Trial of Patrick Rock

P. Curran made this Freedom of Information request to Cabinet Office

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Cabinet Office did not have the information requested.

Dear Cabinet Office,

I am seeking information on Patrick Rock, a former senior aide to David Cameron, who appeared in court over child abuse images.

According to this Guardian report of Friday 19 December 2014 12.40 GMT, he was ' bailed to return to Southwark crown court for a pre-trial hearing on 27 February 2015':
http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/...

Since then there has been no news whatsoever. What has happened to Mr. Rock please? Has he had his pre-trial hearing yet? And if so where and when?

Yours faithfully,

Thankyou.

P. Curran

P.S. I note the NCA has the following: http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/ne...

FOI Team Mailbox, Cabinet Office

CABINET OFFICE REFERENCE:  FOI321173

Dear P CURRAN

Thank you for your request for information. Your request was received
on 2/6/2015 and is being dealt with under the terms of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000.

This email is just a short acknowledgement of your request.

If you have any queries about this email, please contact the FOI team.
Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future
communications.

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Knowledge and Information Management Unit

Cabinet Office

E: [1][email address]

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Cabinet Office request email]

FOI Team Mailbox, Cabinet Office

1 Attachment

Please find attached the reply to your recent FOI request

 

 

 

Regards

 

 

FOI Team

1 Horse Guards Road

London

SW1A 2HQ

 

Email – [1][email address]

 

 

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[Cabinet Office request email]

P. Curran left an annotation ()

This is the reply: "I am writing to advise you that fol owing a search of our paper and electronic records, I
have established that the information you requested is not held by the Cabinet Office."

Dear Cabinet Office / FOI Team Mailbox,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Cabinet Office's handling of my FOI request 'Trial of Patrick Rock'.

Many thanks for this reply, but if you read my original question, this is not what I asked.

I asked: "What has happened to Mr. Rock please? Has he had his pre-trial hearing yet? And if so where and when?

I did NOT ask whether the information was held on your paper or electronic records.

I would also draw your attention to the following:

Guardian: Possible Cabinet Office cover up re: Cyril Smith child abuse allegations: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015...

Same story from the Mail: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-.... Indeed, from the article: "Downing Street cynically tried to prevent the release of damaging files exposing the scale of the cover-up over paedophile MP Cyril Smith.
The Cabinet Office repeatedly blocked The Mail on Sunday’s attempts to see the bombshell documents – and caved in only after being threatened with High Court action."

Same story from Sky: https://www.newstalk.com/Thatcher-knew-o.... From the story:
"He [Simon Danczuk] added: "(The Cabinet Office) have resisted publishing these documents for over 12 months - that's not acceptable. They refused to tell the public who
nominated Cyril Smith for a knighthood. A journalist managed to get that out of them after going to the Information Commissioner. It was indeed David Steel.
And we now know they are resisting publishing at least four other files relating to historic child sexual abuse. We have to ask the question is the Cabinet Office fit for purpose?"

Private Eye story on Cabinet Office cover-up: https://twitter.com/privateeyenews/statu...

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/w...

So, given Mr Patrick Robert John Rock was deputy head of David Cameron's policy unit at the time of his arrest and has known him since the late 1990s (http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-28054433 / http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics...), I would be extremely grateful if you cold please tell me about the trial / pre-trial hearings of Patrick Rock, supposedly held at Southwark Crown Court , case number T20140498 (not whether the information is stored on your paper or electronic records) .

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/t...

Yours faithfully,

P. Curran

FOI Team Mailbox, Cabinet Office

CABINET OFFICE REFERENCE:  IR321173

Dear P CURRAN

Thank you for your request for an internal review. Your request was
received on 17/6/2015 and is being dealt with under the terms of the
Freedom of Information Act 2000.

This email is just a short acknowledgement of your request.

If you have any queries about this email, please contact the FOI team.
Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future
communications.

Yours sincerely,

Knowledge and Information Management Unit

Cabinet Office

E: [1][email address]

 

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]

Dear FOI Team Mailbox,

In your earlier reply you said you searched your paper and electronic records. Er, in the light of the following Guardian report, just how well did you search them please?

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015...

"As the authors of the review said they were “concerned and disappointed”, it emerged that the unreleased files also concern figures including Margaret Thatcher’s parliamentary private secretary, the late Sir Peter Morrison, former diplomat Sir Peter Hayman and former minister Sir William van Straubenzee."

And now Patrick Rock. Dear me.

Yours sincerely,

P. Curran

Dear FOI Team Mailbox,

And now we have this from the BBC: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-3369... - 'Cabinet Office Delays over Freedom of Information'.

>>"The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has disclosed that the number of Cabinet Office delay cases which were not previously reported amounted to 90 in the two years 2013/4 and 2014/5. That's more than three times the comparable figure of 29 in the previous two years."<<

>>"This is on top of the smaller number of investigations which have led to the ICO publicly issuing formal decision notices."<<

>>"It is the latest evidence of the historically poor track record of the Cabinet Office, which has twice been subject to special monitoring by the ICO due to its inadequate performance on processing FOI applications. It's possible that the Cabinet Office may now face this for a third time."<<

>>"In the last two months or so we've issued six decision notices against the Cabinet Office for exceeding the statutory time limit - it's not a good record," says Graham Smith, the deputy information commissioner.
As well as obtaining direct control over freedom of information policy, the Cabinet Office has also taken over the "clearing house" from the Ministry of Justice. This is the team of officials who advise other government departments on how to handle sensitive FOI cases."<<

