Patrick Rock: PM's aide arrested over child porn allegations

One of Cameron's closest advisors, Rock helped draw up government policy on online porn filters

LAST UPDATED AT 10:01 ON Tue 4 Mar 2014

ONE of David Cameron's closest advisors – who helped draw up government policy on online pornography filters – has been arrested on suspicion of offences relating to child pornography. 

Patrick Rock, who had been close to the Prime Minister for two decades, was arrested last month after No 10 Downing Street reported potential offences to the National Crime Agency. He resigned from his role as deputy director of policy shortly afterwards.

A Downing Street spokesman said: "Patrick Rock was arrested at his home in the early hours of 13 February, a few hours after Downing Street had reported the matter.

"Subsequently, we arranged for officers to come into Number 10 and have access to all IT systems and offices they considered relevant."

Cameron and Rock's relationship is said to go back to the 1990s, when they both worked under Michael Howard in the Home Office. The Conservative leader brought Rock into Downing Street in 2011 to work in the No 10 policy unit. He was one of only three advisers given his own private office at No 10 and worked across a wide range of topics. Downing Street confirmed that Rock was involved in dealing with the Government's policy on child pornography and general pornography filters, but said the work was led by somebody else, and decisions were taken by ministers.

According to the Daily Mail, the unmarried 62-year-old had been tipped as a leading contender for a Conservative peerage only weeks ago. The newspaper says Cameron is understood to be "extremely shocked".

An official spokesman for the Prime Minister said he had been immediately informed about Rock's arrest and kept updated throughout.

He added: “This is an ongoing investigation so it would not be appropriate to comment further, but the Prime Minister believes that child abuse imagery is abhorrent and that anyone involved with it should be properly dealt with under the law.” · 

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The UK government really shouldn't keep trying to censor the internet using, as excuses, nonsense of the sort dreamt up in part by Patrick Rock and his authoritarian fellow travellers. There are others, both advisors and Tory MP's, who are also involved in child pornography and they fully deserve the outing they will get.

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