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Abuse Lawyers Back Investigations Into Medomsley Juvenile Detention Centre

Fresh Concerns Over Site After More Victims Raise Abuse Allegations


By Rob Dixon

Legal experts who represent victims of abuse have welcomed Durham Police’s ongoing investigations into allegations of abuse in relation to Medomsley juvenile detention centre, with the latest reports suggesting 64 more people have come forward in relation into the site.

Church minister Neville Husband and store man Leslie Johnson, who are now both deceased, were jailed in 2003 and 2005 respectively for abusing inmates at the site in the 1970s and 1980s. The case was reopened last month when a former inmate came forward to state he was also abused.

According to the BBC, Durham Police have now confirmed that in the past month they have been contacted by 64 more people and expect that the number may grow further. Around two dozen victims were known to police during the original investigation.

Irwin Mitchell’s specialist abuse lawyers, who represent victims who have suffered severe physical and psychological trauma as a result of abuse, have said the revelations are not uncommon in cases of this nature.

Rachel Di Clemente, a legal expert at Irwin Mitchell’s Newcastle office who helps victims of abuse gain justice over the ordeals they have endured, said: “In so many cases, people with concerns over abuse only feel encouraged to speak out when they know their voices will be heard. This is often after others have already come forward.

“It is vital that Durham Police work to thoroughly investigate all of the latest allegations in relation to this detention centre, with the ultimate aim of getting to the bottom of the extent of problems at the site once and for all.

“With the number of people who have come forward, it appears there are many who have concerns over what took place at the site and they will all want answers over the issues.

“It is also possible that a thorough investigation leads to vital lessons being learned and ensures that efforts can be made to ensure the same issues are simply not repeated in the future.”

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