20 July 2016
Operation Pallial, an independent National Crime Agency investigation into recent allegations of past abuse in the care system in North Wales, will not investigate accounts from new victims and survivors received after 31 August 2016.
Operation Pallial began enquiries in November 2012 at the request of North Wales Chief Constable Mark Polin. The investigation has so far resulted in the conviction of eight men, including care home owner John Allen who was sentenced to life in prison in December 2014.
A total of 340 people have made contact with the investigation and 84 complaints are still being actively investigated.
North Wales Police will receive and investigate all new allegations of past abuse received from 1 September 2016 onwards.
Operation Pallial will remain active, completing enquiries into all outstanding lines of enquiry, in addition to supporting victims and survivors through any future trials. One trial is due to take place in September and charging advice in relation to 27 suspects is awaited from the Crown Prosecution Service.
Chief Constable Mark Polin said: “I have full confidence in North Wales Police’s current arrangements to listen to victims and deliver effective support, with partner agencies, and to investigate crimes.
“Officers from Operation Pallial will continue to deliver investigative activity for many months as they complete enquiries and assist the Crown Prosecution Service with further court cases, but today is the start of a return to all new crimes reported in North Wales being investigated by local officers and staff.
“North Wales Police has a dedicated team in place for receiving and investigating allegations of sexual abuse. The Amethyst Team, which includes detectives and specially trained officers working alongside colleagues from the local health board, deals solely with victims, seeing them through from reporting to case conclusion. They have a track record of a high level of reporting which shows that victims have the confidence to come forward.
“I would like to thank the NCA for the thorough and professional investigation they have conducted so far.”
Operation Pallial continues to work closely with other partners and agencies to deliver advice and support to victims of past abuse. Support services will continue to be coordinated by Conwy County Borough Council on behalf of all local authorities in North Wales and there is no change in services for those currently receiving support.
Any member of the public wishing to report new allegations of past abuse in the care system in North Wales to the National Crime Agency, rather than North Wales Police, has until 31 August 2016 to do so.