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Post by Tony Bennett on 11.01.11 0:42


What was the connection between the McCanns and the late paedophilia ‘expert’, Ray Wyre?

by Tony Bennett, Secretary of The Madeleine Foundation
filed 10 October 2010

This article is copyright, but copyright is waived if the source is given
when reproducing or quoting from it: Berne Convention rules apply

In early 2008, the McCanns met Ray Wyre and his wife. The People told us about a meeting the four of them had, at the Wyres’ Buckinghamshire home, probably in January 2008, though the date of the meeting was not given.
Less than six months after meeting the McCanns, and aged only 56, Ray Wyre died, apparently from a stroke.

Summary of Wyre’s career

As a Guardian obituary on 8 August 2008 noted, he was famous as a ‘sex therapist’ for sex offenders, including paedophiles. Edward Marriott, who wrote the Guardian obituary, stated: “He was one of the world's leading experts on sexual crime. He pioneered the treatment of sex offenders in residential therapy settings, believing that the potential for change existed within every criminal and, most importantly, that this work was crucial in reducing the risk of further offending”. That is certainly how many people saw him. But as to whether it is an accurate summary, this article will explore. The full article can be found in an Appendix below (Appendix 3). The headline to the article ran: “Trailblazing therapist with a unique approach to sex offenders”. That is perhaps much more correct, as we shall see in more detail below. But in ‘blazing a trail’, did he start not a few forest fires which proved difficult to put out?

He was best known for setting up his Gracewell Clinic for Sex Offenders, in 1988, having for many years previously been employed by the prison service as a Probation Officer to work with sex offenders, notably in Albany Prison from 1981 to 1986. However, the Gracewell Clinic closed in 1993, partly through local objections to so many paedophiles being housed under one roof. His successor clinic, the Wolvercote Clinic in Surrey, also closed, in 2002.

After this, he set up Ray Wyre (UK) Ltd., based in Milton Keynes, where he lived with his second wife, Charmaine. He claimed to provide services to ‘accused sex offenders and their families’. He and his associates were regularly called in to provide ‘expert evidence’ in criminal cases in the U.K. and beyond. He had become an internationally recognised expert on sex offences and treatment methods.

Wyre frequently gave TV interviews, where he was described as a ‘sexual abuse consultant’, and was so much sought-after that he commanded huge fees for speaking at conferences and giving lectures to police officers, government policy-makers and diplomats, among many others. Whether he can realistically be called an ‘expert’, however, is one of the issues we explore in this article.

‘Paedophiles can be treated’

Wyre was a fervent believer - contrary, one must say, to the preponderance of the evidence - that paedophiles could be turned into non-paedophiles by therapy. He once said: “People say that abusers don’t deserve therapy and that they should be locked up and the key thrown away. But these people are forgetting the children. We are not working for the offender but for the children, because they never defend themselves”. His comments were much later echoed by Jim Gamble, the man who for four years headed up the newly-established Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP), until he controversially handed in his notice on 4 October 2010. Despite heading CEOP for four years, and purporting to be a fervent opponent of child pornography on the internet, Gamble once notoriously pontificated that some offenders who viewed child pornography could be effectively ‘let off’ by accepting a formal police caution.

Ray Wyre’s interest in the disappearance of Madeleine McCann

Ray Wyre’s connection with the McCann case began no more than days after the McCanns reported Madeleine missing.

Madeleine was reported missing at around 10.00pm on Thursday 3 May 2007. Less than a week later, the Daily Telegraph published a lengthy article penned by Ray Wyre on the disappearance of Madeleine McCann. It contained the remarkable statement that, quote: “It was clear from the beginning in Portugal that we were dealing with an abduction…” He thus echoed the statement of Dr Kate McCann - which she has never explained - that she knew ‘instantly’ that Madeleine had been abducted. Pressed by interviewers to say how she could be so sure, she answered, in terms: “I can’t say because the strict judicial secrecy laws surrounding an investigation will not allow me to”. But since the investigation has been archived, she has never clarified what made her so certain that Madeleine had been snatched by an abductor. One is reminded also of the statement of Clarence Mitchell, on being asked why he agreed to be sent from his post as Head of the government’s Media Monitoring Unit to Praia da Luz to manage the McCanns’ public relations. He said he had been ‘assured’ that this was truly a case of abduction. He didn’t say who assured him. But that assurance was good enough for him to rush out to Praia da Luz in May 2007.

Wyre, having in his mind established that it was ‘clear’ that this was an abduction, then launched into an immediate attack on Portugal and its criminal justice system for harbouring paedophiles.

He wrote: “What was [the abductor’s] motivation? How would he initiate contact and target the child? How would he control the environment to evade discovery? Portuguese police cannot ignore the UK's experience in such cases. In the early '90s a British paedophile group filmed the sexual abuse of Portuguese boys. At one stage the Americans were so concerned about the role of British paedophiles in Portugal that I was approached about the targeting of schools there. International co-operation should be part of police thinking. However, there is no culture of community policing in Portugal and they have laws that prevent the discussion of cases. This is clearly the wrong way round”.

Once again, Wyre appeared to be echoing the line put out by the McCann Team right from the word ‘go’ - namely, that Madeleine had been snatched by a predatory paedophile. Equally, and again in tune with the message from the McCann Team, Wyre took an early opportunity to have a dig at the Portuguese police.

The article (reproduced below) by Wyre appeared in the Telegraph on the morning of Thursday 10 May. When was the article actually written?

The article would have to have been commissioned by the Telegraph editor. Then Wyre would have to write it. He would have to send the article to the Telegraph editor - and one of his staff would have to check it. No doubt it would have been slotted into the paper by a sub-editor during the previous day, Wednesday 9 May, if not before.

It is quite possible therefore that Wyre wrote this article only two or three days after Madeleine was reported missing. At that time, hundreds of Portuguese residents and tourists, and hundreds of police officers, were combing the area looking for Madeleine. There were suggestions that she could have ‘wandered off’. There was hope that she could be found.

We might well ask why Wyre was so adamant that Madeleine had been abducted, and why he was already speculating that Madeleine had been taken by a paedophile. It almost seems like he was in a rush to get his ‘take’ on the situation across, despite how soon it was after Madeleine was reported missing.

The article is important and I’ll now reproduce the full Telegraph article:


What the Portuguese police must do

Daily Telegraph - By Ray Wyre - 10 May 2007

Last Updated: 2:06am BST 10/05/07

I have worked with men who have abducted and killed children. Often, their capture has failed to save the child and has not come about through good police work.

The planning needed to take the child cannot be overestimated. It was clear from the beginning in Portugal that we were dealing with an abduction and the need to "think offender" was essential.

What was his motivation? How would he initiate contact and target the child? How would he control the environment to evade discovery?

Portuguese police cannot ignore the UK's experience in such cases. In the early '90s a British paedophile group filmed the sexual abuse of Portuguese boys.

At one stage the Americans were so concerned about the role of British paedophiles in Portugal that I was approached about the targeting of schools there. International co-operation should be part of police thinking.

However, there is no culture of community policing in Portugal and they have laws that prevent the discussion of cases. This is clearly the wrong way round. The media are essential in passing co-ordinated and directed information to the community.

In this case, speculation is rife, confused messages are likely to be given.

The parents will be feeling guilty for leaving the children and even a half hour is a long time if a child wakes up and starts to cry immediately after one leaves the room.

This could, possibly, lead to a woman on her own, who has lost a child, saying to herself wrongly that the parents did not care for this child and deciding to take the girl home. No paedophile, no conspiracy - just a lonely woman.

The window of opportunity for the abductor means that the information given by the parents has to be very accurate. Police must help them to say exactly how long it was since they last saw their child.

The parents need to know that if this was an offender who planned the abduction then there is probably nothing they could have done.

I once asked an abductor who had killed girls how we could stop him. He said: “I suppose you would have to chain a child to the mother”. But he added: “No, that would not work. I would take both”.

Ray Wyre is an expert in sexual crime who worked in the UK Probation Service in the 1970s before specialising in programmes for sex offenders.


