Thursday 18 January 2018

Peaches faces probe for naming abuse-case mums

Peaches Geldof who may face a criminal investigation.
Peaches Geldof who may face a criminal investigation.
Rock singer Ian Watkins pleaded guilty to a string of sex offences, including the attempted rape of a baby

Jamie Grierson

PEACHES Geldof could face a criminal investigation after she named two women who allowed their babies to be abused by disgraced rock star Ian Watkins.

The daughter of Boomtown Rats star Bob Geldof posted the names of two women involved in the case on Twitter, after reportedly reading them on a US-based website -- but has since removed them.

Lostprophets singer Watkins was branded a "determined and committed paedophile" after he pleaded guilty on Tuesday to a string of sex offences, including the attempted rape of a baby.

The 36-year-old, from Pontypridd, south Wales, plotted the abuse with two mothers in a series of text and internet messages.

ANONYMITY

The Attorney General's Office has warned that sex offence victims have automatic lifetime anonymity and publishing details that can lead to their identification is a criminal offence.

A spokeswoman for the Attorney General's Office said: "We understand that the names of the co-defendants in the Ian Watkins case were posted online but have now been removed.

"As has been previously reported, the co-defendants were the mothers of the victims. Victims of sexual offences have automatic lifetime anonymity and the publication of names or information which can lead to their being identified is a criminal offence. This is a police matter."

A spokeswoman for South Wales Police said the force was preparing a statement on the matter.

Geldof (24), who has more than 160,000 followers on Twitter, has worked as a journalist, writing columns for 'The Daily Telegraph', 'Elle Girl' and articles for 'The Guardian'.

Earlier this week, a man who tweeted images purporting to be of James Bulger's killer, Jon Venables, as an adult was given a 14-month suspended prison sentence for contempt of court.

Watkins pleaded guilty to offences he had previously denied, in a last-minute change of plea ahead of what would have been his trial at Cardiff Crown Court.

The charges included sexually touching a one-year-old and encouraging a crazed groupie to abuse her own child during a sordid webcam chat. Watkins also admitted possessing and making child porn as well as launching the plot to rape a baby.

Meanwhile, singer Ian H Watkins, formerly a member of chart-topping group Steps, was said to be "deeply upset" after he was mistaken for the Lostprophets frontman.

UPSET

His picture was accidentally used to illustrate a story about the case.

Website 'E! Online' went on to apologise and replaced the picture with the correct image, however, the Steps singer's agent said: "Ian is deeply upset at being linked by E! online to these awful allegations. This is an extremely serious and damaging mistake to have made and this matter been referred to our lawyers."

Irish Independent

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