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An act of parliament that provides the core framework of police powers to combat crime and provide codes of practice for the exercise of these powers.
Leads and manages the development of the police service in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The body that represents the interests of all police constables, sergeants, and inspectors.
Deals with someone’s inability or failure to perform to a satisfactory level, but without breaching the Standards of Professional Behaviour.
Focuses on putting an issue right and preventing it from happening again by encouraging those involved to reflect on their actions and learn. It is not a disciplinary process or a disciplinary outcome.
Department within a police force that deals with complaints and conduct matters.
Refers to lower-level misconduct or performance-related issues, which are dealt with in a proportionate and constructive manner.
This means doing what is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into account the facts and the context in which the complaint has been raised, within the framework of legislation and guidance.
The average is calculated using the individual results of the forces in that most similar force group.
An investigation carried out by IOPC staff.
Carried out by the police under their own direction and control. The IOPC sets the terms of reference and receives the investigation report when it is complete. Complainants have a right of appeal following a supervised investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
This act sets out how the police complaints system operates.
How a police force is run, for example policing standards or policing policy.
An investigation carried out by the police under the direction and control of the IOPC.
The appropriate authority can be: - the chief officer of the police force - the Police and Crime Commissioner responsible for the police force you complained about -the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service) -the Common Council for the City of London (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the City of London police).
An intelligence-led agency with law enforcement powers, it is also responsible for reducing the harm that is caused to people and communities by serious organised crime.
Policing bodies include police and crime commissioners, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
Investigations carried out entirely by the police. Complainants have a right of appeal following a local investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
IOPC guidance to the police service and police authorities on the handling of complaints.
A complaint or recordable conduct matter that doesn’t need to be referred to the IOPC, but where the seriousness or circumstances justifies referral.
Parameters within which an investigation is conducted.
A person is adversely affected if he or she suffers any form of loss or damage, distress or inconvenience, if he or she is put in danger or is otherwise unduly put at risk of being adversely affected.
This is where a manager deals with the way someone has behaved. It can include: showing the police officer or member of staff how their behaviour fell short of expectations set out in the Standards of Professional Behaviour; identifying expectations for future conduct; or addressing any underlying causes of misconduct.
This could be the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A breach of standards of professional behaviour by police officers or staff so serious it could justify their dismissal.
A matter where no complaint has been received, but where there is an indication that a person serving with the police may have committed a criminal offence or behaved in a manner that would justify disciplinary proceedings.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
Quarter 1 covers 1 April - 30 June Quarter 2 covers 1 April - 30 September Quarter 3 covers 1 April - 31 December Quarter 4 covers the full financial year (1 April - 31 March).
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
Used to house anyone who has been detained.
Complainants have the right to appeal to the IOPC if a police force did not record their complaint or notify the correct police force if it was made originally to the wrong force.
The purpose of an investigation is to establish the facts behind a complaint, conduct matter, or DSI matter and reach conclusions. An investigator looks into matters and produces a report that sets out and analyses the evidence. There are three types of investigations: local, directed and independent.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
A person who makes a complaint about the conduct of someone serving with the police.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
List of officers and staff who have been dismissed from policing, or would have been if they had not retired or resigned.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
An independent judicial officer, the coroner enquires into deaths reported to him/her.
A breach of the Standards of Professional Behaviour that would justify at least a written warning.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
A record is made of a complaint, giving it formal status as a complaint under the Police Reform Act 2002.
This is a format where information is written in plain English and short sentences.
The IOPC must be notified about specific types of complaint or incidents to be able to decide how they should be dealt with.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
Casework involves assessing appeals. Casework staff also have a role in overseeing the police complaints system to help ensure police forces handle complaints in the best possible way.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
Conduct includes acts, omissions, statements and decisions (whether actual, alleged or inferred). For example: language used and the manner or tone of communications.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.

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An act of parliament that provides the core framework of police powers to combat crime and provide codes of practice for the exercise of these powers.
Leads and manages the development of the police service in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The body that represents the interests of all police constables, sergeants, and inspectors.
Deals with someone’s inability or failure to perform to a satisfactory level, but without breaching the Standards of Professional Behaviour.
Focuses on putting an issue right and preventing it from happening again by encouraging those involved to reflect on their actions and learn. It is not a disciplinary process or a disciplinary outcome.
Department within a police force that deals with complaints and conduct matters.
Refers to lower-level misconduct or performance-related issues, which are dealt with in a proportionate and constructive manner.
This means doing what is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into account the facts and the context in which the complaint has been raised, within the framework of legislation and guidance.
The average is calculated using the individual results of the forces in that most similar force group.
An investigation carried out by IOPC staff.
Carried out by the police under their own direction and control. The IOPC sets the terms of reference and receives the investigation report when it is complete. Complainants have a right of appeal following a supervised investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
This act sets out how the police complaints system operates.
How a police force is run, for example policing standards or policing policy.
An investigation carried out by the police under the direction and control of the IOPC.
The appropriate authority can be: - the chief officer of the police force - the Police and Crime Commissioner responsible for the police force you complained about -the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service) -the Common Council for the City of London (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the City of London police).
An intelligence-led agency with law enforcement powers, it is also responsible for reducing the harm that is caused to people and communities by serious organised crime.
Policing bodies include police and crime commissioners, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
Investigations carried out entirely by the police. Complainants have a right of appeal following a local investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
IOPC guidance to the police service and police authorities on the handling of complaints.
A complaint or recordable conduct matter that doesn’t need to be referred to the IOPC, but where the seriousness or circumstances justifies referral.
Parameters within which an investigation is conducted.
A person is adversely affected if he or she suffers any form of loss or damage, distress or inconvenience, if he or she is put in danger or is otherwise unduly put at risk of being adversely affected.
This is where a manager deals with the way someone has behaved. It can include: showing the police officer or member of staff how their behaviour fell short of expectations set out in the Standards of Professional Behaviour; identifying expectations for future conduct; or addressing any underlying causes of misconduct.
This could be the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A breach of standards of professional behaviour by police officers or staff so serious it could justify their dismissal.
A matter where no complaint has been received, but where there is an indication that a person serving with the police may have committed a criminal offence or behaved in a manner that would justify disciplinary proceedings.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
Quarter 1 covers 1 April - 30 June Quarter 2 covers 1 April - 30 September Quarter 3 covers 1 April - 31 December Quarter 4 covers the full financial year (1 April - 31 March).
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
Used to house anyone who has been detained.
Complainants have the right to appeal to the IOPC if a police force did not record their complaint or notify the correct police force if it was made originally to the wrong force.
The purpose of an investigation is to establish the facts behind a complaint, conduct matter, or DSI matter and reach conclusions. An investigator looks into matters and produces a report that sets out and analyses the evidence. There are three types of investigations: local, directed and independent.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
A person who makes a complaint about the conduct of someone serving with the police.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
List of officers and staff who have been dismissed from policing, or would have been if they had not retired or resigned.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
An independent judicial officer, the coroner enquires into deaths reported to him/her.
A breach of the Standards of Professional Behaviour that would justify at least a written warning.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
A record is made of a complaint, giving it formal status as a complaint under the Police Reform Act 2002.
This is a format where information is written in plain English and short sentences.
The IOPC must be notified about specific types of complaint or incidents to be able to decide how they should be dealt with.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
Casework involves assessing appeals. Casework staff also have a role in overseeing the police complaints system to help ensure police forces handle complaints in the best possible way.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
Conduct includes acts, omissions, statements and decisions (whether actual, alleged or inferred). For example: language used and the manner or tone of communications.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.

