Abuse at Kirklevington Detention Centre


October 16, 2017 | By Rob Casey |

October 16, 2017 | By Rob Casey |

Cleveland Police, who have been investigating a large number of allegations relating to physical and sexual abuse at Kirklevington Detention Centre, have now confirmed that a case file has been sent to the Crown Prosecution Service for consideration.

Under the name “Operation Magnolia” the police have received over 400 complaints of abuse from ex-inmates who say they were abused by staff at the Detention Centre in Yarm, North Yorkshire, previously run by the Home Office and now the responsibility of the Ministry of Justice. The allegations relate to both physical and sexual abuse which is said to have occurred from the 1960s until the time the centre became an adult resettlement prison in 1992. During this time the Centre housed youths who had received short custodial sentences of up to approximately 4 months. For a number of years the “short, sharp, shock” policy was in operation. Now a large number of ex-inmates have contacted the police to say that they were the victims of physical and in some cases sexual abuse committed by ex-detention centre officers.

Two ex-officers have been arrested and interviewed as part of the police investigation. The Crown Prosecution Service will consider the evidence gathered to decide whether any criminal charges should follow. The Ministry of Justice has previously encouraged anyone who was abused at the centre to contact the police so that their complaint can be fully investigated.

Medomsley Detention Centre: Operation Seabrook

Another large-scale police investigation is under way in relation to another Detention Centre, Medomsley, which was in Consett in Durham. There, the investigation team from Durham police, working under the name “Operation Seabrook”, have received over 1,400 complaints of abuse and again an extensive file is with the Crown Prosecution Service lawyers so that a decision can be taken on charges.

If you have been the victim of abuse at either of these centres and have not yet done so, you should contact the police on their ‘101’ number and ask to speak to the relevant investigation team.

Switalskis Solicitors represent a large number of ex-inmates who were detained at either Kirklevington or Medomsley. We have a team of specialist lawyers who have extensive experience in dealing with civil claims for compensation arising out of abuse in custodial establishments.

Switalskis Child Abuse team is headed by David Greenwood with Rob Casey and Caroline Chandler being responsible for these cases. They can be contacted for a private telephone consultation on 01924 882000 or call the team directly on their free phone number: 0800 138 4700.

Rob Casey

Rob is a Solicitor Advocate within our Child Care Law team in Wakefield, and is a Director of Switalskis. Rob's profile

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