Dark Valley

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chapter 2

CHAPTER 2


Part 1 Personnel report supporting application to surgical team. Janus Mason. 21st June 1988


Part 2 Personnel report Janus Mason annual appraisal. 4th March 1995


Part 3 Personnel report on dismissal of Janus Mason. 6th June 2006

21st June 1988


Re application SN Mason. Surgical intervention team.


Staff Nurse Mason is a relatively inexperienced member of the team on ward five. He has been qualified for little over three years as a registered mental nurse. He joined the team amongst high expectations of his performance following an exceptional report from his training. He has continued this progress and has significantly developed during his time on the ward.

He is an intelligent man with a flair for technical skills. This can be seen quite evidently in his course report from his Administration of Injectable Medicines course on which he was the stand out student. His place on this course was amongst far more experienced nurses. However, he excelled and received the best student award. His ninety three percent mark overall on the course was the highest mark awarded in the last eight years. He has demonstrated the ability to take technical and theoretical knowledge into the practical arena and now has been delegated the task of performing depot injections on all patients so requiring on the ward. A Task he performs competently and professionally at all times.

Janus is a smart and well turned out member of the team. He takes great pride in his appearance always wearing clean and pressed uniform and always had the correct equipment. This pride and professionalism is reflected throughout his work. Janus regularly arrives on the ward an hour before the start of his shift and remains until after his shift is completed. He will always work overtime when required, often at short notice. This pride extends to his personnel life in which he maintains a rigid fitness plan and can often be seen running around the hospital grounds whilst following his training regime.

His attention to detail is meticulous as can be seen in the medical records that he completes. These records are concise and accurate, written in a clear and legible hand with a consideration to medical convention and correct terminology with more technically demanding aspects.

He exhibits great team spirit and is popular amongst his colleagues. This popularity is increased by his willingness to swap shifts if required by the team. He mixes well socially and regularly will drive allowing his colleagues to enjoy a social drink.

He works hard and consistently performs to a high level all of the time. He is willing to undertake tasks that are less pleasant in order to allow his colleagues to work on other matters. This was clearly evident following the sad death of a patient on the ward where he assisted the duty doctor in his examination of the deceased. Janus volunteered to transport the deceased to the mortuary and dealt with all aspects of the death including the bagging and storage of the deceased persons clothing and property. This resulted in Janus being late to finish his shift but allowed his colleagues to continue in their work without disrupting normal routines.

He has a calming influence upon the patients, some of whom are very disturbed. His calm and easy attitude seems to sooth patients and allow him to diffuse potentially volatile situations. He has the ability to remain serenely calm under the utmost provocation. He reacts appropriately in all situations and, when required, uses force proportionately. He has built up a good rapport with a number of the patients especially those more difficult to reach patients in the secure accommodation area of the ward. This has secured compliance from these patients in a wide variety of challenging situations.

He encourages patients to willingly take part in ECT and proactive surgical intervention treatment programs. He clearly believes in these tried and tested techniques and it is encouraging to see a young member of staff supporting these methods when some of the radical elements of opinion within the field of mental health treatment are starting to feel that they are out dated.

I feel that the sterling work that Janus has put in since his qualification, his meticulous attention to detail and his professional attitude give him the qualities necessary to work successfully in this more demanding and technical area of medicine. I fully support his application to the Surgical Intervention Team. There will be significant further training cost to the NHS incurred. However, this should be viewed as an investment in this very promising young man’s future professional development and will allow him to become a further asset to the NHS in this area. He is far less experienced than many of his contemporaries who might be seeking this post.

I wish SN Mason the very best of luck in the future and I have no hesitation in supporting his application for this position. I will be saddened to lose such a quality nurse but his bright future must take precedence.