Wyre quoted in The Times, 7 May 2007

Three days before this, Wyre had also been quoted in an article in The Times, by Dominic Kennedy.

The article, titled: “Nothing can stop a determined abductor, but there is a chance the child is still alive”, opened with this paragraph:

If Madeleine McCann was abducted by a paedophile, there is a chance that she is still alive and can be saved by sensitive policing, according to Ray Wyre, a sexual crimes consultant. ‘Lately, there have been more and more cases where there has been an element of planning and an attempt to keep the child alive’, he said. Wyre added that: ‘To maximise the possibility of finding Madeleine alive, police must avoid doing anything to make the kidnapper panic. If he believes that they are about to move in and catch him, he may become so alarmed that he kills the child to stop her being a witness’.”.

Wyre was also quoted in the same article in relation to the activities of paedophiles in Portugal. He continued:

“Portugal is known to attract British paedophiles. A ring of 20 Britons set up there around 1990, filming sex acts with local boys and sending the tapes to Belgium and the Netherlands. Some were later jailed in England. The case helped to persuade the British Government to make it illegal for Britons to have sex with underage children abroad”.

The Times article concluded: “Mr Wyre went to Lisbon and became involved in the aftermath of that investigation. ‘There were still lots of connections and other things going on’, he said. ‘There have always been British paedophiles operating in Portugal’.

The McCanns meet Ray and Charmaine Wyre

Now let’s move to The People article of 27 January 2008, and, before commenting, I’ll reproduce that in full as well:





The People - By Marcello Mega and Daniel Jones

27 January 2008

Kate and Gerry played NO part in the disappearance of their daughter Madeleine, one of the world's top crime experts declared last night.

Ray Wyre - who has given Cracker-style testimony to courts since the 1970s - said: “It is absolutely IMPOSSIBLE for them to have been involved”. He insisted the grief-stricken parents were incapable of doing anything to harm their children.

He told how the couple feared Maddie was dead in the hours after she vanished - the first time their initial anguish has been revealed. And he heaped scorn on claims the McCanns are being torn apart by the tragedy, adding: “They are a close and loving couple”.

Wyre spoke out as it was revealed Portuguese cops now believe four-year-old Maddie may have been abducted - as Kate and Gerry have always claimed.

The couple met Wyre, 56, to discuss setting up an international taskforce to help cops trace missing children.

They poured out their hearts to him and his wife Charmaine over dinner at the ace criminologists's home in Milton Keynes, Bucks.

Wyre - who's helped nail a string of monsters including child-killer Robert Black - said: "I was with them for several hours and I could not help but apply some of the practices I use when I'm carrying out assessments of suspects for police and the courts.

“I can state categorically there is no way they were involved in their daughter's murder or disappearance. They would be incapable of such an act. I have more than 30 years' experience in this field and am used to people trying to hide dark secrets.

“There was NO sign of any such deceit. It is absolutely impossible for them to have been involved”.

And Wyre paid a moving tribute to the way the 39-year-old couple manage to think of other people even though their hearts are broken.

He said: “It was humbling and moving to meet the McCanns. They brought flowers for my wife, which brought tears to our eyes. You consider what they've been through and they still bring flowers when they come to your home”.

Wyre hit out at shocking claims of eating disorders and marriage rifts made about Kate and heart specialist Gerry, whose twins Sean and Amelie have just turned three.

He said: “It can't have helped while they've had this massive tragedy on their hands. Days before we met I was reading an ill-informed article saying they were growing apart. But they are a close and loving couple who are certainly united in their roles of being good parents to the twins and maintaining momentum in their quest to find Madeleine.

“There is no doubt they are a couple - they are together and they support and comfort one another. They were very warm and friendly to each other and there was no sign of dispute between them. During the meal, Gerry often put his arm round the back of Kate's chair. They were affectionate to one another all the time. They looked very much together. As for any suggestion Kate might have an eating disorder, it's nonsense. She sat down to my wife's home-made lasagne and garlic bread with a smile and really enjoyed it. And she tucked into the banoffee pie for pudding like the rest of us”.

Wyre told how for 72 hours after Maddie vanished in Praia da Luz on May 3 last year the McCanns were certain their daughter was dead.

Their despair has never been made public before - and Wyre blasted critics who insist they have not expressed enough grief.

He said: “For three days, all they could see in their minds was Madeleine lying dead. They were in complete agreement she'd been taken by a predator, abused and killed.

“They were certain they would never see her alive again. The image of her lying murdered hardly left them and they expected at any time to receive the news that her body had been found. When three days passed and that had not happened, they began to feel the stirring of hope.

“They reasoned it was most likely that if someone had seized her to abuse and kill her, her body would probably have been nearby and would have been found. They continue to cling to that hope - but they are also prepared for the worst. However, as long as she remains missing I know they will not rest in their efforts to find her”.

Wyre also told The People how GP Kate is so dedicated to answering the flood of emails she gets every day about Maddie she sometimes gets up at 4am to deal with them all.

His tribute came as detectives in Portugal finally admitted they could be WRONG in their belief that the McCanns - from Rothley, Leics - were involved in Maddie's disappearance. Prosecutors had named the couple as official suspects in September.

And since then police have been hellbent on trying to prove Kate and Gerry had hidden their daughter's body after the youngster died in their Algarve holiday apartment.

Investigators even claimed they had enough evidence to charge the couple just three weeks ago. But yesterday police sources admitted the McCanns may have been telling the truth all along. And detectives are now set to review the case and quiz all the witnesses again.

The amazing about-turn comes after a British laboratory said DNA tests carried out on blood samples found in the Praia da Luz flat and the couple's hire-car had been inconclusive.

The theory Maddie had been kidnapped was also given another boost last week with the release of a sketch of a possible suspect. A source told Portuguese newspaper 24 Horas: “There are now two hypotheses on the table - abduction or accidental death. There are no concrete proofs to charge the current suspects. No line of inquiry can be discounted - but the first hypothesis is the most credible”.

The McCanns' family spokesman Clarence Mitchell told The People last night: “We welcome any movement on the part of the police that accepts Madeleine was abducted - because that's what happened.

“It’s ridiculous we've had to wait this long for any indication they believe Kate and Gerry are telling the truth.

“The sooner the police realise they don't have a case against them, the sooner they focus on finding Madeleine - which is what this investigation should be about”.



Analysis of The People article - The context in which it came to be published

Let us first examine the context of this article and try to understand how it came to be written and published. We will start with a recap of what had been happening during the previous months.

In August and early September there was a spate of stories, especially in the popular British press, about the evidence of the cadaver dogs, and about forensic reports from the Forensic Science Service in Birmingham that were said to confirm that Madeleine’s DNA had been found in blood and body fluid samples in the McCanns’ holiday apartment and in the car they hired three weeks later. The cadaver dog Eddie, trained by one of the world’s leading dog handlers Martin Grime, was said to have identified 10 locations connected with the McCanns where a corpse had lain. The McCanns came up with at least five different version of how this scent of a corpse might have been detected by the springer spaniel.

Then, on 7 September 2007, the McCanns were taken in for questioning and made ‘arguidos’, or suspects. Three days later a senior detective, Tavares de Almeida, issued a damning interim report which pointed clearly to the main line of enquiry being that Madeleine had died in Apartment 5A at the Ocean Club, Praia da Luz, and that the McCanns or others must have hidden her body. Just three weeks after that report was issued, the detective inspector in charge of the case, Goncalo Amaral, was removed from his position by fax and ordered to report to another location.

The McCanns and members of their team, especially after the trauma of being questioned under caution, were understandably engaged in an active campaign to win the support of the media, and to progress the investigation in what they felt was the right direction. Their fervent supporter, Cheshire businessman Brian Kennedy, who had made his pile from selling double glazing, appointed the highly controversial Spanish detective agency Metodo 3 to investigate Madeleine’s disappearance. They said the Portuguese police were not looking for her properly. The McCanns and Brian Kennedy, using publicly-donated funds paid to their trust, Find Madeleine Fund, had handed Metodo 3 a contract reputed to be worth at least £50,000 a month.

