Royal Victoria Hospital

Dr Morris Fraser, Belfast, Long Island New York, Islington

 

For the past 18 months, Spotlight on Abuse has collated various newspaper reports on the career of Dr Morris Fraser, a child psychiatrist who began studying children in Northern Ireland under pressure of the troubles from August 1969, eventually publishing a book Children of Conflict in 1974.

Spotlight on Abuse: Dr Morris Fraser, PIE, Islington, New York and beyond

Dr Morris Fraser aka Roderick Fraser was a member of the Paedophile information Exchange (PIE), and was involved in child abuse networks across the UK and overseas. He was a founder of the Azimuth Trust charity which sent young boys on sailing holidays as a front for a paedophile ring. He was also one of eight men charged in New York as part of an organised abuse network.

Fraser worked as a child psychiatrist in Belfast at a time when a paedophile ring was abusing children in care at Kincora Boys’ Home and other Northern Ireland children’s homes. Although he was never officially implicated in abuse at Kincora, there seems to have been organised child sexual abuse ocurring wherever he lived or worked. The General Medical Council knew of Fraser abusing children in the early 1970s following ‘an incident’ with a young boy, but allowed him to carry on practicing as long as he switched to working with old people.

Fraser lived in Islington in 1990, at a time when paedophile networks had infiltrated Islington children’s homes. Although this may just be coincidence as he was working at University College Hospital, it’s hard to imagine that there weren’t other motives for his move to London. As the second article below shows, he had also travelled to Turkey, Holland and Denmark to abuse children.

Another PIE member, Peter Righton, is connected to Islington via the Islington-Suffolk Project, which sent children in care on holidays to Lord Henniker’s estate in Eye, Suffolk. Righton and his partner were invited to live on Lord Henniker’s estate after Righton’s 1992 conviction for importing images of child abuse. Righton also sat on a steering committee which advised on training for staff working with disturbed children, alongside John Rea Price, Islington’s Director of Social Services.

Below is a timeline pulling together sources and information linked to and provided by @snowfaked [Troy] @murunbuch [SpotlightonAbuse.wordpress.com] @Ian_Pace [Desiring Progress Blog] and Daniel De Simone (with huge thanks to all) showing the number of times Dr Fraser was convicted, the four hospitals he is known to have worked at during his career, a PhD in electro-shock therapy on the elderly, and the various  books he published or contributed to. Oh – and a 1969 Diploma in Engineering.

As I mention at the end of this post: Savile, Dublin & Belfast: Time to re-evaluate his role in The Troubles? it will always come back to the Azimuths.

Dr Morris Fraser: A PIE member with international connections

Dr Morris Fraser: New York connections

Peter Righton and the National Children’s Bureau

Country house hideaway of a disgraced care chief


 Chronology – Dr Morris Fraser, George Brehm, George Parker Rossman

1940s – 1950s

1922: 9 December George W. Brehm is born

1934: Dr Fraser is born in Inverness, Scotland (he is 39 in May 1973 at time of Long Island Trial)

1948: George Brehm, later convicted with Dr Fraser in a Long Island boy prostitution and trafficking ring in 1973, visits Wesleyan University with Professor Boris Stanfield to attend the annual conference on Labour Management Relations for that year. Brehm is on the student body at Columbia College. He graduates this year from Columbia University aged 25/26. Professor Boris Stanfield’s area of expertise was Russian economics.

“Boris thought he knew a few things about revolution; he was a man who had broken bread with Lenin, Trotsy, and Stalin, but now he was confronting the jock revolution, and it had the chimerical form of two beautiful 26-year old blondes joking around with a U.S. senator” [New York Magazine, 17 December 1973]

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 1960s

1960: At the start of the decade Dr Fraser is 26 or so.

1965: Aged 30/31, Fraser graduates from Queens University Belfast in 1965. MB BCh BAO 1965

The medical schools in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern IrelandQueen’s University Belfast, the University of Dublin (Trinity College), some constituent institutions of the National University of Ireland (University College Dublin, University College Cork and National University of Ireland, Galway), and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland— award the degrees of MB BCh BAO. The letters BAO stand for Baccalaureus in Arte Obstetricia (Bachelor of Obstetrics), a degree unique to Ireland which the Irish universities added in the 19th century as the legislation at the time insisted on a final examination in obstetrics.

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Cited in Update 1989

During 1968 – 1969 it appears R.M Fraser (pre MD in 1980 no electro-shock treatment in the elderly) was working with others on a paper concerning ‘The circumstances preceding death from asthma in young people in 1968 to 1969’ which was published in 1971.

1969

Boys for Sale: A Sociological Study of Boy Prostitution (New York,1969) Parker Rossman (writing as Jonathan Drake) with Dennis Drew

In the same year Parker Rossman publishes his study of boy prostitution in New York, Mervyn Harris, a South African journalist is in the UK studying boy prostitution in London, Piccaddily Circus and writes his book ‘The Dilly Boys’ – blog post on the background to this book here

DPM Eng. 1969 – Dr Morris receives a Diploma in Engineering.

Summer 1969 – Dr Fraser starts treating children amongst The Troubles in Northern Ireland according to 20 September 1974: For Ulster’s Children: A World of Violence, hate [The Dispatch, Lexington, NC]


1970s

Dr Fraser was living at 39 Whitehouse Park, Newtownabbey, East Antrim just outside Belfast – on the coast just off Shore Road with views over Belfast Lough where the ferries for the Isle of Man. He establishes a Scout troop.

Brehm’s Nassau County Ring: In 1972 George Brehm would be convicted for his involvement with a Nassau ring of child abusers. The New York Times later wants to make it especially clear Dr Fraser and Mr Oelke (the ex-fundraiser for the Big Brother organisation in New York) were not involved in the Nassau ring trial of 1972 that Brehm had already been convicted for and it appears was attending court from prison during the trial for the Long Island ring in 1973.

15 April 1971: Article published in New Society ‘Ulster’s children of conflict’ New Society (this is the article referenced in Paul Foot/Colin Wallace appendix – see Tom Griffin’s article on Spinwatch)

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New York Times 4 May 1973 – 8 Indicted in ‘Boys-for-Sale’ Ring

The Long Island International Ring

January 1970 – December 1971: Brehm purchases house 18 Secatogue Lane in West Islip, New York.The group publishes a newsletter and meets on average approx once a month during the 2 years to abuse boys sourced from Mexico, Canada and Puerto Rico. A Canadian College Instructor is involved. [8 May 1973: Eight Charged in Homosexual International Ring on Long Island [Ogdensberg Journal]

George W. Brehm:

A salesman of school equipment, Brehm was wealthy enough to buy houses with small lakes and boats attached for the group to use to abuse boys.

