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'VIP paedophile ring' fantasist Carl Beech aka 'Nick' appeals conviction

Carl Beech, who was jailed over his invented claims of a “VIP paedophile ring” operating in Westminster, is appealing his conviction.

Beech was found guilty last month of 12 counts of perverting the course of justice and one of fraud. He was sentenced to 18 years in prison.

Beech’s claims were first reported by Exaro News in July 2014 under the pseudonym “Nick” and led to Operation Midland, a £2m police probe which ran for a year-and-a-half but ended without any charges being brought.

His lies wrongly painted ex-prime minister the late Sir Edward Heath, Tory MP Harvey Proctor, war veteran Field Marshall Lord Bramall and the late Lord Leon Brittan as child abusers.

On Monday Beech lodged a case at the Court of Appeal against his conviction and sentence. No date has yet been set for the hearing.

Sentencing Beech at Newcastle Crown Court last month, Mr Justice James Goss, told the ex-nurse he had “deliberately, repeatedly and maliciously told lies to the police”.

“You falsely accused a number of well-known public figures including politicians, very senior military figures and the heads of the intelligence services, many of whom had since died but some were still alive, of having been members of paedophile groups and the perpetrators.

“The distress, anger and loss caused to the individuals you accused and their families, some of whom died during the process, has been immense.”

The judge added that, as a result of Beech’s allegations, a “dark cloud of suspicion” had hung over those he falsely accused, as well as their families.

Investigative journalism outfit Exaro News closed down in July 2016.

Former Exaro editor Mark Watts said in a statement following Beech’s guilty verdict that he believed Beech had not had a “fair trial” and that his convictions were “wholly unsafe”.

Picture: CPS/PA Wire

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