Another female arrested in Smyllum child abuse case

Arrests relating to events decades ago at Lanark's Smyllum Orphanage
Arrests relating to events decades ago at Lanark's Smyllum Orphanage

In yet another twist to this distressing case, police have announced a further arrest in addition to the twelve people - including two elderly nuns - who were arrested last week in connection with historical claims of child abuse at Lanark’s former Smyllum Orphanage.

Some of the charges, it is understood, are related to alleged events of more than a half century ago.

Police last week announced, as we reported at the time, that eleven women and one man had been arrested and charged with four more individuals being reported to the Crown Office in connection with the investigations.

The sudden and unexpected move by the police followed allegations made during the ongoing Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry into events at Smyllum, run for over a century by the Daughters of Charity of St Vincent de Paul order of nuns; it closed in 1981 after housing an estimated 11,600 children since it opened in 1864.

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said that the charges brought so far related to “non-recent” incidents.

She said that those arrested were aged between 62 and 85-years-old.

The Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service said it had instructed police to investigate the allegations of abuse at Smyllum, a spokesman adding: “As a result of those investigations, we received information from Police Scotland, which has been considered by our expert team and it has been determined, in consultation with police, that further investigation is required into allegations against a number of individuals relating to the Daughters of Charity.”

Our social media pages have had many comments from people claiming that the inquiry was simply “too little, too late” for those who had suffered the most cruel mental and physical abuse for years.