Category Archives: justice

The Chris Crabtree Case

Emily Checksfield

I’m still working on “Rape – Part 3”, which will now most probably be extended to several further Parts, addressing politicians and celebrities, and, if I can face it, the impossible question of the percentage of rape allegations which are false. While you’re waiting, here is one of the 146 cases from Part 2This one is extraordinary by any standards.

In 2012, Chris Crabtree, 43, then in a parachute regiment, rather regretted taking Emily Checksfield, 41, as his partner. He was ultimately to discover that she had previously been known as Nadine Milroy-Sloan, but only after he had become her victim. They had met on a dating website and had a relationship lasting 9 months. But then Mr Crabtree found out that she had been defrauding two military charities for which Checksfield had assisted him in raising funds. He told her the relationship was over and that she had to pay back the money or he would tell the police.

She was never tried on that charge. Immediately she realised her game was up, she contacted the police and claimed that Mr Crabtree had threatened to kill her with a samurai sword. She fooled the police into believing that Crabtree was mentally unstable, had PTSD from his time in combat, that he had access to weapons and was likely to resist arrest. As a result Mr Crabtree was arrested at gunpoint by armed officers, denied bail and spent the next three months in prison on remand, with his 25-year military career in jeopardy. He was completely innocent of any wrongdoing. He was entirely her victim.

To those who caution against exaggerating the dangers of false accusations, do internalise this lesson in the power that women have to get a man incarcerated with no evidence at all.

While in custody it dawned on Mr Crabtree that anyone who rejected Checksfield “had to pay”. And he was paying.

While locked up, Mr Crabtree was subject to further wild and untrue accusations that, he later said “could have reduced a lesser man to suicide”. Checksfield concocted more and more lurid tales in an endeavour to keep Mr Crabtree imprisoned, including claims that his laptop contained child porn and evidence he had been torturing prisoners in Afghanistan. At this point Checksfield’s story began to unravel when experts found no such material on the laptop, and eventually Mr Crabtree’s innocence was proven. However, it was to take action from Mr Crabtree himself to get Checkfield prosecuted and brought to book.

But first..…so-called Emily Checksfield’s back story – when she was known as Nadine Milroy-Sloan. Then 29, she already had a criminal record before she claimed that she had been raped by former Tory MP Neil Hamilton, together with his wife Christine. In truth, she had never even met the couple.

Milroy-Sloan – or Checksfield, if you prefer – said she had been lured to a flat ,where the sex attack had taken place, by Barry Lehaney, who she said had told her he was the couple’s chauffeur. Two days before the date of the fictitious attack, Milroy-Sloan offered the publicist Max Clifford a story about the Hamiltons being involved in a vice ring and a tax scam. Clifford told Milroy-Sloan she could expect about £100,000 from the media if she could prove her vice ring claims.

Milroy-Sloan then set out to “get the evidence” and arranged to see Mr Lehaney, with whom she had been exchanging explicit e-mails. She told Lehaney that she wanted him to arrange a meeting with Neil and Christine Hamilton for the purpose of a sexual encounter.

In court, Milroy-Sloan denied making false rape allegations against the Hamiltons and Mr Lehaney. She told the court she “apologised” if she had made an “honest mistake”. The court didn’t buy it and in 2003 Checksfield – or Nadine Milroy-Sloan – was jailed for three years after a trial that cost an estimated £1 million.

So back to 2012 and poor Mr Crabtree who had had no idea initially with whom he was entangled…

Even with Emily Checksfield’s notorious past, the police and the CPS decided to prosecute Mr Crabtree over the samurai sword claim. Fortunately for him, her story fell apart. But even then, the CPS did not pro-actively prosecute this appalling serial liar.

Instead, on returning home from prison, Mr Crabtree found his home ransacked and his belongings missing. He launched a burglary allegation against Checksfield and some of his belongings were found in her new home. Though she was later acquitted of the burglary charge, it was to prove her undoing anyway. Checksfield begged Mr Crabtree to meet her so she could persuade him to drop the charge. He did meet with her – and secretly recorded their conversation. Unknowingly she condemned herself, admitting she had lied about the whole thing. Mr Crabtree later remarked, “Seeing her again after everything, I had to ignore every sense of loathing I had for her because I knew getting that confession was gold dust. She is so convincing. I think she is a sociopath. She has no conscience.”

Two years later the recording finally cleared his name for good and secured her conviction and a four-year jail term.