The involvement of Metodo 3 led to stories just before Christmas from its Director, Francisco Marco, that his men were ‘closing in on’ Madeleine’s kidnappers and that Madeleine would be ‘home by Christmas’. These stories were complete and utter fabrications - being perpetrated by Metodo 3 who were in turn being funded by donations from a generous British public.

Metodo 3 were not finished. In January and March 2008, still under contract to the McCanns, they appear to have been behind some highly-publicised searches for Madeleine’s body in the Arade Dam. These were organised amid a fanfare of publicity and media photographers by Madeira-based Portuguese lawyer, Marcos Aragao Correia. Correia later admitted to being paid by Metodo 3, claiming, unconvincingly, that he had ‘only been paid expenses’. This at least made a change from his original story, which was that he was doing it ‘out of the goodness of his own heart’.

Whilst on the subject of Correia, we should note the following. He was also the lawyer who acted against Goncalo Amaral, accusing him of taking part in or authorising a beating of a convicted murderess, Leonor Cipriano. Moreover, he came up with two sick stories about what had happened to Madeleine. When he first came to public notice, he told the world that within three days of Madeleine being reported missing, ‘underworld sources’, whom he could not name, had told him that Madeleine had been abducted, raped, killed and that her body had been thrown into a lake. Several months later, he admitted that this was a lie. He changed his story, replacing it with an equally unconvincing account that on Saturday 5 May, two days after Madeleine was reported missing, he had attended his first-ever Spiritualist meeting. After that meeting, he said he had a disturbing vision of a very large man strangling Madeleine. Such a man was the pursuer of the detective Goncalo Amaral, and employed by the McCanns via Metodo 3.

Meanwhile Brian Kennedy had been busy. He had been contacting various witnesses. According to an article by Mark Hollingsworth in the Evening Standard in August 2009, he even intimidated some of them into keeping silent and not talking to the Portuguese Police. He found two witnesses, however, who were willing to talk. They were Paul Gordon and Gail Cooper. Both claimed they had seen a strange, ‘creepy’ man when they had been in Portugal in the weeks before the McCanns were there. The stories about these two ‘sightings’ of a creepy man were released by the McCann Team on different days to achieve maximum press coverage, in a blaze of front-page publicity, on 7, 8 and 9 January - round about the time the McCanns were meeting with Ray and Christine Wyre.

The Daily Mirror first of all reported: “A Brit who stayed in the same holiday flat as Madeleine McCann has told how he spotted creepy strangers lurking nearby BEFORE she vanished. Paul Gordon said he was worried the dodgy-looking people had no business to be at the Portuguese complex. His shock evidence could mean child-snatchers had been staking out the complex before four-year-old Maddie's family even arrived there. Brewery executive Paul, 34, and his family rented the Ocean Club flat in Praia da Luz for a fortnight last April. The McCanns took it over from them and Maddie went missing five days later on May 3 - sparking a global hunt”.

Two days later, the Mirror filed a new story: “A second British tourist has reported seeing a mystery man hanging around Madeleine McCann's holiday flat just days before she vanished. Gail Cooper, 50, said she was confronted by the ‘creepy’ stranger at her holiday villa in Portugal. He claimed he was collecting for an orphanage in the next village of Espiche. She spotted him again two days later on Praia Da Luz beach.

“Gail, from Newark, Notts, said yesterday: ‘He was a horrible-looking man, really creepy, unkempt and dirty. He definitely wasn't Portuguese. He scared me’.”

To assist Gail Cooper’s recollections of what this man looked like, Brian Kennedy had in the previous weeks paid for an ‘F.B.I.-trained forensic artist’, Melissa Little, to help her mock up a sketch of him. The media blitz of 7-9 January had been well planned. The decisions of both Paul Gordon and Gail Cooper to talk to the McCanns’ private detectives seems to have originated in meetings between them and Brian Kennedy.

As we have said in our major article on Robert Murat (see under ‘Articles’ on our website, ), these stories had a dubious origin and content. And in the end the Portuguese Police dismissed these claims, especially Gail Cooper’s as she changed her story about how many times she had seen this man. The Portuguese Police published this conclusion about Gail Cooper’s unreliable evidence in their final report, a full copy of which is reproduced in our latest book, ‘The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1’ (ISBN 978-0-9563351-1-1), available via our website.

Kennedy had also been busy having secretive meetings in Portugal. He took staff of Metodo 3 to meet the Portuguese Police in Portimao on 13 November. The same day he met with the leading suspect in the case, Robert Murat, each flanked by their respective lawyers, Edward Smethurst and Francisco Pagarete. Around this time, Jane Tanner was gradually - and in public, via the press - shifting from her earlier identification of Robert Murat as the person she said she had seen carrying a child outside the McCanns’ apartment on the day Madeleine disappeared. Now, she was saying, she was no longer sure.

Ray Wyre praises the McCanns

Clarence Mitchell, the McCanns’ chief public relations officer, was busy promoting stories about Madeleine day after day. Without a shadow of a doubt, he will have been behind the appearance of that article on 27 January 2008 in The People which featured the meeting between the McCanns and the Wyres.

He would have known about the meeting, if not actively arranged it. He would have known that Ray Wyre would be willing to talk to The People and that The People would publish details of their meeting. The People’s circulation, in common with many other parents, had been falling. They would have jumped at the chance of an ‘exclusive’ on Madeleine McCann – which is exactly what they got, probably at a price. Mitchell would no doubt have ‘vetted’ the final content - and, as we have seen, he was actually quoted in the article. He may even have drafted the article himself.

Against that background, let us summarise the content of the article about the McCanns’ trip to the Wyres’ home in Buckinghamshire.

First, we note that Wyre doesn’t refer to the McCanns’ children. Presumably they were left at home for the day with a relative or child-minder.

Then we observe one of the most striking features of this article: the insistent, repeated and total certainty of Wyre that the McCanns were 100% innocent and knew absolutely nothing about what had happened to Madeleine. Wyre is quoted as saying, in quick succession:

"it is absolutely IMPOSSIBLE for them to have been involved"

"they are incapable of doing anything to harm their children"

"I can state categorically there is no way they were involved in their daughter's murder or disappearance"

"they would be incapable of such an act".

We notice also in The People article how Ray Wyre is elevated to near divine status by a series of hyperbolic statements about him:

‘top UK crime cracker’

‘helped nail a string of monsters including child-killer Robert Black’

the ‘ace criminologist’.
Then we hear of the claim that the real purpose of the meeting was ‘to set up an international taskforce to help cops trace missing children’. Given that we have had INTERPOL for decades, it is reasonable to ask whether the purpose of the get-together was a lot more about getting a very helpful front-page article in a national Sunday newspaper than to set up a rival organisation to INTERPOL. Was this meeting, indeed, arranged by Mitchell solely to produce a great newspaper headline?

The article says: “Wyre also told The People how GP Kate is so dedicated to answering the flood of emails she gets every day about Maddie she sometimes gets up at 4am to deal with them all”. Only months later, though, as we now know from Johan Seend of Virginia-based company iJet, the McCanns set up a telephone information hot-line intended to field calls from the general public. We now know that the McCanns did not follow up even one of those calls (see our article on Kevin Halligen on our website) - one of many issues which we say should be addressed in a full public enquiry into all aspects of Madeleine’s disappearance.

The People article also neatly linked into the recent fanfare of publicity about another suspect. They wrote: “The theory Maddie had been kidnapped was also given another boost last week with the release of a sketch of a possible suspect. There are now two hypotheses on the table - abduction or accidental death. No line of inquiry can be discounted - but the first hypothesis is the most credible”.

This enabled Clarence Mitchell to have the final say: “The McCanns' family spokesman Clarence Mitchell told The People last night: “We welcome any movement on the part of the police that accepts Madeleine was abducted - because that's what happened”.

One detail The People omitted, however, was whether Ray Wyre had ever met either of the McCanns before.

The controversial career of Ray Wyre

It is time now to examine the career of Ray Wyre. We have seen how in articles in The Times on 7 May and the Daily Telegraph on 10 May, he spoke forthrightly in the British press of his conviction that this was ‘definitely an abduction’, just days after Madeleine disappeared. Then, months later, as we have just seen, he went on to say that he was sure from his experience that it was ‘absolutely impossible’ for the McCanns to have been in any way involved in the disappearance of their daughter. The People described him in their article as a ‘top UK crime cracker’ and ‘ace criminologist’. Was he?

