Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Edward Paisnel :'The Beast of Jersey' linked to home where child's skull found

A NOTORIOUS paedophile known as the "Beast of Jersey" visited the children's home at the centre of a police investigation, it emerged yesterday.
Edward Paisnel, who is now deceased, went to Haut de la Garenne dressed as Santa Claus in the 1960s, it was claimed. He was jailed for 30 years in 1971, aged 46, for a string of sex attacks on children and women spanning 11 years.
The foster carer had abducted and abused children in St Martin, where police are excavating the home. Now a youth hostel, it is where the skull of a child was discovered.
He is said to have visited the home, where he was known as Uncle Ted, to hand out sweets and toys.
Paisnel's visits emerged as police in Jersey revealed they are focusing their searches on a bricked-up cellar in the building. However, they said yesterday there was "no evidence" at this stage to link him with investigations into allegations of abuse at the home.
On Saturday, the skull was found by sniffer dogs under several inches of concrete. Among the remains was a girl's hair clasp, a button and a piece of fabric, although police have not been able to determine if the child was male or female.
Yesterday, officers continued to search seven sites at the hostel and expanded their cordon around the grounds, putting up what appeared to be two more investigation tents.
Detectives have not ruled out finding more bodies. Jersey's deputy chief police officer, Lenny Harper, confirmed that detectives have some names of missing children whose cases they are looking into, but would not comment on how many.
He said the main focus of the investigation centred on allegations in the 1970s and 1980s.

He added: "Our efforts are being concentrated on the entrance of the cellar, which was at one stage bricked up. We are having trouble getting access to that and are currently digging. This is a very slow and methodical process. We don't know if we will find any more bodies.
"The sniffer dogs indicated a site of interest to us above the cellar. This is among other sites of interest in our investigation.''
He refused to confirm reports that children had been forced into solitary confinement underneath the building.
Mr Harper said that ten more alleged abuse victims had come forward after media reports of the investigation.
Officers are already in contact with 140 alleged victims and witnesses, including former employees at the home.
The investigation began when a number of former members of staff were arrested on suspicion of sex crimes.
Mr Harper said the investigation was also looking at accusations that allegations of abuse were not properly investigated when children made complaints in the past. But he added officers had not found any evidence of a government cover-up.
Haut de la Garenne was opened in 1867 as an "Industrial School" for "young people of the lower classes of society and neglected children''.
The centre was intended to solve problems of juvenile delinquency by removing poor and neglected children from their home environment and placing them in a boarding school.
It closed as a children's home in 1986. The building was featured as a police station in the TV series Bergerac.