Child Abuse Inquiry Offers Immunity For Witnesses

Public servants prepared to give evidence to Lowell Goddard's independent public inquiry into allegations of child sex abuse, will be offered immunity from prosecution under the Official Secrets Act.

The new measure has been announced by the Attorney General, Jeremy Wright QC, and will also extend to individuals who are in possession of evidence relating to the Inquiry which they may be holding unlawfully. However, it will not protect anyone who admits taking part in child sexual abuse.

The written undertaking was provided at the request of Lowell Goddard after earlier claims that police officers were told that they would be violating the Official Secrets Act if they were to submit evidence relating to child abuse allegations.

The Rt Hon Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC said: "It is absolutely right that we do everything in our power to find out the truth behind these terrible allegations; to hold the perpetrators to account and to get answers for the victims.

"With this undertaking we are sending a clear message that the government is taking the Inquiry seriously and is committed to ensuring that the work is done thoroughly."


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