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Swyddfa Annibynnol Ymddygiad yr Heddlu - National recommendations and recommendations made to the Metropolitan Police Service - October 2019

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An act of parliament that provides the core framework of police powers to combat crime and provide codes of practice for the exercise of these powers.
Leads and manages the development of the police service in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The body that represents the interests of all police constables, sergeants, and inspectors.
Deals with someone’s inability or failure to perform to a satisfactory level, but without breaching the Standards of Professional Behaviour.
Focuses on putting an issue right and preventing it from happening again by encouraging those involved to reflect on their actions and learn. It is not a disciplinary process or a disciplinary outcome.
Department within a police force that deals with complaints and conduct matters.
Refers to lower-level misconduct or performance-related issues, which are dealt with in a proportionate and constructive manner.
This means doing what is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into account the facts and the context in which the complaint has been raised, within the framework of legislation and guidance.
The average is calculated using the individual results of the forces in that most similar force group.
An investigation carried out by IOPC staff.
Carried out by the police under their own direction and control. The IOPC sets the terms of reference and receives the investigation report when it is complete. Complainants have a right of appeal following a supervised investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
This act sets out how the police complaints system operates.
How a police force is run, for example policing standards or policing policy.
An investigation carried out by the police under the direction and control of the IOPC.
The appropriate authority can be: - the chief officer of the police force - the Police and Crime Commissioner responsible for the police force you complained about -the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service) -the Common Council for the City of London (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the City of London police).
An intelligence-led agency with law enforcement powers, it is also responsible for reducing the harm that is caused to people and communities by serious organised crime.
Policing bodies include police and crime commissioners, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
Investigations carried out entirely by the police. Complainants have a right of appeal following a local investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
IOPC guidance to the police service and police authorities on the handling of complaints.
A complaint or recordable conduct matter that doesn’t need to be referred to the IOPC, but where the seriousness or circumstances justifies referral.
Parameters within which an investigation is conducted.
A person is adversely affected if he or she suffers any form of loss or damage, distress or inconvenience, if he or she is put in danger or is otherwise unduly put at risk of being adversely affected.
This is where a manager deals with the way someone has behaved. It can include: showing the police officer or member of staff how their behaviour fell short of expectations set out in the Standards of Professional Behaviour; identifying expectations for future conduct; or addressing any underlying causes of misconduct.
This could be the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A breach of standards of professional behaviour by police officers or staff so serious it could justify their dismissal.
A matter where no complaint has been received, but where there is an indication that a person serving with the police may have committed a criminal offence or behaved in a manner that would justify disciplinary proceedings.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
Quarter 1 covers 1 April - 30 June Quarter 2 covers 1 April - 30 September Quarter 3 covers 1 April - 31 December Quarter 4 covers the full financial year (1 April - 31 March).
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
Used to house anyone who has been detained.
Complainants have the right to appeal to the IOPC if a police force did not record their complaint or notify the correct police force if it was made originally to the wrong force.
The purpose of an investigation is to establish the facts behind a complaint, conduct matter, or DSI matter and reach conclusions. An investigator looks into matters and produces a report that sets out and analyses the evidence. There are three types of investigations: local, directed and independent.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
A person who makes a complaint about the conduct of someone serving with the police.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
List of officers and staff who have been dismissed from policing, or would have been if they had not retired or resigned.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
An independent judicial officer, the coroner enquires into deaths reported to him/her.
A breach of the Standards of Professional Behaviour that would justify at least a written warning.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
A record is made of a complaint, giving it formal status as a complaint under the Police Reform Act 2002.
This is a format where information is written in plain English and short sentences.
The IOPC must be notified about specific types of complaint or incidents to be able to decide how they should be dealt with.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
Casework involves assessing appeals. Casework staff also have a role in overseeing the police complaints system to help ensure police forces handle complaints in the best possible way.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
Conduct includes acts, omissions, statements and decisions (whether actual, alleged or inferred). For example: language used and the manner or tone of communications.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.

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Preface First

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Content

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National recommendations and recommendations made to the Metropolitan Police Service - October 2019

We made a number of learning recommendations, some national and other to the Metropoiltan Police Service (MPS),  following our investigation of several conduct allegations referred to us by the MPS.

