FORMER Scarborough mayor Peter Jaconelli is set to be stripped of his civic honours after police revealed he would be interviewed under caution over alleged child sex offences if he were still alive.
North Yorkshire Police said last night a file would have been handed over to prosecutors about the ice cream entrepreneur and friend of disgraced DJ Jimmy Savile because of evidence detectives have received from several witnesses.
Scarborough Council leader Tom Fox said last month that he would strip Jaconelli, who died in 1999 at the age of 73, of his civic honours if child sex abuse allegations were proven.
And in a statement released today, he said was speaking to councillors “with a view to bringing forward a motion at the next full council meeting for a permanent resolution in respect of his Alderman status and certain other matters”.
Mr Fox said: “Now the police have stated that if Peter Jaconelli was alive today he would have been interviewed under caution – a criminal interview – and a file submitted to the Crown Prosecution Service which is the ultimate decision-maker for taking people to court, I am confident to say that this leaves me in no doubt that the evidence relied on comes from victims who are creditable, truthful and most reliable.”
North Yorkshire Police also said last night it had referred itself to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) over the way it recorded and responded to child sex abuse allegations made about Savile and Jaconelli. The allegation about Savile, who was given the freedom of the seaside resort, was made over a decade ago while several allegations were said to have been made “recently” about Jaconelli.
The referral also relates to whether information North Yorkshire Police held about Savile or his known associates was properly disclosed to Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary, when asked to do so along with other forces in 2012, and the IPCC, in May last year.
Chief Constable Dave Jones said he ordered a review of the force’s systems to check if information on offending by Savile, Jaconelli or “their known associates and friends” had been recorded.
He added: “As a result of this review, I have referred the matter to the IPCC for their consideration.”
Speaking about the referral, Mr Fox said: “This is a mature and responsible action and hopefully will grow public confidence in how matters have been dealt with.”
In a separate statement released today, Julia Mulligan, North Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “After identifying a number of issues, voluntarily referring the case to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) was the right thing to do.
“I am confident that, having ordered an external peer review of North Yorkshire Police’s processes, the Chief Constable has acted promptly and robustly on receiving the interim findings from that report. We must now wait for the IPCC to determine what happens next.
“In the meantime, on behalf of the public and victims, I want to reiterate our commitment to ensuring they receive the best possible service. The issues raised centre around historical allegations and internal processes.
“I am confident that the force is dealing with them and they continue to provide an excellent service to the public and victims on a daily basis.”