Inquiry by police watchdog ‘in public interest’

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From: Nicholas Long, Commissioner, Independent Police Complaints Commission.

For Adam Briggs to state that the Independent Police Complaints Commission’s investigation into the former DCC of North Yorkshire Police was “vindictive” is unsubstantiated (Yorkshire Post, February 10).

No reason was given for this assertion, nor have these claims been previously put to the IPCC. The IPCC’s investigation into Mr Briggs’s claim for £11,750 for development training while in receipt of an allowance totalling £31,647 intended to provide for the same was firmly in the public interest. No reason is provided for Mr Briggs’s belief that this was “vindictive” or of the further entirely incorrect claim that the investigation took over a year to complete.

The IPCC is obliged to investigate certain matters referred to it, and given current wider public concern about probity in public life, it was important the allegations were examined independently. As the report reveals, they were not satisfactorily resolved by either Chief Constable Grahame Maxwell or North Yorkshire Police Authority.

The IPCC’s investigation commenced in late February 2011 and was completed by late July when Mr Briggs was invited to provide explanations to matters arising. He declined to be interviewed but asked for questions to be put to him in writing. In spite of a generous extension in the time for response no explanations have been provided, nor at any time did he make complaints about the investigation. The report in full can be viewed at http://www.ipcc.gov.uk/en/Pages/investigation_reports.aspx