Kincora victim backs UK inquiry call

Published Tuesday, 15 July 2014
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A victim of abuse at the Kincora Boys' Home in the 1970s has backed a call for the institution to be included in a UK-wide inquiry into child sex abuse.

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Clint Massey went to the home in east Belfast in 1973 as a teenager and remained there for eight months.

Mr Massey said the abuse at the hands of William McGrath started "right away".

McGrath and two other senior staff members, Raymond Semple and Joseph Mains, were jailed in 1981 for systemically abusing boys in their care.

"McGrath, well, he was molesting me the next morning - that was his way of wakening me up," Mr Massey told UTV.

"That was the start and that was just the way it continued, he always got me on my own because the two other guys I shared the room with, they were out of there for about seven in the morning, my job didn't start until 10, so I slept on later so by the time he got to me, I was the only boy in the house."

Mr Massey says the abuse has had a devastating impact on his life.

"From [the time] I left there, a switch turned and I was never ever going to trust anybody, the people that I should have trusted to care for me, they let me down badly," he said.

"I'm 56, I've never married, I've no children, no relationships, a very lonely person - yet I know what I was before I went in there. I was your average 16-year-old boy with the same outlook as 16-year-olds had at the time."

Mr Massey, who has waived his right to anonymity, is convinced that the authorities knew what was going on.

These very senior people who are being protected, and I don't care who they are, I want them named and shamed. They knew what I was walking into when I entered there and they were prepared to let it happen.

Clint Massey

Mr Massey believes interference from higher powers caused previous inquiries to collapse. He says the full story of what really happened there has yet to be revealed.

"It was in people's interest not to have inquiries," he continued.

Mr Massey added that the historical abuse inquiry in Northern Ireland did not go far enough.

"I want the corridors of power in London to be rattled and I don't care if they are in their 90s, with titles before their names, I want them to be accountable."

An inquiry has been ordered by the British Government into whether public bodies dealt with allegations of abuse between the 1970s and 1990s appropriately.

Peter Corrigan from Amnesty International NI has said Kincora should be included in the UK review as access to Whitehall or secret service files could reveal what allegations were known at the time.

UUP leader Mike Nesbitt MLA has said the call to include Kincora "is not a criticism of the current Historical Institutional Abuse inquiry headed by Sir Anthony Hart".

He continued: "Rather it is an acknowledgement that the HIA's Terms of Reference limit him to examine "if there were systemic failings by institutions or the state in their duties towards those children in their care...."

He added: "For most of my adult life, there have been persistent rumours about who was either involved, or knew of what was going on but said nothing. It is long past the time when we pay our debt to the victims by exposing the wrong-doing that took place at Kincora."

However Sinn Féin MLA Martin McGuinness has said that to be effective, any inquiry needs to be "international and fully independent".

"There have been a number of scandals around the activities of the British intelligence services in Ireland, including the murder of human rights solicitor Pat Finucane and collusion in the killings of hundreds of nationalists," the deputy First Minister said.

"The British government has spent decades trying to cover up the activities of its intelligence services in Ireland. The British state is clearly incapable of investigating itself.

"Therefore, to be effective, any inquiry into the abuse of children at the Kincora Boys' Home needs to be international, independent and have the powers to subpoena witnesses and access documents."

© UTV News
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2 Comments
Angela Higgins in Belfast wrote (98 days ago):
Victims of abuse need their voices to be heard. Those responsible need to be brought to justice, i'm just not sure that exists in N.I. Victims don't speak up as children because the people abusing are 'powerful', give victims back their power and bring the abusers to justice regardless of who they are, too many shadows and dark corners in N.I justice system under the guise of security, there has always been a huge stink around this home, however, those involved had strong protection its a pity those who were in their care were not afforded the same protection by a goverment who covered their back.
Mac in N. Belfast wrote (98 days ago):
This man deserves to be listened to. the truth of this murky affair must come out into the open and the perpetrators need to be named. Disgusting that this has been hushed up and young lives have been tarnished.
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