Terms of reference of the IOPC Hillsborough investigation (Revised 17 August 2022)

Published 17 Aug 2022

The IOPC investigation, which is the largest independent investigation into alleged police misconduct and criminality ever carried out in England and Wales, focuses on police actions in the aftermath of the disaster.

The Operation Resolve investigation concerns the actions of all those organisations involved in the disaster and the lead up to it. The policing element of this investigation is managed by the IOPC to provide independent oversight and scrutiny.

In January 2022, the Terms of Reference (ToRs) for both the IOPC and Operation Resolve investigations into the Hillsborough disaster had some minor revisions made to them which are detailed below.

  1. To reflect the changes in the names of organisations (e.g. the IPCC to the IOPC, Police Authorities to the Police and Crime Commissioners) and to update who the Hillsborough Decision Maker is.
  2. To ensure our legal powers are more accurately represented and that they stand up to scrutiny before the Hillsborough Decision Maker Sarah Green finalises her decisions. This is something we regularly do across all IOPC investigations.
  3. Following a review of the TORs against the allegations in the complaint reports, we have identified some gaps and revised the TORs to ensure that all complaint allegations are covered.

The ToRs are kept under review and as a result, in August 2022 they were updated to include some specific conduct matters relating to former West Midlands Police Assistant Chief Constable Mervyn Jones. These matters relate to Mr Jones’ conduct whilst he held the positions of Deputy Chief Constable and Chief Constable of Cheshire Constabulary. This update to the IOPC investigation ToRs can be found at point 6(g).

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