A detective has been disciplined for attempting to sabotage one of Scotland Yard's most sensitive cases.
Detective Sergeant Paul Steed, 49, was demoted after interfering with the investigation into the murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence.
Senior officers were aghast when they discovered the officer tampered with key dates and times on an evidence log.
The Sun newspaper reported the officer is suspected of acting out of spite after being told he would be taken off the inquiry.
Steed, of Greenhithe, Kent, was moved from the tight-knit team after getting involved in a punch-up in Spain.
Stephen, 18, was stabbed to death by a racist gang as he waited at a bus stop in Eltham, south-east London, on April 22, 1993.
Five men, Neil Acourt, his brother Jamie, David Norris, Gary Dobson and Luke Knight, remain the prime suspects. They deny murder.
Three were acquitted of murder after a private prosecution brought by the Lawrence family collapsed at the Old Bailey in 1996.
An inquiry into the flawed police response accused the Met of "institutional racism" and proved to be a landmark in race relations.
Stephen's mother Doreen was invited to Steed's disciplinary hearing, where he was found guilty of two charges and demoted.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: "On Monday March 1 an officer attended a misconduct board at which two breaches of conduct codes, lawful orders and performance of duties, were found proven.
"The officer was reduced in rank from a detective sergeant to a detective constable and was fined 13 days' pay.
"Fortunately the actions of this officer have not had any long-term impact on the review of the Stephen Lawrence murder investigation.
"Any allegation that an officer has not met the standards expected of them is taken very seriously and will be dealt with appropriately.Reuse content