There is a fair amount of material on the internet about this controversial sex therapist-cum-consultant. Readers are referred for example to these four links or sources:



THE "NOTTINGHAM, UK" RITUAL ABUSE CASES by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance

‘The Making of a Satanic Myth’,

Tony Bennett
Tony Bennett

Posts : 15619
Join date : 2009-11-25
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Location : Shropshire

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Post by Tony Bennett on 11.01.11 0:44


The Nottingham Satanic Abuse Ring that wasn’t

One of the worst-ever cases of waste of police time, and social workers’ time. and one which involved many children and families in a great deal of distress, was caused by Ray Wyre. Despite this, his career was not finished, but in fact went from strength to strength.

During 1988, the country was gripped by lurid stories of an alleged Satanic Ritual Abuse network operating in and around Nottingham. And it was all triggered by Wyre.

During the course of investigating claims of a Satanic Abuse Ring, tens of thousands of hours of police and social worker time were spent. The cost ran into tens of millions of pounds. It led to a rift between Nottinghamshire Social Services and Nottinghamshire Police because, in the end, the police simply refused to investigate any further claims of Satanic Ritual Abuse. The claims, they concluded, were not true.

We’ll pick up the story with some direct quotes from the articles we’ve mentioned above.

“In 1988, two social workers in the city were encountering a particularly vile case of incest involving nine adults and 23 children who had been taken into care. According to Christine Johnston, a Senior Social Worker, and Judith Dawson, the Team Leader, the children began telling bizarre stories which they could not understand.

They called in Ray Wyre, a former probation officer who runs a clinic in Birmingham for sex offenders. [However, another version of the introduction of Ray Wyre to Nottingham held that it was a journalist, Tim Tate, who advised social workers to contact Wyre].

Wyre proceeded to give the social workers a list of "Satanic indicators", a profile of signs and symptoms used by American police officers which he told the Independent on Sunday he was given by Pamela Klein, a Chicago social worker who lectures on Satanic abuse.

“Wyre had other literature on Satanic abuse from the United States, where he had first studied child abuse in 1984. He had picked up some of the material himself on a visit in 1988; other information he had been sent. Mr Wyre says the social workers initially asked him if he knew anything about witchcraft because the children were writing strange things in their diaries. He said he told the social workers and foster parents the sort of things said by children who had been ritually abused.

“By June 1989, the police refused to investigate any new allegations disclosed by the children and described in the diaries. The Chief Constable and the Director of Social Services decided to resolve the conflict by creating a joint unit of 4 full-time members, half police officers (two) and half social workers (two). None had any previous involvement with the Broxtowe cases.

“Their inquiry started on 10 July 1989 and lasted for 5 months. They investigated locations disclosed by the children and adults, and interviewed alleged perpetrators, police, social workers, foster parents, and experts used by the Social Services Department. They interviewed 12 children who had disclosed ritual abuse. Finally, they examined studies of ritual abuse.

“This group, called The Nottingham Police/Social Services Joint Enquiry Team (JET) issued their 600-page, five volume ‘Joint Enquiry Report’ at the end of 1989.

Kenneth Clarke, the Health Secretary and local Member of Parliament, realised that the findings of this team should be generally circulated in order to prevent similar situations occurring elsewhere in the UK. He asked for a shortened version of that report. A ‘Revised Report" was then prepared in 1990, and sent to the Social Services Inspectorate and to the government. But it was then suppressed; it was never circulated to individual Social Services Departments.

“The team began the investigation assuming that Satanic Ritual Abuse had actually happened. They re-investigated a number of locations identified by the children and adult witnesses where Satanic Ritual Abuse ceremonies were alleged to have been held.

“These included: 2 tunnels and a room at Wollaton Hall Tunnels, an underground room at St. Mary's Church, a room under the stables at a Ruddington private dwelling, tunnels running from Old Lodge Gates to Wollaton Hall, an underground room in a private dwelling on Derby Road - and tunnels which led to Wollaton Hall and an outdoor swimming pool, a swimming pool at a private dwelling on Lenton Avenue, and a secret passage and underground room with four dead bodies in a house in Derbyshire.

“None of the rooms, tunnels, outdoor pools or bodies existed.

“The children disclosed a wide range of Satanic Ritual Abuse, including such graphic events as: being killed by being jumped upon, shot, having their heads bashed against the floor, thrown on a bonfire, killed by a monster, stabbed in the stomach, killed by crocodiles, sharks and a dragon…There was a huge list of similar events being described by the children, culminating in ‘an adult putting on a cloak and flying’ and ‘adult witches turning the children into frogs’.”

“Essentially all of the diary allegations were made by four children from three foster homes. It was only after Ray Wyre briefed the foster parents with so-called ‘Satanic indicators’ on 9 February 1988 that the children started to disclose [i.e. make up] these stories”. These ‘Satanic indicators’ that Wyre introduced included: transportation to other places, animal sacrifices, drinking of blood, eating flesh, killing of children - and many other gruesome indicators.

“The team concluded that the events described by the children ‘could not have happened’…The team was able to trace many of the symbols and images described by the children to children's fantasy books about witches, TV programmes and to props used during ‘therapy sessions’; the latter included witches’ costumes, toy monsters, masks, unclothed dolls, a toy medical kit, rubber snakes and plastic spiders”.

This hysterical investigation in Nottingham was generated by Ray Wyre’s bizarre theories and his incredible list of indicators. The relevant authorities should have taken note; all of this happened at the same time as Wyre was setting up his controversial Gracewell Clinic. Given the huge waste of police time, he was lucky indeed not to have been prosecuted for wasting their time. The public money he wasted could have been much better spent elsewhere.

The Scottish Satanic Abuse ring that wasn’t

Yet despite this massive and costly blunder by Wyre, he repeated exactly the same thing three years later in Scotland, where there was another Satanic Ritual Abuse false alarm.

One report referred to Wyre in very robust terms:

Perhaps most disturbing of all is the evidence that the investigation team was influenced by Ray Wyre, a former Probation Officer who describes himself as ‘an independent sexual abuse consultant’. Though the local authority refused to admit it, the investigators attended a special three-day training programme in October 1991 organised by Mr Wyre's Gracewell Institute. Only after this did they begin group therapy sessions for the children. Subsequently, the allegations of Satantic Ritual Abuse began to flow.

It was Mr Wyre who, at a conference of Social Services Directors in Scotland in 1990, told delegates that they must: “think the unthinkable, believe the unbelievable and imagine the unimaginable”. And it was Wyre who had played in important role in advising social workers and foster parents during a child abuse investigation in Nottingham in 1988-89. After that investigation had broken down amid recriminations between police and social workers, an inquiry was held. It blamed Mr Wyre for creating unfounded fears of a Satanic Abuse network. Inter viewing and therapy techniques were faulty, it said, and the evidence produced was a reflection of social workers' obsessions. The report concluded that ‘unless action was taken, witch-hunts could develop in this country and grave injustice result’'.

Wyre seems to have had a mesmeric influence on social workers and even Social Services Directors. It is also of note that the Nottingham report on Wyre’s activities was suppressed, while in the Scotland case, several social workers ‘refused to admit’ that they attended a special three-day training programme in October 1991. Why did they deny that?

The Welsh Satantic Abuse Ring that wasn’t

Three years later, Wyre was at it again. In June 1994, another Satanic Ritual Abuse hysteria broke out in Pembrokeshire (Dyfed), Wales. It was subsequently revealed that workers in that case had attended a 3-day conference held by Wyre, for which he was paid tens of thousands of pounds. Despite the trail of havoc in his wake after Nottingham and Scotland, Wyre remained a revered educator and trainer on the subject of ritual abuse of children.

He should have been prosecuted for wasting police time after the Nottingham debacle. Still more so after the Scottish fiasco. To get away with it a third time in Wales, all within the space of 6 years, was remarkable. Was there not one professional, whether police officer or social worker, who could see through this man and understand that he was mistaken. It suggests that, like many con-men, Wyre was persuasive…convincing.

