And a rather excellent question raised in the debate as well:
Does the right hon. and learned Gentleman accept that, on the CPS's lack of proceeding against the officer, one aspect that causes concern is his alleged chequered history? According to press reports, he left the Met under a cloud, was re-employed as a clerk, successfully applied to Surrey constabulary for a position and then transferred back to the Met. Can the right hon. and learned Gentleman advise us, in his knowledge, whether that aspect of Metropolitan Police Authority recruitment policy is being examined as part of the process in respect of the prosecution, and whether, if there is a lesson for the Home Office on inter-constabulary transfers, that matter will be brought to the attention of the House?
My MP has replied to the letter below:
Thanks for the e mail Mr Cohen. I'll let the relevant people know how you feel, Best Wishes, Jim
Dear Jim Fitzpatrick,
It is with great dismay that I read the outcome of the ongoing investigation into the unfortunate death of Ian Tomlinson. My sentiment is that the actions of the CPS and Metropolitan Police in this case demonstrate a clear and unambiguous desire to protect police officers and avoid the application of justice from a jury. A catalogue of errors and dubious behaviour has taken place, including, but not limited to:
- the appointment of Dr Patel as coroner
- the behaviour, public pronouncements and equivocating of senior police staffers in dealing with both the Tomlinson family and press after the event.
- the withholding of evidence of assault until a day after the statue of limitations for the charge had passed
- the opacity of the police disciplinary procedure
- the institutional behaviour of the TSG in covering identifying badges and wearing masks.
- the unacceptable delays in the CPS's announcement
It is clear that the IPCC and CPS are riddled with biased and compromised individuals and institutionally incapable of effecting justice in cases such as this.
I ask that you raise this issue and campaign for the establishment of a transparent, public body for the investigation of police criminal behaviour, as well as the abolishment of the Territorial Support Group, who behave more like the Basij of Iran than the police force we expect and deserve in our country. I appreciate that the Houses (rightly) do not have powers over the Police, however, I feel that vocal objections, questions in the house and a change in the way that the forces are regulated is the only way to restore faith in the police in this country and to allow the family of Ian Tomlinson to receive the justice they need.