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Hal Oelke: 49, Manhattan, former Press Relations employee/ fundraiser with Big Brothers of New York. On Friday 19 October 1973 Oelke was sentenced to 5 years’ probation – to continue with psychiatric treatment and subject to 7 years’ prison sentence suspended if caught while on probation.

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Dr Morris Fraser: 39, child psychologist with Royal Belfast Hospital for Exceptional Children in Northern Ireland.

NBC ‘Suffer the Little Children’

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Parker Rossman: 58 of 20 Autumn Street, New Haven, Dean of the Ecumenical Continuing Education Center of New Haven, Connecticut , married father of three, also at Yale University School of Divinity

See further my post on Walter Breen and his wife Marion Bradley Zimmerman who has now been accused of abuse by her daughter

Ogdenberg Journal, 17 November 1972

Ogdenberg Journal, 17 November 1972

Charles Slavin: Arrested in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Salesman who brought a 10 year old boy from Puerto Rico to be abused at the house in West Islip. Refused to waive extradition, freed on $10,000 bond pending extradition hearing. Was eventually sentenced by Mr J. Lundberg on October 30th 1973.

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Other members of the ring:

Leslie McGraw, English instructor Sheridan College, Brampton Ontario Canada

Angelo Riviezzo, 42, Queens chemist (access to drugs for sedation etc?), 95-24 85th Street, Ozone Park, Queens, Brooklyn was also charge with 1 count of third degree sodomy in the Nassau ring. Became a fugitiveon the run and was believed to have entered a religious order by the time others sentenced in October 1973.

Ron Ramos, 25, of Puerto Rico

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In 1992 the Islington Gazette published an article on Dr Morris Fraser’s later appearance in court at Bow Street and conviction for a collection of child abuse images stretching back 10 years (being a keen photographer)

Islington Gazette, 23 April 1992 'Wicked doctor took pictures of young boys'

Islington Gazette, 23 April 1992 ‘Wicked doctor took pictures of young boys’


1971

Dr Fraser receives an award from the Mental Health Research Fund in 1971

27 January 1971:When war breaks out…’ Dr Morris Fraser quoted in an article on children in Northern Ireland conflict

August 1971: Child Psychiatrist Dr Fraser travels to London with a 13 year old Belfast boy from the Scout Troop Dr Fraser had founded. The child was characterised as having a drug problem and having had homosexual experience in order to mitigate Dr Fraser’s sexual offence against him. It works and the GMC don’t strike him off. [Child Psychiatrist’s ‘squalid act’ with boy, 18 July 1973, The Times, see excerpt below]

18 July 1973, The Times

18 July 1973, The Times

In August 1971 Dr Fraser stayed at a friend’s flat at no 6 St Augustine’s Mansions, Bloomberg Street, SW1 opposite The Gordon Hospital, between Victoria and Westminster, where he assaulted the 13 year old boy scout

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GMC Disciplinary Hearing 16 July 1973

 

 

Ian Pace’s blog : Paul Foot on Kincora – Appendix with Colin Wallace documents, and mention of Morris Fraser

Tom Griffin’s article for Spinwatch :

“… a briefing provided by Army intelligence to the Information Policy unit at HQ Northern Ireland in 1973. It described a shadowy loyalist paramilitary group known as Tara and its leader:

The OC is William MCGRATH. He is a known homosexual who has conned many people into membership by threatening them with revealing homosexual activities which he himself initiated. He is a prominent figure in Unionist Party politics and in the Orange Order.

McGrath uses a non-existent evangelical mission as a front for his homosexual activities and also runs a home for children on the (236) Upper Newtonards Road, Belfast (Tel: B’fast 657838).

On the 8 November 1974, Colin Wallace wrote a memo highlighting the abuse of inmates at this hostel, the Kincora Boys’ Home. His conclusion, cited in Paul Foot’s book, was that the Army should seek to have matter investigated by the RUC and by responsible journalists, something that ultimately did not happen for another six years.

The earlier 1973 memo on Tara made no direct mention of child abuse, but it did include one largely un-noticed detail that may link Kincora to parallel scandals in Britain.

A handwritten annotation at the bottom of the document reads:

‘Ulster’s children of conflict’, New Society 15 April 1971. Dr M. Fraser? RVH “

“One of the first systematic studies of Belfast was conducted by Dr Morris Fraser, a child psychiatrist affiliated with the Royal Victoria Hospital there. Dr Fraser correlated the 1969 riots with the effects on mental health and found that there had been significant detrimental effects on both adults and children.” [Northern Ireland: Society Under Seige, Rona M. Fields, 1980 see below]

In 2007, this study was still being referred to authoritatively in the Counselling  Psychology Review, Vol. 22, No. 3, 2007, without considering whether Dr Fraser’s access to those children studied means there is a possibility that their anxiety or stress could be situational in other ways.

Northern Ireland: Society Under Seige, Rona M. Fields, 1980

Northern Ireland: Society Under Seige, Rona M. Fields, 1980

The Times ,11 October 1971

The Times ,11 October 1971

November 1971:

19 November 1971, Miami, The Voice

19 November 1971, Miami, The Voice


1972 – Dr Morris Fraser: Senior Registrar, Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, NBC Documentary broadcast, MRCPsych 1972, pleads guilty to sexual assault at Bow, London on 13 year old Belfast boy

In 1972 Dr Fraser had been featured in the documentary ‘Suffer the Little Children’ for NBC on effects of violence in young people, the work which formed the basis for Children in Conflict (published the same year as he appeared in court in NY) – a transcript of this programme is here –http://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/flatview?cuecard=65203 . By this year, he had become Senior Registrar in Psychiatry at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, and was also a cathedral organist.

In 1972 Dr Fraser pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting a 13 year old boy and in 1973 is found of serious professional misconduct Gains MRCPsych qualification in 1972. Although the victim was a Belfast boy Dr Fraser was in London on a trip in 1971 when the assault took place, hence whey he had to appear at Bow Street Magistrates’ Court.

The Times 15 July 1975

The Times 15 July 1975

Cited  in Children of The Troubles, Joan Harbison, 1983

Cited in Children of The Troubles, Joan Harbison, 1983

How Children understand War and Peace, 1999

How Children understand War and Peace, 1999

Northshield, R. (Reporter). (1972, January 11). Suffer the Little Children. [Television series episode]. NBC News. Retrieved from https://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/browse/?cuecard=65203

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NBC Archives, Suffer the Little Children transcript January 1972

26 April 1972: Recently the Scottish-born psychiatrist, Dr Morris Fraser, after visits to Watts and Harlem concluded conditions were worse in some ways in Northern Ireland.” [House of Representatives, Congress, Extension of Remarks, April 26 1972]

What is not clear from the excerpts below (there is a missing middle page) is whether it is Senator Mario Biaggi referring to Dr Fraser in concluding paragraphs of his speech or whether the reference is contained in an article Mario Biaggi begins quoting from an article on the tragedy of Ulster by Francis B. McCaffrey.

