Investigation into Bedfordshire Police launched over Ian Watkins abuse allegations

Ian Watkins sentenced yesterday (December 18) to 35 years in prison for child sex offences

Ian Watkins sentenced yesterday (December 18) to 35 years in prison for child sex offences - Credit: Archant

An investigation into how Bedfordshire Police handled allegations that jailed Lostphrophets singer Ian Watkins was abusing children has been launched.

Watkins, 36, from Pontypridd in Wales, was jailed yesterday (Wednesday) for 29 years with a further six years on license after he pleaded guilty to 13 child sex offences including attempted rape of a baby.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is looking into the handling of an allegation of child abuse by the force against Watkins in October 2012.

The complaint was investigated by the police’s Professional Standards Department in September 2013 but it found no action was necessary.

However, the body then received a further complaint by the alleged victim who was dissatisfied with the outcome.

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A spokesman for Bedfordshire Police confirmed that the force had received a complaint from a member of the public after they had reported a suspected incident of child abuse.

The police investigated the complaint but found that there was insufficient evidence to apply for a warrant and a medical examination of the child did not reveal an evidence of abuse.

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A police spokesman said: “As part of the wider investigation, Bedfordshire Police voluntary referred the complaint to the IPCC on December 4, 2013. The IPCC are now investigating the complaint.”

Jan Williams, IPCC commissioner, said: “No one can fail to be shocked by the vile details of Ian Watkins offending that emerged in court last month.

“As the criminal proceedings have now ended, questions are now rightly being asked as to whether Ian Watkins could have been brought to justice sooner, what steps were taken by police in response to allegations made against him as far back as 2008 and whether his celebrity status had any impact on the investigation.”

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