Report on alleged Bird Island paedophile ring leaked

A report by two private investigators, who are looking into allegations that former National Party ministers were involved in a paedophile ring in the 1980s, has been leaked.

News24’s sister publication Netwerk24 published details of the report on Friday.

The allegations are contained in the book The Lost Boys of Bird Island.

A private investigator, Wouter de Swardt, has reportedly found no evidence that General Magnus Malan and former minister Barend du Plessis were involved in "sex orgies with young boys".

De Swardt, who reportedly is described as having 46 years of experience as an investigator, was appointed in August 2018 together with Dr David Klatzow, a forensic scientist, by the Foundation for Human Rights to investigate the explosive allegations in the book.

Suicide

Lost Boys of Bird Island was co-written by former policeman Mark Minnie and investigative reporter Chris Steyn.

Minnie's body was found with a single gunshot wound to the head on a smallholding near Port Elizabeth in August last year. Klatzow ruled it a suicide.

In the book it is alleged that Malan, formerly a minister of defence as well as former environmental affairs minister John Wiley and a third unnamed minister, who was later named as Du Plessis, were allegedly involved in sex crimes involving young boys during fishing trips to Bird Island just off the coast of PE, Daily Maverick reported.

The book links them to David Allen who was a well-known and wealthy businessman and police reservist in PE. Wiley and Allen both committed suicide in 1987.

Allen reportedly shot himself shortly before he was due to appear in court on charges of a sexual nature. At the time he had been arrested by Minnie.

"There is no doubt that there was in fact a paedophile-ring operating in the Port Elizabeth area, with Dave Allen as the ringleader. But there is no proof the politicians named or insinuated to in the book, except for Wiley, were involved in the paedophile ring operated in the Port Elizabeth area in the 1980s," De Swardt's report reportedly reads.

No links

According to Netwerk24, De Swardt also stated that there was no concrete evidence linking Wiley to paedophilia. His finding on Wiley is reportedly based on information he obtained during his investigation, particularly a discussion he held with a person named "William Hart" in the book. Hart's real name is being withheld on legal advice.

Reportedly, De Swardt also could not find any evidence to support Steyn's claims that Minnie was killed or forced to shoot himself. TimesLIVE reported that a preliminary investigation by the police had also established that Minnie's death was a suicide. 

Steyn reportedly maintains that a forensic investigator reached an inconclusive finding relating to Minnie's cause of death. She said she was prepared to accept a finding of suicide but maintained there is a possibility he was forced to kill himself, according to Netwerk24.

Previously, Daily Maverick reported that Brigadier Sonja Harri, the head of the Western Cape Family Violence Unit, was leading the investigation that was reopened following the publication of the book.