Timeline: How ‘fantasy’ Hampstead satanic abuse cult allegations came to be online

PUBLISHED: 17:17 20 March 2015 | UPDATED: 17:25 20 March 2015

How Hampstead satanic abuse cult allegations came to be online and viewed by four million people worldwide

How Hampstead satanic abuse cult allegations came to be online and viewed by four million people worldwide

PA Archive/Press Association Images

How did completely “baseless” allegations of a satanic paedophile abuse cult in Hampstead come to be posted online and viewed by four million people worldwide?

High Court judge Mrs Justice Pauffley said the children's mother Ella Draper (pictured) had collaborated with her boyfriend Abraham Christie to torture them High Court judge Mrs Justice Pauffley said the children's mother Ella Draper (pictured) had collaborated with her boyfriend Abraham Christie to torture them

This case involves two children, who can only be identified as P and Q, who were forced to lie about abuse at the hands of a satanic paedophile ring. The children were coerced by their mother, Ella Draper, and her boyfriend, Abraham Christie, after suffering relentless emotional and psychological pressure as well as significant physical abuse. In the words of High Court judge Mrs Justice Pauffley they had been tortured. Here we follow the timeline of events.

2003: Ella Draper and Ricky Dearman, the parents of children P and Q, meet.

2006: By 2006 the parents’ relationship has disintegrated. The children live with their mother. Over the next six years there is never a time when the children’s contact with their father proceeds smoothly.

May 2014: The children’s father has contact with them for the first time since October 2013 after a period of renewed involvement by the London Borough of Camden.

In the same month, the mother meets her new partner, Abraham Christie. He has a background of criminality for drug offences, violence and dishonesty.

June 2014: There is a scene in the children’s school as Mr Christie collects P and Q. He is “loud and aggressive, accusing teachers of poisoning the children”.

August 2014: While Mr Christie is on holiday in France he contacts his brother-in-law, a former policeman, saying he has information regarding abuse of the children.

August 2014: Ms Draper, Mr Christie and the children travel to Gibraltar and then Morocco, returning on September 4. Over the course of the four weeks spent abroad judge Mrs Justice Pauffley said the children’s minds were filled with “ever more elaborated, fantastical and sexually explicit stories” during “brainstorming sessions”. 16 short clips of interviews with the children alleging a satanic abuse ring in Hampstead led by their father and involving Christ Church Primary School in Hampstead, which were later widely published on the internet, were likely filmed as the children, mother and Mr Christie awaited their flight back to England.

September 4, 2014: Mr Christie’s brother-in-law reports the matter to Scotland Yard saying he is “greatly concerned for the children’s welfare”.

September 5, 2014: Barnet police launch what the force described as a “wide ranging investigation” into the case. Six officers are deployed. The children are interviewed.

September 8, 2014: The children are taken by police on a drive around the area in an unsuccessful attempt to identify specific locations where abusive practices have occurred.

September 10, 2014: Police officers visit and inspect the interior of a church implicated in the false allegations. No notice is given of their intended arrival. Officers look around the vestry and in draws searching for material to assist the inquiry. They find nothing of interest.

September 11, 2014: The children undergo further interviews. They are made the subjects of a Police Protection Order.

September 12, 2014: Both children are examined by a consultant community paediatrician at both the Royal Free Hospital and University College London Hospital.

September 17, 2014: During a third police interview both children withdraw their allegations. Each states that they had been made to say things by Mr Christie which were not true. They give very full details of the way in which he secured their compliance. Both children were assaulted by Mr Christie by being hit with a metal spoon on multiple occasions over their head and legs, by being pushed into walls, punched, pinched and kicked. Water was poured over them as they knelt semi-clothed.

December 2014: The children’s mother dispenses with the legal team representing her in care proceedings.

January 13, 2015: High Court judge Mrs Justice Pauffley first becomes involved with the care proceedings. She speaks to Ms Draper about the relatively limited online publication of court and other material relevant to the case.

January 26, 2015: The children’s mother appears in court representing herself. From this date onwards the volume of material relating to the case posted on different websites, in a variety of formats, increases markedly.

February 10, 2015: Ms Draper fails to attend court when “mandatory and prohibitory injunctions” are made against her.

February 12, 2015: Police officers attend Ms Draper’s address. Her car is on the driveway. Police are denied entry. While officers wait for the means to secure forced entry, three people climb out of a first floor window, run along the roof line of three or four houses and climb down onto some nearby garages where they disappear from sight. Ms Draper has not been seen by anyone in authority since. There are rumours that she has fled abroad.

February 17-20, 2015: Care proceeding hearing begins. Mr Christie is outside the front entrance of the court on February 17 as part of a group campaigning. A witness summons is issued requiring his attendance to answer questions on February 20. Attempts to serve the summons are unsuccessful.

March 3-6 and 10-12, 2015: Care proceeding hearing resumes.

March 19, 2015: Mrs Justice Pauffley gives her care proceedings fact finding judgment at the High Court. In it she finds that there was “no satanic cult or other cult at which babies were murdered and children sexually abused” and that “all of the material promulgated by Ms Draper published on the internet is nothing other than utter nonsense”.

She says: “The long term emotional and psychological harm of what was done to the children is incalculable. The impact of the internet campaign is likely to have the most devastating consequences for P and Q.”

Related articles

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Yesterday, 17:15

Hampstead voted overwhelmingly to adopts its neighbourbood plan in a referendum yesterday.

Disability campaigner, Olympic torchbearer and Shepherd’s Hill resident Pamela Moffatt has died at the age of 80.

Yesterday, 15:54

Teddy bears will be cascading down from St James’ Church once again on Saturday, as part of the fourth annual Midsummer Muswell festival.

Yesterday, 12:47

Three young men have been charged in relation to two moped smash and grabs after police executed search warrants across Islington, Camden and Haringey.

Yesterday, 12:22

A Muswell Hill woman is living on borrowed time after being diagnosed with the deadly mesothelioma “asbestos disease” caused by hugging her dad as a toddler when he came home each night from working in the docks in the 1960s.

Yesterday, 10:55

The London Irish Centre has received a welcome funding boost after Ed Sheeran and Dermot O’Leary helped them rake in £250,000 on Wednesday night.

Thu, 17:57

George Michael superfans are preparing to celebrate his life at two events on Sunday, ahead of what would have been the pop icon’s 55th birthday.

Thu, 17:28

Workers have reportedly been living on a construction site in Abercorn Estate in St John’s Wood.


Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Preparing your child in advance for school will go a long way towards ensuring the very best start for your child.

After over 50 years in the acting industry, and a decade of unprecedented success delivering outstanding part-time performing arts tuition at her weekend Academies across the country, Pauline Quirke returns to her roots to create even more opportunities for young performers in North London.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now