British Police: News (Page 1)

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BBC News

Police commander sacked over ‘sensitive leak’

January 16, 2015

Det Ch Supt Andy Rowell

Det Ch Supt Andy Rowell

A London police borough commander has been sacked by a disciplinary panel for giving details of a “sensitive” police investigation to a journalist. Det Ch Supt Andy Rowell was dismissed without notice after a disciplinary panel found allegations of gross misconduct against him had been proven. The panel heard he had let a journalist copy a statement containing details from a serious crime investigation. The ex-Ealing commander’s behaviour “lacked integrity”, it ruled.

The abuse of his position could have “brought discredit on the police service”, the panel added. Mr Rowell was originally arrested by detectives from Operation Elveden – the operation investigating corrupt payments to public officials. His arrest came after information was passed to the police by News International’s management and standards committee in the wake of the phone hacking scandal.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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Top gay police officer with MBE is arrested for ‘supplying Class A drugs after being found slumped at wheel’

December 8, 2014

Chief Inspector Paul Cahill

Chief Inspector Paul Cahill

A senior police officer has been arrested on suspicion of supplying Class A drugs. Chief Inspector Paul Cahill, 43, was allegedly found slumped over the wheel of his car. He has previously worked as a tactical adviser to the Metropolitan Police firearms unit, one of the toughest roles in policing. An outspoken campaigner for gay rights, he was awarded an MBE for services to diversity in the 2003 New Year Honours. Cahill was arrested last Monday, December 1, after being found in his car in Wandsworth, South-West London. Colleagues found what they believed to be a stash of drugs during a search of the vehicle and his pockets.

He was arrested on suspicion of possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply and driving while unfit through alcohol or drugs. Cahill was taken to a police station and released on bail pending forensic tests on the substances seized. It is understood that further suspicious substances, also believed to be Class A drugs, were found during a search of his home. The drugs have not been specified but Class A includes cocaine and heroin. Tattooed Cahill is a senior officer in Westminster, where he leads a proactive unit cracking down on crimes including drug dealing in the West End and Soho.

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SOURCE = The Daily Mail

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Warwick University students accuse police of attacking tuition fee protest

December 3, 2014

Three people have been arrested and police officers accused of using excessive force after a Taser was pulled on students amid violent scenes at a sit-in for a free education on Wednesday. Students at the University of Warwick say they were sitting down discussing tuition fees after a national student protest when the police arrived. Helena Dunnett-Orridge said she had been attacked by police: “There had been a demo for a free education, then people went into Senate House, sat in reception and had a discussion about the protest. Police came in and we all linked arms. They started pushing and attacking people, completely unprovoked. We couldn’t say anything because we were being pushed.

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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Seven Met police officers arrested after brawl in Lithuania

November 29, 2014

Seven police officers have been arrested while on holiday in Lithuania following a brawl. Scotland Yard said the Metropolitan police officers were detained in Vilnius, the country’s capital, and are under investigation. The Sun reported that the men were in Lithuania for a stag party, and the newspaper published pictures appearing to show them bloodied and stumbling as they were handcuffed and put in to police cars in the city, which is a popular tourist destination. A Met police spokesman said: “The directorate of professional standards is aware seven police constables from territorial policing were arrested on Saturday 22 November whilst on leave in Vilnius, Lithuania.

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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BBC News

Rotherham abuse officers investigated

November 18, 2014

The police watchdog is to investigate 10 South Yorkshire Police officers over the handling of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham. The officers are 10 of 13 referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) by the force. Two are not being investigated while a third officer remains under review. A report, published by Professor Alexis Jay in August, found the abuse of 1,400 children in Rotherham over a 16 year period was ignored by agencies. IPCC Commissioner Kathryn Stone said: “The amount of public concern across the country about this episode and the impact on confidence in the police means it is important that a fully independent investigation is conducted to establish how South Yorkshire Police dealt with child sexual exploitation. “I sincerely hope that victims and their families will see this investigation as a positive step towards answering the many questions they must have.”

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SOURCE = BBC News

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telegraph

IPCC probe three police forces over ‘failure to act on intelligence about indecent images of children’

November 12, 2014

Three police forces are to be investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) over allegations that they failed to act on intelligence passed to them about paedophiles in their area. An investigation has been launched into the actions of Essex, North Yorkshire and North Wales police forces after they were handed information via the Canadian authorities about people who had been accessing indecent images of children. Project Spade was launched after police in Toronto identified thousands of men in the UK who had allegedly been purchasing videos and DVDs featuring pornographic images of youngsters.

The information was first passed to the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP), which is now part of the National Crime Agency (NCA), which in turn was passed the information to individual police forces. But concern was raised over the speed with which forces were acting on the intelligence, after it emerged that Essex Police had taken ten months to investigate a local teacher who was suspected of being a paedophile. The day after officers contacted Southend based teacher, Martin Goldberg, about the allegations he was found dead at his home, where officers later discovered hundreds of images of pupils on his computer.