MorrisFraserCongress7201

House of Representatives, 26 April 1972

MorrisFraserCongress7203

House of Representatives, US Congress, 26 April 1972, p. 14532

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

17 May 1972: Dr Fraser pleaded guilty to indecent assault on the boy scout in August 1971 and was found guilty at Bow Street Magistrates’ Court.

 

22 May 1972: George Brehm arrested  – Columbia Football Advisory Committee – charged with 41 counts ranging from sodomy to sexual abuse. Resident in Floral Park, Long Island, New York leading a ring of international child abusers “which preyed on young boys, some of whom lived in Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico”

23 May 1972: Lewd Film leads to indictment of 6 charged as sex deviants [The Bridgeport Post – a local Connecticut paper]

The Bridgeport Post, 23 May 1972

The Bridgeport Post, 23 May 1972

23 May 1972: 3 charged as sex deviate recruiters [Tri-City Herald / LA Times] – George Brehm and Angelo Riviezzo are both charged with being involved in the Nassau ring.

“They were among six persons indicted by a Nassau grand jury. Nassau Dist. Atty. William Cahn said the men were “involved in a national recruitment program of young boys for the purposes of deviate sexual conduct.”
Cahn said that the men -about 15 of them — had bribed the boys to participate in “acts of sexual deviation.” Cahn said, “These men bribed the youngsters with very, very expensive gifts, clothing, bribed the families (of the boys) and inferred that they were members of the Big Brother movement since most of the boys were fatherless.”
Big Brothers is a nationwide program designed to provide mature male companionship for fatherless young boys between the ages of 8 and 16 years. The organization, Cahn said, was not involved.
Cahn said a three-month investigation by his office’s vice squad has revealed that about 15 adult males were involved with about 30 boys. He said that the men knew each other but were not led by any one individual.
“The boys come from all over the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Puerto Rico,” Cahn said. “They were brought to Nassau County and elsewhere for the purposes of ‘schooling’ them in sexual deviate conduct and to get them to recruit other boys for the same purposes.”
Cahn said that the ring was involved in activities in New York, Toronto , Pittsburgh, Acapulco and Los Angeles, and had been operation for about 10 years. Cahn said that a fourth member of the ring was arrested and indicted in Pittsburgh. Cahn said that the boys involved ranged in age from 8 to 17.
Under the guise of working for the Big Brother program, the men were able to entice the youngsters to accompany them on trips to San Juan, Los Angeles, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Nassau and Suffolk, he said. The adult homosexuals would then “swap” them for local boys by members who maintained the ring in the various cities, Cahn said.
Cahn added, “very few of these boys, if any, had any propensity for this kind of conduct before they met up with these men. In fact, in most instances, the boys objected and had to be bribed . . . before they consented to participate.”
Arrested in Nassau were George W. Brehm, 49, of Floral Park, a salesman of school equipment, charged with 41 counts on a variety of morals charges; Russell Hoffman, 44, of Uniondale, an associate professor of English at Adelphi University, charged with one count of sexual abuse; and Angelo F. Riviezzo, 42, of Brooklyn, charged with third-degree sodomy.
Brehm, married, and the father of three children was arraigned before Nassau County Court Judge Paul Kelly and was released in lieu of $10,000 bond. Hoffman, married, and the father of three, was released in lieu of $900 bail, and Riviezzo, who is single and works as a chemist for a New Jersey firm, was released on $1,000 bond.”

5 June 1972: Columbia Spectator ‘Football Committee Member Indicted on Sodomy Charges’ – George Brehm

Columbia Spectator, 5 June 1972

Columbia Spectator, 5 June 1972

8 June 1972: War in the head, The Guardian (see below) Dr Morris Fraser

The Guardian, 8 June 1972

The Guardian, 8 June 1972

October 1972: NBC Reports documentary ‘Suffer the little children’ is broadcast featuring Dr Fraser – full episode available on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xBMlUre2YNo

Dr Morris Fraser appearing on NBC's Suffer the Little Children broadcast 1 November 1972

Dr Morris Fraser appearing on NBC’s Suffer the Little Children broadcast 1 November 1972

New York Times 4 May 1973

New York Times 4 May 1973

18 November 1972: Sandusky Register ‘Father who admitted recruiting boys for homosexuality sentenced’ Brehm pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 10 years on Friday 17 November. Police are still seeking two alleged members of the ring and two others are still awaiting trial.

Sandusky Register, 18 November 1972

Sandusky Register, 18 November 1972

2 December 1972: Dr Fraser appears as a reference in an article ‘In Belfast: Tinsel, Tears & Hatred’ on the effects of the conflict on 8 and 10 year old children [New York Times below]

New York Times, In Belfast: Tinsel, Tears & Hatreds, 2 December 1972

New York Times, In Belfast: Tinsel, Tears & Hatreds, 2 December 1972


1973 – Long Island Trial, GMC finds Dr Fraser guilty of serious professional misconduct

29 March 1973: Harpers & Queen advertise their current edition as including an article by Morris Fraser

Harpers & Queen advert for an issue including Dr Morris Fraser on Ulster's children, 29 March 1973

Harpers & Queen advert for an issue including Dr Morris Fraser on Ulster’s children, 29 March 1973

3 May – Dr Fraser returns to New York for the trial – both willingly and at his own expense…according to the Suffolk County prosecutor

The Daily Review, California, 4 May 1973

The Daily Review, California, 4 May 1973

4 May 1973: Child-psychiatrist, 7 others charged in sex abuse of 15 boys (Arizona Republic)

British child-psychiatrist Morris Fraser, 39, and seven other men were indicted here yesterday on 27 counts of conspiracy, sodomy and sexual abuse involving 15 boys.

Fraser, who appeared on the widely acclaimed NBC television documentary, Suffer the Little Children, concerning the effects of war on the children of Northern Ireland, pleaded innocent to the charges in arraignment before Suffolk County Judge Pierre Lundberg.

Three other men also pleaded innocent, a fifth was in custody in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and the remaining three men are at large, police said.

The Suffolk County grand jury indictment charged the men with befriending the alleged victims, some under 11 years of age, then committing sex acts with them at a home in West Islip, N.Y., between January 1970 and December 1971.

The indictment specified one count of conspiracy, 19 counts of sodomy and 7 counts of sexual abuse against each defendant.

Authorities said one of those indicted, Hal Oelke, 48, of Manhattan, was a former fund raiser for Big Brothers of New York, but left the post several years ago. The organization works with troubled youths.

Another defendant, George Brehm, 50, of Floral Park, N.Y., was accused of making a house available for the alleged sex activities — a summer home since resold.

Both Brehm and Oelke pleaded innocent to the charges as did a fourth defendant, George Rossman, 53, married and a father of three from New Haven, Conn.

