"The biggest police scandal this country has ever seen"?
Bates told us:
The evidence I have collected over the six years since I first became involved in Operation ORE is extremely sensitive and undoubtedly includes information that the police (particularly CEOP) would prefer not to see revealed. It is likely that this evidence will eventually lead to exposure of the biggest police scandal that this country has ever seen.
Thus it appears that this may be a last ditch attempt by the police to cover up possible incompetence (or worse) by Avon and Somerset police and the shortcomings of Operation ORE. Colin Port may have been persuaded to make his stand on alleged child pornography to cloud the issues and retain the illegally obtained data.
I also feel that the recent support for [Colin Port’s] position offered by Jim Gamble of CEOP is extremely interesting given that Mr Gamble headed the Operation ORE enquiry and has more to lose than most when the appalling shambles is eventually exposed.
The relevant facts will be presented to Senior Judges at the High Court during the contempt proceedings scheduled for 16th June. Their decision is what counts, not the unsupported, misleading, inaccurate and emotive utterances of an embattled Senior Police officer.
The Register has asked the relevant police organisations for comment. Avon & Somerset have declined. A spokeswoman for CEOP stated that the allegations of credit card fraud were not new.
CEOP also provided the following statement:
Within the UK we put child welfare first. We are duty-bound to establish an investigation where there is an indication that children may have suffered abuse.
During the course of Operation Ore, more than 130 children have been safeguarded and over 2,500 perpetrators held to account. 700 people have been cautioned, meaning that they have accepted their guilt and are now on the sex offenders register.
Assessments came to the UK, cases were analysed and then passed to the local police force. Further assessments were then carried out as to the veracity of the information. Where there were reasonable grounds to suspect an individual, an independent assessment was carried out. Where there was evidence found to say that a person had visited an adult site no further action was taken.