Police and BBC criticised by report into raid on Sir Cliff Richard's home

Sir Cliff Richard's lawyers said the BBC's coverage of the raid caused him 'immeasurable harm'. Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

An independent report into the controversial police raid on Sir Cliff Richard's home has found the pop star was caused "unnecessary distress" by live coverage which invaded his privacy.

The Daily Mail, which has obtained the report under Freedom of Information laws, said that its author, former chief constable Andy Trotter, concluded the police should not have made a deal with the BBC to supply details of the raid in return for the broadcaster holding the story.

Detectives searched the 74-year-old singer's Berkshire apartment in August while a film crew from the corporation caught the event on camera.

Following the raid, Sir Cliff was interviewed by detectives investigating a claim of a sex crime involving a young boy, but was not arrested or charged.

The review reportedly concluded South Yorkshire Police should not have confirmed "highly sensitive and confidential" details to the BBC or facilitated a meeting between a senior detective and a corporation reporter.

The report heavily criticises the BBC's coverage of a police raid on Sir Cliff's apartment in Berkshire. Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

The paper said Mr Trotter, who helped draw up press relations guidance for the College of Policing, said: "People have seen a search of Sir Cliff Richard's apartment unfold on television with details of a serious allegation put into the public domain prior to him being interviewed by the police.

"The search and the nature of the allegation ... certainly interfered with his privacy and may well have cause unnecessary distress."

A statement from Sir Cliff's lawyers said the coverage caused "immeasurable harm" to the star.