An act of parliament that provides the core framework of police powers to combat crime and provide codes of practice for the exercise of these powers.
Leads and manages the development of the police service in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The body that represents the interests of all police constables, sergeants, and inspectors.
Deals with someone’s inability or failure to perform to a satisfactory level, but without breaching the Standards of Professional Behaviour.
Focuses on putting an issue right and preventing it from happening again by encouraging those involved to reflect on their actions and learn. It is not a disciplinary process or a disciplinary outcome.
Department within a police force that deals with complaints and conduct matters.
Refers to lower-level misconduct or performance-related issues, which are dealt with in a proportionate and constructive manner.
This means doing what is appropriate in the circumstances, taking into account the facts and the context in which the complaint has been raised, within the framework of legislation and guidance.
The average is calculated using the individual results of the forces in that most similar force group.
An investigation carried out by IOPC staff.
Carried out by the police under their own direction and control. The IOPC sets the terms of reference and receives the investigation report when it is complete. Complainants have a right of appeal following a supervised investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
This act sets out how the police complaints system operates.
How a police force is run, for example policing standards or policing policy.
An investigation carried out by the police under the direction and control of the IOPC.
The appropriate authority can be: - the chief officer of the police force - the Police and Crime Commissioner responsible for the police force you complained about -the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service) -the Common Council for the City of London (if your complaint is about the Commissioner of the City of London police).
An intelligence-led agency with law enforcement powers, it is also responsible for reducing the harm that is caused to people and communities by serious organised crime.
Policing bodies include police and crime commissioners, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
Investigations carried out entirely by the police. Complainants have a right of appeal following a local investigation (unless it is an investigation into a direction and control matter).
IOPC guidance to the police service and police authorities on the handling of complaints.
A complaint or recordable conduct matter that doesn’t need to be referred to the IOPC, but where the seriousness or circumstances justifies referral.
Parameters within which an investigation is conducted.
A person is adversely affected if he or she suffers any form of loss or damage, distress or inconvenience, if he or she is put in danger or is otherwise unduly put at risk of being adversely affected.
This is where a manager deals with the way someone has behaved. It can include: showing the police officer or member of staff how their behaviour fell short of expectations set out in the Standards of Professional Behaviour; identifying expectations for future conduct; or addressing any underlying causes of misconduct.
This could be the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Common Council for the City of London, or the Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A flexible process for dealing with complaints that can be adapted to the needs of the complainant. It may involve, for example, providing information and an explanation, an apology, or a meeting between the complainant and the officer involved.
A breach of standards of professional behaviour by police officers or staff so serious it could justify their dismissal.
A matter where no complaint has been received, but where there is an indication that a person serving with the police may have committed a criminal offence or behaved in a manner that would justify disciplinary proceedings.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
Quarter 1 covers 1 April - 30 June Quarter 2 covers 1 April - 30 September Quarter 3 covers 1 April - 31 December Quarter 4 covers the full financial year (1 April - 31 March).
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
Used to house anyone who has been detained.
Complainants have the right to appeal to the IOPC if a police force did not record their complaint or notify the correct police force if it was made originally to the wrong force.
The purpose of an investigation is to establish the facts behind a complaint, conduct matter, or DSI matter and reach conclusions. An investigator looks into matters and produces a report that sets out and analyses the evidence. There are three types of investigations: local, directed and independent.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
A person who makes a complaint about the conduct of someone serving with the police.
The ending of an ongoing investigation into a complaint, conduct matter or DSI matter. An investigation may only be discontinued if it meets one or more of the grounds for discontinuance set out in law.
List of officers and staff who have been dismissed from policing, or would have been if they had not retired or resigned.
The type of behaviour being complained about. A single complaint case can have one or many allegations attached.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
An independent judicial officer, the coroner enquires into deaths reported to him/her.
A breach of the Standards of Professional Behaviour that would justify at least a written warning.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
A record is made of a complaint, giving it formal status as a complaint under the Police Reform Act 2002.
This is a format where information is written in plain English and short sentences.
The IOPC must be notified about specific types of complaint or incidents to be able to decide how they should be dealt with.
No further action may be taken with regard to a complaint if the complainant decides to retract their allegation(s).
Casework involves assessing appeals. Casework staff also have a role in overseeing the police complaints system to help ensure police forces handle complaints in the best possible way.
Disapplication means that a police force may handle a complaint in whatever way it thinks fit, including not dealing with it under complaints legislation. This may only happen in certain circumstances where the complaint fits one or more of the grounds for disapplication set out in law.
Conduct includes acts, omissions, statements and decisions (whether actual, alleged or inferred). For example: language used and the manner or tone of communications.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
You can request a review/appeal if you’re not satisfied with how your complaint has been handled.
IOPC reference
2016/075718
Date of recommendation
Friday, 4 October, 2019
Date the force response is due
Friday, 29 November, 2019
Recommendations

Recommendation to the MPS

Although our investigation did not find a case to answer for misconduct by anyone in relation to the application process for search warrants, we did find areas where the warrant applications could have been improved. To ensure these errors are not replicated in future enquiries conducted by the MPS, we recommend:

The MPS should take immediate steps to assure itself that appropriate measures (for example training, guidance and oversight) are in place to ensure that warrants applied for by the MPS are consistently completed to a high standard.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

A Deputy Assistant Commissioner (DAC) has been appointed to oversee the implementation of these recommendations. A Commander provides the strategic oversight in their role as Head of Profession for Investigations and the tactical delivery is managed at Superintendent level. An organisational Governance board and working group have been implemented.

The search warrant guidance that has been in place since 2016 has been revisited. Refresher training was made available and published for all staff across the MPS regarding search warrant applications through the internal communications system. This was followed up with targeted communications to all staff directing them to the updated guidance on the 13/11/19.

Internal online training material has been updated for search warrant applications. This was achieved through updating the guidance and sending focused communications to all staff on the 14/11/19. This material also reinforced that officers should consult the MPS legal department before they apply for search warrants in complex and sensitive cases. The DLS lawyers are aware of the concerns raised regarding search warrants and have been briefed to deal with any urgent requests for assistance.

Search warrant training is covered in the recruit continuous training course, and detectives receive refresher training with a focus on specialist crime and the use of cover intelligence. Both courses cover how to apply for a search warrant by telephone. Learning and Development (L&D) have briefed their trainers/instructors, to ensure all the current learning points are highlighted within the existing training, this includes specific focus on appropriate disclosure, and handling exhibits.

There is ongoing training for officers working within covert policing regarding the management of sensitive material for search warrant applications. The course also reminds staff of the importance relating to search warrant applications for exhibits and disclosure.

An HMCTS lead team manager is part of the working group to support any immediate improvements to the telephone search warrant process. They will continue to work with the MPS on the Search Warrant Strategic Governance Board from January 2020. A formal board following the initial actions and response to these recommendations will be chaired by Lead Responsible Officer (LRO) for search warrants.