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SOURCE = The Telegraph

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BBC News

Gwent Police mistakenly use ‘pepper spray’ on four-year-olds

November 6, 2014

Children as young as four have been mistakenly sprayed with “hot chilli” by Gwent Police. On Wednesday, officers visited Ysgol Gymraeg Gilfach Fargoed, in Bargoed, Caerphilly county, and gave a lesson on equipment used by the force. But instead of demonstrating a mock PAVA spray, which replaced CS spray, officers discharged a real canister. The spray, used on eight pupils aged four and five, causes the eyes to close and is extremely painful. None of them needed hospital treatment, said the force, which has apologised for the error. “Parents were contacted by a senior officer to explain what happened, discuss any concerns and offer our sincere apologies,” a spokesman said.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Girl hurt in Nottinghamshire police gun accident

November 6, 2014

A seven-year-old girl was injured when a police officer accidentally fired a gun in front of a group of children. Nottinghamshire Police has launched an investigation following the incident at its headquarters last week, and has referred the matter to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. The girl was hit in the face by an empty cartridge after a shot was fired into the ground, the force’s commissioner said. She did not need hospital treatment. Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner, said the girl was injured by the empty cartridge when it ejected from a gun fired into the ground on Thursday last week. She suffered a “minor injury to her lip”, police said. The group of children and parents were being shown specialist police services including firearms and dogs at Sherwood Lodge, near Hucknall, after they won a local prize, he said.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Avon and Somerset Chief Constable Nick Gargan to face gross misconduct probe

October 31, 2014

Chief Constable Nick Gargan

Chief Constable Nick Gargan

A police chief is to face an internal charge of gross misconduct following an allegation of inappropriate behaviour towards women. Avon and Somerset Chief Constable Nick Gargan was suspended in May. A probe by the police watchdog led to PCC Sue Mountstevens making the decision that Mr Gargan had a case to answer over the allegation. Mr Gargan, who denies any wrongdoing, also faces an internal charge over improper disclosure of information. He learned in June that he would not face any criminal charges. In a statement, Ms Mountstevens said the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) had put forward a number of recommendations regarding Mr Gargan. “I have made the decision there is a case to answer for gross misconduct and therefore I will refer the allegations to a misconduct hearing in front of an independent misconduct panel,” she said.

“The members of the panel will decide if the allegations are proven or not and will present their recommendations to me. I will ensure that these recommendations are made public.” In Mr Gargan’s absence the force has been led by Acting Chief Constable John Long. ‘Long-winded system’ Mr Gargan is yet to comment publicly but a Chief Police Officers Staff Association spokesman said it awaited specific details of the alleged breaches of the police code of conduct. “It would be inappropriate to comment until they have been provided – except to say that Chief Constable Gargan will continue to co-operate fully with the process and wants to get back to work as quickly as possible.” Nigel Ashton, chairman of the Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Panel, said he was concerned about how long it had taken to bring the gross misconduct charge.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Emma Siswick murder: Jonathan Sutton jailed for at least 28 years

October 24, 2014

Jonathan Sutton

Jonathan Sutton

A “paranoid and controlling” former policeman has been jailed for at least 28 years for murdering his pregnant partner, stabbing her 81 times. Emma Siswick, 37, was found at a house in Huddersfield with wounds from a knife and broken glass on 18 May. Ex-PC Jonathan Sutton, 40, admitted murder. He also pleaded guilty at Leeds Crown Court to wounding two boys with intent at the property. The children were treated in hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. The court heard Sutton had been a police officer with West Yorkshire Police between May 2003 and November 2004.

The judge, Mr Justice Edis, said Sutton’s offences were “as serious as it’s possible to imagine”.”Looking at the photographs of the house where all this happened is a truly horrific experience,” he said. “There are three different sites in that property where very serious assaults with knives were carried out. “There’s blood everywhere. You inflicted 81 separate cut injuries to Emma. She fought you to try to save herself.” The judge also said there had been “irreparable harm to those still alive after the incident”. He said it had left the children “with physical scars that they will see every day of their lives”, adding: “One can only speculate about the mental scars which they will be left with.”

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

The undercover cop, his lover, and their son

October 24, 2014

Bob (Robinson) Lambert

Bob (Robinson) Lambert

The Metropolitan Police has agreed to pay £425,000 to a woman who did not know the father of her child was an undercover policeman. The unprecedented settlement comes after a long battle by a group of women who say that the police used sex to infiltrate their protest groups. Here is Jacqui’s story. The 14 hours of labour that delivered Jacqui’s first child was the most intimate moment of her life. In her words, she shared it with a ghost. Alongside her as she prepared to bring a child into the world was the man she loved, Bob Robinson. She thought he loved her, too. “Well done Jac,” he wrote to her in a note after their boy was born.

That was 1985. Two years later he disappeared into the ether, leaving Jacqui tormented and a toddler without a dad. Three decades on, Jacqui, former animal rights activist turned suburban middle class woman, knows there was more to Bob than his easy charm, love and a shared desire to change the world for the better. Bob Robinson was not Bob Robinson, but Bob Lambert – an undercover police officer sent by the Met’s then Special Demonstration Squad to infiltrate what commanders suspected were the dangerous fringes of London’s animal rights scene. His extraordinary past was exposed three years ago when some of the former campaigners he stood alongside joined the dots and realised that a counter-terrorism detective turned academic was the same man they’d known many years before.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Human rights inquiry over Met Police discrimination case

September 23, 2014

A human rights watchdog is to investigate the Met Police after it emerged references to discrimination were deleted from internal reports. The inquiry by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) comes after PC Carol Howard won a discrimination case against the force. A tribunal found the firearms officer was discriminated against on the grounds of sex and race. The Met said it welcomed the inquiry to “improve” its grievance procedures. In July, a tribunal panel found the Met had “directly discriminated” against PC Howard between 31 January and 29 October 2012. The officer still works for the force.