Brehm currently is being held in Auburn State Prison after conviction on similar charges last year.

Sam Fierro, chief of the Suffolk County rackets bureau, said Fraser returned here “willingly and at his own expense” from the British Isles, where he is associated with the Royal Belfast hospital for Exceptional Children in Belfast.

He was released on his own recognizance after the arraignment to return to Belfast, pending trial at a date not yet set.

Oelke and Rossman were released on $2,000 bail each”

New York Times 040573 - 8 Indicted in 'Boys-for-Sale' Ring

New York Times 4 May 1973 – 8 Indicted in ‘Boys-for-Sale’ Ring

New York Times 6 May 1973 - Psychiatrist denies sex-abuse charges

New York Times 6 May 1973 – Psychiatrist denies sex-abuse charges

On 6th May in an article ‘Psychiatrist denies sex abuse charges’ (see right) Dr Fraser states to the New York Times “my innocence is beyond question.”

The 31 year old doctor, who said he had been suspended following the indictment from his $8,000 a year post as senior registrar in psychiatry at the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children, said: “I emphatically deny that I did anything other than act completely properly.

He said he had known two of the defendants and had seen one indulging in “minor acts” with two boys but had not reported it for professional reasons. He said that he had received assurances that treatment would be obtained for the man who had committed the acts.

“It looks very bad on the face of it,” Dr Fraser said, “But I only wanted to help these people, and I feel that all I did was my duty as a doctor to that one man.”

7 May 1973: The Times review Children in Conflict (below)

The Times, 7 May 1973

The Times, 7 May 1973

8 May 1973: Eight Charged in Homosexual International Ring on Long Island [Ogdensberg Journal] including a ‘British child psychiatrist’ and a ‘Canadian college instructor’

16 July 1973: First GMC Hearing for Dr Fraser [see FOI response ]

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Child Psychiatrist in Squalid Act with Child, 18 July 1973, The Times

At some point during May Dr Fraser is suspended from his job at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast as senior psychiatric registrar. The General Medical Council are already aware of his conviction in 1972

10 May 1973: Review of Children in Conflict in The Guardian

Children First, Peter Chippendale, The Guardian, 10 May 1973

Children First, Peter Chippendale, The Guardian, 10 May 1973

27 May 1973: Review of Children in Conflict in The Observer

The Observer, 27 May 1973

The Observer, 27 May 1973

31 May 1973: New Scientist article refers to Dr Morris Fraser’s study showing that CS has exacerbated the mental illness of certain children dwelling amid the violence of Belfast (Children in Conflict: Secker and Warburg, 1973)

MorrisFraserTeargas1973

18 July 1973: Article in The Times titled Child Psychiatrist in Squalid Act with child – On 17th July Dr Fraser was before GMC on charge of serious professional misconduct.

4 August 1973: General Medical Council Disciplinary Committee decides to postpone deciding re Dr Fraser’s sexual assault of a 13 year old Belfast scout boy he took to London with him in August 1971

British Medical Journal 4 August 1973

British Medical Journal 4 August 1973

18 August 1973: The Observer, Ulster at School by Peter Wilby

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25 October 1973

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1974  – Pleads guilty to attempted sodomy with 3 boys in Suffolk County, living in Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim

Medical Directory 1974

Medical Directory 1974

Dr Fraser is listed in the Medical Directory for this year as living at 39 Whitehouse Park, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim

NEW YORK TIMES
March 1, 1974, Friday, p.61
Child psychiatrist Roderick Morris Fraser pleads guilty on Feb 28 to attempted sodomy with 3 boys (S).

He pleaded guilty to several charges in 1974, after having denied them in 1973 (during which time he was suspended from his post) though it is not clear what came of this. But he was able to continue practising. From around 1974 he was involved with PIE and wrote for them and other paedophile groups.

 

After pleading guilty in New York, within a fortnight Dr Fraser was back home to appear before the General Medical Council for a second time.

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6 April 1974: General Medical Council Disciplinary Committee postponed hearing Dr Fraser’s case from 4 August 1973 until July 1974

British Medical Journal Supplement 6 April 1974

British Medical Journal Supplement 6 April 1974

14 March 1974: East Hampton Star, NY reported that a man “involved in the management of a homosexual ring dealing in young boys” was sentenced to five years probation on the condition he was seeking therapy and being perpetually banished from Suffolk County. The man (highly likely to be Parker Rossman) lived and worked in Connecticut as did Parker Rossman

East Hampton Star, NY, 14 March 1974

East Hampton Star, NY, 14 March 1974

 

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Of the 4 hearings at the GMC only this one doesn’t appear to have a legal assessor

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August 1974: Despite Dr Fraser pleading guilty to the Suffolk County charges in U.S. on 28 February 1974 for which he’d been suspended from Royal Victoria Hospital Belfast in 1973, the GMC Disciplinary Committee now postpones their decision re Dr Fraser almost a full further year to July 1975

British Medical Journal Supplement 3 August 1974

British Medical Journal Supplement 3 August 1974

15 September: Fear, Hate part of life for Belfast’s children, [Reading Eagle] – same article as published below – almost, no apparent material differences.

20 September 1974: For Ulster’s Children: A World of Violence, hate [The Dispatch, Lexington, NC]

The Dispatch, Lexington, NC 20 December 1974

The Dispatch, Lexington, NC 20 December 1974

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26 September 1974: Growing up in terror [ Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Ed Bianchi]

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 26 September 1974

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 26 September 1974

 

In July 1975 the GMC met with a 9-strong panel to decide Dr Fraser’s fate.

The Surgeon to the Queen in Scotland
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/obituary-professor-sir-donald-douglas-1497730.html 

Baroness Fisher – ex MP (Lab: Birmingham Ladywell 1970-74)

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/baroness-fisher-of-rednal-520625.html

Chairman of the British Medical Association Sir Ronald Gibson (knighted in 1975 for his services to medicine in Winchester)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronald_Gibson

Walpole Sinclair Lewin, Consultant Neurological Surgeon, Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge (Queen’s birthday honours in 1978) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1978_Birthday_Honours

The Legal Assessor during this final hearing was A. R. A. Beldam (now Privy Council member, Sir Roy Beldam, having been appointed a Lord Justice of Appeal 1989-2000)

 http://www.crownofficechambers.com/profile/12/sir_roy_beldam

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British Medical Journal 9 August 1975

British Medical Journal 9 August 1975

15 July 1975: Child psychiatrist’s case discharged [The Guardian] Here referred to as Dr Roderick Morrison Fraser (as opposed to Morris).

The GMC, under Sir John Richardson decide that Dr Fraser’s conviction for sexually assaulting a 13 year old boy was “an isolated and squalid act”. Dr Fraser’s barrister, Adrian Whitfield, argues that Dr Fraser’s contributions to the peace effort in Northern Ireland mitigate for him and that if Dr Fraser was removed from the register the people of Northern Ireland would lose someone who was doing a lot of good at a critical time.

