Wednesday, October 12, 2022

A new article on Brian Eley, the only British chess champion to appear on Crimewatch

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Fiona Pitt-Keithley has written a new article about Brian Eley, the former British Chess Champion who skipped bail in 1991 while charged with sexual offences against boys. 

He died in Amsterdam in April, having kept one step ahead of the authorities for over 30 years, even if the life he led there doesn't sound much fun.

Pitt-Keithley sets out what is known or suspected about Eley and concludes:

This is a long story though I still cannot find out all the facts. But there are substantial rumours. His victims are said to include one extremely famous British chess player as well as many others well enough known on the chess circuit. If only half of these rumours are true, there are probably more than a hundred victims.

I might have written it off as police incompetence that he was not picked up the couple of times a policeman gave his exact location to Crimestoppers or when Stuart Conquest also attempted to report it to the Dutch police. But there is the strange matter of Eley’s picture being taken off the Interpol site, something neither South Yorks police or Interpol are prepared to explain. ...

Nobody else wanted to write this story which is why I am putting it out here. I would like to ask a favour of his many victims. Go to the police. Tell them what happened to you if you haven’t done so already. Put it all on record. Let the police and the ECF [English Chess Federation] and perhaps eventually the general public find the size of this story. For those who have made witness statements already ask South Yorks police about the case. You as victims may have some right to info that I do not have as a mere journalist. 

I will also ask a politician to look into the situation of why the police did not pick him up and why his name was taken off the Interpol Wanted list. It is important that other paedophiles are not given a free pass just because they have been useful in other matters to the authorities. Their victims deserve better.


Frank Little said...

Before Crimewatch, there was the failed Ritson Morry libel charge. (Criminal libel was abolished by the first Blair government, if I recall correctly.)

Frank Little said...

There are suggestions that Eley has done a Reggie Perrin".

Jonathan Calder said...

I saw Ritson Morry once. He looked exactly like Winston Churchill.

Jonathan Calder said...

The theory that Eley isn't really dead dates from the summer. Later, more information appeared, and you don't find such suggestions now.

Anonymous said...

It's not that we don't believe he's dead, it's just that so far it's only ever been reported on findagrave, which is basically the wikipedia of grave sites that anyone can edit. Neither the chess press nor the mainstream press have reported his death.