Date: 26 Mar 1993
Bulic Forsythe was murdered at his flat which was then set on fire. He was found to have suffered from a fractured skull.
It was thought that he was possibly murdered by a VIP paedophile ring that he was going to uncover. His family said that they thought that his murder was linked to a cover-up.
His body was found at about 2am on Friday 26 February 1993 when the fire brigade responded to a fire at his block of flats, in his back bedroom having been beaten about the head.
It was found that the fire had been started deliberately.
Bulic Forsythe worked for Lambeth Social Services. It was said that although he was considered by some to be over zealous, it was observed by certain people that his bark was worse than his bight. Amongst his responsibilities were premises management of about ten social services buildings around Lambeth Borough and he was described as a very conscientious and efficient office manager, so much so that senior management in social services often asked him to write important policy documents on health and safety procedures. It was further noted by his colleagues that he had a very genuine concern for the welfare of staff.
He lived in Foster Court in south London, having moved there about four years earlier.
He had married an American woman in 1990, but it was said that he had loved his job too much to emigrate. However, his wife, who was at the time of his death pregnant with their baby being due in May 1993, was planning to join him in Britain.
Bulic Forsythe was said to have been easy going and to have loved to party, listen to music to play pool.
Bulic Forsythe was also known as John.
It was suggested that whilst his wife was in America that Bulic Forsythe might have been lonely and it was noted that he had several friends from Clapham, some of whom were from the gay community and that a few of them would go around to see him at his flat.
In the few months before his murder, Bulic Forsythe was often seen in the off-licence opposite his flat with two men. It was noted that one of them would always hang about at the door of the off-licence whilst the other one would go to the counter with Bulic Forsythe but who seemed quite keen not to be recorded by the shops security camera. The owner of the off-licence said that he remembered the man that came to the counter as being scruffy, wearing blue tight-fitting jeans and wearing a casual jacket. He described him as being about 25 years of age, about 6ft tall, with blue eyes and unkempt fair hair.
On Wednesday 24 February 1993 at about 4.45pm Bulic Forsythe was preparing to leave the office which was slightly earlier than usual. When asked about leaving work early, he said that he had just finished a report and that he had been at it for six weeks and that it was all done, adding that he was really pleased, and as such he was heading off to get an early night. The report was found to be missing following his death.
He was last seen alive when he left the council offices at about 5pm.
The woman that lived in the flat above Bulic Forsythe said that she would hear his alarm going off every morning, but said that on the morning of 25 February 1993 she didn't hear the alarm. She said she left her flat at about 9am and that on her way out she saw that Bulic Forsythe's curtains were open which she said she thought was unusual because she said that his curtains were usually drawn at that time in the morning.
When Bulic Forsythe didn't come into work, his co-workers became worried as it was not like him to be late and they tried calling his home but got no reply.
It was further thought that there might have been visitors to Bulic Forsythe's flat during the day whilst his co-workers were trying to get hold of him on the phone.
A person that lived nearby said that at about 9.30am on the Thursday morning, 25 February 1993 he was going over to the paper shop to buy a paper and said that he saw three men coming out of Foster Court. He said that there were two black men and a white man and that they were dressed as businessmen and were carrying some brief cases and folders. He said that he noticed them because they looked official and he had never seen them there before. The resident said that later at about 1.55pm he was walking around the back of Foster Court when he saw a white car with two well-dressed business men sat in it. He said that he had lived there for 18 years and had never seen a car parked there before. He said that when he walked past them, they gazed at him. He said that they were white, and one had black hair and the other had brownish hair.
Meanwhile, Bulic Forsythe's work colleagues had been trying to call him and one of them decided to go around and see him later on. She arrived later that evening after dark at 5pm and found that Bulic Forsythe's curtains were closed, and his lights were off. She said that she knocked for him and shouted through his letterbox but got no response. It was thought that Bulic Forsythe had been in his flat when his co-worker called, and it was also thought that he was probably almost certainly dead at that time.
However, later on that night someone turned all the gas on and set fire to his flat.
A resident at Foster Court who had been in bed was disturbed by a commotion at about 1am on 26 February 1993. He said that he then heard running at the back of the flats as though two or three men were running away.