Medium term plan:

From January 2020 the search warrant working group will become the Search Warrant Strategic Governance Board. The terms of reference are being developed ane will report into the Head Profession of investigations. The board will consist of MPS representatives from across all areas of the organisation and include the HMCTS. Responsibilities will include, policy and governance ownership, performance management, organisational learning, and identifying and cascading good practice. They will also engage with other forces to support the College of Policing in the development of national standards for search warrant applications. This board will be chaired by the Lead Responsible Officer (LRO) at Superintendent level.

A revised L&D package for all staff on search warrant applications and processes will be created. This will be achieved using a blend of learning approaches including 'Webinar' style delivery. The role out of this programme will commence in January 2020. The new governance structure will allow for clear oversight and performance on all search warrants. An improved quality assurance (QA) system will be manged through the intelligence teams, this will ensure consistency of standards and opportunities for improvement. To embed the process the MPS plans to use innovative training tools to deliver training to all officers within their working environment, interactive remote training and conventional presentations via the internal communication system.

A new L&D package for all inspecting ranks will be created. The current intention is to roll this out from March 2020. This will be a focused approach for all Inspectors across the MPS, and delivered to all existing Inspectors who perform roles where search warrants are authorised. The training delivery will be through a continuous professional development package, via the local training teams. It will build on the PC/DC 'Webinar' training and will include additional material in the form of a video and written presentation.

New L&D package for Met Operations (MO2) will be developed with anticipated roll out from March 2020. This will ensure a consistent approach to the management of search warrant records. The plan is for all relevant staff to receive interactive training utilising the PC/DC 'Webinar', and will then include additional material in the form of a video and written presentation.

The existing covert policing training will continue to be delivered via Met Operations (MO3). This is face to face training and incorporates the management of sensitive material for search warrant applications.

The MPS will introduce a single point of contact (SPOC) at Superintendent level for each MPS unit and BCU to embed and cascade learning regarding search warrants through the governance board.

Long term plan: by January 2021

Assurance and monitoring of search warrant applications and executive action will be achieved through the governance board. Areas that will be evaluated and where necessary improvement plans embedded will be through the number of referrals to the Director of Legal Services (DLS), the level of complaints received relating to search warrants and evaluation of the training through feedback from staff when the courses are embedded in business as usual.

Ensure the covert policing course, including the search warrant sensitive intelligence training is incorporated in the organisational course catalogue through L&D. This will allow for regulated monitoring and central support for the course.

Embed within the Inspectors Promotion training programme the package on search warrant authorisation through L&D, this will become business as usual.

By September 2022

The MPS are introducing a new integrated intelligence system 'CONNECT'. This will transform the ability of the MPS to capture and interrogate information. The search warrants governance board will remain linked into the development programme to ensure a joined up approach to the search warrant elements within the system. There is a significant investment plan for L&D and will affect all staff across the MPS.

Recommendation to the National Police Chiefs' Council and College of Policing (NPCC)

Although our investigation did not find a case to answer for misconduct by anyone in relation to the application process for search warrants, we did find areas where the warrant applications could have been improved.
We are aware that, in 2015, the National Crime Agency (NCA) carried out an internal review of its use of warrants and production orders following deficiencies identified in two high-profile cases. Following the initial review, the NCA took actions such as reviewing operational practices, establishing a dedicated group of search warrant applicants and carrying out awareness training for authorising officers.
There was a follow-up joint inspection of the NCA's warrant processes in 2017/18 by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) and Her Majesty's Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCPSI). Overall the joint inspection found that, although some deficiencies were identified, search warrants were generally being completed to a good standard. It found the NCA had set a high standard for the oversight of warrants and orders and had achieved the improvements sought following the initial review.
There is clearly some good practice here which could be adopted within policing.
The National Police Chiefs' Council and College of Policing should work together to consider what steps can be taken to ensure that warrants applied for by the police service are consistently completed to a high standard. In doing this they should consider learning and action taken from an internal review of search warrants carried out by the NCA and subsequent inspection to determine whether any of this learning is transferrable to the police service. They should then determine who the appropriate lead to take forward any appropriate action is.

 

Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​The College of Policing, the National Police Chiefs’ Council and the Metropolitan Police Service note that the Henriques and IOPC reports identify the significant interference with the right to privacy that searching a person’s premises may involve. We also note the issues around disclosure of all relevant information in applications for search warrants. The issue of disclosure was also part of the National Crime Agency (NCA) review of their processes to obtain search warrants. 

In December 2016, the Home Office asked the Law Commission to identify and address problems with the law governing search warrants.  The Commission has been clear that the current system for granting warrants is too complicated and there is a risk that applications are not prepared properly or given sufficient scrutiny.  The NPCC has been an active partner in respect of the Law Commission’s review, responding to their consultation which closed at the end of 2018.  It is our intention to consider any recommendations made as part of that review when the findings are published in January 2020.  For your information, I attach to this letter a copy of the Law Commission’s consultation summary.
We are also aware that the IOPC made a recommendation that the CPRC consider the format and wording of the CPR in respect of search warrants and will fully engage with any consultation that may result from this.
Separately, by 31st December 2019 the College will update the Investigations Authorised Professional Practice (APP) to reflect the importance of ensuring that searches of a person’s premises are a proportionate response to the crime being investigated. It will also emphasise the importance of disclosing all information, whether it points towards an investigation or away. While the reports and reviews mentioned above relate to search warrants, the issues apply to all search powers. The APP will be amended to reflect these issues in relation to all search powers. 
Most police training is delivered by police forces using the College curriculum. Relevant College curricula will be amended to reflect APP. A particularly relevant curriculum is the ‘Professionalising Investigations Programme’ level 2 that is aimed at investigators in investigation departments. This curriculum will be updated by 29 February 2020, once the APP has been amended. 
We fully understand the critical need for law enforcement to address any failings in this area, and welcome the learning approach taken by the IOPC in supporting us to do so.

