Chief Constable investigated over 'undue influence'

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A Chief Constable is being investigated over a claim that he used "undue influence" in relation to a criminal investigation.

The allegation of misconduct against Martin Richards of Sussex Police is being investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) after it was referred to the organisation last month.

Details of the allegation have not been released by Sussex Police but it is believed that Mr Richards is being investigated over allegations he used "undue influence in relation to a process in a criminal investigation where proceedings are still active", said a source.

A Sussex Police spokeswoman said that given the seniority of the office of Chief Constable, Sussex Police believes it is paramount that any allegations about Mr Richards are subject to the independent scrutiny of the IPCC to maintain the public's confidence in the outcome of any investigation.