The neighbour from the flat above Bulic Forsythe said that she later woke up and said that when she went down to Bulic Forsythe's flat and looked through the letter box she saw that his flat was on fire and so went back upstairs to call the fire brigade.
During a Crime Watch UK appeal, an appeal for a bicycle courier was also made.
The police also noted that Bulic Forsythe's Rolex Oyster model watch was also missing. Its serial number was R16110A.
The police noted that it was known that some documentation was missing from Bulic Forsythe's flat. They said that they didn't know whether it was person or work related. However, it was later revealed that he had been worried about things that he had discovered about child abuse at children’s homes in the borough.
There were five children’s home which were later identified as places where child sex abuse took place:
When the child abuse came to the attention of Scotland yar they reopened the investigation into Bulic Forsythe's murder.
In a long-running police inquiry later carried out called Operation Middleton, it was found that there had been at least 35 men and women that had abused children over a period of years. In its final report, it concluded that 16 suspected child abusers were dead and that another 19 could not be identified. It was further noted that that total didn't include the people arrested or charged and it was known that at least one man killed himself a day before his trial.
However, a group later set up called the Shirley Oaks Survivors Group said that they thought that there had been at least 600 pedophiles active over that period.
It was noted that all of Lambeth’s children’s homes were close by the mid-1990s but that they had been infiltrated by pedophiles for at least 30 years in the meantime.
There had been several other enquiries, Operation Trawler in July-November 1998 that investigated a particular pedophile who ran the Angell Road children's home in Lambeth between 1981 and 1990 and who was later fired in 1991 when it was discovered that he had a previous conviction for child abuse. At the time there was an inquiry into why the manager was not sacked in 1991 carried out, and the then general secretary of the Social Care Association concluded in June 1993 that the manager should not have been left in the charge of children. The manager of the Angell Road children's home in Lambeth was later convicted of 35 offences in 1998, including buggery of young boys, whilst another 40 charges were left on file and he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. of which he served 5 years.
After Operation Middleton which covered allegations of child abuse across all of Lambeth's children's homes over 20 years was carried out between November 1998 and July 2003 there was a report entitled the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse which began in March 2016 and is still ongoing. However, it was described as flawed by the Survivors of Organised and Institutional Abuse in June 2017 who left it saying that it was not fit for purpose.
A later police investigation, Operation Trinity was set up to look into child abuse across Westminster which it was thought had involved senior figures from Lambeth and encompassed assaults on women and children, as well as Bulic Forsythe's murder. It was claimed that sex abuse networks used the basement of Lambeth's housing headquarters, Hambrook House, because they could carry out sexual assaults there without fear of interruption by other staff. It was also claimed that senior members of staff would use the basement to watch films with 'sadistic, bestial and pedophile themes' that, 'may have been home-produced by staff of people with whom they associated'. However, it was reported that although the report recommended a criminal investigation, none was ever carried out and certain accused staff were simply dismissed from their positions.
However, it was never established what Bulic Forsythe had known or whether it had provoked his murder.
It was also noted that three days before his murder, Bulic Forsythe had told a colleague he was going to 'spill the beans', and it was thought that he had meant that he was going to expose a pedophile ring. It was suggested that he had discovered that council property in Lambeth was being used to carry out sexual abuse.
It was later claimed that 'The murder of Bulic Forsythe was seen by some witnesses as a possible outcome for anyone who strayed too far in their investigation or for those who asked too many questions', regarding the child sex abuse in the borough.
It was claimed that conspiracy to abuse children was deeply rooted and that employees worked in fear because of it, including Bulic Forsythe, who it was said in a later report was scared that even if he moved jobs, 'people in power could still get to him'.
It was later reported that a detective who later suggested that the investigation into Bulic Forsythe be reopened after hearing of links between child abuse and a minister in Prime Minister Tony Blairs Labour government was removed fom the case and Bulic Forsythe's case was not looked at again. It was said that the minister was seen making evening visits to the Angell Road children’s home in Brixton during the early 1980s and it was also claimed that he had visited South Vale, which was another children’s home.
