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Police watchdog condemns 'collusion' between officers

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has criticised "collusion" between officers involved in the 'plebgate' row.

Deborah Glass, chair of Police watchdog the Independent Police Complaints Commission Credit: PA

Speaking after Pc Keith Wallis was jailed for 12 months for lying about witnessing the incident, the body's head Deborah Glass said: "The patchwork of evidence from emails, text messages and telephone calls does not suggest an organised conspiracy to bring down a Cabinet Minister.

"But there was clearly collusion between certain officers to, as they saw it, blow the whistle on bad behaviour toward one of their own, which ultimately had the same effect."

She added: "The actions of Pc Wallis - and the other officers responsible for turning a largely inaudible altercation lasting less than a minute into a national scandal - have not only caused injustice to Mr Mitchell, they have brought shame upon the police service.

"Now that the criminal proceedings have concluded it is important for the Metropolitan Police Service to proceed as quickly as possible to the misconduct hearings and to deal effectively with any underlying issues so that they can finally close the book on this sorry chapter."

Met Police says sorry to public for 'Plebgate' Pc

Britain's most senior police officer, speaking after the sentencing of Pc Keith Wallis, said that the officer - who is one year away from retirement - would now be the subject of a misconduct process "as soon as possible".

Pc Wallis's actions have clearly fallen way below the standards that me, my fellow police officers and the public demand.

I expect my officers to serve the public without fear or favour. Where officers break the law they must expect to be held to account and answer for what they have done.

Yesterday I apologised personally to Mr Mitchell that an MPS officer clearly lied about seeing him behaving in a certain manner.

Today, I apologise to the public for Pc Wallis's behaviour.

– Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe

Read: Met Police officer jailed for 12 months over 'Plebgate'

Two officers from the DPG have received final written warnings and a third officer has undergone management action in relation to inappropriate comments, the Met confirmed.

Wallis, along with four other officers from DPG, will be the subject of gross misconduct hearings due to start at the end of the month.

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Met Police officer jailed for 12 months over 'Plebgate'

Pc Keith Wallis admitted lying about witnessing the "plebgate" row at Downing Street Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A Metropolitan Police officer has been jailed for 12 months after pleading guilty to a charge of misconduct in public office over the "plebgate" scandal last month.

Pc Keith Wallis, 53, falsely claimed in an email that he had witnessed an incident in Downing Street involving the former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell and other officers in September 2012.

Andrew Mitchell witness impact statement

Former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell wrote an impact statement ahead of Pc Keith Wallis' sentencing for misconduct in public office over the "plebgate" scandal.

Andrew Mitchell statement described the impact Pc Wallis' actions had on him.
Mr Mitchell said the email contributed to his "acute demoralisation and sense of isolation".

Met Police officer to be sentenced over 'Plebgate' row

Keith Wallis was the only officer to have been charged in connection with the 'plebgate' affair. Credit: PA

A Metropolitan Police officer will be sentenced today after pleading guilty to a charge of misconduct in public office over the "plebgate" scandal.

Pc Keith Wallis, 53, falsely claimed in an email that he had witnessed an incident in Downing Street involving the former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell and other officers in September 2012.

Last month, his offer to resign from the force was rejected by Scotland Yard, who said in a statement: "The deputy commissioner has refused to accept Pc Wallis's resignation and he will face a misconduct board in the coming weeks."

IPCC halts probe into 'Plebgate' union representatives

The ripples from Andrew Mitchell's short, bad tempered altercation at the Downing Street gate continue to spread.

ITV News has learned that the police watchdog has temporarily suspended its investigation into three police union representatives over their meeting with Mr Mitchell.

The officers from Mr Mitchell's local Police Federation branches gave an account of a meeting with him about the 'Plebgate' affair, which appeared to contradict a recording Andrew Mitchell made of the meeting.

Andrew Mitchell. Credit: Press Association

The Independent Police Complaints Commission launched an investigation into the men after they appeared in front of the Home Affairs Select Committee. But the Federation then initiated legal proceedings saying the men had already been investigated and cleared.

The Federation took out an injunction against the IPCC investigation while a Judicial Review is heard. An IPCC source says it will not harm their investigation to wait for the outcome of the review and so they are not contesting the injunction.

An IPCC spokesman said: "We deeply regret the delay in concluding a matter of great public interest.

"However, as there would be no prejudice to our investigation if it is suspended pending the outcome of proceedings we do not wish to incur unnecessary costs from the public purse in fighting the interim application.

"As a result, we will not be in a position to complete our investigation pending the conclusion of this legal action."

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Sun: PC guilty plea 'a red herring to the main event'

The Sun's Political Editor Tom Newton Dunn, who broke the original 'plebgate' story, has claimed the police officer's admission today to falsifying witnessing the row, was merely "a red herring to the main event": the Downing Street PC who alleged Andrew Mitchell called him a "pleb".

A Sun spokesman said: "We stand by our story and will defend Mr Mitchell's claim vigorously".

Mr Mitchell is suing the paper for libel.

In a statement, he said: "I am pleased that justice has been done in a criminal court today....I am looking forward to seeing justice done in the up to 10 other related disciplinary cases involving police officers"

Mitchell in constituency after 'plebgate' guilty plea

Former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell was in his constituency after a police officer admitted to falsely claiming to have witnessed the 'plebgate' row.

Andrew Mitchell pictured in his Sutton Coldfield constituency today. Credit: ITV News

He had earlier issued a statement saying: "It is very sad and worrying for all of us that a serving police officer should have behaved in this way."

Mitchell declines to comment on 'plebgate' news

Andrew Mitchell declined to comment to awaiting reporters on the news a police officer has pleaded guilty to misconduct over the "plebgate" scandal during his visit to his Sutton Coldfield constituency.

Andrew Mitchell pictured in his Sutton Coldfield constituency today. Credit: ITV News

Mr Mitchell told them: "I hope you're enjoying visiting my constituency."

He had earlier issued a written statement saying he was "pleased that justice has been done."

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