"the charity’s trustees lacked sufficient oversight"
Wilson Chowdhry, the founder of the charity British Pakistani Christians, has quit after having an affair with a volunteer he helped to rescue from sex slavery.
The married father-of-three admitted there were “moral failures” over his sexual relationship with a 33-year-old Australian woman.
Chowdhry founded the charity, formerly known as the British Pakistani Christians Association (BPCA), in 2013 and it became registered as a charity two years later.
He resigned shortly before the Charity Commission’s case began in June 2019, citing “personal reasons”.
It has now been revealed that an affair was the cause of his resignation.
Chowdhry had an affair with a volunteer who had been rescued from sex slavery.
When the affair ended in 2019, the woman told police that Chowdhry had raped her in Australia.
Police in Australia and in the UK began an investigation but no charges were brought.
The woman went to the Charity Commission in 2019, which began a probe.
Chowdhry then quit as chairman of Essex-based British Pakistani Christians Ltd.
His wife Juliet Chowdhry, who remains a trustee, previously said:
“We are glad the investigation is over and our focus can return to the desperate suffering people that we support.
“Working with the Charity Commission we have introduced improved safeguarding and other measures that enhance the level of service that we provide to some of the most vulnerable Christians in South Asia.”
In May 2022, the regulator published a report.
It raised serious concerns over the competence of the trustees to safeguard vulnerable people and to account for donations it spent overseas.
The charity was also reprimanded for publicly attacking the woman as a liar.
The commission’s Tracy Howarth said: “Everyone who comes into contact with a charity has a right to feel safe.
“Trustees must make safeguarding a governance priority, ensuring that the charity protects people from harm, and responds promptly and effectively when things do go wrong.
“Unfortunately, that hasn’t always been the case at BPCA.”
“We found the charity’s trustees lacked sufficient oversight and expertise to protect people who came into contact with the charity.
“I am pleased that our firm action, in this case, has resulted in clear improvements in the charity’s approach to safeguarding.
“We now expect the trustees to address outstanding issues, and ensure the charity’s governance improves into the future.”
Admitting “moral failures”, Juliet told The Sun:
“We spent three years under investigation. We feel no need to say anymore.”