In 2007 Adrian Whitfield QC was awarded the AvMA 25th Anniversary award for outstanding contribution to patient safety and justice

The Guardian, 15 July 1975

The Guardian, 15 July 1975

The Times, 15 July 1975

The Times, 15 July 1975


1976 – Publishes Death of Narcissus Screen Shot 2014-09-14 at 00.13.32 Screen Shot 2014-09-13 at 23.59.24

From Ian Pace’s blog: In 1976, Fraser published The Death of Narcissus – a key text in a ‘paedophile canon’. It is an immensely pro-paedophile reading of classic literature – Carroll, Barrie, Henry James, and various others – which was regularly cited in paedophile magazines and other articles, and influenced a wide range of other articles and books. To this day, The Death of Narcissus , with its distorted cod-Freudianism, is cited approvingly in the introduction to the Penguin Modern Classics’ edition of James’s The Turn of the Screw.

Parker Rossman, Sexual Experience between Men and Boys: Exploring the Pederast Underground (New York: Association Press, 1976).

‘It may be that nature intended older males to tutor adolescent boys in sex, and unconscious or  repressed pederast or homosexual tendencies are intended to stimulate an interest in such tutoring’ (p. 17).

The book was also reviewed by Ken Plummer in Gay News.

An important new blog article was posted by Tom Griffin on Tuesday (Tom Griffin, ‘From Kincora to PIE: Why the abuse inquiry needs access to intelligence documents’, August 5th, 2014), relating to recent reports concerning abuse at the Kincora Boys’ Home in Belfast, about which I earlier blogged here. In particular, Griffin’s article noted a mention in Paul Foot’s book Who Framed Colin Wallace? (London: Macmillan, 1989) of an article by Dr Morris Fraser (also known as Roderick Fraser), a child psychologist at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, who was also connected to the Paedophile Information Exchange and later to the Azimuth Trust, who was convicted of multiple offences against children in several countries (beginning in the early 1970s) and also had connections with the North American Man-Boy Love Association (NAMBLA) and various European paedophile groups. He nonetheless often appeared or was cited on the subject of the plight of children during the troubles in Northern Ireland, and was the author of and Children in Conflict (London: Secker & Warburg, 1973) and The Death of Narcissus (London: Secker & Warburg, 1976), the latter a sympathetic Freudian analysis of paedophile desire as represented in literature, which continues to be cited, for example, in the introduction by Anthony Curtis to the Penguin Modern Classics edition of Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw and The Aspern Papers (London: Penguin Books, 1986) (see here for a sample). I will blog in more detail on Fraser at a later date; for now, I would recommend people read the Spotlight links given above, and in particular watch the following film about the Azimuth Trust.

9 June 1976: Violence in Ireland is the norm of life [The Hour, Donal O’Higgins]

The Hour

The Hour


1977

13 January 1977: The Peter Pan Principle [The Guardian]

The Guardian, 13 January 1977, Book Review of The Death of Narcissus

The Guardian, 13 January 1977, Book Review of The Death of Narcissus

5 February 1977: The Times

The Times, 3 Feb 1977

The Times, 3 Feb 1977

6 February 1977: Paedophilia into art, The Observer

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An interview with DW Nichols, author of Towards a Boy-Lovers Perspective by D Tsang published in U.S. publication: Midwest Gay Academic Journal, Volume 1, Issues 1-3  [Pages 11-21] Gay Academic Union, 1977

“The truth is that Rossman himself  is very much a boy-lover, although he is married with grown children; he has been personally involved in the Boy-Lovers scene. In fact no one has devoted more of his adult life to studying the various lifestyles of various kinds of Boy Lovers, as well as searching out the literature on the theme, and gone into deep speculation on his findings, than has George Parker Rossman.” (p.20, D W Nicholson in interview, see George Parker Rossman aka Jonathan Drake blog post here)

6 March 1977: The year Dr Fraser published The Death of Narcissus he was on Songs of Praise, BBC 1 as the church organist for the televised church service in the East End of London, St John at Hackney, Lower Clapton Road, E5

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3 May 1977:  Children of War  [Boca Raton News]  


1978 – Senior Registrar at hospitals in Whitechapel, East London and Goodmayes, Essex

When does Dr Morris Fraser make the move to London? During or after the publication of The Death of Narcissus and as a result of the GMC’s decision to limit his practice to geriatric focus?

17 February 1978 – New Statesman – Fraser is credited as Senior Registrar in Psychiatry at the London Hospital (later renamed Royal London Hospital after QEII’s visit in 1980 in Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets) and Goodmayes Hospital, Essex

“Or what of photographers like the Victorian Frank Sutcliffe, and the Royal Family of the time, who admired and purchased his work, in particular his famous The Water Rats of 1886? Already this week a Mr Edward Brinicombe has taken a chain-saw to the Eros statue in Piccadilly Circus ‘as a protest against child pornography.’ Perhaps next week will see a high-minded chiseller at work on the facade of Broadcasting House.”

Edward VII, while Prince of Wales, was the purchaser of The Water Rats. Eric Gill was the “high-minded chiseller” and the sculpture referred to is that of Ariel and Prospero

Can the art of a paedophile be celebrated? – BBC News [5 September 2007]

New Statesman, 17 February 1978

New Statesman, 17 February 1978

12 October 1978: Dr Morris Fraser appears on BBC R4’s Kaleidoscope talking about the new play ‘Lost Boys’ on J.M. Barrie

“The form of the child-adult encounter, so very often idealised by writers, is almost too painfully authentic here – too horribly real, yet depicted so beautifully. The Lost Boys has that rare virtue of blending truth with exquisite taste and perception.”

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19 October 1978 – Dr Fraser writes on article on the Barrie trilogy for New Society, a weekly publication. New Society was launched after the New Scientist by the same publishers.

Advert in The Guardian for New Society featuring an article for Morris Fraser

Advert in The Guardian for New Society featuring an article for Morris Fraser 19 October 1978


1979 – Moves to London, England, Navarino Road, Dalston/Hackney, E8

The Medical Directory  London, Provinces, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Abroad, Navy, Army & Air Force, Volume 135, Part 1, lists Dr Fraser’s address as 35 Navarino Road, E8, Hackney London

It’s unclear whether Dr Fraser starts working at University College Hospital immediately but by 1982 the Medical Directory lists him as working there as a Consultant psychiatrist.


