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'Carl Gissing, Portillo, Laud and the paedophile parties', Spiked issue 6, 1996
Carl Gissing, Portillo, Laud and the paedophile parties

Spiked issue 6, 1996

In previous issues of Spiked, we have told the story about a British Airways executive's friendship with the Minister for Defence, Michael Portillo - a relationship which the executive, Carl Douglas Gissing, has habitually denied, despite evidence to the contrary.

Now new evidence has come to light regarding another of Carl D. Gissing's close friends, this time not from the front bench of the Conservative Government, but from the twilight world of Parliamentary lobby groups.

Derek Laud is the director of Ludgate Communications, a high powered political public relations outfit. He is also black, nicknamed 'Golly' by his Conservative friends, homosexual and the former boyfriend of Michael Brown MP. He is the nephew and former research assistant of Lord Pitt, and moves with equanimity through Parliament and in some very high circles.

He has written speeches for Prince Charles, knows Princess Diana, Prince Andrew and Fergie's ex-beau, John Bryan. He introduced gay footballer Justin Fashanu to Westminster life, who later claimed that he had slept with two Cabinet Ministers. And then, presumably under some pressure, retracted the story.

Laud leads a very fashionable life, dining out at the exclusive Le Caprice restaurant in London W1. Where he has been seen with Michael Portillo and Peter Lilley. He has a flat in Winchester Street, Pimlico, just around the corner from Dolphin Square, a luxury apartment block populated by MPs, and with a somewhat colourful noctural reputation.

It is here that the story becomes more interesting. There has always been a strong connection between Parliamentary lobby groups and the seamier side of Westminster night life. Dolphin Square has long been the scene of often very debauched parties, where certain MPs indulge some rather peculiar sexual peccadilloes with rent boys, and, presumably, each other.

According to one former employee of a well known Parliamentary public relations company which provided rent boys for Westminster parties, the male prostitutes are often underage and sometimes suffer appalling abuse. The source claims that not only are some beaten up, but that there have been cases where the boys were slashed with razor blades.

These grotesque crimes are not the norm in Westminster, they are a sordid aberration. But gay parties involving senior Tory politicians are commonplace, and Derek Laud is often on the guest list.

He is also known by one former resident of Greystone Heath children's home in Merseyside, Stephen Hasshim. Although this is technically outside the Clwyd investigation into child abuse, it was nevertheless a nightmare for many children who were unfortunate enough to live there. Hasshim remembers meeting Laud when he was thirteen.

According to certain former inmates at homes in Clwyd, who later became male prostitutes in Brighton and London, they frequently plied their trade among MPs in Westminster and Dolphin Square. Which brings us back to the extracurricular role of the political lobbyist, and Derek Laud. Not forgetting, of course, Carl D. Gissing.

For a man who claims to have no Parliamentary connections, it is strange that Gissing has been seen with Laud, who has a great many Parliamentary connections, and also knows Michael Portillo rather well, whom Gissing claims he has never met. Perhaps his denials are just sour grapes at not being invited to one of those Dolphin Square parties.

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