BBC Wales 10 November 2015
‘To some he was an inspirational head teacher, to others Jon Styler was a predatory paedophile who abused pupils for decades. He killed himself in 2007 during a police inquiry into historic sex offences against one boy. But as new allegations emerge from across Wales and England involving more children, Week In Week Out investigates why he was never brought to justice.’
‘A former head teacher accused of historical sexual abuse may be one of the most prolific paedophiles in recent Welsh history, solicitors representing his alleged victims have claimed.
Lawyers said Jon Styler, from Newport – who killed himself while being investigated by police – could have abused more than 100 boys.
He strongly denied all allegations.
The Children’s Commissioner for Wales said the way the case was handled by police should be looked at again.
Prof Sally Holland also said the case could be included in the Goddard inquiry, which is looking at historical sexual abuse across Wales and England.
One of those who said he is a victim has told BBC Wales that he has already contacted Goddard inquiry officials, and is awaiting a response.
He said: “I get more and more disgusted with every new revelation.
“I have little confidence that the authorities are capable of protecting children today. My experience tells me that they are more interested in protecting their reputations and everything else comes lower down the list of priorities.”
Mr Styler hanged himself in 2007 after allegations emerged earlier that year that he had abused a boy at the former Malpas Church in Wales Primary School.
BBC Wales’ Week In Week Out programme has learned Gwent Police did not link the allegation in 2007 to an account given to them by another alleged victim in 2005, which claimed Mr Styler had abused other boys at the school.
The force has now launched an internal review as a result of BBC Wales’ investigation.
It is also understood a formal complaint has been made to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
Andrew Collingbourne, a solicitor representing several alleged victims, said: “I believe we’ve only scratched the surface, there could be a hundred plus victims.”
Prof Holland told BBC Wales the Clywch Report in 2004 made recommendations about how public bodies should log and share information on child sexual abuse cases.
She feels the way the Jon Styler case was handled should be looked at in more detail.
Prof Holland added: “I’d be absolutely supportive of any of the victims who wished to refer the case forward [to the Goddard inquiry] and my office would be prepared to support them in doing that.”
Newport council said it has no record of Gwent Police contacting them in 2005 or 2007 following the allegations.
The council said it also had no record of the accused’s personnel files and it could not comment further as the matter was subject to a compensation claim.
Ian Johnston, Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent, said: “Part of the internal investigation now will look at the possibility of there being other cases.
“You need to sit down and put the process and procedures in place to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Week In Week Out: My Teacher the Paedophile, BBC One Wales, 22:40 GMT, Tuesday 10 November’
BBC Wales 10 November 2015