UK & World News

  • 12 August 2014, 15:09

Criminal Probe Into Manchester's Police Chief

Greater Manchester Police's top officer is subject to a criminal investigation over a "poorly handled" inquiry into a suspected sex offender, the police watchdog has said.

Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy has been served with criminal and gross misconduct notices following investigations, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said.

A serving detective superintendent and a detective chief inspector have also been handed the same type of notices in relation to the investigation into the alleged sex offender.

The watchdog said a fourth officer, who is retired, will also be served with criminal and gross misconduct notices over the case.

Sir Peter, who joined the police in 1981, issued a statement, saying: "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."

The IPCC has carried out three investigations - one was about the sexual abuse investigation, another looked into claims concerning serial killer Harold Shipman's victims and a third probed allegations against a detective chief inspector.

Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney has been served with a gross misconduct notice for his oversight in the disposal of body parts belonging to Shipman's victims.

It has been previously reported that tissue samples were taken from 12 of Shipman's female victims in order to confirm the cause of death.

They were stored for a number of years, but in 2011 police decided to "respectfully dispose" of the samples without letting the women's families know.

Relatives of Shipman's victims are being kept informed as the probe progresses and a major incident room has been set up, the IPCC said.

The investigation was prompted by allegations made by a whistleblower.

Investigators at the IPCC said they have a sizeable number of GMP documents which relate to all three inquires and interviewed the whistleblower.

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