On 25 July 2016 the trial started of former Church Minister George Granville Gibson at Durham Crown Court. He is accused of eight charges of indecent assault against two men dating back to the 1970s and 1980s.
The charges against Gibson arose from Durham Constabulary’s Operation Seabrook; an investigation into Medomsley Detention Centre. One of the charges against Gibson relates to an alleged indecent assault during a visit to an inmate at Medomsley Detention Centre.
Operation Seabrook is one of the UK’s biggest investigations into non-recent sex abuse. No charges have yet been brought against any other individuals. Papers however have been sent to the Crown Prosecution Service for decisions to be taken on whether former staff will be prosecuted. A significant number of former staff have been interviewed about the allegations of abuse made. It is expected the Crown Prosecution Service will make a decision by the end of 2016 on whether any former staff will be charged and if so who. If charges are brought it is expected a criminal trial will take place by the end of 2017.
Over one thousand three hundred survivors of abuse at Medomsley Detention Centre have reported the abuse they suffered to Durham Constabulary. Ben Hoare Bell is acting for over three hundred and fifty clients claiming compensation arising from the abuse. Unfortunately it is unlikely that real progress can be made on the majority of these claims until the conclusion of the criminal proceedings.