Dozens more claim Scouts abuse


Published: Thursday 11th December 2014 by The News Editor

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Dozens more people have come forward to claim they were victims of child abuse in the Scouts a day after the movement issued an apology.

Solicitor David McClenaghan said 30 people called his firm overnight after seeing a BBC report about two historic cases.

The UK Scout Association yesterday said it was “deeply sorry” for the hurt caused by abuse and admitted it has paid out around £500,000 in compensation to victims since October 2012.

It said there had been “inappropriate and unacceptable responses” to allegations at the time – which the broadcaster said were not reported to police – but insisted they were “extremely rare incidences”.

“We deeply regret this failure,” a spokesman said, giving a reassurance that the organisation was confident that mistakes of the past would not be repeated.

Mr McClenaghan, of Bolt Burdon Kemp which has already represented around 30 alleged victims in recent years, told BBC Radio 4’s Today: “Since the report on the abuse in the Scout Association went out yesterday, I have been contacted overnight by an additional 30 people.

“I think what that demonstrates is that the figures that have come out really are the tip of the iceberg in terms of the number of people who have suffered abuse.”

He said the apology had been issued “under intense pressure from the media”.

“It’s convenient that that has been issued now and it serves their self-interest rather than being a genuine apology to the individual people,” he said.

The Scout Association denies claims, reported by the BBC, that 56 people have instructed solicitors to sue the association over historical abuse since October 2012.

The Scouts put the number of people who have launched civil actions since that time at 36 – more than double the number during the first century of the movement’s history.

Published: Thursday 11th December 2014 by The News Editor

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