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'VIP paedophile ring' source 'Nick' is himself 'manipulative paedophile', court hears

The man accused of lying about a Westminster VIP ring of child abusers and killers is himself a “committed and manipulative paedophile”, a court has heard.

Carl Beech, known by the pseudonym “Nick”, hid his sexual interest in young boys behind a secret app on his iPad, tried to frame someone else, and only later admitted a series of charges, jurors were told.

Beech told police in 2016 that he and other children were sexually abused by powerful figures – including the former prime minister Ted Heath, the head of the Army and security chiefs – in the 1970s.

Others he named included the former MP Harvey Proctor, the late Lord Brittan and other Army generals, claiming three children were murdered by the ring.

The father-of-one denies 12 counts of perverting the course of justice and one of fraud – relating to a payment in 2013 of £22,000 for criminal injuries.

Newcastle Crown Court has now been told that Beech admitted making and possessing indecent images of children and voyeurism at a previous hearing.

Northumbria Police was tasked with investigating the 51-year-old after the Metropolitan Police’s £2m Operation Midland ended without making a single arrest.

Officers raided his rented Gloucester home and seized electronic devices on which they found indecent images of young boys, covert images of schoolboys taken by him, and recordings.

Tony Badenoch QC, prosecuting, said: “These child sex offences were committed whilst he was speaking to investigating police officers.

“At the same time as he perpetuated these lies about Harvey Proctor and so many others, he was also viewing indecent images of the gravest kind and spying on small boys.

“He had installed on his own iPad a secret app. It was an app which looked to all and intents and purposes like a calculator. Only it wasn’t.

“Two codes were required to look at the content stored behind the calculator image.

“What was that? Indecent images of young boys of the most serious kind and a covert recording.”

Beech was prosecuted and tried to frame someone else until he pleaded guilty, after a jury had been sworn in, Badenoch said.

That took 18 months, and included the former nurse and Care Quality Commission employee fleeing the country, Badenoch added.

He said: “The evidence demonstrates that Carl Beech is a committed and manipulative paedophile, capable of deceit to investigators and limitless manipulation when required.

“The sort of individual concerned only for himself, unconcerned with the impact upon others; whether it is falsely accusing them of heinous crimes.”

“It also demonstrates that Carl Beech has an interest in child pornography.

“Not something which is learned behaviour from something which happened, but the reverse.”

After he was charged with the indecent images offences, Beech fled to Sweden, grew a lengthy beard as a “rudimentary disguise” and bought a £17,000 property in a remote forested area, jurors were told.

Badenoch said Beech “sought to evade justice”, leading to a manhunt being launched.

He received almost £60,000 from an early retirement pension from the NHS and travelled to Calais in February 2018.

Beech moved to Sweden and tried to set up a new life, taking on a new identity and moving around the country under false names, with multiple hotel stays using pre-payment cards that were hard to trace, the court heard.

But he could not evade the Swedish authorities and he was arrested on a train in Gothenburg in October, Badenoch said.

The court was played drone footage of Beech’s remote woodland property.

Earlier, the court was told Beech craved attention, made money from his claims and intended to become an international speaker on “survivors”.

Jurors also heard that Beech gave “utterly incredible” evidence to officers about how he was abused vast distances away from his childhood homes.

He lived in Bicester from 1976 to 1977, when he would have been a young boy, and moved to Kingston-upon-Thames in 1978 at around the age of ten.

Newcastle Crown Court heard that Beech said it was during these years that he was abused in a number of locations, including the Imber training groups and Larkhill Barracks, both in Wiltshire, which, jurors were told, would have been considerable distances away from where he was then living.

Prosecutors also said that a number of the locations that Beech put forward as being sites of abuse were in central London, and would have been challenging for a young boy to access.

Badenoch said: “It is utterly incredible, and it’s also untrue.”

Beech attended the Coombe Hill Primary School, Rivermead Secondary School and The Tudor School, all in Kingston-upon-Thames, during his childhood.

Prosecutors said that, despite his claims that he was taken out of school on a weekly basis to be “sadistically abused”, he was given an award for 100 per cent punctuality at The Tudor School in the spring term of 1984.

Picture: Crown Prosecution Service/PA Wire

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