Myra Ling-Ling Forde And Edward Heath

Two days ago I caught a piece on the BBC news channel.  In this update on the growing accusations against former PM Ted Heath it was mentioned that a brothel owner may have escaped conviction in the early 1990’s because she had threatened to reveal what she knew about him,

It was also noted that she was successfully convicted in 1995 for running a brothel in Salisbury, where Heath lived.

So I jumped straight on Google.

The only reference I could find from multiple searches such as brothel +salisbury +1995 was this piece from the Scottish Herald.  From that I got her name, one of only two search results that mention that name.

What struck me was that there was no trail of internet rumour, no innuendo, linking this woman to Heath.  In three years of using the internet to research supplementary information relating to the child abuse scandal this was a first.  That in itself sets this apart from things like the Scallywag rumours, and of course Savile rumours.

This is new information.

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 Something Does Not Add Up About Ms Forde

Within an hour of searching, several papers (I believe the Telegraph was the first) began running stories naming Myra Ling-Ling Forde.

If the Telegraph ran the first story then it is ironic, considering the position taken by clickbait aficionado Dan Hodges yesterday.

In the article her sister was quoted as saying:

“I know what she did in Salisbury and she knew a lot of politicians and celebrities because of it.”

Yet, within hours, Ms Forde had released a statement via her solicitor that completely contradicted her sisters lurid claims:

“My firm acted for Myra Forde in relation to the case which the prosecution discontinued on the day of the trial and which has been the subject of a great deal of speculation.

“My former client wishes me to make it very clear that at no stage did she state that Ted Heath was a client and at no stage did she threaten to expose him as a client of hers if the prosecution was continued.

“For the avoidance of any doubt Myra Forde wishes me to make it clear that she had no involvement with Ted Heath of any kind and has no knowledge of any misconduct on his part.

“It is my recollection assisted by discussion with my colleague who was at Winchester Crown Court on the day the case was discontinued and by the barrister we instructed to represent Myra Forde, that the prosecution had witness problems.

“In particular it may have been the case that one of the witnesses was at court in the cells and perhaps therefore not best inclined to assist the prosecution.

“The prosecution took what at the time seemed a sensible decision that they could not prove their case and offered no evidence.

“This decision would have been announced in open court and would be a matter of record.”

Now of course Myra Forde could have told her sister a load of porky-pies over the years, but that aside, it strikes me a extremely odd that her sister confidently states Ms Forde knows politicians and celebrities through her position as a Madam, yet hours later Ms Forde releases a statement denying everything.
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What The Solicitor Said…

Forde’s solicitor Richard Griffiths made it clear in the statement released that the case was stopped because:

“It is my recollection assisted by discussion with my colleague who was at Winchester Crown Court on the day the case was discontinued and by the barrister we instructed to represent Myra Forde, that the prosecution had witness problems.

In particular it may have been the case that one of the witnesses was at court in the cells and perhaps therefore not best inclined to assist the prosecution.

“The prosecution took what at the time seemed a sensible decision that they could not prove their case and offered no evidence.”

This all sounds perfectly believable, and I am sure that the records surrounding the case will reveal this to be the case. But it has little value in terms of clearing up whether Ms Forde knew Ted Heath, or the possibility that the trial was stopped because she threatened to expose him.

Firstly, the witness problems could be down to them being “got at”.  Now I know that people will see that as “tinfoil hat” and dismiss it, and to be fair they are probably right.  But knowing what we do now about corruption in our system, I certainly would not rule it out.

Secondly, Ms Forde would not have threatened to expose him in court and nothing related to it would be on the record. That would have been done through conversations between defence and prosecution off the record.  Horse-trading goes on all the time behind the scenes and it would be naive to dismiss it as a possibility.

And why release such a long statement at all?

If she doesn’t know Heath, then why not just say it?  “I have never met Ted Heath.”  That would shut it down for good.

But she didn’t say she has never met Ted Heath.  She said he had never been a client.  A client of who though?

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Shake Your Money Maker

Ms Forde has openly admitted to having financial problems in the past.  She is also evidently free of the morals that stop most of us from grooming young kids and then making money from them as child prostitutes.

So why has she passed up the chance of her biggest ever payday by issuing a denial?

Put yourself in her shoes (thigh length boots?).

Even if she has never met Heath, the Sunday rags will pay her a big old lump of cash for any story she tells now. I’d be singing like a canary to get that cash wouldn’t you?

Yet rather than play the game and make some cash, she has leapt into instant denial through an official channel.  Not a door-stepping denial, but a denial through the solicitors firm who represented her 20 years ago in a different part of the country, a solicitor it appears who also has a photographic memory. He was not in court and yet he remembers significant details surrounding what would be one of hundreds he has dealt with in the past twenty odd years.

If she want’s to be left alone, well it’s a bit late for that.  The media frenzy is global now.  So why not cash in?  Has she suddenly developed the morals she lacked for the rest of her life?

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Can You Smell The Smoke?

There is definitely not a raging fire burning around Ted Heath yet.

But to dismiss the Heath accusations out of hand in the way people like Dan Hodges have done strikes me as odd after everything we have learnt in the past three years.

The Myra Forde situation is odd and anyone with an open mind can see that.

No history of rumours online, Story breaks, Sister says she knows stuff, Myra says she doesn’t through solicitor from 20 years ago that also cuts off her chance of a payout, but statement does not explicitly state she has never met Ted Heath.

Odd.  Odd.  Odd.

And what of the ex-copper who went to the IPCC months ago to tell them that the trial had been stopped because Forde was protected?

That person has not broken cover and rather than cashing in, or going public, it appears they have quietly gone to the IPCC.

Doesn’t that strike you as the action of someone with integrity who is pretty convinced they are right?

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UPDATE:

Even more curiously, a judge, who was the prosecuting counsel in the aborted 1992 Myra Forde trial has written a letter to the Times:

“He said he had been told by police that the large number of reporters at the court that day were there because Forde, who had been on bail, had said she would allege she had provided rent boys for Sir Edward, should the case proceed.”

How did all those reporters hear that a small-time Madam, in a sordid little trial taking place before the internet could spread information rapidly, was going to expose Ted Heath?

And the police seemed happy enough to share that information didn’t they?  How did they know this information yet the prosecuting counsel did not?  Once a case is in court do the police have the freedom to wander in and chat with the defendant? Or did they know prior to the court date, and if so why didn’t they bother telling the prosecution until everyone was in court?

It also raises concerns about the statement released by Ms Forde’s solicitor.  Mr Griffith’s apparently has a clear memory of how his colleague at the court told him why the trial was stopped, but he seems to have forgotten that the conversation would have included that rather bizarre fact that the court was packed with journalists because his client had threatened to expose Ted Heath, if the defence and police had only just found that out.

But I would suggest that Myra Forde must have made her claim previous to that day in order for the journalists to hear about it and get to court, so how were Mr Griffiths, the prosecution and defence, the police and the judge all completely unaware until they watched the press filing into the public gallery?

Perhaps someone should be asking some more searching questions?

Myra Ling-Ling Forde And Edward Heath

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