Recommendation to Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunal Service (HMCTS)

The current process for applying for search warrants involves a police officer completing an application form which includes providing information under the following headings: the offence under investigation, the investigation material sought, premises to be searched which can be specified, premises to be searched which cannot be specified, search on more than one occasion, search with additional persons, duty of disclosure, declaration, authorisation.
The application form and guidance for completion can be found at the following website:https://www.justice.gov.uk/courts/procedure-rules/criminal/forms#Anchor11
The decision by the Magistrate or District Judge as to whether to grant the application is recorded at the end of the application form. In this section of the form there is space for the court clerk or Magistrate/District Judge to record whether the applicant gave additional oral information and a summary of what that was.
Most applications for search warrants are not carried out in public court rooms, but in Magistrate Court Buildings' retiring rooms (i.e. court offices). Applications out of hours can also be made at Magistrates' home addresses. Although the space on the form to record additional information provided during the oral application provides some evidence of anything said in the hearing, it does not provide a complete record, in the way an audio recording of the making of the application would do. Section 9 of the Contempt of Court Act 1981 and Part 6.9 of the Criminal Procedure Rules 2015 (commencing October 2015), make provisions which would permit the recording of applications. However, this is not routine and the IOPC understands it is rare, if ever, that applications for search warrants are recorded.
In relation to this case, the Senior District Judge did include reference in the 'decision' section to the discussion that took place between him and the officers during the making of the application - and we have no reason to doubt the completeness of that record. However, there was no audio recording, and we received feedback from an interested party that the absence of an audio recording or transcript of the application meant that there was not full transparency of the discussions that took place during the making of the application.
We have spoken with representatives of Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunal Service and we understand they are moving towards all search warrant applications being made by telephone. Making applications exclusively by telephone may allow for making audio recordings easier compared with the current system of face-to-face applications. However, we acknowledge that, with at least 30,000 applications for search warrants being made a year, the benefits of recording would need to be weighed against the associated costs. In our view, recording of the search warrant application process would increase public confidence by improving transparency and providing a clear audit trail. We are aware that, in order to implement such a change, the support of the Lord Chief Justice would be required. In our view, the first step is for Her Majesty's Court and Tribunal Service to consider the merits of our recommendations.
Her Majesty's Courts and Tribunal Service should consider the costs and benefits of implementing audio recording of search warrant application hearings and whether this should form part of the hearing process.

 

Do you accept the recommendation?: 

No

If not accepted please provide reason for this: 

This recommendation has been passed to the Ministry of Justice (MoJ).  HMCTS deal with around 30,000 applications for search warrants each year and there is no statutory requirement to record these applications. If HMCTS were to introduce recording, it would only be possible if there were either a statutory requirement, or a judicial direction, to do so.  Neither of these are in place, which means that HMCTS is not in a position at present to accept the recommendation, and it should be directed to MoJ policy.

Recommendation to the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee

Section 10 of a search warrant requires an authorisation - effectively the counter-signing, senior person who authorises the application to go ahead. In order to ensure that there is a record of the authorising officer having considered specific issues, this section could be updated.
It is important to emphasise that the counter signatory's role to the search warrant should be undertaken with seriousness and diligence, and to indicate what is meant by the word 'review' in the context of authorising the application.
The Criminal Procedure Rule Committee should consider whether additions can be made to the 'Notes for Guidance' relating to section 10 (authorisation) of the search warrant, and to section 10 itself, to include a checklist which requires the authorising officer to confirm:
i. that all relevant information is contained within the warrant to the best of their knowledge and belief, and
ii. that the possibility there may be evidence, intelligence or other matters that might reasonably be considered capable of undermining the application has been considered, and relevant assurances have been sought from the applicant.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​At its meeting on 8th November, 2019, the Criminal Procedure Rule Committee considered a reformulation of the requirement imposed on an authorising officer by rule 47.26(5)(b) of the Criminal Procedure Rules and by the 21 forms of application for search warrants and production and other orders which are authorised for use with the Criminal Procedure Rules. The Committee is considering making a recommendation to the Lord Chief Justice, under whose personal authority forms for use with the Criminal Procedure Rules are made and amended, the substitution of the following elaboration for the sentence, ‘I have reviewed this application and I authorise the applicant to make it’, in each of the 21 application forms in which that sentence appears:

‘I confirm that:
(a)  I have read this application;
(b)  I have been assured by the applicant that the declaration in [box 9, or whichever is the relevant box number] is true;
(c)  to the best of my own knowledge, information and belief the application discloses all the information that is material to what the court must decide, including anything that might reasonably be considered capable of undermining any of the grounds of the application;
(d)  I am satisfied that making this application is a necessary and proportionate step to take in this investigation; and
(e)  I give the applicant my personal authority to proceed.’

However, in the absence of information in the IOPC report or elsewhere about how widespread may be misunderstanding of the requirements of the current rule and forms, the Rule Committee will first consult with the National Police Chiefs’ Council and with other investigating authorities to establish the extent and nature of the misunderstanding before deciding finally on how best to deal with it.

Recommendation to the MPS

The inclusion of 'N/A' in section 8 of the search warrant application suggested that there was nothing that could undermine any of the grounds of the application. In the Operation Midland investigation, the individual completing the application thought this was already covered in section 2 and wanted to avoid unnecessary repetition. Additional elements could have been included within section 8 of the application form, for exmaple outstanding lines of enquiry. It is particularly important that the investigator makes full disclosure in search warrant applications as the person whose property is subject of the application is not able to contest the application.
In summer 2018, the Law Commission carried out a consultation in relation to search warrants. One of the issues this consultation considered is the duty of disclosure, as this is a frequent ground of challenge. In its consultation, the Law Commission asked for views on making this duty more accessible and comprehensible to ensure that investigators comply with the legal duty. This included considering whether there should be a list of the information which must always, if it exists, be disclosed. The IOPC fully supports any changes that will help ensure investigators properly understand and complete this part of the application. We await with interest the publication of the Law Commission's final report. We will feed in the learning from this, and any other relevant IOPC cases to inform any future work on this area.
The MPS should issue an urgent reminder to officers of the requirements of this duty of disclosure and how high the onus is on them to make full disclosure in a search warrant application.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

Refresher training was made available and published for all staff across the MPS regarding search warrant applications through the internal communications system. Particular attention was drawn to the points of disclosure. This was followed up with a targeted communications to all staff directing them to the updated guidance on the 13/11/19.

Internal online training material has been updated for search warrant applications. Particular attention was drawn to the point of disclosure. This was achieved through updating the policy and guidance and sending focused communciations to all staff on the 14/11/19. This material also reinforced that officers should consult the MPS legal department (DLS) before they apply for search warrants in complex and sensitive cases. The DLS lawyers are aware of the concerns raised regarding search warrants and have been briefed to deal with any urgent requests for assistance.

