January 2002

Officers hailed over notorious child abuse case

Three commended for investigations into offences at naturist club more than 20 years ago.

Three Bedford police officers who helped crack a notorious child abuse case at a naturist club have received awards for their work.

DS Ged McCarthy, DC Alan Bellingham and DC Colin Richardson were commended by Chief Constable Paul Hancock for their investigation into crimes at Riseley s Blackthorns Sun Club more than 20 years ago.

Mondays ceremony heard the Greyfriars-based Family Protection Team became involved in September 1999 when a man disclosed to Devon and Cornwall probation service he was sexually abused as a child in the 1970s.

Mr Hancock applauded the officers for their professional and sympathetic attitude and the way they traced the offenders and found other victims. Two statements compiled by DC Richardson, who is due to pick up his certificate at a later date, ran to over 100 pages.

And an operation planned by DS McCarthy and DC Bellingham led to four arrests and a large amount of obscene material recovered.

Among those jailed was former club chairman Alan Ross-Duff, 62, who got nine years for sexually abusing teenage boys.

He was found guilty of 11 charges of buggery, 15 of indecent assault and one of aiding and abetting buggery. One victim said he was sexually abused more than 500 times and was Ross Duff s weekend sex toy.

Judge Rodwell described Ross-Duff as “the most voracious and predatory paedophile” he had ever dealt with.

Fellow naturist Raymond Baggerley, 80, of Queen Street, Bedford, was jailed for 18 months. He was convicted of three charges charges of buggery.