Scotland Yard showed 'poor judgement' in appointing Neil Wallis, says IPCC

Police watchdog says professional boundaries 'became blurred' at the Metropolitan Police

The IPCC the police watchdog said today that Scotland Yard had made 'imprudent decisions' and showed 'poor judgement' in hiring former News of the World boss, Neil Wallis, as a public relations consultant.

Mr Wallis was appointed as a communications adviser to the Metropolitan Police, and his daughter also got a job with the force.

The watchdog said that professional boundaries 'became blurred', and that their two investigations showed 'senior people appear to have been oblivious to the perception of conflict' amid the phone hacking scandal.

The investigations also ruled out corruption allegations in the decision to appoint Neil Wallis to the £1,000-a-day job with the London police force.

Claims of misconduct over John Yates's alleged involvement in securing a job at the force for Neil Wallis's daughter were also dismissed.

Mr Wallis was arrested and then bailed last year in relation to the Metropolitan police investigation into phone hacking.

Neil Wallis's company, Chamy Media, was paid £24,000 by the Met for PR advice between October 2009 and September 2010.

Deborah Glass, the deputy chairwoman of the IPCC, also expressed concern over the resignation of the former Met Police communications chief Dick Fedorcio, who was told he had a case to answer over the procurement of the contract.

Ms Glass said, 'The IPCC cannot prevent a member of police staff leaving before facing misconduct proceedings. But I can and do observe that such a practice can be hugely damaging to public confidence.'

The IPCC said today that senior figures at the Metropolitan Police were to blame for not carrying out a vetting check on Neil Wallis prior to, or during his appointment as a communications adviser between 2009 and 2010.

John Yates, the former assistant commissioner, left the force when the hacking allegations reached their peak last summer.

The IPCC said today that Mr Yates showed 'poor judgement' in sending Amy Wallis's CV to the head of Human Resources at Scotland Yard.

The action had "the foreseeable consequence that human resources staff believed that they were obliged to find a post", the report said.

Ms Glass said, "In these investigations, at the heart of the issues affecting public confidence was the question of whether two separate arrangements - both involving a form of employment connected to Neil Wallis - were either corruptly entered into or otherwise breached MPS policies and procedures.

“In neither case did we find evidence of corruption, but in both cases we found that policies were breached, and in the case of the former Director of Public Affairs, Dick Fedorcio, that there was a case to answer in relation to misconduct.

"Our investigations were limited in scope to the issues over which we have responsibility. However, the findings should be considered in context.

"Despite the growing phone hacking scandal, which must have exercised the MPS at a senior level and which was beginning to damage the reputation of the Metropolitan Police in late 2009, senior people appear to have been oblivious to the perception of conflict.

"It is clear to me that professional boundaries became blurred, imprudent decisions taken and poor judgment shown by senior police personnel.

"I am acutely aware that both reports are being published against the backdrop of the Leveson Inquiry, which is examining the relationship between the police and the media.

"The ongoing inquiry is painting an uncomfortable picture of the relationship between the biggest police force in Britain and sections of the media.

"This culture has had an impact on public confidence, although I also observe that since these cases were referred, none of the senior personnel referred to in these reports are still serving."

 

VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
News
Plans to decriminalise non-payment of television licence fees would cost the BBC £500m according to estimates drawn up within the Corporation
people
News
people
Life & Style
The new low cost smartphone of Motorola, 'Motorola Moto G', is displayed in Sao Paulo, Brazil on November 13, 2013. The smartphone, with dimensions 65.9mm W x 129.9mm H x 6.0 - 11.6mm D is equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 with quad-core 1,2 GHz CPU, a 4.5-inch display and Android Operating System 4.3 and a suggested price of $ 179 USD.
techData assessing smartphones has revealed tens of millions of phones are at risk of being harvested
Arts & Entertainment
Jessica Pare as Megan Draper and Jon Hamm as the troubled, melancholy Don Draper
tvAnd six other questions we hope Mad Men series seven will answer
Arts & Entertainment
Cody and Paul Walker pictured in 2003.
film
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Online Advertising Account Executive , St Pauls , London

£26K-30k + Bonus, Private Medical Insurance, Company Pension: Charter Selectio...

Advertising Account Executive - Online, Central London

£25K-28k + Bonus, Private Medical Insurance, Company Pension: Charter Selectio...

NGO and Community Development in Cambodia

Unpaid: Kaya Responsible Travel: There are many small development projects in ...

Business, Marketing and Tourism Volunteer Projects

Unpaid: Kaya Responsible Travel: As part of an ongoing effort to support local...

Day In a Page

Homelessness: Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Why is the supported lodgings lifeline under threat?

Zubairi Sentongo swapped poverty in Uganda for homelessness in Britain. But a YMCA scheme connected him with a couple offering warmth and shelter
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

When the world’s biggest shed took over Regent’s Park
The pain of IVF

The pain of IVF

As an Italian woman vows to keep the babies from someone else’s eggs, Julian Baggini ponders how the reality of childbirth is often messier than the natural ideal
Supersize art

Is big better? Britain's latest super-sized art

The Kelpies are the latest addition to a growing army of giant sculptures. But naysayers are asking what a pair of gigantic horse heads tells us about Falkirk?
James Dean: Back on the big screen

James Dean: Back on the big screen

As 'Rebel without a Cause' is re-released, Geoffrey Macnab reveals how its star perfected his moody act
Catch-22: How the cult classic was adapted for the stage

How a cult classic was adapted for the stage

More than half a century after it was published 'Catch-22' will make its British stage debut next week
10 best activity books for children

10 best activity books for children

Keep little ones busy this bank holiday with one of these creative, educational and fun books
Arsenal 3 West Ham United 1: Five things we learnt from the battle between the London sides

Five things we learnt from Arsenal's win over West Ham

Arsenal still in driving seat for Champions League spot and Carroll can make late charge into England’s World Cup squad
Copa del Rey final: Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right

Pete Jenson on the Copa del Rey final

Barcelona are paying for their complacency and not even victory over Real Madrid will put things right
Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

Rafa to reign? Ten issues clay courts will serve up this season

With the tennis circus now rolling on to the slowest surface, Paul Newman highlights who'll be making the headlines – and why
Exclusive: NHS faces financial disaster in 2015 as politicians urged to find radical solution

NHS faces financial disaster in 2015

Politicians urged to find radical solution
Ukraine crisis: How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?

Ukraine crisis

How spontaneous are the pro-Russian protests breaking out in Ukraine’s east?
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

The first execution at the Tower of London for 167 years

A history of the First World War in 100 moments
Fires could turn Amazon rainforest into a desert as human activity and climate change threaten ‘lungs of the world’, says study

New threat to the Amazon rainforest:

Fires that scorch the ‘lungs of the Earth’
Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City: And the winner of this season’s Premier League title will be...

Who’s in box seat now? The winner of the title will be ...

Who is in best shape to take the Premier League prize?