Search Warrant training which includes duties around disclosure is covered in the recruit continuous training courses, and detectives receive refresher training with a focus on specialist crime and the use of covert intelligence. Both courses cover how to apply for a search warrant by phone. Learning and Development (L&D) have briefed their instructors, to ensure all the current learning points are highlighted within the existing training, this includes specific focus on appropriate disclosure, and handling exhibits.

There is ongoing training for officers working within covert policing regarding the management of sensitive material for search warrant applications. The course also reminds staff of the importance relating to search warrant applications for, exhibits and disclosure.

Long term plan: by September 2020

L&D as per response above to recommendation 1.

Ensure the covert policing course, including the search warrant input is incorporated in the organisational course catalogue through L&D. 

Recommendation to the PACE Strategy Board

​The inclusion of 'N/A' in section 8 of the search warrant application suggested that there was nothing that could undermine any of the grounds of the application. In the Operation Midland investigation, the individual completing the application thought this was already covered in section 2 and wanted to avoid unnecessary repetition. Additional elements could have been included within section 8 of the application form, for example outstanding lines of enquiry. It is particularly important that the investigator makes full disclosure in search warrant applications as the person whose property is subject of the application is not able to contest the application.
In summer 2018, the Law Commission carried out a consultation in relation to search warrants. One of the issues this consultation considered is the duty of disclosure, as this is a frequent ground of challenge. In its consultation, the Law Commission asked for views on making this duty more accessible and comprehensible to ensure that investigators comply with the legal duty. This included considering whether there should be a list of the information which must always, if it exists, be disclosed. The IOPC fully supports any changes that will help ensure investigators properly understand and complete this part of the application. We await with interest the publication of the Law Commission's final report. We will feed in the learning from this, and any other relevant IOPC cases to inform any future work on this area.
 
The Home Office's Police and Criminal Evidence (PACE) Strategy Board should amend Code B of PACE to provide guidance to make the duty of disclosure clearer to investigators and assist them to comply with this duty.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 
The Government and its partners across the criminal justice system recognise the need for improving disclosure in criminal cases. In January 2018 the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), National Police Chiefs’ Council and the College of Policing came together to publish the joint National Disclosure Improvement Plan (NDIP), a package of measures to improve how the criminal justice system deals with disclosure and which the CPS reported on last November. The Attorney General will also be issuing revised Disclosure Guidelines, as set out in his 2018 review of disclosure, to help ensure the current unprecedented commitment to improving disclosure across the criminal justice system continues.
Whilst we fully support the purpose of this recommendation, we also note that the statutory authority for including disclosure requirements in search warrant application forms arises not from PACE Code B but from the Criminal Procedure Rules (in particular, Rule 47.26((3), (5)) for which the Criminal Procedure Rules Committee, not the PACE Strategy Board, are responsible in law). As such, instead of adding this requirement to another piece of statutory guidance in Code B, we have agreed to work jointly with the CPR committee on recommendation 4 – with a shared objective of ensuring concerns around meeting disclosure requirements in search warrant applications are addressed.

Recommendation to the MPS

​As part of wider considerations about the searches undertaken, we are aware of concerns linked to communication about the searches. Firstly, there was no a clear explanation given to those affected as to why items that were not detailed on the warrant were seized. Secondly, it was not made clear that some of the property being recovered may have related to the investigation of allegations of criminality by others, not just the occupant (or former occupant) of the property.
The MPS should issue an urgent reminder to officers of their responsibilities for notifications relating to searches under PACE.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

Refresher training was made available and published for all staff across the MPS regarding search warrant applications through the internal communications system. Particular attention was drawn to the points of seizure of property. This was followed up with a targeted communications to all staff directing them to the updated guidance on the 13/11/19.

Internal online training material has been updated for search warrant applications. Particular attention was drawn to the points regarding seizure of property, and section 19 PACE. This was achieved through updating the policy and guidance and sending focused communications to all staff on the 19/11/19.

Learning and Development (L&D) have briefed their instructors, to ensure all the current learning points are highlighted within the existing training, this includes specific focus on appropriate disclosure, handling exhibits, understanding the level of intrusion and how important good communication is when conducting a search.

Medium term plan: by March 2020

An updated and revised L&D package for all staff on search warrant applications and processes will be created. This will include a focus that the use of a search warrant (and its execution) is a serious intrusion, and if there is more information that can reasonably be given to the occupier (without compromising and investigation) it should be. To embed the process the MPS will use innovative training tools including 'Webinar' to effectively deliver remote training.

Recommendation to the PACE Strategy Board

As part of wider considerations about the searches undertaken, we are aware of concerns linked to communication about the searches. Firstly, there was no a clear explanation given to those affected as to why items that were not detailed on the warrant were seized. Secondly, it was not made clear that some of the property being recovered may have related to the investigation of allegations of criminality by others, not just the occupant (or former occupant) of the property.
In the next review of PACE, the Home Office PACE Strategy Board should review requirements for notification relating to searches including looking at any inconsistencies in requirements under different PACE powers. The review should consider whether there should be a specific requirement in all searches that a list of property seized is provided, detailing under which powers it was seized, and explaining how individuals may seek its return or be allowed to have copies/access to it. The IOPC will be happy to provide input to consultation around such a review based on this and other case experience.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 
PACE already requires a list of property seized to be provided (PACE section 16(9), section 21, PACE Code B, section 7). Section 22 of PACE covers retention of items seized and PACE Code B, Section 7 covers both retention of items seized and owners’ statutory rights for them to be returned or for access to be allowed.
 
The issue of search warrants and inconsistencies in legislative requirements is an important one which we will be considering at the next PACE Strategy Board, where the Law Commission will be presenting their findings on the Home Office-funded review into search warrant legislation. We will engage with and involve the IOPC in these discussions.

Recommendation to the MPS

​Concerns have been raised about an alleged conflict of interest in the team that conducted a search of one of the properties given that X's family liaison officer was one of the officers present. Although there may have been good reason for this, it fueled suspicion and raised concerns of the search team being biased towards the complainant.
The MPS should take steps to ensure that consideration of potential conflict of interests, whether real or perceived, inform decisions about which officers are deployed to undertake a search. This should include a responsibility on those making the decision as well as an expectation that officers will self-declare any potential conflict of interest. It is acknowledged that there may be circumstances where the benefit of a particular individual being present outweighs a potential conflict of interest. In these circumstances, decisions should be fully considered and managed appropriately.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

Refresher training was distributed to all staff across the MPS through the internal communications system. Particular attention was drawn to who attends the search. This covered both the legal obligation to list third parties on the search warrant, and also considerations for 'conflict of interest' about who attends the actual premises to be searched. This was achieved through a presentation and targeted communications to all staff directing them to the updated guidance on the 14/11/19.