Wyre’s weird views

We might note one other thing at this stage. Ray Wyre can be seen from the above to have had something of an obsession about witchcraft and Satanism. One interviewer who spoke to him at home noted that he had a large book on witchcraft on his shelves. Is it possible that Wyre dabbled in some way with the occult? Many of those who get involved with the occult world also hold strongly anti-Christian views. It is of interest therefore that Wyre claimed more than once that a large proportion of sex offenders were Christians. That looks like being one of many of Wyre’s claims that he could not sustain.

Wyre’s name came up again during the controversy about a Channel 4 programme in 1998, titled ‘The Devil Amongst Us’, which allowed five paedophiles to openly advance their sick views about sex with children. The programme opened with a man called ‘Paul’ who spoke about ‘the need for society to stop discriminating against paedophiles’. ‘Paul’ added: “I would love to come out and have an open relationship with a child where we did the same things as heterosexuals do with each other”.

Glenda Cooper, Social Affairs Correspondent of the Independent, was among many who challenged the right of paedophiles to be given a platform for their views and queried whether such a programme should be shown.

There was a contrast between the robust views of the NSPCC about this proposed programme and those of Ray Wyre.

NSPCC spokesman, Mike Taylor, said of the programme: “It is a chilling account of how men who have no moral scruples and who do not share the values of our society operate in sexually abusing children…the film does not take the child's perspective into account as well as that of the perpetrator of the abuse”.

Paul Cavadino, Principal Officer for the National Association for the Care and Resettlement and Offenders, added: “The programme gives a platform to criminals to justify their activities that cause life-long damage to children…it is unbalanced - there is no reference to the victims or survivors of paedophiles”.

But by contrast with these strong views, Ray Wyre did not condemn the programme, instead offering this bland comment: “There is a responsibility on us. This programme may reinforce their beliefs. These people believe what they do is not wrong, they believe society is wrong. Other people watching could have their belief system reinforced”.

Evidence from the ‘False Allegations Action Scotland’ website

We turn now to the facts about Wyre to be found on the ‘False Allegations Action Scotland(FAAS)website, and will run briefly through the main points. Readers are referred to their website:

] - or their main article on Wyre can be read on Nigel Moore’s ‘’ website.

Wyre’s controversial activities began when he was a Probation Officer attached to Albany Prison. He began the practice, contrary to probation guidelines and accepted ways of working, of interviewing three or four sex offenders together, instead of individually. He denied that three or four people constituted a ‘group’.

Wyre’s influence spread what one observer called ‘a tide of Satanic Abuse hysteria’ across the U.K., the U.S., Australia and New Zealand. He did so partly through one of his controversial associates, Pamela Klein. Wyre and Klein were, amazingly, listened to approvingly by high-powered joint training conferences for police and social workers. Klein became a rape crisis worker in Illinois, but she was criticised by a judge in her own state. He said: “Klein is not a legitimate therapist and is not licensed to practise”.

Wyre’s ‘masturbation satiation’ technique

In the journal 'Men and Crime', Issue 13, Summer 1992, Wyre admitted that a form of treatment commonly used at the Gracewell Clinic was that of so-called ‘masturbation satiation’. This was a technique originally devised by W.L. Marshall. It made use of deviant, or even illegal, films and other material as part of the therapy. Offenders were required to watch pornographic films, some of them of an extreme nature, while masturbating, for ‘a minimum of an hour-and-half to two hours’.

Wyre claimed, in effect, that if they masturbated frequently over a long period of time, they would reach ‘saturation level’ and no longer be tempted to engage in criminal sexual acts. It is a claim that has never been verified, except by Wyre himself, who said that none of those who underwent this treatment ever re-offended.

The FAAS website commented: “Wyre claimed at that time that no-one who had been treated at Gracewell had re-offended. This is not the achievement that it appears to be. Wyre excluded, from the outset, via the assessment, anyone who he feels ‘he cannot work with’. If he chooses to refuse to treat someone whose behaviour is so far detached from what would be expected from an average member of society that there is little or no hope of rehabilitation, and instead chooses to treat men who have little or no criminal evidence against them, it is no surprise that he can claim that none have gone on to re-offend”.

Wyre recommended to probation officers and others involved in the treatment of sex offenders that ‘masturbation satiation’ should become a mandatory form of treatment for all sex offenders.

The questionnaire that was waste of space

The FAAS website also noted that Wyre was promoting a questionnaire, which he himself had devised, that was totally ineffective: “Incredibly, Wyre admitted that the questionnaire which was used in the assessment pack he provided for the men received similar responses from the accused and from ordinary men in the community. Exactly what value and purpose this questionnaire had, if the answers were the same from all men, is unclear. You could [for example] assume from this that all men have the potential to act on deviant fantasies, or that the accused he was treating were innocent…Wyre seems to have had difficulty in differentiating between those who are innocent and those who are guilty”.

Paedophiles into homosexuals

Another highly controversial aspect of Wyre’s treatment regime was his programme of trying to convert child abusers into homosexuals. His theory was that the sexual tendencies of child abusers could be changed by making them attracted to other men instead of to children. The FAAS website commented: “Wyre considers that it is better for men who are believed to have abused boys, and who appear to be unable to conduct a relationship with a woman, to enter into homosexual relationships”.

Sally Smith - and Snuff Films

Let us now examine the extraordinary and close association that a woman known as ‘Sally Smith’ (who has never been identified so far as I am aware) had with Ray Wyre and his Gracewell Clinic. An article in the Birmingham-based Sunday Mercury tells the story, and I reproduce the full article below:


I've fallen in love with 200 killers’

Sunday Mercury - by Caroline Wheeler, 24 August 2003

A middle-aged psychology student is dedicating her life to helping notorious child killers, sex offenders and murderers - by falling in LOVE with them.

Sally Smith regularly writes to 200 dangerous criminals and counts paedophile killer Sidney Cooke and Robert ‘The Cannibal’ Maudsley among her close friends.

In the past the spinster, who claims to have been sexually abused as a child, has corresponded with Moors Murderers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley.

More recently she wrote to Ian Huntley, who is charged with killing Soham schoolgirls Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman.

Yet Sally, 56, sees nothing wrong in the bizarre relationships. She claims instead that they could help the rehabilitation of the monsters behind bars.

“I love the men because of - not in spite of - what they have done,” said Sally, adding that it started when she fell in love with her own abuser.

“I was sexually abused by a serious sex offender as a child over a number of years,” she explained. “He was in a position of authority and I was assaulted within what I would call a loving environment.

“When he dumped me several years later, I thought if I couldn’t love him, I would love men like him. I began to write to some of Britain’s most violent sex offenders.”

Sally, who is studying for an MA in criminal psychology, claims that she wants to help rehabilitate the men by offering them her close friendship. She first began work in the field of sex offenders in the 1980s when she volunteered at Ray Wyre’s controversial Gracewell Institute, in Moseley, Birmingham.

When the clinic closed in 1993 she branched out on her own and set up the Michael and Ray Snowy Trust in Stourbridge, West Midlands, to continue her controversial psychological techniques.

“My work begins with the question of not what I can do for these men, but what they need,” she said. “I offer them emotional and financial support while they are in prison and I am developing links with other organisations who can help them once they are released.

“I send cards and letters and make prison visits. I also send them money for things like phone cards and trainers”.

Sally, who is hoping to get her semi-autobiographical book ‘Forwards With Hope And Love’ published, says that her desire to help the men is motivated by love. “Everybody needs love,” she explained. “If these offenders are given back some self-respect and self-esteem it is my hope that they might begin to change. By using these techniques we could all eventually enjoy a safer society.”

Sally claims that her methods have already had a positive impact on several high-profile criminals, including serial killer Robert Maudsley. The 50 year-old murderer, currently in HMP Wakefield, once ate part of a victim’s brain with a spoon.

2Robert Maudsley has been improving since I began writing to him,” she said. “And Sidney Cooke and I have been friends for years - I’ve been to prison to visit him. I’m not as interested in women but I have also written to Rose West and the late Myra Hindley. She once sent me a Christmas card and a letter, in which she said she wanted to get to know me better.