It was heard that Bulic Forsythe had told a colleague, 'With what I’m about to tell you I’m taking a big risk. What if I was to say that council buildings are being used for child sexual abuse on a regular basis’. The colleague also said that when Bulic Forsythe later came to see them, he asked about South Vale youth assessment centre in West Norwood which had recently closed and asked for the keys, adding that, 'People are saying they are using it to make films'. The colleague said that Bulic Forsythe appeared frightened and that he was then shortly after murdered.
It was reported that he was murdered during an internal probe by Lambeth Council into the alleged sexual abuse in the housing department where he had worked. The report, called the Harris Report, which was published in December 1993 revealed details of alleged rape, sexual assault and the swapping of child abuse videos and violent porn within the council. It was also stated that that report also implicated senior Lambeth officers as well as police and local politicians. The report also contained the evidence relating to Bulic Forsythe stating that he was going to 'spill the beans', noting that he died three days later.
The Harris Report contained details regarding Bulic Forsythe's manager whom it described as a 'Godfather' who utilised the housing run by the council for his own purposes. It was claimed that the Godfather had given Bulic Forsythe a hard time and that he had sent him a memo stating that 'the 'culture' in Housing Directorate had not been conductive to Bulic’s way of working'. It was noted that the 'Godfather' was simply suspended on full pay in September 1993 and then later medically retired in August 1994 with a golden handshake of £50,000.
It was heard that Bulic Forsythe said that a senior manager in the Social Services had put pressure on him on behalf of the 'Godfather' to write a statement and that Bulic Forsythe was scared that the senior managers could get him in Social Services and asked the colleague he told not to take notes as he was fearful of reprisals. It was also noted that Bulic Forsythe had said that he would have considered a move from the Housing Department that he worked in to Social Services previously due to the pressure as he wanted to leave, but that the pressure applied led him to believe that they could get to him anywhere he was in the Council, including Social Services.
The following abuse findings in Lambeth Council were later reported:
It was reported that the member of staff that was raped said that she had been raped 'of horrendous proportions' and suffered from her resulting injuries even a month after. It was also reported that she claimed that she was raped alongside children and animals by senior members of the council. She said that she was drugged and then raped by multiple strangers. However, it was noted that in June 1995, the woman was at home when a man came to her door and poured petrol down her back and tried to set her on fire, but that the match dropped to the ground and she was not seriously hurt. She said that she had had three knocks at the door the day before. She said that later, in mid-June an intruder broke into her home during the night and poured petrol over her bed and set it alight. However, she escaped, being later treated for shock and smoke inhalation. The latter attack was described as an attempted murder by the police.
The woman’s' complaints were later investigated by the Metropolitan Police under Operation Progarda.
The Harris report included criticism of the use of the removal firm in the council which was said to have been used to excess, but it was also noted that Bulic Forsythe himself used them for his own private house move and had given them a set of keys to his home for ease of access. It was further stated that when they had gone to his home one time and let themselves in that they had found him in bed with another man.
It was also heard that another colleague said that Bulic Forsythe had been to see her after leaving work and had told her that he was 'not going to keep quiet' and that he had repeated to her, 'if they think I’m going to keep quiet, I’m not'.
The detective that was removed from his position after making the connection between the abuse at the children's homes and the minister in the Tony Blair Government and who was removed soon after, claimed that Bulic Forsythe had found child porn photos on council property that showed children that had been in the care of Lambeth Council with council members, and that that was a part of what he was going to expose.
It was also noted that a caretaker and his wife who had both worked for Lambeth Council both died in a fire at their homes after petrol was sprayed in through their letter box and it was thought that their murders were connected to the abuse taking place in Lambeth Council facilities. It was claimed that they died after the caretaker claimed that he had videos of 'extremely violent and depraved sex parties'.
In 2015, a dossier was handed to the Metropolitan Police relating to the alleged abuse in Lambeth that included the names of 22 members of parliament, including former members of parliament and members that were still serving at that point, as well as 13 former ministers who were all connected with the alleged abuse. The dossier also called for an investigation into the deaths of Bulic Forsythe and the caretaker and his wife which it described as 'suspicious deaths'.
In his dossier, the member of parliament said of the deaths, 'Both of them were people who were blowing the whistle on child abuse, for whatever reason, and were suspicious deaths'.