Notorious brothel’s co-owner denied knowing of child sex abuse at her Edwardian house
By Mark Conrad and David Pallister | 1 April 2015
Brothel owner Carole Kasir boasted to friends about high-profile visitors to her guest house. Three decades later, that guest house is at the centre of an investigation by Scotland Yard into VIP paedophiles – amid claims of a cover-up.
Kasir liked to joke especially about people from the pop world who frequented her Edwardian home in a leafy residential road in Barnes, south-west London – the notorious Elm Guest House.
Sitting at her kitchen table inside the guest house, and bolstered by generous quantities of gin and vodka, she forcefully denied to friends that boys from children’s homes were sexually abused inside her property.
She owned and ran Elm Guest House with her then husband, Haroon Kasir, known as Harry. They were convicted in 1982 of running a “disorderly house”, or a brothel. In July 2013 under the current police investigation, Harry was arrested, and his home raided, but he was released without charge five months later.
Up to her sudden death at the age of 47 in 1990, Carole claimed to be unaware that her guest house was used by paedophiles.
But acquaintances told Exaro that Carole was “manipulative” and “promiscuous”, accusing her of abandoning her original family.
One source who visited Carole as she held forth at her large kitchen table at Elm Guest House told Exaro: “She always denied that young boys went there, or that she knew about abuse.
“We used to say to her, ‘There is only one door into the guest house, and one door out of it, Carole. It is not Buckingham Palace.’”
The source, speaking on condition of anonymity, added: “She would not say anything in response.” One regular adult guest, known as “Gladys”, a confidant of Carole’s, boasted about his homosexual relationship with a pop star.
The Kasirs often told friends that several famous musicians visited Elm Guest House.
On one alcohol-fuelled afternoon, Carole dropped a bombshell by casually claiming that another pop star took part in a violent paedophile orgy overseas that resulted in a boy’s death.
More than two years ago, the Metropolitan Police Service’s paedophile unit launched an investigation into historical claims that politicians and other prominent people sexually abused boys at the guest house.
The Met confirmed in 2013 that Sir Cyril Smith, the former Liberal MP outed as a paedophile after his death in 2010, was a visitor to Elm Guest House.
The police investigation turned into ‘Operation Fernbridge’. It runs alongside ’Operation Midland’, which is investigating child sex abuse at various venues – and even murder – by the ‘Westminster paedophile network’.
Exaro revealed in February that detectives were planning to contact Lord Brittan, former home secretary, before he died in January, and three other living former Conservative MPs – as well as two pop stars and several senior public officials – to ask whether they had visited Elm Guest House.
The venue, since converted into flats, operated between 1979 and 1982 as a guest house for gay men and as a paedophile brothel.
Peter Glencross, a Dutch-based South African, working on behalf of an underground paedophile group called the Spartacus Club, persuaded Carole to make Elm Guest House part of its network of venues.
The Spartacus Club would recommend Elm Guest House to its members, who in turn could have a discount on the usual rates.
The business benefits appear to have appealed to Carole. Acquaintances describe her “obsession” with money, which was seen as a major driving force in her life.
Exaro revealed two years ago how Harry told friends that he had been on good terms with Sir Jimmy Savile, the late BBC star and prolific paedophile. They would take tea together, Harry explained. But they fell out for some reason.
One source who was close to Carole said that she also talked to friends about Saville. “Oh, we know him,” said Carole on one occasion. “He is a right old pervert.”
Drawing on information from people who knew her well, Exaro has pieced together the personal background of Carole Kasir, the woman who would go on to run Britain’s most infamous guest house.
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