>>"The Cabinet Office should be setting a good example to the rest of Whitehall," Smith adds. "You would hope that they would want to be an exemplar".<<

Yours sincerely,

P. Curran

FOI Team Mailbox, Cabinet Office

1 Attachment

Please find attached the reply to your recent internal review request

 

 

 

Regards

 

 

FOI Team

1 Horse Guards Road

London

SW1A 2HQ

 

Email – [1][email address]

 

References

Visible links
1. mailto:[email address]

P. Curran left an annotation ()

Their reply:

REVIEW OF REQUEST UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000
Cabinet Office Internal Review Reference: IR 321173
(Original Case Reference: Fol 321173)
Thank you for your email of 17 June 2015. You asked for an internal review of our response to
your request for information of 8 June 2015. In your request you asked for information about the
trial of Patrick Rock.
It may be helpful if I start by explaining that the Freedom of Information Act provides a right of
access, subject to exemptions, to information held in a recorded format by a public authority.
Public authorities are specifically scheduled under the Act and the Cabinet Office (including No1 O
Downing Street) is one of those scheduled authorities. Each government department and agency
is separately listed under the Act.
As such, the Cabinet Office can only respond in terms of information we hold in a recorded format.
I have reviewed your request and have concluded that the Cabinet Office does not hold any
recorded information, which would answer your question. I recognise your interest in this case but
I regret that we do not hold the information to be able to answer your question.
The substance of your request is a matter for the criminal justice system, which is outside the remit
of the Cabinet Office. The only advice and assistance I am able to offer is to suggest that you write
to the Crown Prosecution Service or Her Majesty's Court Service. I should also explain that even if
they hold any information in a recorded format in scope of your request, one or more exemptions
under the Act might apply.
If you are unhappy with the handling of your request for information you, have the right to apply
directly to the Information Commissioner for a decision. The Information Commissioner can be
contacted at:
Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

P. Curran left an annotation ()

Well, no thanks to you I've managed to find out that our good friend, Mr. Patrick Robert John Rock de Besombes will be appearing at Southwark Crown Court for legal argument on Friday, 16th of October 2015

Why not pop along and take some notes, you might then be able to supply information to those of us who ask.

And since you genuinely appear to know nothing about this matter, a few links for your attention. Please read them, you might learn something:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-2643...

Paul Chapman left an annotation ()

What an interesting read this is. How to avoid giving out any information by clouding the issue, diverting the issue and point blank admitting that they don't know.

Also strange that this case is nearly 18 months old already and still hasn't managed to get to court.

Mark Fitch left an annotation ()

Patrick Rock pleaded not guilty to seven counts of making indecent photographs of child. His case is on the 31/05/2016 I will expect a full witch hunt as the media did with Paul Gadd, aka Garry Glitter. It will be interesting to see what coverage, if any, the media will make.

Paul Chapman left an annotation ()

I think we can all see which way this will go. Discreetly forgotten, swept under the carpet with some sad comment like "Let's draw a line under this and move on", much the way Cameron did with that thief Maria Miller, who stole £50k but only had to repay £5k.

"We're all in this pig trough together".

P. Curran left an annotation ()

First off, many thanks to everyone who contacted me re: Mr. Patrick Robert John Rock de Besombes, Case Number T20140498 with your messages of advice / support etc. I appreciate it.

Also, for everyone's information, Exaro have said: "Judge Alistair McCreath, sitting at Southwark crown court, granted Patrick Rock bail until trial date in May. Normal reporting restrictions."

https://twitter.com/exaronews/status/655...

I'll post the actual date if / when I find it. Of course, if anyone else knows it, feel free to add it.

Thank you.

P. Curran left an annotation ()

Dear me, it appears one Sebastian Crump was done for child pron too: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...

It says: "Former Cabinet Office digital expert amassed images while working as digital communications manager advising Government on its own website."

And: "Received promotion at Cabinet Office while he was being investigated."

You really couldn't make this up could you. And they had 'no information on Mr. Patrick Robert John Rock de Besombes, Case Number T20140498 (who I now understand is to be tried at Southwark on Tuesday, 31st May 2016, not Monday 30th).

Let's see if it's covered:

https://courttribunalfinder.service.gov....

http://www.thelawpages.com/court-hearing...

http://xhibit.justice.gov.uk/xhibit/sout...

https://twitter.com/cSouthwark?ref_src=t...

Nick Brooke left an annotation ()

Did we miss his day in court at 08:40 am on 26 May 2016?
https://twitter.com/cSouthwark/status/73...

Nick Brooke left an annotation ()

Ah, apparently not. Exaro News reports that that was a short hearing to confirm that a one-day trial (est.) is going ahead on Tuesday 31 May.
https://twitter.com/ExaroNews/status/735...

P. Curran left an annotation ()

Well, would you believe it!
"Cameron Aide Given Short Child Porn Sentence After Judge Error."

https://www.londonnewsonline.co.uk/15868...

Thank Goodness we're still all in it together. And there's certainly no 'one rule for them, one for us' mentality in these 'taking back control, anti-establishment' times we're now apparently living.

>>"A former aide to David Cameron who was convicted for possessing child porn was given a sentence less than half of what it should have been – because of a judge’s mistake.

Patrick Rock, from Fulham, was given a two-year conditional discharge after downloading indecent images of scantily-clad girls in sexual poses – some as young as 10 – in June last year."<<