Paul Farrell, 55, of Camden, north London, faced 79 charges, including charges of rape, attempted rape, sexual assault of a child under 13, and indecent assault on a male, according to police. According to the charges, the offending continued until June 2020, with one boy under the age of 13 sexually assaulted “during lockdown”.
The charges related to 7 victims and concerned alleged offences committed between 1985 and 2020. The alleged sex offences are against children.
Mr Farrell appeared at Wood Green Crown Court on 5 February 2021, when he was accused of another 17 offences against a boy between the ages of 6 to 11, in the 1990s. He pleaded guilty to 13 of those offences, which included indecent assault on a minor and gross indecency on a child under 14.Paul Farrell ultimately pleaded guilty to 76 offences against eight victims in respect of offences which occurred between 1985 and 2020. The court was told that the true number of offences was “not less than 560” but probably “in the thousands”.
He is a former Porter at Great Ormond Street Hospital. He worked at the Hospital between 1994 and 2020. A statement from the Trust states that he has been dismissed.
Paul Farrell was arrested on 16 January 2020. He first appeared at Highbury Magistrates Court, after being charged. He appeared at a hearing at Wood Green Crown Court on Friday, 27 November 2020, wearing a red jacket over a blue sweater, and glasses.
Judge Noel Lucas said, on 27 November 2020: "The prosecution have made it clear that this is not a case where it is alleged that Mr Farrell was targeting children at the Great Ormond Street Hospital.
"Rather that children were abused in parts of the hospital in which he had access."
Prior to the hearing on the 27 November 2020, Paul Farrell had admitted 25 counts. At the hearing on 27 November he pleaded guilty to a further 33 charges, 58 in total. The offences include attempted rape, sexual assault of a child under 13 and making indecent photographs of children. The admitted sexual offences occurred over a period of 35 years against six boys, between 1985 and 2020. The victim survivors are now aged between 8 and 43 years. The youngest victim was aged between 6 and 7 at the time he was abused in 1988.
The 58 charges Paul Farrell pleaded guilty to include:
- 2 counts of indecency with a child;
- 17 counts of indecent assault of a male;
- 14 counts of sexual assault of a child under 13;
- 5 counts of causing a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity;
- 4 counts of sexual activity with a child under 13;
- 8 counts of sexual activity with a child under 16;
- 3 counts of causing a child under 16 to engage in sexual activity;
- 2 counts of attempted rape;
- 3 counts of making indecent photographs of children.
He subsequently admitted further offences, making 76 offences in total.
Paul Farrell was sentenced on the 24 May 2021. He was given a life term, with a minimum of 18 years.
Great Ormond Street Hospital Statement
A statement from the Hospital said: "These are truly awful charges and we know that our hospital community, including our patient families, will have concerns or questions.
"Due to the ongoing legal proceedings, we cannot go into the details of the case, but we can confirm that the individual who has been charged was dismissed from the trust and we are continuing to work closely with the police.
"Safeguarding children is fundamental to the care we provide and our policies are in line with national best practice.
"If patients, their families or colleagues raise concerns about staff there is a clear and swift process to manage these concerns when they are raised. This includes involving the police where needed."
After the court hearing on the 27 November 2020, a statement made by the Hospital said: "These charges relating to a former member of GOSH staff are awful.
"It is upsetting to hear in court today that some of the charges relate to the hospital site.
"It is important to stress, as stated by the judge today, that GOSH patients were not targeted.
"Due to the ongoing legal proceedings, we are really limited in what we can say, but we can confirm again that Paul Farrell was dismissed from the Trust."
They made a later statement, adding, “His actions are in direct contrast to everything we stand for as a children’s hospital.
“We would like to reiterate what has been said in court; that Paul Farrell did not target children at GOSH”.
Impact statement of the victim survivors
Victim impact statements were read to the court.
"I have carried this every day for the last 10 years. I want you to know that you are not going to break me. I am going to get over this and be the best man I can be for the community."
"The last 18 months of my life have been unrecognisable and torturous….." guilt, shame, despair and disgust…
"I now feel hopeless, lost and disgusted at my silence that has allowed you to ruin the lives of so many innocent children…. Innocent children like me and my brother will be profoundly scarred by your actions for the rest of our lives."