Our abuse team can be contacted on 0800 9555 094 or 0330 300 1103