Internal online training material has been updated for search warrant applications. Within the searching package, attention is drawn to who attends the search. This covers both the legal considerations for 'conflict of interest' about who attends the actual premises to be searched. This has been communicated to all staff directing them to the updated guidance on the 14/11/19.

Medium term plan: by March 2020

L&D as per response above recommendation 1.

Embed 'conflict of interest' consideration into Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) training regarding major crime investigations.

Long term plan: by September 2020

Maintain key point of 'conflict of interest' in SIO training

Maintain key point of 'conflict of interest' in all relevant staff training.

Recommendation to the MPS

"The Home Office Large Major Enquiry System (HOLMES) is a case management system/database used by police forces and other law enforcement agencies in the management and investigation of major enquiries.
Our investigation found that, although HOLMES was used to assist with the management of this investigation, at its conclusion not all of the 2,757 documents in the possession of the MPS had been registered onto the system, graphically read and had all relevant investigative actions logged. While the documents that were not registered on HOLMES were available to the IOPC investigation team for assessment, this did require manual searches and was inefficient.
When used to its full capacity, HOLMES is a valuable investigative tool that can assist an inquiry. However, when all HOLMES roles are allocated in accordance with Major Incident Room Standard Administration Procedures (MIRSAP) guidance, this can be resource intensive. This sometimes leads to the partial use of HOLMES and/or backlogs of investigative material building up. This risks an assumption that HOLMES will properly record and link relevant information at each stage of the investigation to allow the Senior Investigating Officer to establish priorities.
The MPS should engage with the national HOLMES working group to understand how other police forces are innovating around the use of HOLMES and to see if there is any best practice that can be adopted.
The MPS should define the benefits of using HOLMES to ensure that those benefits are maximised with reference to, but not bound by, Major Incident Room Standard Administration Procedures. The MPS should also ensure that it has a clear policy for its staff, requiring a decision to be made and articulated in relation to how HOLMES will be utilised to enhance the quality of the investigation, which should include associated resources and role allocation. Particular consideration should be given to: using the full functionality of HOLMES to support an investigation (with the appropriate associated resourcing requirement to avoid a backlog of investigative material being added); using HOLMES as defined by the needs of the enquiry (known as HOLMES-lite), in which case clear direction and policy decisions must be provided in relation to what roles will be allocated; not using HOLMES at all in the specific circumstances.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Holmes Structure / Governance

The MPS accepts the context of this recommendation, regarding engaging with other forces to capture good practice and to develop innovative ways to use HOLMES.

The MPS are part of the National HOLMES Strategic Board led by an Assistant Chief Constable (ACC). They also form part of the National HOLMES practitioners' board, who meet quarterly. This is where operational service delivery is improved, critical issues are addressed and good practice is shared.

The MPS have a lead officer at Commander level who is responsible for the MPS HOLMES board. The MPS is in a unique position due to the volume of cases managed by HOLMES. This board incorporates key stakeholders within the organisation and is responsible for policy and governance, L&D and improving service delivery. They also link into other London associated forces such as BTP and the City of London.

Holmes use

HOLMES provides investigative benefits for large scale and complex investigations. Within the MPS, HOLMES incident rooms are limited to Specialist Crime (Murder Investigation Teams, Operation Winter Key and Major Inquiries Unit) and SO15 Counter Terrorism command, whereas other case management systems, such as Crime Reporting Information System (CRIS), are more accessible to investigators.

If a case develops into a complex large scale investigation that requires specialist investigation and/or HOLMES support it would be escalated to Specialist Crime.

The Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) is the responsible person who sets any HOLMES strategy, including how HOLMES is utilised. this decision and strategy are subject to oversight and review by the Specialist Crime Det Supt (Reactive).

Once a HOLMES account has been created, if the investigation is scaled down the HOLMES account remains open and active until the enquiry is completed.

There are a number of serious crime investigations, which may be signficant and/or complex but do not require HOLMES support:

  • Kidnap and extortion - the MPS uses CLIO case management during the crime in action phase of the investigation. If the SIO for the reactive investigation and/or Det Supt (Specialist Crime) considers it is so complex that HOLMES is needed, this would be escalated within Specialist Crime
  • Stranger Rape - The majority of stranger rape investigations are led by BCU safeguarding units, and managed using CRIS. If a stranger rape investigation is escalated to Specialist Crime it would be investigated by a MIT or Complex Case team and managed on HOLMES through the incident room.
  • Specialist Fraud - the majority of Specialist Crime Frauds are long term lengthy complex investigations. HOLMES is considered for each enquiry but has never been utilised as CRIS provides the level of oversight required.

 

Oversight and test

1) SIO: is responsible for making the decision of how HOLMES will be utilised in any investigation. In making that decision, with the MPS the SIO can draw on the expertise of their dedicated HOLMES Incident Manager and also the MPS Holmes Manager. The SIO's decision and rationale is then recorded in the SIO's Decision Log (Book 200) and in the Holmes Indexing Policy File. This log is accessible to all staff working on the investigation to ensure they all have full understanding of how HOLMES will be used.

2) Det Supt - For cases investigated by Specialist Crime teams with HOLMES incident rooms, the Det Supt has responsibility to undertake a review of new investigations within 7 days, which will include the HOLMES strategy.

3) Gold - Commanders should ensure their oversight of cases includes a test and challenge of SIO decision making on whether HOLMES or other case management systems are used.

4) Commander (Specialist Crime) - is the responsible chief officer for HOLMES within the MPS, including setting organisational policy for HOLMES use.

5) Specialist Crime Review Group - As part of their reviews, will examine the HOLMES strategy and whether it has been used effectively. Recommendations or issues identified within these reviews are then shared with SIOs / Det Supts for learning and where required bespoke training developed for staff.