“I’ve also written to Rose West and sent her a small cheque for Christmas. She cashed it but she has never written back.”

Leading sex crimes expert Ray Wyre confirmed that Sally had been a volunteer at the Gracewell Institute - but said that he had serious doubts about her methods. “Our approaches are very different,” he added. “I know where her heart is but in the end we just had to agree to disagree on her methods. I think that some of the work she does is extremely dangerous and could leave her open to attack.”

Anyone who wants to contact Sally about her work should write to PO Box 1782, Stourbridge, DY8 1WZ., sending an SAE so that a newsletter can be sent out free of charge. Sally’s name has been changed at her request.


Some of the names of the criminals ‘Sally Smith’ was associating with are well-known. Sidney Cooke was surely one of the most evil of all, leading a gang rape of a 10-year-old boy at a flat in Hackney, which killed him, and then dumping his body in a wood near Ongar, Essex.

It’s clear that ‘Sally Smith’ is a lonely attention-seeker who cannot find anything else to fill her life apart from corresponding and ‘falling in love with’ some of the most evil men in society. It was clearly a most unhealthy obsession. The crucial point in the article is that she began her infatuation with these evil criminals whilst working alongside Ray Wyre in his Gracewell Clinic. Indeed, as the article says, she remained closely alongside him until its closure. Wyre’s attempt to distance himself from ‘Sally Smith’ is unconvincing. Wyre clearly knew about and tolerated ‘Sally Smith’s correspondence with these killers. Did he also approve of and encourage her in this work? Why, for several years, did Wyre have as his associate and close colleague a woman who was obsessed with writing to murderers?

One more point: once again we see the media hagiography of Wyre; here the Sunday Mercury refers to him as a ‘leading sex crimes expert’.

Finally, we might note Wyre’s claims of having ‘viewed snuff films first-hand in America’. When challenged about this, however, he denied having seen a real snuff movie, claiming instead that what he had seen was ‘merely a sophisticated simulation’.

Questions for the McCanns and Clarence Mitchell

We have already raised one question – did either of the McCanns know the Wyres before they met in January?

Second, did the McCanns have any idea of the highly controversial career of Wyre, before they willingly accepted his praise of them in The People article? Did they know of his calamitous record in relation to his false claims of Satanic Ritual Abuse rings? Did they know of his obsession with ‘masturbation satiation? Did they know of his association with ‘Sally Smith’?

Did Clarence Mitchell know of Wyre’s past record?

How was the meeting set up? Who arranged it?

And what happened about the alleged purpose of the meeting: namely, to discuss setting up an international taskforce to help cops trace missing children?

Tony Bennett, 6 October 2010 – Harlow

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Post by Tony Bennett on 11.01.11 0:45



Paedophilia and paedophiles are words from which we naturally recoil. It is by no means a new phenomenon. There are many other words we use to refer to paedophiles: kiddie-fiddlers, nonces, child sexual abusers, child sex offenders and so on. Some of the crimes committed by paedophiles are scarcely believable in their brutality; other offences by them are mercifully less serious. One thing seems certain, such crimes are on the increase and are often severe in their long-lasting effects on those abused. There is widespread agreement that the internet is a major cause of any increase in this vile crime.

This Madeleine Foundation article has examined the history of someone with a deep interest in the subject of paedophilia, namely the late Ray Wyre - though of course he said he was trying to treat paedophiles.

It is an unpleasant fact that the subject of paedophilia has frequently been associated in some way with the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, very regrettable though that is. Here, for the record, we give a brief summary of some of these references:

1. Dr Gerry McCann said on the day Madeleine was reported missing that Madeleine had been taken by a paedophile

Leaving aside for a moment the lack of direct evidence that Madeleine was abducted at all, there clearly is also no direct evidence whatsoever that, if Madeleine was abducted, that it was a paedophile who took her. Yet the McCanns themselves, on the very evening that Madeleine was reported missing, claimed she had been snatched by one or more paedophiles. That was a remarkable thing for them to say right from the first minute they reported Madeleine as missing. She might for example have wandered out of her room and out of the flat.

2. The McCanns and their team repeatedly said that Madeleine had been taken by a paedophile or a gang of paedophiles

In the months that followed her reported disappearance, the McCann Team made numerous references, counted in dozens, to the probability that Madeleine had been abducted by paedophiles.

3. One of the McCanns’ close friends, a General Practitioner, said that on a previous holiday together, one of Dr Gerald McCann’s best friends, Dr David Payne, had made sexualised remarks and gestures about Madeleine

On 16 May 2007, just 13 days after Madeleine disappeared, Dr Katarina Gaspar made this statement:

“One night, when all the adults, that is, from those couples I have mentioned above, were all sitting around on a patio outside the house where we were all staying. We had been eating and drinking ‘Berbers’. I was sitting between Gerry and Dave and I think both were talking about Madeleine. I can't remember the conversation in its entirety, but they seemed to be discussing a particular scenario. I remember Dave saying to Gerry something about ‘she’, meaning Madeleine, ‘would do this’.

“While he mentioned the word ‘this’, Dave was doing the action of sucking one of his fingers, pushing it in and out of his mouth, while with his other hand he was doing a circle around his nipple, with a circular movement around his clothes. This was done in a provocative way. There seemed to be an explicit insinuation about what he was saying and doing. I remember being shocked by that. I always felt it was something very weird and that it was not something anyone should say or do. I looked at Gerry, and also at Dave, to gauge their reactions.

“I looked around as if saying: “Did someone else hear that, or was it just me?”. The conversations stopped for a moment, then we all began conversing again. Moreover, I remember Dave doing the same thing on another occasion. In saying this, I want to mention once again that it was during a conversation in which he was talking about an imaginary scenario, although I’m not sure.

“He again stuck one of his fingers in and out of his mouth and with the other hand he once again drew a circle around his nipple in a provocative and sexual way. I think he was referring to the way she, that is, his daughter Lily, would behave or what she would do. I think he did this later during this same holiday, but I'm not sure.

“The only time since then that I have been in the company of Dave and Fiona was several weeks after the holidays, when Savio and I met Gerry, Kate, Dave and Fiona in a restaurant in Leicester. I’m sure that he said what he said and made the gestures I have related, but [the second time] it could have happened in the restaurant in Leicester, although I do think it was in Majorca that I heard Dave say and do this for the second time. After the second occasion [when he made these gestures] I took it more seriously.

“I remember thinking whether he would look at my daughter and other little girls in a different way than I or others do. I imagined that he had perhaps visited internet sites related to little children. In a word, I thought that he could be interested in child pornography on the web. During our holiday in Majorca, each parent would bath the children in turn. I was keen to stay near the bathroom if Dave was bathing the children.

“I remember I said to Savio to be careful and to be close by if Dave was helping to bathe the children and my daughter in particular…”

4. Dr Katarina Gaspar’s husband, also a General Practitioner, Dr Arul Savio Gaspar, confirmed this event:

“During the period we stayed at the villa I remember a gesture made by David Payne. I do not remember the context of the conversation between David and Gerry, but I do remember seeing David use his left index finger to rub his nipple, using circular movements, whilst he put his right index finger into his mouth, touching his tongue. This happened during a meal, at the end of the day, in the villa. I do not remember the time or the date, but we would usually dine between 7.30pm and 9.00pm every day. I think this happened in the middle of the holiday.

“I remember that when I saw this gesture, I immediately thought it to be in very bad taste, independently of the context of the conversation they were having. We were sitting around a white plastic table in the villa. I don’t know if anyone else saw the gesture, apart from my wife Katherine”.

5. One of the suspects in the case, Robert Murat, was accused by two witnesses of having paedophile tendencies

A couple of days after Robert Murat was taken in for questioning by the Portuguese Police and formally declared a suspect, Dr Gerald McCann was asked: “Did you already know Robert Murat?” Dr McCann brushed the question aside impatiently and said: “I am not going to comment on that”. That led many to consider that the two men did previously know each other. It is a very reasonable inference to draw from his evasive comment.

