Michael Le Vell is a victim of the State-sponsored assault on adults
MICHAEL Le Vell had to prove his innocence. The Daily Mirror reserved a special place on its front page for the man who works as an actor on Coronation Street. The Mirror used words like “truth” and guilty” to report on Le Vell as he was tried for child sex crimes.
Le Vell’s aunt Pat Gallier, 67, told media:
‘The police seem to be arresting celebrities and accusing them of child-sex offences without seeming to check if there’s enough evidence. Michael’s been caught up in this witch-hunt. This has changed him – people will never look at him the same again.”
She’s right. As Brendan says:
I’ve been waiting for weeks to say what complete bullshit this case seemed to be. It had flashes of false memory syndrome, therapeutic fantasy, and of course post-Savile hysteria about abusive celebs. Thank God for juries, an oasis of reason in a mad world.
A CPS spokesman said:
“This case was reviewed in great detail. On the basis of the reviews the CPS concluded that there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction. Whilst the CPS needs to consider if a conviction is realistic, the jury needs to be sure that the defendant is guilty beyond reasonable doubt. We of course respect the verdicts they have reached today…”
‘There has been a fundamental shift in the way that we assess the credibility of the alleged victims in these cases, as demonstrated by the Savile and recent grooming cases such as that in Rochdale, but the evidential test remains the same.”
The shift being that all adults are now mistrusted.
The Indy notes:
In June a jury at Liverpool Crown Court took just 29 minutes to clear former Coronation Street actor Andrew Watkinson who played Frank Foster of four counts of indecently assaulting a 15-year-old boy in the 1990s.
Now cleared, the Press react with a few puns and rhymes. Only the Daily Mail leads with the important question: why did this case ever come before a jury in the first place
The Indy rhymes Le Vell with Hell:
The Sun clumsily works in a brand endorsement
The Mirror gets poetic about “Corrie Kev”
I’ve lost two years of my life
to this hgell
but at last it’s over
says Michael Le Vell
And the Mail gets it
The Mail offers some background to the case:
As Le Vell walked free, it emerged that the CPS initially ruled there was insufficient evidence to charge him after his arrest in September 2011. But the decision of Nazir Afzal, Chief Crown Prosecutor in the North West, not to prosecute was over-ruled by Alison Levitt QC, the principal legal adviser to the Director of Public Prosecutions for England. The victim’s mother made a formal complaint in February 2012 and asked for the decision to be reviewed. The girl also made further allegations and the actor was charged in February this year.
The Mail adds:
After his initial arrest in September 2011, the actor was the subject of an intense police investigation. The alleged victim was interviewed on video by specialist officers trained to deal with such cases and she told them about the abuse and rape in detail. The DPP’s Principal Legal Advisor, Alison Levitt QC (left) overruled Chief Crown Prosecutor, Nazir Afzal, (right) who had decided there was insufficient evidence to charge le Vell with any of the abuse or rape allegationsAfter the police investigation had been concluded a file of evidence was passed on to the Crown Prosecution Service North West.
Both parties were both told of this decision in late December 2011 and Le Vell was said to be ‘relieved and delighted’ at the decision. However the victim’s mother was said to be furious and after speaking with police officers she made a formal complaint against the CPS in February 2012. The girl also returned to the police in March 2012 told them she had forgotten to mention other rapes she had suffered at the hands of the actor.
The Jimmy Savile sex scandal erupted in October 2012 causing a wholesale re-evaluation of sex cases, particularly those offences against children.
The CPS tells us:
“She [Levitt] concluded that there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that the earlier decision not to prosecute should be overturned. In addition the victim made further allegations to the police in March 2012 which were investigated by the police. The Principal Legal Advisor also reviewed this additional evidence and in February 2013 authorised that the defendant be charged with 19 offences in total. All victims now have the right, if they are concerned about a decision not to charge, to ask for the case to be looked at again. This process enabled the CPS to re-review this case, to consider the evidence afresh including some further allegations by the victim, and to bring charges.”
A “legal source” tells the Telegraph:
“There was not a shred of evidence to support the girl’s claims. There was a basic lack of evidence. I have never known a case such as this to go to court with no evidence he had any interest in child pornography or other telling indicators.
There was not even the remotest suggestion from anyone, other than the alleged victim, that he had even looked oddly at a child – let alone had a sexual interest in children. Any professional jury would have cleared him but in a court trial you can sometimes be swayed by emotion and not fact.”
The Times reported this nugget of courtroom drama:
She said her daughter spoke about the alleged abuse after attending a self-help conference and that her daughter was “very calm” and told her that she remembered the alleged attacks “all the time”…
The witness said: “In the car she said, ’It’s happened a lot more than I’m making out Mummy. It’s a lot worse.’
“She said, Mummy, you don’t want to know.”’
…the burden of proof required to bring a prosecution has seemingly been lightened to a degree that simply does not serve justice. This is especially true when the abuse is not recent: in the Le Vell case, a rape at the age of six is being alleged in court by someone who is 17; in Savile’s case, not to mention the rash of cases that followed, the time between alleged abuse and serious police action was even longer.
So although I don’t doubt that some of the ‘victims’ in these cases are telling the truth, I simply do not believe they all are.
Meanwhile, the mantra that ‘we must listen to what children say’ has subtly changed to ‘we must believe what children say’. The police and the CPS, knowing this, bring flimsy cases – like Le Vell’s – that should never have seen the light of day.
So another career bites the dust, and another man – heart, soul and reputation – is ruined.
What about the alleged victim, who wasn’t?
Duncan Barkes asks: “Should the law change to grant anonymity to those charged with sex offences?”
Jerry Wright notes:
“It must be awful to be accused of something you haven’t done, facing a nightmare of twelve months knowing your innocent, but trying to find any proof that you were not at the scene of an alleged crime. Mr Le Vell, 48, who plays Kevin Webster in Coronation Street had denied 12 charges in total, telling the jury he was “fighting for his life” During the trial Mr Le Vell admitted he was an alcoholic who had a series of one-night stands throughout his 25-year marriage. What makes my blood boil is, his name, his career, his personal details were all made public, and the accuser was kept secret, as the girl is still a teenager, and her parents too, who no doubt wanted just to cash in on Mr le Vell’s celebrity status!”
The accuser is afforded lifetime anonymity.
The last words are Le Vell’s, who told the court:
“I’m like a lost soul and I still want to get to the bottom of why this has happened to me and why I’m being accused of this, because I know none of this happened. I have been walking around for the last two years just not knowing.”
Such are the facts…