Insult to Jersey Abuse Case Victims
PORTSMOUTH, England, August 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
- Still no Compensation for Victims of Haut de la Garenne Horrors
Victims of the notorious Haut de la Garenne abuse in Jersey are still awaiting compensation more than three years after the case hit the headlines.
The wait continues for the victims, despite their abusers Michael Aubin, Morag and Tony Jordan and Gordon Wateridge being successfully prosecuted and convicted during 2010.
35 of the victims, many elderly and in poor health are represented by Solicitor Alan Collins of Verisona Solicitors & Advocates in Portsmouth.
He said: "The victims of these appalling crimes believed that following the guilty convictions, the States of Jersey would accept the allegations of abuse, along with its moral and legal obligation to compensate for the harm that had been inflicted. In fact, the State is actually scrutinizing the investigation that led to the convictions; unbelievably politicians in Jersey have questioned the truth of the abuse despite the guilty verdicts."
One victim, who cannot be named due to the impact it may have on any civil proceedings, said: "The States of Jersey seems to have done everything in its power to try to bury this historic child abuse investigation.Â Its attitude has been 'move along folks, nothing to see here', it's appalling. Politicians seem to care more about Jersey's reputation, than they care about those of us who were mentally and physically abused as children whilst in the care of the States of Jersey."
Another victim added: "The States seem more involved in fighting each other than assisting the victims. We are, as quoted by a States Member, 'a bunch of disturbed minds & criminals'."
Alan Collins, a specialist in historical child abuse cases, added: "The failure to compensate the victims is a case of rubbing salt in to open wounds. Many of the victims, as a result of the abuse suffered, are vulnerable. The children were in the State's care and the criminal trials clearly exposed that this care was wantonly lacking."
Mr Collins believes that the only way victims can now get justice is by taking proceedings against the States of Jersey.
He explained: "Civil proceedings would be regrettable because of the stress involved to the victims and witnesses, as well as the cost implications. The States of Jersey have put the victims in an intolerable position though and it is about time they did the right thing. No amount of money would make up for what happened but the gesture of meaningful compensation helps victims draw a line in the sand and move on. The horror of what went on at Haut de la Garenne will not go away."