Dr P. Davies

Ward 18

North Wales Hospital

Part 2

Annual Appraisal: Charge Nurse Mason 4th March 1995

Secure Wing Cat.A

Rampton Hospital

Charge Nurse Mason has been with the trust for two years subsequent to his redundancy on the closing of the North Wales Hospital in 1993. He has made the transition well and is now a very well established member of the team on the very demanding High Security Section of the Hospital. As previously documented, within his personnel file (June 1994) he has encountered some initial difficulties as he adjusted to the more modern and holistic treatment regimes that are in use in this and other establishments. This transition is now complete and he is excelling in his field. Janus’ promotion to Charge Nurse is well deserved and hard earned. He is flourishing and performing superbly in the role. His efficiency in his previous role has provided him with the skill set to be readily transferable into the supervisory role he has now assumed.

His team of nurses are effectively lead by his example and are now performing excellently. He does, indeed, run a tight ship. The documentary side of his work remains as sharp as his outstanding clinical skill. He is starting to get to grips with the new computerised systems that are emerging into the hospital and the further National Health Service. His level of performance has caused performance within other shifts and teams to increase.

His relationships with his team can clearly be evidenced by the effective way in which he dealt with the incredibly sensitive issue of the former S/N Lynton. Lynton was alleged to have used an unnecessary level of force against a vulnerable patient. C/N Mason maintained his professionalism and instigated an internal investigation and followed correct disciplinary procedures. He collected evidence with efficiency and sensitivity to ensure that the service was in a position to dismiss Lynton with a sufficient burden of proof to preclude any likelihood of a tribunal. This was despite Lynton’s cynical denial of the facts plainly put before the committee.

Due to the efficiency of his working practices C/N Mason has found that he has surplus capacity. He has optimised this by offering to carry out the censorship of letters into the unit that was previously carried out by the ward manager. This corporate minded attitude underlines his commitment to the role. His example has unsettled the other charge nurses on the ward, he is not popular with them. However, his performance in this area has spurred the marked improvement in their performance and this additional drive to their performance has been the root of his unpopularity. All members of staff respect him, his skill and performance command that level of respect.

One of the other key effects of the action involving Lynton was the increase in trust that the patients exhibit towards him and his team. The most difficult of patients, when learning that he is on duty, moderate their behaviour and become very much more compliant. His influence seems to calm them by sight and his softly spoken slow speech appear to instil confidence into the patients allowing for a more productive and efficient relationship.

His attitude to his work remains professional and non- judgmental. This is despite the nature of some of the patients he deals with on a daily basis. Whilst all staff are expected to perform in a non-judgmental manner he excels in this area. There is no indication that he is aware that he is dealing with the most dangerous and insidious criminally insane patients in the country. However, he has a full understanding of every patients offending, diagnosis and treatment schedules gained by reading the files of the patients and being aware of any developments in their care plans.

At his previous hospital S/N Mason was a part of an archaic surgical intervention team. This added responsibility has been removed from him now and whilst he carries out the Charge Nurse role admirably he has obvious further capacity for promotion. Whilst he is only recently promoted I strongly suggest that he is fast tracked into the nurse practitioner role. His professional development should be encouraged and supported by the service. He is likely to be one of the brightest stars within his field.

Mr.. H. Cliffe

Consultant Psychologist

Secure Wing.

Rampton Hospital

Part 3.


6th June 2006


Report to the Chair of Nottinghamshire NHS Trust.

In the matter of Charge Nurse Janus Mason.


Sir,

The matter before us is of a very sensitive nature and consideration given to this matter at the very highest level within the trust. There is, in this matter the potential for extreme and critical damage to be caused to the trust.

I have enclosed a series of documents for your consideration including the personnel reports for C/N Mason since his employment in the North Wales NHS trust. I would ask you to read through these and also refer to the report from the trust solicitor included within this package.

C/N Mason joined the trust from North Wales in 1993. Prior to this time he had been a member of the notorious Surgical Intervention Team that operated in the North Wales Hospital. This team was the last in the western world to perform Orbital Lobotomies. The closure of the North Wales Hospital, under the auspices of the care in the community scheme, was brought about by a threat to reveal the inhuman practices ongoing in the establishment.