During the hearing, the panel was told that an internal report supporting her claims of sex and race discrimination had been deliberately rewritten ahead of the tribunal. Mark Hammond, chief executive of the EHRC, said: “This independent and transparent investigation will establish whether the Met’s procedures for handling employees’ complaints about discrimination comply with the law.” The Commission said it will carry out an inquiry into claims of “unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation of employees by the Metropolitan Police”. Craig Mackey, deputy commissioner of Scotland Yard, said: “We had announced previously that we accepted the employment tribunal’s findings and that we would be seeking an independent review and recommendations to improve our internal grievance procedures.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Police officers investigated for social media breaches

August 19, 2014

Hundreds of police officers have been investigated for breaching social media guidelines, research has revealed. Freedom of Information requests by the Press Association found officers made racist comments online and asked crime victims to become Facebook friends. Of 828 cases in England and Wales from 2009 to February this year, 9% ended in resignation, dismissal or retirement. The College of Policing said there was “no place… for officers who abuse the trust placed in us by the public”. About a seventh (14%) of the cases reported resulted in no further action at all. The majority of other cases were dealt with through advice being offered to the officer in question. arious forces also said staff were investigated for comments deemed homophobic, racist or “religiously aggressive”. Greater Manchester Police reported the most investigations, with 88 over the period in question.

West Midlands was second highest with 74, while the Metropolitan Police recorded 69. Chief Constable Alex Marshall, chief executive of the College of Policing, said: “People working in policing must always be mindful of the high standards that the public expect from us. “Our code of ethics, which was launched last month, sets out the standards which everyone in the service should strive to uphold whether at work or away from work, online or offline.” He said most police officers and staff “uphold these high standards” and that social media can be a “really useful way of us talking to the people that we serve”. But he added: “There is no place in policing for officers who abuse the trust placed in us by the public.” “Everyone in policing has to remember that if you’re not prepared to put it in a local newspaper with your name at the bottom, then don’t say it on social media.”

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Police name officers in undercover sex claim case

August 15, 2014

Jim Boyling

Jim Boyling

The Metropolitan Police has officially named two men who had relationships with women while working as undercover officers. It is the first time in its history that it has confirmed the identities of undercover operatives. The pair – Jim Boyling and Bob Lambert – are accused of deceiving the women by having relationships with them without disclosing who they really were. The Met is being sued by three women over the issue but denies wrongdoing. The force argues that the relationships were based on “genuine” feelings.

Historically to protect the safety of undercover officers it has been police policy neither to confirm nor deny who they are under any circumstances. But last month Mr Justice Bean at the High Court ruled that Scotland Yard could no longer rely on this in the cases of Mr Boyling and Mr Lambert, and – in an unprecedented move – the force has now confirmed they did work undercover.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

GMP Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy in IPCC misconduct probe

August 12, 2014

Greater Manchester’s Chief Constable faces a criminal probe over an allegedly poorly-handled investigation into a suspected child sex offender. Sir Peter Fahy was served with both a criminal and gross misconduct notice by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC). The IPCC looked at allegations made by a whistleblower serving with the force. It has been claimed the force let a teenager enter the home of a suspected paedophile who was under surveillance. The inquiry claims officers did not stop the boy from walking into his apartment, which they were watching. Following the announcement, Sir Peter said: “As a chief constable you face making complex decisions on a daily basis about many high risk and challenging situations.

“It is right that this decision-making is scrutinised and that I am held to account as part of this investigation.” Rochdale Labour MP Simon Danczuk said he wanted to see Sir Peter suspended as it was “only right and proper that he is until inquiries are completed”. But Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd said Sir Peter would not be suspended. He said after taking independent legal advice, “nothing has been placed before me at this time by the IPCC which would make me consider the position of the Chief Constable”. A detective superintendent and a detective chief inspector have been also served with criminal and gross misconduct notices over their roles in the case. A retired officer will also be served with the same notice over his role.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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BBC News

Ricky Reel: Police ‘spied on dead student’s family’

July 23, 2014

A mother campaigning for an inquiry into her son’s death in 1997 says she has been told she was spied on by undercover Scotland Yard officers. Student Ricky Reel was 20 when he vanished during a night out in London, shortly after he and his friends had been racially abused by two white men. His body was found in the River Thames. The man tasked with investigating undercover policing did not name specific families but criticised the “routine gathering” of information. Mr Reel’s mother, Sukhdev, said she had been informed that officers gathered intelligence on her in 1998 and 1999.

