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PEERS HAVE criticised the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse’s continued investigation into allegations against the late Lord Janner.
Lord Janner, who died three years ago, was accused of child sex abuse offences but was never convicted of any crime.
The ex-MP, who was also president of the Board of Deputies from 1976 to 1984, died as the inquiry was ongoing, but a series of judges had ruled he was not fit to stand trial.
In a debate in the House of Lords on Thursday, Lord CampbellSavours said the inquiry’s decision to continue a dedicated investigative strand into Lord Janner when he was not able to reply to any allegations, was an “affront to natural justice”.
He said: “The inquiry… gives credence to hearsay and allows for the presumption of guilt in the court of public opinion.”
Conservative Peer Lord Finkelstein said it was “very odd” that the inquiry had a strand dedicated to Lord Janner.
He said it should not be thought that “because he is dead, it matters less what is said about him. He has a family who loved him and his reputation matters to his family”.
Lord Janner’s family have always maintained his innocence.
His daughters, Marion Janner and Laura Janner-Klausner, Senior Rabbi to Reform Judaism, released a statement saying the “inquiry’s current approach undermines its credibility… We call on the inquiry to drop the immoral investigative strand into our father, who died an innocent man.”
Manny Waks, chief executive of Kol v’Oz, an organisation dedicated to preventing child sexual abuse in the global Jewish community, said: “Just as we can’t state unequivocally that the late Lord Janner is guilty of the serious and numerous crimes attributed to him, his family cannot possibly state as fact that he is an innocent man.
“It is understandable that Lord Janner’s family are upset, but our primary goals must be about justice and protecting current and future generations of our children.”
Our main goal must be to protect children’