The allegations of historical child sex abuse made by Esther Baker were always going to be a ‘big challenge for Staffordshire Police‘ to investigate, to quote David Hencke‘s own words. David, of course, is the once respectable Guardian journalist who now glories in the title of ‘investigative reporter for Exaro’. He was awarded the prestigious label of ‘political journalist of the year’ in 2012, but that was for his exemplary investigation into tax evasion rather than anything to do with the historical sex abuse stories with which Exaro has latterly become synonymous.
Esther Baker burst onto our screens in May of this year – at 11.30am, 2.30pm, 4.30pm, 8.30pm ad nauseum….Sky TV simply couldn’t get enough of their ‘Exaro’ exclusive. As is the way of modern reporting, the mere repeating of an allegation was treated as fact that these events occurred – with no demurring. Not the slightest hint of caution.
Among Esther many allegations, of Lord and Ladies and policeman holding her down on the forest floor, was one allegation in particular. That one of those abusing her was a ‘still alive’ genuine VIP politician. A rare beast indeed. Even amongst such rare beasts – one with a pulse – this one was even more identifiable, in that he was a ‘senior Lib-Dem’ politician. Not many of those around.
Said politician duly denied the claims, well, ‘he would wouldn’t he’, as Mandy Rice-Davies once said, and most of us moved on with our lives. Something about that claim stuck with me, more so when I read David Hencke’s curiously cautious article on the subject – it bore none of the confident bragging of Exaro’s article on the same subject that was also by David but ‘co-written’ with Mark Watts, Editor of Exaro.
Phrases like ‘What it suggests’ and ‘ [Esther] has until recently not been certain’ made me wonder if David was not quite as convinced by this exotic allegation as others might have been…or wanted to be.
Then somebody with more time on their hands than I, sent me a print out of every Tweet that Esther Baker, @Esther9982, as she likes to be known, has ever made. You have to understand what a monumental undertaking that is – the woman is indefatigable, ‘tweeting’ morning, noon and night. It runs to several pages. I am grateful to my dedicated friend though, for amongst the twittery dross, there are some gems. Gems that have subsequently been removed.
Take this one, for instance, back in January:
Never met a politician in her life? How could that be? Four months later she was claiming to have been raped by, I don’t know, dozens of them?
That very same day – January 20th 2015 – there she was, chatting to David Hencke, telling him that she ‘didn’t care about politics’. During that conversation, she also vouchsafed, yet again – never ‘met a politician in my life’.
No wonder David’s blog post was so cautious – there was Exaro’s prime witness telling him – and the world – that she had never met a politician – yet a brief four months later he was expected to run with a story that she had been raped by an instantly recognisable politician – for several years!
Ms Baker described the political figure as: “One of the core members. He was there quite often – I was one of his favourites.
Perhaps David has forgotten these exchanges, an easy mistake to make, particularly since Esther has taken the precaution of deleting it from her Twitter feed.*
There is a lot more in this package of evidence of Esther’s veracity, but that is quite enough for one day…
*Correction it is still there….!