She wants a public inquiry into the spying claims and told the BBC: “This was happening at a time we were feeling very low, we should have been left alone to grieve for our son, instead of being spied upon.” Mr Reel, a student at Brunel University, was last seen alive on 15 October, 1997, after a night out with three friends in Kingston upon Thames, south-west London. Two white youths had attacked the group of young Asian men. As his friends fought them off, Mr Reel disappeared. His body was found a week later. Police said his death had probably been an accident, and an open verdict was recorded at an inquest in 1999.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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mail

Top gay police officer with MBE is arrested for ‘supplying Class A drugs after being found slumped at wheel’

December 8, 2014

A senior police officer has been arrested on suspicion of supplying Class A drugs. Chief Inspector Paul Cahill, 43, was allegedly found slumped over the wheel of his car. He has previously worked as a tactical adviser to the Metropolitan Police firearms unit, one of the toughest roles in policing. An outspoken campaigner for gay rights, he was awarded an MBE for services to diversity in the 2003 New Year Honours. Cahill was arrested last Monday, December 1, after being found in his car in Wandsworth, South-West London. Colleagues found what they believed to be a stash of drugs during a search of the vehicle and his pockets. He was arrested on suspicion of possessing Class A drugs with intent to supply and driving while unfit through alcohol or drugs.Cahill was taken to a police station and released on bail pending forensic tests on the substances seized. It is understood that further suspicious substances, also believed to be Class A drugs, were found during a search of his home. The drugs have not been specified but Class A includes cocaine and heroin. Tattooed Cahill is a senior officer in Westminster, where he leads a proactive unit cracking down on crimes including drug dealing in the West End and Soho.Visit source for more on this story

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Warwick University students accuse police of attacking tuition fee protest

December 3, 2014

Three people have been arrested and police officers accused of using excessive force after a Taser was pulled on students amid violent scenes at a sit-in for a free education on Wednesday. Students at the University of Warwick say they were sitting down discussing tuition fees after a national student protest when the police arrived. Helena Dunnett-Orridge said she had been attacked by police: “There had been a demo for a free education, then people went into Senate House, sat in reception and had a discussion about the protest. Police came in and we all linked arms. They started pushing and attacking people, completely unprovoked. We couldn’t say anything because we were being pushed.

“They pushed people to the ground and grabbed a girl by the throat using her scarf. They also used CS spray in my friend’s face and had Tasers. They started physically pushing and carrying people out. They dragged me out with them.” Police said they had been called to the site after a member of university staff complained that they had been assaulted. Although they confirmed that a Taser had been taken out, they said it had not been used. A tweet from the West Midlands police account said a Taser “was drawn but not deployed. The sound is a warning sound”.

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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Seven Met police officers arrested after brawl in Lithuania

November 29, 2014

Seven police officers have been arrested while on holiday in Lithuania following a brawl. Scotland Yard said the Metropolitan police officers were detained in Vilnius, the country’s capital, and are under investigation. The Sun reported that the men were in Lithuania for a stag party, and the newspaper published pictures appearing to show them bloodied and stumbling as they were handcuffed and put in to police cars in the city, which is a popular tourist destination. A Met police spokesman said: “The directorate of professional standards is aware seven police constables from territorial policing were arrested on Saturday 22 November whilst on leave in Vilnius, Lithuania.

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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4 News

Police watchdog probes Rotherham abuse officers

November 18, 2014

The IPCC said the officers were all identified through the Jay report, which found that more than 1,400 children had been subjected to sexual exploitation in the town between 1997 and 2013. Professor Alexis Jay’s report criticised Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police for not taking action when children as young as 11 were raped by men, beaten, abducted, and regularly trafficked to other cities to be abused. The watchdog’s commissioner Kathryn Stone said: “The amount of public concern across the country about this episode and the impact on confidence in the police means it is important that a fully independent investigation is conducted to establish how South Yorkshire Police dealt with child sexual exploitation.

“I sincerely hope that victims and their families will see this investigation as a positive step towards answering the many questions they must have. I have met with South Yorkshire Police and am reassured by their commitment to fully cooperate with the investigation.” Today the IPCC identified seven parts of the report, which was published in August, that could lead to misconduct allegations against the officers under investigation. The officers were originally part of a group of 13 referred to the IPCC. Two officers will not face investigation at this time, while the other is still under review.

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SOURCE = Channel Four News

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telegraph

IPCC probe three police forces over ‘failure to act on intelligence about indecent images of children’

November 12, 2014

Three police forces are to be investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) over allegations that they failed to act on intelligence passed to them about paedophiles in their area.An investigation has been launched into the actions of Essex, North Yorkshire and North Wales police forces after they were handed information via the Canadian authorities about people who had been accessing indecent images of children. Project Spade was launched after police in Toronto identified thousands of men in the UK who had allegedly been purchasing videos and DVDs featuring pornographic images of youngsters. The information was first passed to the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP), which is now part of the National Crime Agency (NCA), which in turn was passed the information to individual police forces.

But concern was raised over the speed with which forces were acting on the intelligence, after it emerged that Essex Police had taken ten months to investigate a local teacher who was suspected of being a paedophile. The day after officers contacted Southend based teacher, Martin Goldberg, about the allegations he was found dead at his home, where officers later discovered hundreds of images of pupils on his computer. As a result of the case, Essex Police referred itself to the IPCC, which in turn wrote to all the forces in England and Wales to ask how they had treated the information from Project Spade. An investigation is now to be launched into the actions of North Yorkshire and North Wales Police.