Two witnesses claimed that Robert Murat had paedophile tendencies. One of them, who knew Murat well, made a detailed statement with some very graphic comments about Murat’s sexual preferences. The links for these statements are given on our website in a lengthy feature article about Robert Murat. The Portuguese Police discovered encrypted material on Murat’s computer after they seized it. Encryption is often used by those who view, download or exchange child pornography. Murat said he had ‘no idea’ why there was encrypted material on his computer.

6. Murat’s friend Sergei Malinka was also said to have child pornography on his computer

A witness told Portuguese Police that Sergei Malinka, a friend of Murat who had worked on Murat’s website, also had an interest in child pornography and had child pornography on his computer. But the police found he had wiped all the data on his hard drive before the police examined it.

7. Jim Gamble, the Chief Executive of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP), used the Madeleine McCann disappearance to highlight the danger of paedophiles

Despite the high degree of uncertainty about what really happened to Madeleine, highlighted by their own spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, saying in March 2010 that her disappearance was ‘a complete mystery’, Jim Gamble, head of CEOP, relentlessly associated Madeleine with CEOP. This was despite the obvious fact that the McCanns on their own admission had left three young children, all aged under four, in a vulnerable situation - for six nights in a row - and clearly failed to protect them. Many questioned why an organisation with the words ‘Child Protection’ in its title should feature the McCanns so heavily, given their failure of child protection.

Gamble, from 2007 onwards, heavily featured Madeleine on the CEOP website and in various CEOP publications. Around the time of the second anniversary of Madeleine’s disappearance (17 months previous to the date of this article , he appeared together with the McCanns in a so-called one-minute ‘viral video’, strongly emphasising that Madeleine was still alive and needed to be found. Later he also appeared on morning news shows side by side with the McCanns.

Still more significantly, he invited Dr Gerald McCann in January 2010 to be the keynote speaker at a conference on the abduction of children by paedophiles. Why Dr McCann was considered by Gamble to be qualified to contribute to that conference, never mind being the ‘keynote speaker’, given the raft of uncertainties about the circumstances in which Madeleine disappeared, has never been explained either by the McCanns or by Jim Gamble.

Furthermore, it was reported - and confirmed by a Home Office Freedom of Information Act request - that in October 2009, the McCanns had a private interview with the McCanns. Following that, several press reports (not denied) indicated that the Home Secretary asked Jim Gamble to recommend a new British police force to carry out a review and possibly a re-investigation into Madeleine’s disappearance.

Some reports suggested that he had recommended West Yorkshire Police to carry out such a review. But the Home Office was unwilling to confirm or deny this. It was baffling why the Home Secretary, knowing Jim Gamble’s extreme closeness to the McCanns, should choose him to recommend who should carry out any review into Madeleine’s disappearance.

In the days before this article was written, Jim Gamble told the Home Secretary, Theresa May, that he was resigning from his post as CEOP Chief Executive, a resignation she swiftly accepted. The McCanns put out statements strongly supporting him, thanking him for his work on their behalf, and querying the Coalition government’s decision to incorporate CEOP within the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA). They described Gamble’s departure in graphic terms as ‘a huge loss to child protection’. These comments pointed inexorably, once again, to the conclusion that there was a very close ‘tie’ between the McCanns and Jim Gamble.

8. The McCann Team in conjunction with Jim Gamble of CEOP published a video about Madeleine and circulated it round the internet which many believed showed her inappropriately posed in heavy make-up

In 2010, Jim Gamble once again co-operated with the McCanns to make a another video about Madeleine. The video in question featured three images of Madeleine. One very striking one shows her in an unusual pose, shot by the photographer from well below her face, wearing make-up, including much blue eyeshadow, lipstick and jewellery, and looking unhappy.

The McCanns publicly claimed that ‘the photo shows her when she was three after a raid on the dressing box’. However, it is very unlikely that Madeleine could have put the necklace on herself, nor applied eyeshadow in the manner shown in the photograph, nor applied the pink bow to her hair. The evidence from the photograph suggests that an adult made her up and of course an adult was on hand to take that particular image of her. The McCanns did not say who took the photograph. Even if Madeleine had ‘raided the dressing box’, as claimed, it is one thing to take a photo of something like that for your family photo album, but altogether another matter to release it for millions to see.

The McCanns explicitly approved the very public release of this video and the images on it. As one newspaper reported: “Parents of Madeleine McCann, who went missing three years ago, have released a new video and photo of their missing daughter to mark the third anniversary of the girl's disappearance”. The photo the McCanns specifically chose to highlight in the video was the one with Madeleine wearing heavy make-up, apparently applied by an adult and not by herself.

There was strong adverse reaction by many members of the public to this image being used in connection with a missing child. Not least was the opinion of Mr Mark Williams-Thomas, a former police detective and now leading criminologist and child protection expert, who has often in the past spoken with strong sympathy and understanding for the McCanns. His unambiguous reaction to this particular photograph, promoted on his ‘Twitter’ blog, was that it was ‘so inappropriate’ and ‘so damaging’. We agree with him.

The McCanns have from the day Madeleine was reported missing claimed explicitly and on many occasions that Madeleine must have been abducted by a paedophile, or paedophiles, often described by them as ‘predatory’, ‘evil’, or ‘ monsters’. Yet the photo of Madeleine featured by her parents shows a child looking much older than her actual three years, due to the make-up and jewellery, as all the news media quickly picked up the following day.

The McCanns said a number of times that they were advised by the police ‘not to show any emotion’ in front of the cameras. One newspaper reported, around the time the McCanns appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show: “The couple also admitted they had been advised not to show any emotion while in front of the media, because any potential abductor ‘may get a kick out of it’.It was all the more surprising, therefore, that the McCanns should use this short video to project and promote an image of Madeleine which might well appeal to certain paedophiles, some of whom are unfortunately attracted to young children.

One person commented on ‘Twitter’ about the direct promotion of this video by CEOP Chief Executive Jim Gamble, writing: If CEOP endorse this type of public relations for a supposed missing child, then their role in child protection has to be questioned!”

9. The McCann Team have highlighted the possible involvement of a named paedophile, Raymond Hewlett, in the disappearance of Madeleine

First they suggested that Hewlett was involved in Madeleine’s disappearance; latterly they have claimed that he gave an account of his knowledge of Madeleine’s disappearance in a letter he dictated to hospital staff in the weeks before he died. The claims made about this letter are highly improbable and we suggest that they are a complete fabrication. They have however been deliberately promoted by the McCann Team for 18 months.

10. The connection between Ray Wyre, paedophile ‘expert’ and the McCanns

We’ve highlighted this connection in our article. There are at least four questions we would ask about this connection:

(1) Why was Wyre so keen, in two articles published four and seven days after Madeleine was reported missing, to insist so adamantly that she had been abducted?

(2) Why, in addition, did he emphasise the possibility that she had been snatched by a paedophile?

(3) Why did the McCanns agree to meet the Wyres at the their Buckinghamshire home?

(4) Was that meeting really much more about producing a helpful Sunday newspaper article than, as was claimed, about starting a new organisation for missing children?


June 30, 2008

Ray Wyre: expert on sex crimes and police adviser

Ray Wyre was one of the world’s leading experts on sexual crime. He was renowned for his pioneering work with people who sexually abused children and championed the idea that, for a society that rarely locks anyone up for life, rehabilitating offenders - rather than punishing them - was the only effective way to prevent reoffending.

In 1988 he founded the Gracewell Clinic, the world’s first residential clinic for sex offenders. It was controversial, and in fact was closed after five years, but Wyre believed that the ideas behind it were sound: “People say that abusers don’t deserve therapy and that they should be locked up and the key thrown away.” he said in 1995. “But these people are forgetting the children. We are not working for the offender but for the children, because they never defend themselves.”

Wyre was also called as an adviser in important police investigations and court hearings. He had an extraordinary ability to enter the mind and world of suspected offenders, whatever their techniques to avoid it, and among the landmark cases he worked on was that of Robert Black, who at the time had been sentenced to life imprisonment for a vicious sexual assault; Wyre was asked to assess Black by his defence lawyers and Black cancelled his appeal on reading the report; he was subsequently convicted of the murder of three girls.

