Abuse specialist hails end of Jersey case

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Abuse specialist hails end of Jersey case

7th January 2011

A lawyer specialising in helping victims of abuse has welcomed the end of a years-long investigation into the abuse of children in a Jersey care home.

Mark Hatzer, a partner with Fentons Solicitors LLP, was speaking after Anthony and Morag Jordan were this week jailed for carrying out a string of assaults against vulnerable children at the Haut de la Garenne care home in Jersey in the 1970s and 1980s. Five others had previously been convicted of a number of sexual assaults, receiving prison sentences of up to 15 years.

The Jordans, who are both 62, had been found guilty in November last year of eight separate charges. This week, Morag Jordan was jailed for nine months and her husband for six months.

"The trial included accounts of how the pair had inflicted 'casual and routine violence' against the children in their care at the home," said Mark, an expert in helping victims of child abuse pursue claims for compensation. "They were employed as houseparents, but the court heard how they acted like bullies and frequently assaulted the children."

Morag Jordan was convicted of charges relating to assaults on four children, while Anthony Jordan was convicted of common assault against two children. "The court heard how one of Mrs Jordan's victims had her face pushed into urine-soaked sheets after she wet the bed," said Mark. "In Mr Jordan's case, the court was told how he had hit residents with metal utensils including a knife and a metal spoon, or with his hand."

Mrs Jordan was acquitted of a further 28 charges and Mr Jordan of four.

The pair were amongst those arrested following a three-year, multimillion-pound police investigation - Operation Rectangle - into suspected abuse at the Haut de la Garenne home. When police opened their inquiry in September 2007, they took more than 1,700 statements from 192 former child residents who identified around 150 people as abusers.

"The descriptions of abuse these vulnerable children were subjected to are abhorrent," said Mark. "The victims were in a position where they needed help and guidance, and instead were subjected to assaults which will have left them scarred, both physically and emotionally, forever."

According to Police, Operation Rectangle has now ended. A number of the victims are now bringing civil proceedings against the island's government.

How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons Solicitors LLP has a department dedicated to helping victims of child abuse pursue claims for compensation where the abuse has taken place in schools, care homes, the church or similar institutions.

If you would like to talk to one of our experts in confidence, then please contact us on 0161 684 6643 or 0161 238 6440.

READ MORE AT: Sky News, The Guardian