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SOURCE = The Telegraph

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RT

Welsh police pepper spray 4- & 5-yo kids in botched weapons demonstration

November 7, 2014

Gwent Police accidentally sprayed a class of four and five year olds with pepper spray at a school in Wales during a botched weapons demonstration. The weapons were accidentally deployed during a visit from officers to Ysgol Gymraeg Gilfach Fargoed, in Bargoed, Caerphilly, while giving a lesson on police equipment. The officers were reportedly intending to demonstrate the use of pepper spray using a mock PAVA spray, but accidentally discharged a real canister. Eight pupils aged four and five were hit with the spray, which causes the eyes to close and is extremely painful. None of the children required hospital treatment, but parents were urged to seek medical assistance if they had concerns about their children’s welfare.

One parent said that although she was unimpressed with the officers’ conduct, she believed the discharge of chemicals was “a genuine mistake.” “My son was in the class when the pepper spray was released. We had a phone call from the school to say it had happened. I’m not happy about it, but at the same time, it seems to be a genuine mistake.” A spokesperson for the police said that “parents were contacted by a senior officer to explain what happened, discuss any concerns, and offer our sincere apologies.” In a similar case, a 7-year-old girl was injured during a weapons demonstration on November 6 at a police station in Nottinghamshire. The girl, who remains unnamed, reportedly received a cut lip after an ammunition cartridge fell and bounced as a gun was fired. She was touring a police station in Sherwood Lodge, the headquarters of the Nottinghamshire Police Force.

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SOURCE = Russia Today

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Express

Police force blasted for ‘sanitised’ version of how girl, 7, was injured in gun accident

November 7, 2014

The youngster was hit in the face when an officer accidentally fired a gun during a trip by school pupils to Nottinghamshire police force HQ. However the accident was only made public yesterday – a full seven days after it happened – in a report that has been branded as “sanitised” by the local MP. Labour’s John Mann criticised Nottinghamshire Police for their “basic procedural” error, adding that the schoolgirl has been left a “superficial mark” on her lip and required a precautionary hearing test. The Labour MP for Bassetlaw has spoken with the child’s “shocked” mother and said the family have submitted a formal complaint to the force.

Mr Mann said: “It is extremely worrying – not just that the incident happened, but the fact there was a weapon with live ammunition in it lying around police headquarters. “The police have put out a rather sanitised version. The police checked this weapon, claimed that it had no ammunition in it, then fired it off and found that it did. “If ammunition is going off there is a danger it is going to go somewhere and someone is going to get hurt in some way. “And that is exactly what happened. “Why were they doing that? Why was there ammunition in a weapon to begin with? “An awful lot of basic procedures have not been followed here. Weapons should not have ammunition in them when they are being stored.

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SOURCE = The Express

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BBC News

Avon and Somerset Chief Constable Nick Gargan to face gross misconduct probe

October 31, 2014

A police chief is to face an internal charge of gross misconduct following an allegation of inappropriate behaviour towards women. Avon and Somerset Chief Constable Nick Gargan was suspended in May. A probe by the police watchdog led to PCC Sue Mountstevens making the decision that Mr Gargan had a case to answer over the allegation. Mr Gargan, who denies any wrongdoing, also faces an internal charge over improper disclosure of information. He learned in June that he would not face any criminal charges. In a statement, Ms Mountstevens said the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) had put forward a number of recommendations regarding Mr Gargan.

“I have made the decision there is a case to answer for gross misconduct and therefore I will refer the allegations to a misconduct hearing in front of an independent misconduct panel,” she said. “The members of the panel will decide if the allegations are proven or not and will present their recommendations to me. I will ensure that these recommendations are made public.” In Mr Gargan’s absence the force has been led by Acting Chief Constable John Long. Mr Gargan is yet to comment publicly but a Chief Police Officers Staff Association spokesman said it awaited specific details of the alleged breaches of the police code of conduct.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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mail

‘Obsessively jealous’ ex-police officer who brutally stabbed pregnant girlfriend to death while high on M-Cat because he thought she was having an affair is jailed for life

October 24, 2014

An ‘obsessively jealous’ former police officer who brutally stabbed his pregnant girlfriend to death has been jailed for a minimum of 28 years. Jonathan Sutton, 40, wrongly believed Emma Siswick was cheating on him when he stabbed her 81 times in ‘anger and possessive rage’ at the home they shared in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire. Sutton also stabbed two boys, aged nine and 11, in an attack that was described as ‘little short of torture’. The defendant pleaded guilty to Ms Siswick’s murder and the grievous bodily harm of the two boys at Leeds Crown Court today. The court heard that Sutton initially attacked his partner with a glass after discovering a text message on her phone and deciding that she was being unfaithful to him.

He then stabbed her with a knife in the basement kitchen before attacking the two boys in other parts of the house. Miss Siswick called for help and the older boy heard her cries, the court heard. It was then Sutton turned his attention to him. The elder of the two boys was able to attract the attention of neighbours – who called the police – when he ran from the house screaming and bleeding profusely.  Three rooms of the house on Reinwood Road, Huddersfield, where the attack took place, were left covered in blood.

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SOURCE = The Daily Mail

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Met police to pay more than £400,000 to victim of undercover officer

October 23, 2014

The Metropolitan police are to pay more than £400,000 to a woman who has been profoundly traumatised after discovering by chance that the father of her son was an undercover police officer. It is the first time the police have made a payment to settle any of the legal claims brought by women who were deceived by undercover officers sent to spy on political and activist groups. The woman has been receiving psychiatric treatment and has contemplated suicide since she read a newspaper in 2012 and found out the true identity of the man who had fathered her son before abandoning her and the child 24 years previously. The woman, who wishes to remain anonymous and is known by the name Jacqui, said the out-of-court settlement in which the Met would pay her £425,000 would not bring closure for her as the force had not admitted wrongdoing.