Good practice / training / development

The MPS HOLMES policy was recently in line with national policy. This is being updated to provide clarity on the:

  • Benefits of HOLMES in large complex investigations
  • Escalation process to Specialist Crime for investigations that require HOLMES support
  • Role and responsibilities of
    • SIO
    • Detective Superintendent
    • Gold Commanders

The MPS Learning & Development board considers good practice or recommendations that need to be introduced, which includes HOLMES requirements. HOLMES training is in accordance with MPS policy and the national Major Incident Roonm Standard Administration Procedures (MIRSAP) 2005. SIOs receive a 3 day HOLMES training course, if they are to be deployed to lead teams using HOLMES incident rooms. The MPS supports the national network by supplying training across the country, and the sharing of learning and good practice via the national HOLMES strategic board.

Medium term plan: by March 2020

Continued engagement with national HOLMES boards to ensure continued improvement.

Roll out of video, presentations and 'Webinar' products connected to L&D activity to ensure people understand HOLMES is available for use and how to access it, including key roles.

Long term plan: by September 2020

Maintain and develop existing SIO and HOLMES training to reflect both National Good Practice and key messages.

Develop the use of HOLMES to utilise the Major Incident Public Portal (MIPP).

Recommendation to the MPS

​In the case of Operation Midland, the rolling log of key consistencies and inconsistencies in X's evidence was a key document. Attempts to establish when and how the document was updated were critical to our enquiries. These were hampered by the lack of version control or a clear audit trail for the document. Clear document management systems and control can assist with accountability and public confidence and enable police officers and staff to account for their actions.
The MPS should consider how it can best reinforce with its officers and staff the importance of good quality document management and take appropriate steps to act on this. This could, for example, be achieved by embedding it in policy or training and ensuring there is a process for checking that the procedure is being properly followed.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

From July 2018 the MPS implemented a CPIA support programme in the form of 'Disclosure Champions'. Their remit is to support their BCU/OCU colleagues in disclosure issues and to provide advice. There are currently approx. 450 trained members of staff across the MPS and they have all received an additional full day's training. 2 Civilian Disclosure Advisors are also being recruited to work within the safeguarding hubs on each BCU.

The MPS have implemented a digital asset management tool 'BOX'. This is a secure system (Official Sensitive) system that allows for the storage and sharing of data. It has the additional functionality of automatic version control storage.

As part of the strategic investigators role (PIP level 4) it is their responsibility to ensure management and oversight of investigations. This includes agreeing and documenting disclosure strategies at the outset of an inquiry and to review them throughout.

'COPA' is the Criminal case papers system and allows for the secure transfer for material with the CPS. This ensures controlled access to material and monitored processes as it is an auditable system. The CPS have recently introduced, for serious cases, the need for officers to document their reasonable lines of enquiry, from which a charging decision can be made and a disclosure management document shared with the defence.

Medium term plan: by March 2020

Through L&D develop good practice tools for case management files, to be delivered on the Initial Detective Constable course.

Continue with training and embed the 'BOX' system to support document management.

Long term plan: by September 2022

The MPS are introducing a new integrated intelligence system 'CONNECT'. This will transform the ability of the MPS to capture and interrogate information. The search warrants governance board will remain linked into the development programme to ensure a joined up approach to the search warrant elements within the system. There is a significant investment plan for L&D and will affect all staff across the MPS.

Recommendation to the MPS

​It is important, especially in relation to high-profile, complex, serious and organised major crime investigations, that regular periodic reviews of the investigation are carried out. Whilst a review of Operation Midland was undertaken after 12 months, it may have benefited from more regular periodic reviews.
For investigations, especially of the type described above, the MPS should seek to undertake regular periodic reviews to provide the necessary advice and support to the overall strategic management of the investigation and to ensure they are conducted within the level of quality and strategic oversight required by the chief officer. Reference should be made to the relevant College of Policing advice in this area.
Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Yes

Accepted action: 

​Immediate action and current position: November 2019

From 2016 the Senior Investigation Officers (SIO) training programme has incorporated a mandatory element regarding understanding the services of the Specialist Crime Review Group (SCRG). This is also embedded in the child death course and is in line with the College of Policing mandatory continual professional development programme.

The SCRG review process starts at 21 days post report of any murder. Communication will be sent to the SIO explaining that the unsolved murder will be subject to discussion at the following tasking meeting. The case will then be evaluated as to whether a progress review should take place. If a full review is required this will be allocated, however if if it is not necessary at the time (e.g. suspect has been arrested, awaits charging decision, etc.) the case will remain on the SCRG tasking register to be reviewed on a regular basis.

The SCRG have undertaken engagement work with all commands to explain their role and how they can support lead investigators with complex investigations.

The MPS have introduced a quarterly meeting to provide oversight of 'Undetected Homicide Reviews'. this ensures joint working between specialist crime and professionalism. The SCRG are managed by the Head of Profession for Investigations (Commander) this therefore ensues separate governance from the operational teams, maintaining an independent approach to reviews.

A specialist crime homicide monitoring system (dashboard) has been implemented. This allows for a clear overview of compliance and is underpinned by a policy regarding timescales and levels of intervention. The MPS also have a central role within the development of review capability within national NPCC Specialist Capabilities Programme. The result of this collaboration has led to the development of new role profiles and updated national training for review officers.

Op Hydrant

The MPS Specialist Crime teams (Op Winter Key) are aware of the services offered by Op Hydrant and have regular contact with the single point of contact, who is co-located with the team. The BCU Safeguarding teams have been reminded of their review support services.

BCU investigations

In May 2019 a revised supervisory review policy was introduced, clear guidance was given to all officers who investigate serious sexual assault via the safeguarding toolkit for both adults and/or child cases. An initial review will be completed by a Detective Sergeant within 3-5 days for all cases, and for high risk cases a Detective Inspector will review within 5 days and a Detective Chief Inspector within 10 days. Further reviews occur at 21 days and throughout the investigation.

Medium term plan: by March 2020

Embed a more robust monitoring review process for all Op Hydrant BCU investigation teams. The Commander's for Specialist Crime and Safeguarding  ensure compliance through their strategic governance boards.

Long term plan: by September 2020

The Commander Head of Profession for Investigations is developing a plan to increase the number of officers trained in the 'Professionalising Investigation Process' 4 (PIP 4). This will increase the resilience to support SIOs with serious crime investigations.

Recommendation to the Ministry of Justice

​The Ministry of Justice should consider the costs and benefits of implementing audio recording of search warrant application hearings and whether this should form part of the hearing process.

Do you accept the recommendation?: 

Awaiting response

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