1980 – MD. Belfast 1980

Publishes PhD from Queen’s University Belfast? A Comparative Trial of Unilateral and Bilateral Electroconvulsive Therapy in Elderly Patients

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1981 – Perspective on Paedophilia published

It is worth reading the entire chapter Fraser wrote for this publication [ Many thanks to Ian Pace: link to pdf chapter here Morris Fraser – The Child ] but below are some excerpts – bear in mind that Fraser’s studies on children were about the effects of stress…

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Fraser, ‘The Child’ Perspective on Paedophilia, p.42

Published in 1981

Published in 1981

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Fraser’s ‘The Child” Perspectives on Paedophilia, p50

Here, at p. 50 – 51 Dr Morris Fraser describes providing psychiatric support to ‘John’, 25, son of diplomatic parents, born in Italy, whose aunt, a Justice of the Peace and “in public life” refers her nephew to Fraser for treatment.

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Fraser’s ‘The Child’ p.51 – Case study of ‘John’ the Diplomats’ son

2 August 1981  – ‘Ulster’s Lost Generation’ (New York Times) – Excerpt below re Morris Fraser:

“Psychologists say that a chief reason for emotional disturbance in children is a sense of not belonging, of not fitting into their community. The children who have grown up throwing stones in riots, facing the common foe in the shape of a soldier or a policeman, belong. They may have given up regular church attendance, a major break with tradition in this very religious land, limiting themselves to attending funerals. They may have made aggression, in the words of the psychiatrist Morris Fraser, their ”major means of dealing with all problems.” But in the opinion of some authorities, they have found a way to deal with their world that produces a minimum of mental illness – considerably less, for example, than in many of the ghettos of the United States.

Those parents whose children have not yet become hoods devise their own strategies. ”Yes, I am keeping him at home,” one mother told a school psychologist who was investigating her son’s truancy. ”I know where he is when he is at home. He is not with the I.R.A., he is not hijacking cars, he is not playing in derelict buildings. He is watching television, and I have a fire, and he is warm.”

The daughter of the house is not really part of the drama. The sexes keep to their traditional roles in Northern Ireland: Women have the entire responsibility of raising a family. No man ever does the laundry, makes the dinner or goes to the grocery. Men drink, gamble, steal, go off to jail, or get involved in paramilitary groups. The wives are left behind to cope.

What the visitor to Northern Ireland finds most amazing is that very capacity to cope. Tony Spencer, a member of the Belfast school board and professor of sociology at Queen’s University, puts it this way:

”Everyone has adapted very well. There are certain areas people will not go into, certain things they will not do, but that is no different from the United States. The paramilitaries have adapted. The security forces have adapted -the death rate is far higher in Germany on the autobahn, and the training the troops get here is excellent. The fire service has adapted: We have people from all over the world coming to look at it to see how it works. Medicine has adapted: We have doctors coming from all over to study the way we deal with high-velocity gunshot wounds. Public administration has been strained, but it has adapted, and you haven’t seen anything approaching the breakdown you saw in Italy during the earthquake, for example. The political system goes on, after a fashion. Unemployment is bad, but lower than in Latin American states. The milk keeps arriving in the morning. The bread is in the shops everyday. We can go on like this indefinitely, for generations.”

Medical Directory 1981 Listing for Dr Fraser

Medical Directory 1981 Listing for Dr Fraser


1982

Consultant Psychiatrist at University College Hospital – papers on acute situational stress in adults and children

Medical Directory 1982

Medical Directory 1982

1983

24 – 27th March 1983: Dr Fraser submits (and/or attends?) a Symposium held in Finland on Children and War. He is resident at 4 Northchurch Road, Islington already by this stage.

Children and War: Proceedings of Symposium at Siuntio Baths, Finland, 24.3.-27.3.1983

Children and War: Proceedings of Symposium at Siuntio Baths, Finland, 24.3.-27.3.1983

 1985 – Advertorials for Boating Trips

morrisfraser01

Society At Work Comin of Age Pages 241-242 New Society, Volumes 71-72 New Society Ltd., 1985

morrisfraser02

Society At Work Comin of Age Pages 241-242 New Society, Volumes 71-72 New Society Ltd., 1985

Dr Morris writes an article for Society at Work extolling the virtues of independent living for children on the boat holidays.


1987

13th May – date of alleged assault from Islington Gazette Two face child porn charges 

In 1987 Cornwall County Council ran a hearing/internal inquiry into Michael Johnson (later partnered with Dr Morris Fraser in the Azimuth Trust) and was given a warning for striking a boy on a boat trip but sexual allegations were found to be unproved. “The Council is to publish the findings and recommendations of its inquiry”. See below.

The Guardian 22 February 1992

The Guardian 22 February 1992


1988 – Founder of the Azimuth Trust, linked to Ecole en Bateau

He founded the Azimuth Trust in 1988, linked to Ecole en Bateau, a French paedophile group founded in 1969 by Leonid Kameneff (who was sentenced to 12 years for rape and sexual assault of children in 1988); Fraser also travelled to abuse children in other countries, including Turkey, Holland and Denmark. In 1989 the Sunday Mirror (23 July 1989) reported that former BBC Northern Ireland correspondent Clifford Luton was also linked to the Azimuth Trust and investigated, but no charges were brought.

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In July 1988, astonishingly (and tragically), Dr Morris Fraser was being thanked for providing input into a study by two psychiatrists looking into the ‘Attitudes of general psychiatrists to child sexual abuse’. Regarding victim blaming the study found that

 “no female psychiatrists believed that the sexually abused child provoked the abuse through being attractive and seductive, but 23% of the male psychiatrists did”

Attitudes of general psychiatrists to child sexual abuse Bisa Haeger, Joy Dalton The Psychiatrist Jul 1988, 12 (7) 271-272

Attitudes of general psychiatrists to child sexual abuse
Bisa Haeger, Joy Dalton
The Psychiatrist Jul 1988, 12 (7) 271-272

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1990 – Living in Northchurch Terrace, Islington

By now Dr Fraser is living at Northchurch Terrace, Islington

25 January 1990: Two face child porn charges – appeared at Bow Street magistrates on Protection of Children Act 1978 charges. Morris’s co-defendant is Nicholas Reynolds, St. Briavens,  Gloucestershire

In November 2011, Keir Mudie wrote an article in the Daily Mirror stating a Dr Malcolm Fraser had given a reference in 1990 when he applied to have the List 99 ban relaxed and cites this Dr Fraser as having been convicted for possessing indecent images of children and that his 1992 conviction led to Dr Fraser finally being struck off. 20 odd years after the General Medical Council had deemed he should only work in Gerontological medicine with old people.

Abuse scandals probe widens: The man who may hold key to UK's biggest paedophile network ever, Daily Mirror, 11 November 2011, Keir Mudie

Abuse scandals probe widens: The man who may hold key to UK’s biggest paedophile network ever, Daily Mirror, 11 November 2011, Keir Mudie


 1993 – Working at Royal South Hampshire Hospital

Yet in August 1993, he was able to find work again at the Royal South Hampshire Hospital. He was arrested again in March 1994 and then fled to Amsterdam. Fraser was also linked to Andrew Sadler, a prep school teacher, who was jailed for abusing children in Romania.