She also criticised the police for dragging out the legal action by refusing to concede for two years that the father, Bob Lambert, was one of their undercover officers, even though he himself had already publicly admitted his covert role. She added there was “absolute proof” that Lambert was the father of their son as there was “six foot of his DNA walking around”. The police’s obstructive attitude had made her last two years a “hundred hundred times worse”. She said: “It was like they were kicking me all the time. I felt like they had cast me out to the sea, just to leave me, and I was drowning, I was clinging on.” She had previously said she felt as if she had been “raped by the state”. Jules Carey, Jacqui’s lawyer, called on Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the Met commissioner, to give a commitment that undercover police would never use sexual relationships to gather information, a “shameful and abusive practice”.

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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BBC News

Human rights inquiry over Met Police discrimination case

September 23, 2014

A human rights watchdog is to investigate the Met Police after it emerged references to discrimination were deleted from internal reports. The inquiry by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) comes after PC Carol Howard won a discrimination case against the force. A tribunal found the firearms officer was discriminated against on the grounds of sex and race. The Met said it welcomed the inquiry to “improve” its grievance procedures. In July, a tribunal panel found the Met had “directly discriminated” against PC Howard between 31 January and 29 October 2012. The officer still works for the force.

During the hearing, the panel was told that an internal report supporting her claims of sex and race discrimination had been deliberately rewritten ahead of the tribunal. Mark Hammond, chief executive of the EHRC, said: “This independent and transparent investigation will establish whether the Met’s procedures for handling employees’ complaints about discrimination comply with the law.” The Commission said it will carry out an inquiry into claims of “unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation of employees by the Metropolitan Police”. Craig Mackey, deputy commissioner of Scotland Yard, said: “We had announced previously that we accepted the employment tribunal’s findings and that we would be seeking an independent review and recommendations to improve our internal grievance procedures.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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The Independent

Hundreds of police officers investigated for racist or threatening social media posts

August 19, 2014

Hundreds of police officers and staff have been investigated for posting racist, homophobic and threatening messages on social media, a Freedom of Information request has uncovered. More than 70 have retired, resigned or been sacked over the past five years in some of the most serious breaches that have come to light. The cases that were investigated included an officer who posted information about a planned police operation, and a member of police staff who harassed a former partner on Facebook. Other cases included a community support officer in Devon and Cornwall who was given a written warning for posting photos with weapons, and two special constables in Northampton who resigned after they were pictured in a “compromising situation”.

A civilian officer posted a comment on a Facebook account regarding the actions of Muslims in central London failing to observe a two-minute silence. It was alleged the language used “could be regarded as offensive, inappropriate or likely to cause offence”, police said. Forces said there had also been inquiries into comments that were deemed homophobic, racist or “religiously aggressive”. Greater Manchester Police, the country’s third-biggest force, reported the most investigations at 88, followed by the West Midlands, with 74, and the Metropolitan Police with 69.

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SOURCE = The Independent

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BBC News

Police name officers in undercover sex claim case

August 15, 2014

The Metropolitan Police has officially named two men who had relationships with women while working as undercover officers. It is the first time in its history that it has confirmed the identities of undercover operatives. The pair – Jim Boyling and Bob Lambert – are accused of deceiving the women by having relationships with them without disclosing who they really were. The Met is being sued by three women over the issue but denies wrongdoing. The force argues that the relationships were based on “genuine” feelings.

Historically to protect the safety of undercover officers it has been police policy neither to confirm nor deny who they are under any circumstances. But last month Mr Justice Bean at the High Court ruled that Scotland Yard could no longer rely on this in the cases of Mr Boyling and Mr Lambert, and – in an unprecedented move – the force has now confirmed they did work undercover.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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Manchester police chief Peter Fahy should be suspended, say local MPs

August 14, 2014

Calls intensified for the head of Greater Manchester police to be suspended following his criminal investigation by the police watchdog over bungled surveillance of a suspected paedophile. Two local MPs have called for the suspension of Sir Peter Fahy, with one saying on Wednesday that he was undermining public confidence in the police by remaining in his position. Two further MPs said they were surprised he was still in office after the Independent Police Complaints Commission announcement that it had served Fahy with a criminal and gross misconduct notice in relation to his alleged support for an allegedly poorly handled investigation into a suspected sex offender.

Fahy is one of four serving chief constables, out of 43 in England and Wales, who are facing inquiries into claims of crimes or misconduct. There is a decision pending on a fifth. Sir Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), denied that there was a crisis in police leadership and insisted the cases showed that complaints were investigated effectively. Graham Stringer, MP for Blackley and Broughton, in north Manchester, said: “If the man can clear his name then so be it. But he shouldn’t be in a position where he is looking after the safety and security of the people of Greater Manchester with this hanging over his head because it’s bound to affect his judgment.”

