Tuesday, February 27, 2024


 Broken is the autobiography of Shy Keenan, whose courage and persistence eventually led to the arrest of a ring of pedophiles in Merseyside, at whose hands she suffered inhumanly from the age of 4, one of the perpetrators being her own stepfather. I think most people reading the book are shocked not only by the cruelty but that the authorities did nothing to rescue the child victims, even in the face of overwhelming physical evidence and witness testimony. I realize it is difficult for most sane people to comprehend such evil, yet in this case to ignore the evidence was absolutely criminal. It is also horrific that pictures of the victims being abused, particularly of the author herself, are still circulating on the internet, giving enjoyment to another generation of perverts. From an old article in The Guardian:

Sexually abused from the age of four, sold to paedophiles for £15, Shy Keenan has managed to turn the tables, testifying against her abusers and building a new life as mother and children's campaigner. Here, she explains how she was saved by a 'tiny ray of light.'
Shy Keenan's book, Broken, opens with the line, 'Hello, my name is Shy Keenan. I was born and broken in Birkenhead, and was abused from infancy by a network of every kind of pervert from 'thinks it's love' to 'show it hurts', all the way through to 'smile for the camera'. In the next sentence she tells us that she was beaten, sold, swapped, photographed, filmed, left for dead, betrayed, ignored and then 'booted into adulthood' and deserted.

It is Shy the adult I am to see today, more than 40 years later, given that the rape and abuse by her stepfather, Stanley Claridge, began when she was four. He adopted Shy and her two sisters when Shy was six and soon for Shy, who tried whenever possible to take her younger sister's 'turn' with Claridge, almost every basic human need - food, drink, sleep, clothes - came at a sexual price. Outside the house, she was sold to other paedophiles for fags and booze. The most Claridge ever got for hauling her out of bed in the middle of the night and dropping her off in a strange man's house was £15. As she writes: 'I hated what the faces were doing to me, it hurt so much. I couldn't physically stop them. I tried struggling, I tried screaming, I tried to run away, but nothing I knew of worked. Once I'd tried all that, I would just close my eyes and cry, but even that didn't help: it just made some of the faces angrier, open my eyes and look at the paranoid cammer [sic], yelling at me for spoiling their pictures.'

It seems amazing to me that Shy Keenan is not dead. How can the soul survive such manipulation, betrayal and depravity? She did almost die, sometimes from the violence of the abuse, but also from the compulsion to end it all herself. When she was a teenager, for example, she was talked down from a Liverpool tower block clutching a suicide note reading 'Dear Sir/Madmen, F ...k off and leave me alone.' (Years later, in a horrible mirror of this event, another of Claridge's new generation of victims, a young man, committed suicide by throwing himself off a bridge).

But somehow Shy Keenan survived. She is 45 years old now, with a husband and a family, although I have no idea who they are, how old they are, how many of them there are, or what they do. This is because Shy will not speak or write of them at all for fear of losing them to the paedophile community, which she meets head-on with her campaigning child-protection website Phoenix Survivors. She set it up with Sara Payne, the mother of Sarah Payne, murdered in 2000, to lobby for better care and support for what she calls 'her kind'. Only days before, she'd been up in London having a meeting with Jacqui Smith, the home secretary, about the funding of a special retreat for those who might otherwise be failed by the system. (Read more.)

More HERE, HERE, and HERE.


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