1994

“The Sunday Express reports that a convicted paedophile tricked his way into a top job at a hospital despite a string of crimes against children. The scandal came to light when the trust that runs the hospital was tipped off about Dr Roderick Fraser’s 20-year history of child sex abuse. He was working as a consultant psychiatrist at the Royal South Hampshire Hospital in Southampton only a year after release from prison for peddling paedophile material.”

March/April 1994: Arrested by Hampshire police, now in Amsterdam

Psychiatrist was abuser

The Times
30 May 1994
An NHS Trust hospital that employed a convicted child sex abuser as a consultant psychiatrist is to review its employment procedures. The Royal South Hampshire Hospital in Southampton found out about Roderick Fraser’s 20-year involvement in child sex abuse and pornography only when told by police. He joined the hospital as a locum last August. His contract was ended immediately after the police tip-off. Fraser was arrested two months ago by Hampshire police investigating child pornography allegations and is now believed to be in Amsterdam.

The Medical Directory 1994 had Dr R.M. Fraser listed as an employee in Psychogeriatrics [see above 1988 for Dr Fraser’s input into colleague J(oy) Dalton’s study into attitudes of psychiatrists to sexual abuse of children]

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1995

14 July 1995: Tougher measures to root out child abusers [The Glasgow Herald, Sarah Nelson] on the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill on sex tourism

TODAY a little-publicised Bill — successfully piloted through the Upper House by Lord Hylton — is due for its crucial second reading in the Commons. The Sexual Offences (Amendment) Bill would enable UK courts to try UK citizens for crimes committed against children abroad.

This Bill would not only help protect many desperately vulnerable children in poor countries, such as Thailand, from exploitation by child abusers, heterosexual and homosexual, who regularly go to the Third World for foreign holidays or “volunteer” work. It would help British police forces build up dossiers against abusers also likely to be active in the UK.

A recent Christian Aid report on tourism and child prostitution in the Third World found a high proportion of ”sex tourists” were British, and that in the Philippines and Sri Lanka were one of the main groups of men deported for sexual abuse against children.

Such men “have also turned to computer networks to spread information about sex tourism and child prostitutes. The ‘information superhighway’ offers these men a new opportunity to circumvent international and national legislation . . .” The report called on the British Government to prosecute companies, as well as individuals, who promote sex tourism involving children.

But the Government is going to block this Bill today, saying it is unworkable in practice — even though Australia, New Zealand and several European countries already operate similar laws. (For instance, there have been successful prosecutions in Sweden.) Home Secretary Michael Howard has promised “an urgent review” of the law, but campaigners believe this does not go far enough.

Vocal lobbying for the measures in this Bill would be one way concerned people in all parties could take forward positively issues such as the recent, highly -charged and publicised debate about actor Eric Cullen’s jail sentence on indecency charges.

The usual criticism of disputed child abuse cases is that individual young people’s rights and needs are swept beneath the waves of grand principles and general causes. In the “Wee Burney” debate, the needs of one individual and the anger of his supporters submerged major issues, and many other vulnerable people.

Even the basic point that indecent photography is itself a form of child abuse seemed to be lost. Some deeply committed journalists ended up making highly distasteful personal attacks on other journalists. And when one said this nine -month sentence was the greatest miscarriage of justice he had known in 20 years, the affront to the Guildford Four, Birmingham Six, Judith Ward or indeed George Beattie and Emma Humphreys seemed as painful as it was embarrassing.

Of course, sentencing is an important issue. So is the very complex relationship between victimising and being a victim. If a sentence was appropriate, there were more constructive, imaginative ones than prison. But we need to go much further back than this.

The most crucial, glaring question to act upon, which many people forgot to ask (though to be fair to Cullen, his own statements would prompt it) was why on earth the paedophile Frank Currens was able to abuse and intimidate countless children for 18 years, without children feeling free to tell, without those who did so being believed, and without other adults noticing.

Those of us unfortunate enough to have stared into the cesspit of child sex abuse know something of the costs people like Currens inflict. We know of many children, teenagers and adults who have killed themselves, or tried many times, or are repeatedly tormented with suicidal thoughts; finding no-one to keep a 24 -hour watch or even to diagnose their problems. Surely all are equally deserving of our care.

Hardly a week passes without press reports of Currens-type scandals — of residential school heads, priests, ministers or other respected authority figures finally convicted after decades of abuse against children in their care. Yet we never seem to learn the obvious lessons.

Instead, children’s court evidence is repeatedly thrown out as untrustworthy. Young children, as in Sheriff Miller’s Ayrshire judgment, are branded “devious and manipulative”, while millions of pounds and staff-hours are spent in trying to make children’s evidence more “reliable” to adults — whatever the trauma to young people.

In contrast, desperately under-resourced police units can’t even view thousands of seized child porn videos, let along follow up clues from films which have already enabled them to arrest several abusive rings.

Recently the director of the National Criminal Intelligence Service, Britain’s main police intelligence-gathering organisation, publicly demanded more resources and legal teeth to extend its heavily restricted work. In the past year, it received about 350 incoming intelligence reports on paedophiles.

Many well-meaning people in senior jobs also need to search their consciences about the freedom allowed to child abusers over decades. All those second chances, given people thought to have made one foolish mistake; when more often they’ve spent their lives accumulating victims, unspeakable videos and photographs, or intimately detailed diaries.

Some months ago I was astonished to see, featured on a TV documentary about leading “childcare expert” Peter Righton, reminders of the paedophile activities of Dr Morris Fraser. Because it shot me back 22 years to when Fraser’s conviction for child offences caused shock-waves in Belfast. Thousands of people heard of it. For the dapper, boyish figure in a smart blazer was one of Ulster’s best-known child psychiatrists, research writers and conference -speakers on the effects of “The Troubles” on children.

How many jobs had he moved to subsequently, how many references from respected people had failed to mention his history? This was just one example among many. I think it should be made an offence for any referee to conceal their knowledge of a job applicant’s history of risk to children.

Meantime, another new move will challenge organisations including churches to begin taking real steps to make young people safer from the minority of abusers who deliberately target work with vulnerable youngsters.

Supported by the Scottish Office, Volunteer Development Scotland have just published Protecting Children; a code of good practice for voluntary organisations working with children and young people.

It asks them for a bit of effort and commitment — like planning the organisation’s work so as to minimise situations where child abuse can happen, rigorously scrutinising recruitment, and having an independent complaints system. But protecting young people and taking their integrity seriously is surely worth such effort and inconvenience. Then there may be fewer “Wee Burneys” who, later in life, have such traumatic secret histories to reveal.”