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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bbc

Ricky Reel: Police ‘spied on dead student’s family’

July 23rd, 2014

A mother campaigning for an inquiry into her son’s death in 1997 says she has been told she was spied on by undercover Scotland Yard officers. Student Ricky Reel was 20 when he vanished during a night out in London, shortly after he and his friends had been racially abused by two white men. His body was found in the River Thames. The man tasked with investigating undercover policing did not name specific families but criticised the “routine gathering” of information. Mr Reel’s mother, Sukhdev, said she had been informed that officers gathered intelligence on her in 1998 and 1999.

“Time to grieve”

She wants a public inquiry into the spying claims and told the BBC: “This was happening at a time we were feeling very low, we should have been left alone to grieve for our son, instead of being spied upon.” Mr Reel, a student at Brunel University, was last seen alive on 15 October, 1997, after a night out with three friends in Kingston upon Thames, south-west London. Two white youths had attacked the group of young Asian men. As his friends fought them off, Mr Reel disappeared. His body was found a week later. Police said his death had probably been an accident, and an open verdict was recorded at an inquest in 1999.

There were two police investigations, neither of which established exactly how he died. His family are critical of those inquiries and have always maintained he was murdered. Mrs Reel said she had been informed by a senior officer of five occasions when police were gathering intelligence on her. That officer was from Operation Herne, the inquiry into undercover policing. She said: “As soon as I heard it, the room started spinning and I felt sick.” The undercover operation involved the unit known as the Special Demonstration Squad (SDS) which also spied on the parents of the murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence. Civil rights campaigner Suresh Grover, who has worked with Mr Reel’s family on its campaign, said: “The first real gesture that needs to take place is for the police to come and explain who these officers were and exactly what their remits were.”

SOURCE = BBC News

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bbc

Police stop and search powers to be overhauled

April 30, 2014

Police stop and search powers in England and Wales are to be overhauled with a revised code of conduct, Home Secretary Theresa May has said. She told MPs an inquiry had found 27% of searches may have been illegal. She said that if the number of stop and searches did not now come down, she would seek to change the law. The move follows a consultation, which highlighted concerns that stop and search was used too widely and was unfairly targeting ethnic minorities. Labour say the plans do not go far enough. Recent figures show only about 10% of more than a million searches lead to an arrest, with black people six times more likely to be stopped than those who are white.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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LBC

Policewoman Sacked Over ‘Plebgate’ Row

April 30, 2014

A policewoman has been sacked after details of the ‘Plebgate’ row were leaked to the press, Scotland Yard has said. Gillian Weatherley was found guilty of gross misconduct over her role in the debacle after a three-day hearing. The Diplomatic Protection Squad member was on duty in Downing Street on the day of the confrontation between former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell and PC Toby Rowland in September 2012. The row erupted when Mr Mitchell was prevented from cycling through the main gate of Downing Street.

The Tory MP, who was accused of calling the officer a “****ing pleb”, ended up resigning over the row. He has always maintained he never used the word “pleb”, although he admits swearing during the altercation. A day after the confrontation, PC Weatherley sent a photograph of an email between PC Rowland and his bosses to another officer, James Glanville, who then leaked details to a national newspaper.

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SOURCE = LBC News

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bbc

Wiltshire Police officer cleared of Taser assault

April 29, 2014

A police officer who used a Taser on a naked man who threw his underpants at him has been cleared of assault. Wiltshire PC Lee Birch, 30, fired the stun gun into Daniel Dove’s chest during a strip search at Melksham Police station in December 2012. Mr Dove, 24, was arrested for being drunk and disorderly and assault, but the case was later dropped. The jury at Bristol Crown Court also found the officer not guilty of misconduct. It took the jury of six men and six women just more than an hour to acquit unanimously PC Birch. The jury had heard Mr Dove had been arrested after a disturbance outside a nightclub in Trowbridge. PC Birch had told the jury that Mr Dove “appeared to be drunk” and he considered the threat posed by him was “extremely high”.

The court had previously heard that during the strip search in a police cell Mr Dove took off his boxer shorts and flicked them at the officer, hitting PC Birch on the side of his face. CCTV footage of the incident shows PC Birch ripping the boxer shorts from Mr Dove and throwing them against the wall of the police cell. He fired his Taser and then shouted “you have assaulted me for the second time”. Mr Dove was left “prostrate on the ground” while PC Birch removed the prongs of the Taser from his chest. Speaking outside court, Ch Supt Paul Mills from Wiltshire Police said: “The use of Taser is one of a number of tactical options available to selected officers who have undertaken rigorous training and assessment. “During their training it is highlighted to officers that the level of force used must be reasonable and necessary to achieve the purpose.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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The Mail UK

A gangster left to rot in a sealed barrel… and a stench of corruption that goes to the very top

April 27, 2014

The killers of cocaine smuggler Floyd Dodson treated him as ruthlessly in death as they had in life. What was left of him made it hard to establish precisely how he met his end – he had, after all, been sealed in a plastic barrel and left to rot for three weeks. But according to a pathologist, he may literally have died of fright. Dodson’s error was to fall out with his associates over a series of deals involving drug mules bringing cocaine into Britain in their stomachs. Late one night, he was lured to a meeting with gang members  in Catford, South-East London, then tied up and beaten. He was physically fragile: his beating is thought to have exacerbated a heart condition caused by his drug use.