C/N Mason was a very keen member of this team transferring into the area early in his career. His interest was, at this point, understood to be one of career development and professional ambition. During his time within this team he assisted in numerous operations and ECT procedures. It can be shown that he would change his shift pattern to ensure that he was working at the time of these procedures and always would be present within the treatment suits.

His personnel record at this time suggests an outstanding and very promising member of staff and he was taken on by us after passing a full interview board and assessment. It is worthy of note that on the psychometric aptitude testing he achieved the highest mark ever achieved by a member of nursing staff and within the top five of current consultant psychologists. Janus Mason is a highly intelligent man. At this point there was not sufficient suspicion upon him the precipitate any criticism for a failure to identify his future activities.

On arrival within the Hospital he employed in the highest security section of the Hospital CAT A. under the supervision of Mr. Cliffe. He has exceptionally good interpersonal skills and immediately established a good rapport within the team. It was felt in senior management that he had the potential for a stellar career within the trust. This extended to the clients under his care and he immediately appeared to have a calming influence over the most difficult and dangerous patients within his care. Some of whom are very troubled and have committed the most serious offences of sexual violence against children and women.

C/N Mason was quickly promoted and assumed the leadership of D shift within the wing. His leadership qualities were outstanding and he always exhibited a high degree of professionalism and competence within the hospital environment. This had the effect of increasing performance across the board as other shifts struggled to attain the levels of performance that his shift seemed to attain with ease. He had become unpopular with other Charge Nurses.

Shortly after his arrival he claimed to uncover some alleged improprieties by the well-respected S/N Lynton. He, alone, collated evidence including reports from the clients that implicated S/N Lynton in excessive use of force. At the time this was seen as exemplary conduct and commitment. This lead to the subsequent dismissal of S/N Lynton. Further facts have since been disclosed, that bring this into question.

C/N Mason was able to free up enough capacity in his schedule to assist the ward manager with some administration tasks. One of which included the reading of mail sent in to service users by the public, to remove any correspondence from hybristophiliacs that might gratify the service users.

In light of recent developments in the case it can be seen that Mason had cynically and cleverly manipulated the system in order to place himself in a position to access these very letters.

The issues came to light when on 12th April 2006 Mr. Cliffe was performing a routine annual assessment on a client. "Client A". The client asked Mr. Cliffe if he would still have to undergo “the procedure”. This was the first that Mr. Cliffe had heard of any procedure being used in relation to this patient. On checking there was no mention of any scheduled procedure in the client’s notes. Mr. Cliffe further pressed Client A who told Mr. Cliffe that he would be subjected to a lobotomy should he fail to act in a complaint way. The client was reassured that this would not happen and was asked why he thought it would. He replied that he had been told this would be the case by Mason. Mr. Cliffe did not press further and terminated the consultation at this point. He subsequently reported this to the internal investigation unit. Mr. Cliffe made nothing of this to Client A so as not to alert his suspicions and prejudice any subsequent investigation.

Due to the obvious gravity of the matter John White at the internal investigation unit immediately instigated a high level and large scale investigation into Mason and his conduct. This investigation has been far reaching and deeply intrusive. It was conducted at significant financial cost to the trust. The senior investigator's report is attached at the rear as an appendix for you to view.

Covert cameras have been deployed in areas that Mason had access and his internal emails and communications have been monitored. His use of the Hospital's wireless internet has also been monitored through covert interception.

The unit spoke to clients on the secure ward and it was soon revealed that Mason's previously perceived good relationship with clients was built on fear. Threats of violence were common place and threats that failure to comply would result in them being subject to ECT and lobotomisation.

