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October 2012

Volume 1, Issue 11

unProfessional Standards Department


West Yorkshire Police

Time for a Swift exit?

It was a rambling shambolic press offering

What should have happened, if experienced and competent PR professionals had been utilised, was a prepared statement put on general release at 2pm that day saying that Sir Norman Bettison welcomed the Report, acknowledged the work of the Panel and expressed continued sympathy with the families of the deceased. It should have gone on to say that further questions would be taken after the contents of the Report had been digested by the Chief Constable. A press conference should then have been arranged for the following week. That would have avoided the doorstepping of Bettison by ITNs Lucy Manning and a mobile TV camera crew. Even taking into account that his press office had allowed him to be ambushed, protestations that he had nothing to hide sounded hollow and unconvincing. The fact that his single TV interview so far has been through a car window informs plenty about the people advising him. Instead, the morning after came the catastrophic offering, via the WYP website, in which (Sir) Norman managed to selfexonerate himself and blame the Liverpool fans at the same time. It was a rambling, Car window press shambolic offering conference that quite rightly caused universal outrage amongst press, politicians and, most importantly, the man (and woman) in the street. The following day, the deeply offensive statement had been replaced by an apology that, even then, suggested (Sir) Stench of corruption seeps Norman Bettison had not besmirched the fans - and that he had been wrongly out from police HQ

ITNs UK Editor Lucy Manning doorstepped Chief Constable

One of the key features of the Hillsborough affair has been the utterly disgraceful handling of public relations by the West Yorkshire Police press office: From 12th September, the day the Enquiry Panel Report was published, to the present they have staggered from blunder to blunder. The stonewalling of the media for almost 24 hours in the immediate aftermath was the first major mistake. It revealed lack of planning, preparedness and complete absence of tactical or strategic nous. It was also a more visible than usual demonstration of the level of contemptuousness in which most members of the Fourth Estate are held by West Yorkshire Police.
accused of doing that for 23 years. It satisfied most people but media professionals were, again, left wondering about the quality of PR advice on which this second offering was based. On 4th October the WYP press office announcement of the Bettison retirement plan was placed on the police website after business hours: All fulsome praise and tributes. It was another gratuitous, ill-conceived, tactical blunder. The subliminal message, yet again, was that Bettison is whiter than white, a great Chief Constable and West Yorkshire Police were finding him not guilty whatever the Home Office, Police Authority or IPCC may think, or do. The concept that Bettison was acting in the best interests of the police service rather than himself caused offence and derision in equal measure - and remains another issue that will come back and bite those responsible for its propagation. The press release concerning his retirement should have been a simple presentation of the facts. The reason why that should have been the preferred option was very simple: Unless the press office operates in a metal box, locked away from the outside world, it was plain to anyone reasonably close to the Hillsborough tragedy that their Chief Constable was damaged goods. He had no discernible Parliamentary or Home Office support, his own ACPO team had notably failed to rally round and he had, undoubtedly, lost the confidence of his own Police Authority. The Special Committee had met the previous day and decided to record a further serious complaint against Bettison and refer it to the IPCC. This concerned allegations that he had attempted to attempted to influence the decision making process concerning the previous referral. This latest, but hardly surprising, allegation was made public knowledge in

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unProfessional Standards Department


the IPCC Decision document published on 12th October. It runs to 17 pages and offers very little comfort for Bettison, or the dwindling band of people who retain faith in him as an honest police officer. Anyone who has read the Enquiry Report, and those documents that result from typing Decision in response to the report of the Hillsborough Independent Panel Bettison into the internal search engine of the Panels excellent website, quickly forms their own IPCC Decision opinion as to the likely culpability of the Wain inquiry team. Or Black Ops Unit as Liverpool MP Maria Eagle terms it. The working hypothesis is that no-one in West Yorkshire Polices press office has done so. The over-riding point that uPSD make here is that if (Sir) Norman Bettison was employing, and personally funding his own PR staff then they can write what they like. Or, more likely, what he likes. But that is not the case here. The fact is, the public are picking up the tab paying top salaries to professional people who behave like the emperors toadies. It is just not acceptable and the man in charge, ex Wakefield Express reporter Nigel Swift, has to fall on his sword: Like his Chief Constable, he is no longer fit for purpose. Apart from the Hillsborough/ Bettison saga, we also have on Swifts CV the recent uPSD exposure of DCC Parkinsons disgraceful and dishonest press WYPs Head of Media statements on Relations Nigel Swift virtually every occasion he has spoken publicly over the past year. That only serves to underscore the fact that change is urgently needed amongst those responsible. Under a new Media Relations Manager, press enquiries might be dealt with promptly and honestly rather than the stonewalling, evasiveness and downright deceit that is the current West Yorkshire Police hallmark. The public of this County deserve nothing less than honest output from its police force. After Hillsborough the days of the police cover-up and press office shenanigans should be numbered. Mr Swift was offered the opportunity to comment, but declined. Hopefully, he was busy clearing his desk.
October 2012
1

West Yorkshire Police

The Bettison questions the Police Authority chairman must answer


uPSD have made their position clear in past issues regarding the Police & Crime Commissioner candidacy of Mark BurnsWilliamson. On his record as Police Authority Chairman, over the past nine years, he shouldnt be allowed anywhere near the job. A point that will be put to him at every public meeting between now and election day on 15th November. Burns-Williamsons record on the integrity issues surrounding the Force almost since the day he took office is appalling by any measure. He is also the man who, effectively, brought (Sir) Norman Bettison out of police service retirement and back into West Yorkshire Police as its Chief Constable. What possessed such a move? The huge furore created on Bettisons appointment as Chief Constable on Merseyside was a matter of record. Three Police Authority Members had resigned, 15,000 constituents had petitioned against the move and three Liverpool MPs had spoken vociferously against him having the job. Did it not strike Burns-Williamson that there may be a toxicity attached to Bettison: A risk that could end up costing WYPA dear in terms of both finance and reputational damage? The other more recent question that has to be answered by Burns-Williamson is why did he deliberately mislead the press and public in a TV interview? This followed the Police Authority meeting on 25th September when both in specific statements such as business as usual and the Police Authority have full confidence in the Chief Constable and with his general demeanour he left the viewer/listener in no doubt that the Hillsborough troubles were a passing fad and everything was fine. This was plainly not the case and, according to uPSDs WYPA source, the Members were split and there were vociferous calls for Bettison to leave the Force immediately. It was clear at that point that he had misled the Authority and that he had exerted his authority improperly and exceeded his powers. That TV clip will be replayed at every opportunity during the PCC election campaign and let it be a reminder to Burns-Williamson that treating the electorate with scarcely concealed contempt is what has cost the Chief Constable his job.
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Steve Foulkes Resigned from MPA in protest over Bettison appointment

He shouldnt be allowed anywhere near the job

Mark Burns Williamsons PCC candidacy tainted by corruption

unProfessional Standards Department

West Yorkshire Police

Retired senior detective to refuse consultancy as police bid to head off software theft enquiry
The software theft saga reported in issues 8 and 9 took a dramatic new twist this week when uPSD learned of a plan to head off former FTS consultant, Trevor Fordy. Mr Fordy, a former Regional Crime Squad Detective Superintendant, is pursuing criminal allegations against a former Head of Complaints & Discipline and another retired PSD detective. He is an ex DCI, who still works for the Force as a civilian. uPSD is aware of the identities of both. The criminal matters concern a corrupt investigation into complaints over misappropriation of software by West Yorkshire Police, belonging to FTS. In a spectacular reversal, WYP lost a High Court case and had FTSs costs of almost 200,000 awarded against them. It is understood from a Police Authority source that the external police costs also ran well into six figures. The same WYPA source also confirms that the police have settled less than a third of the costs awarded to FTS by the trial judge and have yet to pay a penny of damages. At a meeting at the Police Authority offices in September, Mr Fordy set out his concerns and, we understand, also disclosed details regarding perjured evidence put into a significant criminal trial by a West Yorkshire officer. Inspection of the FTS trial transcripts shows that WYPs former Legal Services Director, Ajaz Hussain, regarded the re-badging of secret service evidence, as West Yorkshires own, as a routine matter. This, of course, raises the spectre of more than the single instance in Mr Fordys knowledge. According to a well-placed source, there is very little enthusiasm within West Yorkshire Police for launching a hugely damaging criminal investigation but they are, instead, exploring ways of reaching a compromise with Mr Fordy. One of those could be to engage him as a consultant to the Force. It is not clear what services that would entail although Mr Fordy, apart from 34 years outstanding police service, does have considerable forensic software knowledge. One of the masterminds of what is being termed as a pragmatic solution is believed to be none other than DCC John Parkinson. The same officer who has deliberately misled the press and public in maintaining that the FTS investigation was open and transparent throughout

IPCCs Regional Commissioner Nicholas Long

I wont be bought off at any price

Ex D/Supt Trevor Fordy

ACC John Robins. Another PSD cover-up

and the FTS civil claim should never have ended up in court. Parkinson was outed as the Forces go-to Black Propaganda man in issue 8 of uPSD. uPSD understands that Parkinson has already been in touch with Mr Fordy to sound him out and that a meeting has been arranged for later this month. The other lateral thinker is our old DCC John Parkinson Black Propaganda Man uPSD friend, Fraser Sampson. He has spent the last three weeks scuttling around working out how to lift West Yorkshires Professional Standards and Parkinson off the very sharp hook that Mr Fordys evidence now presents and the extent of the cover-up that preceded it. Central in that cover-up is another with plenty of previous, DI Damian Carr. He pops up in uPSD, yet again, as the West Yorkshire Professional Standards officer making the dispensation application to the IPCC. A reliable ex-PSD source has confirmed that Carr was also the officer who took the complaint call from another High Tech Unit software theft victim, MCMS. Carr simply failed to record the complaint or any details pertaining to it. A different police source tells uPSD that Carr is also well aware that pirated software is in use in the Imaging Unit of West Yorkshire Police. Another with serious questions to answer is IPCC Commissioner, Nicholas Long. His organisation wrongly allowed the dispensation application by WYP not to investigate Mr Fordys criminal allegations of perjury and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Longs casework team claimed it was essentially a civil matter. Both Parkinson and Commissioner Long declined to comment on whether, or when, a criminal investigation would commence into these very serious allegations when approached via their respective press offices. Which means we invoke the infallible uPSD Inverse Rule of Truth, yet again: The longer it takes for the police or the IPCC to provide an answer, the less likely it is to be true. For his part, Mr Fordy has quite rightly said that whilst he is, naturally, interested in the value they would place on his integrity it is most definitely nonnegotiable, as it was throughout his distinguished police career. He will not be bought off at any price.

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unProfessional Standards Department


West Yorkshire Police

October 2012
Volume 1, Issue 11

The House of Fraser


Ex YWP Detective puts hat into PCC ring

Cedric Christie, who retired from West Yorkshire Police last year having given 30 years exemplary service, is to stand as a candidate in next months Police and Crime Commissioner elections. Former Detective Inspector Christie, who headed the Forces Economic Crime Unit will put up as an independent and fund the 5,000 deposit himself. The other three candidates all have the backing of political parties who have picked up the deposit tab. In an exclusive interview Cedric told uPSD: I am very proud to stand as an Independent Candidate for the role of Police and Crime Commissioner for my former Force. I was brought up in Headingley and worked in West Yorkshire Police for my entire career, after joining as a cadet. He continued: I have specialised in Crime IPCC handling of anonymous email Investigation throughout my career. My complaint is branded a disgrace
basic motivation was to bring criminals to justice wherever I worked in full accordance with the legal processes. Having worked in local CID, Major Crime Unit, National Crime Squad, Homicide Team and the Economic Crime Unit I fully understand how criminals operate and can be brought to account. I intend to use the benefit of my experience to the advantage of the West Yorkshire public as the first elected Police and Crime Commissioner. It would be an honour to serve the public and in particular victims of crime. I understand fully how West Yorkshire Police operate and therefore I have a unique advantage over and above my fellow candidates. This is most certainly an election with a difference. Its a poll in which the electorate should not vote along traditional party lines but rather choose an expert in crime, policing and the judicial system who knows that subject well, rather than the politics surrounding it. In that regard I assure you I am truly independent. Police and Crime Commissioners will aim to bring about local democratic accountability. I will both support and challenge the police. The role calls for the Commissioner to be beyond reproach and independent of influence. It calls for the highest of public and professional standards. I meet all of those requirements having had my integrity tested beyond doubt by West Yorkshire Police. In conclusion Cedric said: One of the main planks of my election strategy will be to bring integrity and high professional standards to the fore. It is one area upon which I will not compromise.

Cedric Christie Independent PCC candidate

In a brief decision note to uPSDs Felicity Stewart-Smith on 4th October, the IPCC refused permission for WYPA to dispense with the complaint concerning an inappropriate anonymous email sent by West Yorkshire Police on 20th August. The matter was referred by the Police Authority to the IPCC on 18th September for permission not to investigate the complaint, the very same day that they invited Ms StewartSmith to discuss it uPSDs at a meeting. Cedric Christie Felicity Stewart-Smith There had already PCC Candidate been two versions of the same story concerning the recording of the complaint provided by WYP and the Police Authority, and efforts by uPSD to unravel the mystery have been blanked by both. The IPCC despite repeated requests refused to confirm whom the complaint was recorded against. A further invitation to discuss the outcome of the complaint was made by WYPA on 11th October. This in spite of a well placed source telling uPSD that no investigation of the email complaint has, in actual fact, taken place. Ms Stewart-Smith has requested further information from the Police Authority and subsequently told uPSD: The way this complaint has been handled, from start to finish, is an absolute disgrace: The WYPA always seems to find a way to alienate complainants. They really do need to become much more focused on the public, and more transparent in their dealings, rather than being there simply as apologists for the police. Cloud of corruption just Karen Grey, WYPAs External relations wont clear away from Director declined to comment. WYPA HQ

It is one area upon which I will not compromise

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