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MP calls for inquiry into Gwent crime figures

Blaenau Gwent MP Nick Smith has called for Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary to look into claims crime reporting in the Gwent area was 'capped.' He made his call during a House of Commons debate on the rôles and powers of Police and Crime Commissioners in Wales.

Mr Smith said that the force's Commissioner Ian Johnston had not justified claims that the area's figures had been capped. He said an external inquiry is needed.

N Wales PCC candidate spent £36,457 on campaign

A candidate to become North Wales' Police and Crime Commissioner spent more than on his election campaign than all of his rivals.

Independent candidate Richard Hibbs spent £36,457 campaigning for the first PCC elections, but only finished fourth.

They were held last November, with very low voter turnout - an average of below less than 15 per cent across England and Wales.

Dyfed-Powys:

Christopher Salmon - Conservative - £15,903.34

Christine Gywther - Labour - £10,102.32

Gwent:

Ian Johnston - Independent - £4,343.94

Nick Webb - Conservative - £2,045.00

Chris Wright - Independent - £13,845.44

Hamish Sandison - Labour - £5,177.00

North Wales:

Winston Roddick - Independent - £11,463.99

Colm McCabe - Conservative - £5,915.88

Richard Hibbs - Independent - £36,457.14

Tal Michael - Labour - £4,795.97

Warwick Nicholson - UKIP - £572.00

South Wales:

Alun Michael - Labour - £14,436.51

Caroline Jones - Conservative - £6,496.50

Antonio Verderame - Independent - £2,881.28

Michael Baker - Independent - £14,357.75

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MPs report calls for better scrutiny of PCCs

A report by a committee of MPs has criticised the behaviour of Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner Ian Johnston.

It comes after the forced retirement of Gwent's Chief Constable, Carmel Napier last month.

The report concluded that checks and balances for Commissioners were too weak.

The Home Office says strict safeguards are in place. Sarah Powell reports.

Caerphilly MP: report raises questions over need for PCCs

"This is a cross party report, and it's quite scathing" says Caerphilly MP Wayne David.

"It's very scathing of the PCC for Gwent, both of his attitude and actions, but it also raises bigger questions of the power that a PCC has and certainly puts a question mark over whether we should have them in the first place."

Gwent PCC Ian Johnston hits back at MPs' criticism

Ian Johnston was elected in November

"I would like to reiterate that the interests of the communities of Gwent have, and always will be, at the forefront of my decisions and that at all times I act within the relevant legislation" says Gwent Police & Crime Commissioner Ian Johnston.

"I will be moving to appoint a new Chief Constable at the beginning of September".

"In the meantime, I will work with the temporary Chief Constable Jeff Farrar to ensure the Force has the stability and leadership required, to continue to provide a police service for Gwent which meets the needs of the communities of Gwent"

Committee of MPs: Checks on PCCs are 'too weak'

The Home Affairs Select Committee published a report into the powers of PCCs to remove Chief Constables Credit: ITV Wales

The checks and balances on Police and Crime Commisioners are too weak, according to a report published by the Home Affairs Select Committee into their powers.

The Committee took evidence from Ian Johnston, Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner , and Carmel Napier, the former Chief Constable, who he sacked.

The report recommends that police and crime panels should fully exercise their powers of scrutiny in cases where the commissioner proposes to remove a chief constable.

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Vaz claims PCCs have 'worrying' ability to evade rules

Home Affairs committee chairman Keith Vaz said it is "worrying" that Police and Crime Commissioners "seem able to side-step the statutory process for dismissing a chief constable".

Home Affairs committee chairman Keith Vaz. Credit: PA/PA Wire

Mr Vaz said: "Police and Crime Panels should make more active use of their powers to scrutinise decisions such as this.

"We will be returning to this area when we carry out our next major inquiry into Polic eand Crime Commissioners, towards the end of this year."

Expert urges review of who controls Welsh police forces

A leading expert on policing has tonight called on the Welsh Government to take over control of forces across Wales. The move follows the bitter row over how a Welsh Police Commissioner handled the forced retirement of a chief constable.

Dr Tim Brain says the Gwent Commissioner, Ian Johnston was within his rights to force out Chief Constable Carmel Napier.

Dr Brain is now calling for a review of who is responsible for the police forces of Wales.

Owain Phillips reports

Gwent's PCC quizzed by MPs

Gwent's Police and Crime Commissioner, Ian Johnston, will be questioned by the Welsh Affairs Select Committee today. A one-off session is being held with all four Welsh PCCs, but the spotlight is likely to fall Mr Johnston following revelations over the departure of Chief Constable, Carmel Napier.

Carmel Napier suddenly left her post as Gwent's Chief Constable last month. Later it emerged that Ian Johnston had suggested she should retire or face being removed from her post.

Giving evidence to the Home Affairs Committee last week, the ex-Chief Constable said that Ian Johnston was 'bullying and menacing' when he told her she should retire or be sacked. Mr Johnston defended his decision, saying it was clear she was "hostile" to his role as Gwent's PCC.

It later emerged that the taxpayer footed the bill of £16,000 in legal fees over the removal of the Chief Constable.

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