Wyre also worked on the case of Fred and Rosemary West, interviewing one of their surviving children, Anne Marie.

Ray Wyre was born in Hampshire in 1951. His father was a chief petty officer, and Wyre joined the Navy at the age of 15. When he was later discharged because of trouble with his feet he went to theological college and became a volunteer warden at a working men’s hospital. He abandoned the idea of ordination and was taken on as a trainee probation officer at Winson Green prison in Birmingham, where his first client happened to be a sex offender.

From 1981 to 1986 Wyre worked with Category A prisoners at Albany prison on the Isle of Wight. He appeared to be immune to shock, a quality which gave him credibility among the prisoners as he took his first steps to understanding and interrupting their distorted thinking.

During this time he pioneered group therapy for sex offenders, simply by giving three or four of them appointments at the same time. He later remembered that he was “always fighting the system because nobody wanted me to do this sort of work. They thought sex offenders were one-offs and wouldn’t do it again; they didn’t understand that it’s a lifelong pattern of behaviour and unless people go through therapy while in prison they’ll go straight out and resume where they left off.” It was at this time that he co-wrote ‘Women, Men and Rape’, which was praised for its psychological insights.

He eventually moved to Portsmouth where he established a hospital-based programme. He resigned from the Probation Service, set up as a self-employed counsellor and within a few months had 20 clients, who attended voluntarily.

He soon found that the work was not financially viable, but through his accountant he met Trevor Price, a Midlands property entrepreneur, who enabled him to found the Gracewell Clinic in two houses in a suburb of Birmingham. Initially, it took referrals from the Probation Service, but it later accepted men who had not been charged but wanted help. He drew around him other practitioners committed to child protection and devised a programme of skilful questioning. There was a refusal to allow any shifting of blame to a victim, and therapy included resident offenders challenging the belief systems of new or more resistant arrivals. Wyre was much inspired by four months he spent on a Churchill Fellowship in the US with the FBI, studying the treatment of rapists and murderers there. “I am motivated by curiosity,” he once said. “I’m fascinated by people, I want to know how they tick and how I tick. It’s a journey you’re both on, together; therapy isn’t something you do to someone else. It’s about trying to get through to people’s feelings.” One witness said of a 35-minute session with an offender at Gracewell that Wyre had moved the man so far forward in his acceptance and understanding of his crimes that it might have taken another therapist years to make the same mark.

Wyre accumulated considerable knowledge about offending which could be used not only in the rehabilitation of victims but also in the detection and investigation of paedophile rings. So important was the latter to a criminal justice system inadequately equipped to prosecute such offences that Wyre and his Gracewell colleagues became tutors and hosts to investigators, first from New Scotland Yard and then from other UK police forces. However, there were local objections to the presence at Gracewell of so many convicted child abusers under one roof, and trouble with funding, and the clinic was closed down in 1993.

In the mid-1990s Wyre published Murder of Childhood, a book about Robert Black. In recent years he had worked more closely with fellow practitioners. Steve Lowe, the director of Ray Wyre Independent Consultancy, said of him: “Ray was the sharpest man I have ever met. He picked up on what was said, what was not said and what someone was feeling in a way that was at times quite disarming. I think he achieved this often by looking very dishevelled, something of a Columbo figure. He also had a charm and a boyish manner that people mistook at their peril. In terms of his work he could also ask the most direct questions and get answers.”

Wyre was optimistic, cheerful and entirely obsessed by his work. He lectured widely, here and abroad, to audiences of diplomats, government policymakers and investigators. In his spare time he was a talented poker player.

He is survived by his wife, Charmaine, and by three children from his first marriage.

Ray Wyre, sexual crime consultant, was born on November 2, 1951. He died after a stroke on June 20, 2008, aged 56

Ray Wyre - Trailblazing therapist with a unique approach to sex offenders

by Edward Marriott, The Guardian, Friday 8 August 2008

Ray Wyre, who has died from a stroke, aged 56, was one of the world's leading experts on sexual crime. He pioneered the treatment of sex offenders in residential therapy settings, believing that the potential for change existed within every criminal and, most importantly, that this work was crucial in reducing the risk of further offending. His distinctive therapeutic approach, which involved making bold but research-based assumptions about what other crimes an individual might have committed, was often controversial, but yielded spectacular results.

As his former colleague Charles Fortt puts it, "He didn't treat people punitively because they had offended, he worked with them in a way which enabled them to reveal the worst things they'd done. The men believed that Ray knew what was inside them, things that no one else had seen."

Wyre worked with some of the UK's most dangerous offenders, including Reggie Kray and child-killer Robert Black. The success of his methods, and his striking ability to enter the mind of the offender, made him a trusted police adviser in important criminal investigations and court hearings. In the Black case, Wyre was asked by his defence lawyers to assess the murderer. Black, already serving a life sentence for a vicious sexual assault, cancelled his appeal on reading Wyre's report, and was subsequently convicted of the murder of three girls. Wyre also worked with Anne Marie West as the police prepared the case against her parents, Fred and Rosemary, for their trial in 1994.

Wyre had set up the Gracewell clinic in Birmingham during the late 1980s. It was the world's first residential clinic for sex offenders, followed, in the mid-1990s, by the Wolvercote clinic in Surrey, which boasted non-reoffending rates of 80%. Among his many legacies was legislative change provoked by work he did with television journalist Roger Cook. It was after one of their programmes that, in 1987, child pornography was made illegal in the UK.

Wyre was born in Hampshire. His father was a chief petty officer and Wyre, after leaving school at 15, joined the Navy as a submarine torpedo man. After leaving, Wyre embarked on theological training, which involved a stint as a volunteer warden at a working men's hospital. This experience helped him decide against ordination, and in the late 1970s, he was taken on as a trainee probation officer at Winson Green prison in Birmingham, where his first patient was a sex offender.

Though he had little time for organised religion, his faith remained important to him, informing his deeply felt belief that, in the words of his long-time colleague Steve Lowe, "even in the people who are hated by society, there is a good person lurking in there somewhere". He would later joke that he owed his success in public speaking - which took him around the world, lecturing to shocked audiences of diplomats, NGOs and government policy makers - to his training in the ministry.

From 1981 to 1986, he worked with category-A inmates at Albany prison on the Isle of Wight, pioneering group therapy for sex offenders. He later said he was "always fighting the system because no one wanted me to do this sort of work. They thought sex offenders were one-offs and wouldn't do it again; they didn't understand that it's a lifelong pattern of behaviour and that unless people go through therapy while in prison, they'll go straight out and resume where they left off".

In 1988 he founded the Gracewell clinic, thanks to financial backing from Trevor Price, a Midlands property entrepreneur. It was the world's first residential clinic for sex offenders to take referrals, initially from the probation service, but later accepting men who had thus far managed to avoid the criminal justice system. Among the many innovations Wyre introduced was the use of resident offenders to challenge the beliefs of new or more resistant arrivals. The knowledge he and fellow practitioners acquired became an important source of information to police investigators from all over the country.

The clinic closed in 1993, partly through local objections to so many paedophiles being housed under one roof. In 2002, the same fate befell Gracewell's successor, the Wolvercote clinic in Surrey. Despite Wyre's trailblazing work, there is now no residential unit of this kind in the UK.

Optimistic, cheerful and obsessed by his work, Wyre loved politically incorrect jokes, and would often find it hard to finish them because he was already laughing uproariously in anticipation of the punchline. He was fond of magic tricks, and was an accomplished poker player, once appearing on a Channel 4 series about the game. Lowe puts Wyre's success at poker down to his skill at "reading" other people. "Poker, for him, wasn't about gambling. He'd never have gambled his house, but he often came away with a wallet full of money, and a little-boy smile on his face."

Among his published works are 'Women, Men and Rape', and 'Murder of Childhood', about Robert Black.
Wyre's first marriage ended in divorce. He is survived by his wife Charmaine, and three children, now all adults, from his first marriage.

· Ray Wyre, crime consultant, born November 2 1951; died June 20 2008
Tony Bennett
Tony Bennett

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