Leading article: The Lawrence case is far from over

Share

It took the full weight of the Macpherson inquiry to expose the institutional racism that hampered the Metropolitan Police investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence. Now, fully 19 years after the teenager's fatal stabbing, evidence from secret Scotland Yard files, published in this newspaper today, suggests there may be more – and worse – to come.

That one of the leading detectives on the Lawrence case was widely suspected of being a "major player" in a corruption ring "operating as a professional organised crime syndicate" is shocking enough. But the accusation that a crooked relationship between Detective Sergeant John Davidson and the drug-dealing father of one of the prime suspects may have had a bearing on the investigation – and that the Met's anti-graft squad knew of the alleged links and deliberately kept them back from the public inquiry – is more alarming still.

So far, the Met is sticking to the same line it took with Sir William Macpherson: there is evidence that DS Davidson was corrupt, but nothing to link those activities to the Lawrence case. With supergrass Neil Putnam claiming otherwise, and discrepancies over the debriefing process, that is simply not good enough.

The claims heap pressure on the Met, which is already reeling from last week's Leveson Inquiry session revealing a "network of corrupted officials" accepting bribes from The Sun in return for "salacious gossip", and was buffetted further yesterday by the appearance of Paul Stephenson – the former Commissioner forced to resign over his links to Neil Wallis – to answer questions about his relationship with the former News of the World executive arrested over the scandal.

The murder of Stephen Lawrence, and the flawed police investigation that followed, are stains on British society and British justice. With only two of the five people involved in the killing convicted, it cannot be over yet. And in the light of the latest appalling allegations of corruption, there must be a full, independent inquiry into the activities of the Met investigation team. No more prevarications. No more cover-ups. We owe it to Stephen Lawrence, and to his parents.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Technical Service Engineer - Vehicles

£25000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's premier supplie...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care / Support Workers

£7 - £10 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This care provider is looking for Home ...

Recruitment Genius: Web Team Leader

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's leading web des...

Recruitment Genius: Client Manager

£27000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A growing, successful, friendly...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Separate lives: Boston’s streets illustrate the divide between the town’s communities  

Migrants have far more to offer than hard work and wealth creation, yet too many exist in isolation from the rest of society

Emily Dugan
Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird has sold 40 million copies  

Go Set a Watchman: Harper Lee’s new novel is more than just a literary event

Joseph Charlton
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate