Bettison is referred to IPCC

The former Chief Constable of West Yorkshire, Sir Norman Bettison, has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission as part of an investigation into the Stephen Lawrence Enquiry.

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Bettison: West Yorkshire Police statement

"The allegations made against two other Police Forces and the material we have found in connection with the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry raise significant issues of not just public confidence and trust, but also public interest.

"In the interests of openness and transparency I have today referred this matter to the IPCC so that an independent body can assess these matters so that the public can have full confidence in any outcome. West Yorkshire Police will co-operate fully with the IPCC and assist in any way we can to get to the truth".

– Mark Gilmore, Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police

Bettison: Crime commissioner's statement

Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson has released the following statement about Sir Norman Bettison.

"I have become aware of three documents following a thorough search requested by West Yorkshire Police Chief Constable Mark Gilmore. These documents raise significant concerns over the role of Sir Norman Bettison at the time he was Assistant Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police in 1998 in commissioning a report to be prepared in the respect of a key witness appearing before the Macpherson Inquiry.

"This may suggest an attempt to intervene in the course of a public inquiry and influence the manner in which the testimony of a witness, who was due to present evidence before it, was received. I have today referred this to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

"This is a matter which needs to be thoroughly investigated, and if wrongdoing is demonstrated those responsible must face the consequences of their actions.

"Doreen Lawrence and her family need their treatment by the police service reviewed independently and this must be done as a matter of urgency.

"I am sure the IPCC will do the same for these separate issues of concern indicating possible corrupt practices around the Macpherson Inquiry. I am now seeking an urgent meeting with the Home Secretary.

"Wider issues of any institutional racism in the police service may need to be tackled with a standalone inquiry but my referral today is to make sure we understand the truth regarding the conduct of Sir Norman Bettison. I welcome the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire rightly and swiftly recognising the seriousness of this issue and dealing with it in an open and transparent way. "

– Mark Burns-Williamson, Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire

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Bettison: Crime Commissioner raises concerns

Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson says West Yorkshire Police have found documents which raise concerns into Sir Norman's role at the time he was Assistant Chief Constable of the force in 1998.

A report was commissioned into the background of a key witness due to appear before the inquiry when it sat in Bradford.

It comes after recent allegations that police officers tried to smear the family of race murder victim Stephen Lawrence prompting the Home Office ask police forces to review their involvement with the enquiry. Sir Norman's solicitor told ITV that he would not be commenting on the referral.

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