Four arrested over 'bribes' of £20,000 to Met Police

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The Independent Online

Three former Metropolitan police officers and a serving anti-corruption officer were arrested yesterday over claims that information about a Nigerian fraudster was handed to a private security firm in return for thousands of pounds.

The arrests followed allegations detailed to a Parliamentary committee that the security company made a series of bribes totalling about £20,000 to police or people close to the inquiry into James Ibori. The former Governor of one of Nigeria's richest oil-producing states was jailed for 13 years last month after admitting fraud totalling nearly £50m. Two private investigators, aged 53 and 58, were held following a raid at the London Offices of Risc Management Ltd, which was reportedly hired by a law firm that was representing Ibori.

Officers went earlier to a home in London to arrest a 45-year-old Detective Constable. He is being questioned on suspicion of providing information about Ibori in return for money. A fourth person was arrested on suspicion of bribing police.

Details of the allegations came to light during an investigation into the unregulated private-investigation industry by the Home Affairs Select Committee. Scotland Yard said the raid at Risc was part of a "pre-planned operation".