It has now been revealed that the case in 1994 of the dismissal of S/N Lynton was built upon false evidence extracted by Mason, under these threats. The clients were so scared of Mason they complied with whatever he asked of them and he was able to have Mr. Lynton removed from the ward and allow himself access to more sensitive information and correspondence.

A part of his duties included the monitoring of letters to the clients to weed any out from hybristophiliacs (people who gain sexual gratification from corresponding with murderers and other types of serious offenders).

It is believed that it was during 1999 he began a correspondence with then Ivy Hyde. Ivy Hyde wrote numerous sexually explicit letters in to Client B. They were of a deeply hybristophilliac nature and extremely disturbing. The file for her communication with Client B ends in September 1999. Unusually for this type of person she does not continue to communicate with any other sex offender or murderer.

In June 2001 Janus Mason and Ivy Hyde were married in Retford registry office. It is strongly suspected, but cannot be proved, that Mason used his position to establish this correspondence with Hyde and that they subsequently formed a relationship.

Records of the messages and emails that have been forwarded through the Hospitals internet framework are available to view at annex A. The nature of these messages would suggest that a sadist sexualisation based around Ivy Mason's hybristophilliac tendencies exists between them. There are numerous references to the offences that the clients had committed and these are recorded in intimate, shocking, detail. There are further references to fantasy scenario in which Mason describes how he would treat the clients. They make particularly harrowing reading and often explore torture and practices such as lobotomies with strong sexual references.

This information has been shared with Nottinghamshire police service.

On 30th May 2006 Mr. John White of the Internal Investigation unit spoke with Mason. Mason was confronted with this evidence. Mason made no reply. He passed Mr. White a piece of paper (copy attached) that briefly explained that should the trust seek to prosecute or discipline him then he would contest all of the charges and this case would result in a tribunal. He suggested, in the letter, that a promotion to Ward Manager and then ill health retirement with a decent relocation package would see him quietly leave.

The situation that the trust finds itself in is unprecedented and advice has been sought from the trust solicitors.

A full review of the evidence has been carried out and it is the opinion of the trust solicitor that there is not sufficient clear cut evidence to prove the case against Mason to a standard that would ensure a clear dismissal with no fear of a tribunal. The threat of a tribunal is very real. Should this case go to an industrial tribunal it would be aired in the public domain. There could be no way that the press would be excluded. Legal costs for process would be enormous, public interest would be very high and the adverse publicity would see the trust exposed all over the media. The potential for a legal backlash is high. The trust would be liable for litigation under the European Court of Human Rights in that the clients had been treated unfairly and indeed tortured. If this is found against the trust by the ECHR the potential for damages would be unprecedented. This level of damages would have massive implications for the functioning of the trust in the future financial cycles. If the practices of the North Wales Hospital were to be exposed at a tribunal then the subsequent closure of the hospital was to be subject to scrutiny the political damage would be enormous. In the opinion of the investigators and the legal advisor Mason would be prepared to expose this at tribunal.

A confidential conference has taken place with Nottinghamshire Police and the Crown Prosecution Service on the basis of joint investigating agencies. The findings, whilst technical, amount to the fact that there is insufficient evidence to seek a prosecution so criminal proceedings cannot to be instigated.

Of the limited options that we have to consider, in this case, it is apparent that the one with the least potential for damage, both corporately and financially, to the trust must be the very unpalatable option of submitting to Mason's demands. He has manipulated and maneuvered himself into a position of safety. Therefore it is my recommendation that Mason is immediately removed from suspension and placed on sick leave. He should then be promoted to ward manager and allowed to retire on ill health grounds with immediate effect.

The legal services team have suggested that one of the conditions of this settlement be that he sign a suppression order (commonly known as a "gagging order") to prevent this reaching the public domain.

Enquiries have been made to trace Mr. Lynton by the Internal Investigation Unit and the police. He has been untraceable since early 1995.

This report is of the highest level of confidence and is not for further distribution.


For your consideration,

S.Watson-Harkness.

Executive officer I.I.U

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