Paedophile still working as doctor

The Sunday Times
26 Nov 1995: Regional News: p9
A DOCTOR with a 20-year record of sex offences against children is still on the General Medical Council’s register of practitioners, despite his latest conviction two weeks ago for offences against a 13-year-old boy, writes Lois Rogers.Belfast-born Roderick Fraser, 53, is now living in Amsterdam but in the past two years he has worked as a psychiatrist in the South Hampshire hospital, Southampton. He has also been involved in a charitable trust set up to provide deprived boys with sailing holidays paid for by council grants.
He attracted publicity in the early 1970s for his work helping the child victims of the Ulster troubles, despite the fact that he was already under investigation for involvement with a New York paedophile ring. 
Shortly after that he was convicted of sex offences involving a 13-year-old Belfast boy scout on a weekend trip to London.
His other offences include making indecent films of 8- and 12-year-olds, who he contacted through the Azimuth Trust, organising sailing holidays on the south coast during the 1980s and early 1990s. He was jailed in 1993 for taking and distributing pornographic pictures of boys.
Earlier attempts by the GMC to discipline him led to a reprieve in 1975. A spokesman for the council said last night that they had an agreement with Fraser that he would not practise as a doctor. “That undertaking is being closely monitored by the GMC, and if we receive information that it has been broken we will act immediately,” he said.
John Rainsford, honorary secretary of the Association of Directors of Social Services, said the council’s attitude was “worrying”. He added: “What we do know about paedophiles is that they offend again and again. You would think a professional body like the GMC owed it to itself to do something about this man.
Fraser set up the Azimuth Trust in 1988. One of his fellow directors was Michael Johnson, who was convicted in 1994 of sexually abusing two boys over more than two years during cruises run by the trust.
The parents of one of the boys demanded a public inquiry into the case after Johnson was sentenced.”

GMC keeps child-sex doctor on medical register (26.11.95), Sunday Telegraph, 26th November 1995

Fraser interviews the boys to see whether they are ‘suitable’ psychologically for the sailing trips

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Sunday Telegraph 26 November 1995


1996

10 January 1996: Paedophiles infiltrate care homes, The Pioneer, Lucknow

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Paedophiles Infiltrate Care Homes, The Pioneer, Lucknow, 10 January 1996


2000

20 July 2000Why sex offenders who prey on the young are incurable; ‘THE AVERAGE ABUSER WILL HAVE OFFENDED AGAINST 200 CHILDREN BEFORE BEING

BYLINE: Eileen Fairweather

SECTION: Pg. 17

LENGTH: 904 words

ANYONE hardened enough to kidnap and kill a young child will almost certainly be a career paedophile with a string of lesser offences, such as “flashing”, which has gradually escalated to indecent assaults then worse.

The one thing I’d bet on given this country’s attitude to men who hurt children and a tradition of light sentences is that, somewhere along the way, he will have been shown a mercy he did not deserve.

I have yet to meet an expert in this field who believes the condition is curable. It is an addiction, manageable at best.

Ray Wyre, founder of the Gracewell Clinic for sex offenders, estimates that the average abuser will have offended against 200 children before being prosecuted. He believes paedophiles will always be dangerous, and the best one can hope for – given few are locked up for life – is to teach behaviour modification techniques.

Maureen Carson, a leading NSPCC abuse investigator who works closely with police, believes in most cases “once a paedophile always a paedophile”, and is not even optimistic about therapy’s effectiveness. One of her cases involved four men in the South-East who, between abusing young London boys, founded a charity for Romanian orphans.

They thought up this way to access yet more vulnerable children when they met on a paedophiles’ counselling course in Grendon prison.

They told investigators their charity work was to “repay their debt to children”.

Did these men truly believe that? Probably. Paedophiles are thought incurable due to their sheer level of self-delusion. They believe children want them, “provoke” them, and that adult-child sex is natural, harmless, beneficial.

The now disgraced former top childcare consultant Peter Righton openly wrote that sexual attraction to children was no more mysterious “than a penchant for redheads”.

His friend, child psychiatrist Dr Morris Fraser, argued in the same book that children effectively invite sex with adults.

The self serving, self justifying attitudes of these highly educated men also typifies those of less articulate paedophiles. True remorse and insight are so rare that experts have developed a diagram to teach investigators how paedophiles operate psychologically. Remorse is a tiny part.

The sudden snatching of a child is rare: many paedophiles devote months to the four stages of their addiction cycle. They “target” a future victim; “groom” the victim (ie gaining trust); commit the abuse; and some momentarily experience remorse.

This may be provoked by a child’s tears or their own arrest: suicides are more likely among paedophiles than other offenders questioned by police.

Investigators know they have only a brief period to break a paedophile’s well-established psychological defences.

Why is paedophilia a recidivist crime? A child protection officer once wearily told me she saw it as “like being heterosexual or gay – something that’s basic to their personality, imprinted, unchangeable”.

Some studies suggest that being a victim of sexual abuse in childhood can predispose one to becoming an abuser.

Fred and Rosemary West, who both grew up in abusive homes, fatally bear that out.

But it is a theory that, understandably, infuriates the many adult survivors of abuse who would rather die than see a child suffer as they did.

THE simple answer is that even the experts do not really know why paedophiles are repeat offenders: just that they are and society must respond accordingly. Burglars can reform, paedophiles can not.

Yet acceptance of the incur-ability of paedophiles does not seem to have filtered through to the judiciary, the Home Office and those in charge of children’s organisations. The stories break with monotonous regularity: another boy scout leader imprisoned here, another residential social worker found guilty there.

Invariably, a long history of hurting children emerges – a history that those higher up in the hierarchy covered up because they felt “sorry” for him and believed his claim that it wouldn’t happen again.

Take the horribly misnamed Roger Saint, imprisoned for abusing several children during the North Wales children’s homes scandal. He rose to become head of Clwyd’s fostering and adoption panel despite a known previous conviction for indecently assaulting a 14-year-old boy (he claimed this was an aberration committed while “depressed”).

Or consider Dr Morris Fraser: this child pornographer and abuser was only recently struck off by the British Medical Association, after his third conviction. The BMA continued endorsing Fraser because he switched to work with old people. He then used his respectability as a doctor to set up a registered sailing charity so children could be molested at sea.

Catholic leader Archbishop Cormac Murphy-O’Connor yesterday agreed to pay compensation to victims of Father Michael Hill, now serving a five year prison sentence.

The Church moved him to the chaplaincy of Gatwick Airport; presumably believed “safer”. One of his subsequent victims was a child who missed his flight.

It is tragic that so many in authority fall for paedophiles’ fake contrition. I’ve interviewed many and know how plausible they can be. But paedophiles who sincerely want not to offend again don’t beg to retain positions of responsibility. Do recovering alcoholics seek work in breweries?

No they know to avoid temptation.”