Whether still alive or not, Guyana-born Dodson, 39, was wrapped in a duvet cover, then stuffed inside the industrial barrel, which was loaded on to a truck.  The gangsters drove it to Pendeford in Staffordshire, and dumped it in a hedgerow by the side of a country lane. By the time a council worker found it, Dodson’s remains were so badly decomposed he could only be identified by his credit cards and a notebook in one of his pockets. Nigel Brade, the one man eventually convicted and jailed for six years for Dodson’s manslaughter, later admitted that leaving them had been ‘sloppy’.

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SOURCE = The Daily Mail

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Met tried to silence PC whistleblower who exposed crime figures scandal

April 13, 2014

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) made repeated attempts to silence a whistleblower who exposed the widespread manipulation of crime statistics, it has emerged. Documents seen by the Guardian show that senior officers made three separate attempts to stop PC James Patrick speaking out over the course of less than five months. In one letter, they went so far as to insist he be barred from having any contact with any member of the public. He was sent two further letters within a few days this month warning him about interviews he intended to do with the BBC. He was told he faced further disciplinary action if he continued to speak out. He was eventually referred to the directorate of professional standards after he did the interviews, in which he said the Met “puts reputation before the truth”.

As a result of Patrick’s evidence to the public administration select committee, the head of HM Inspectorate of Constabulary Tom Winsor admitted that the manipulation of crime figures was taking place. The UK Statistics Authority withdrew the Met’s gold standard national statistics status. The Met commissioner, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, was forced to admit the numbers were being fiddled and said the issue was a cause for concern. Bernard Jenkin, the chair of the parliamentary committee that investigated the manipulation of crime stats, said: “The most depressing part of our inquiry is the way in which the Metropolitan police have treated my constituent, PC James Patrick, who was our key witness.”

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SOURCE = The Guardian

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LBC

Charges Considered Over Man Who Died In Police Custody

April 9, 2014

Two Metropolitan police officers have been referred to the Crown Prosecution Service over evidence they gave at the inquest into the death of Sean Rigg. The 40 year old paranoid schizophrenic died at Brixton police station in August 2008. The musician was left restrained and handcuffed on the floor of a cell after being arrested for attacking passers-by and officers in Balham. An inquest later found that the officers involved had used “unsuitable force” and called into question the actions of one officer in light of CCTV footage from the police station. Sean Rigg’s family have previously criticised the IPCC for their investigation into his death and a review last year concluded the watchdog should look at it again.

The IPCC has now passed information to prosecutors to consider whether two serving Metropolitan Police officers should be brought to court. A sergeant and a police constable were arrested in March last year on suspicion of perjury and perverting the course of justice. The watchdog said: “The IPCC has concluded its investigation into the evidence given at the inquest into the death of Sean Rigg and has decided to provide its investigation report to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) for consideration as to whether criminal charges should be brought against two serving Metropolitan Police Service officers.” A third officer, who has retired, was also arrested on suspicion of perverting the course of justice but his actions have not been referred to the CPS.

Copyright © 2014: LBC News

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LBC

Duggan Family Win Latest Legal Fight Over Lawful Killing Verdict

April 8, 2014

judge has ruled that his mother, Pamela Duggan, has “an arguable case” that should be heard by the Divisional Court in London. Mr Justice Mitting has ruled that the coroner’s direction to the jury in relation to the lawful killing was “arguably inadequate”. The 29 year old was fatally shot by police in Tottenham in 2011. His death sparked the London riots. Mrs Duggan’s lawyers will contend at a full hearing that the coroner did not address questions which, if they had been addressed, meant the lawful killing verdict could not stand. The judge said the case should go before a panel of judges including either the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas, or the President of the Queen’s Bench Division, Sir Brian Leveson.

Copyright © 2014: LBC News

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bbc

Police damaged but not broken, says HMIC report

March 31, 2014

In the first annual report, HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary Tom Winsor said loss of trust was corrosive to the British model of policing by consent. He said it was the responsibility of chief constables to repair the damage. He names five events linked to claims of police malpractice, wrongdoing or corruption, including the Stephen Lawrence case and “plebgate” affair. ‘Severely shaken’

The five examples he gives are:

  • The handling of the Stephen Lawrence murder investigation into the killing of a black teenager by a gang of white youths in London in 1993
  • The Hillsborough disaster and claims that police covered up mistakes during the 1989 FA cup semi-final in which 96 Liverpool fans died
  • Clashes between police and protesters at Orgreave Colliery during the 1984-85 miners’ strike and claims of miscarriages of justice
  • The so-called plebgate affair which led to the resignation of chief whip Andrew Mitchell after a row with police officers at the gates of Downing Street in 2012
  • The conduct of some undercover police officers who had relationships with women they were targeting, including some who had children

In his annual report to Parliament, Mr Winsor said: “It is very much to be regretted that the confidence of the public in their ability to trust the police has been so severely shaken by controversies which have recently achieved public prominence, and ones which have been the subject of public concern and criticism for many years. “They include those concerning Hillsborough, Orgreave Colliery, the investigation of the murder of Stephen Lawrence and how police conducted themselves afterwards, the enforced resignation of a cabinet minister as a result of the actions of at least one dishonest police officer, the sexual deception of citizens who trusted undercover police officers, and others.” The report was published on the morning that fresh inquests into the Hillsborough disaster were opening in Warrington. Those hearings will look at allegations of police misconduct arising from the aftermath of the tragedy.

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SOURCE = BBC News

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