HC Deb 16 July 1953 vol 517 cc2218-9
11. Mr. Lewis

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps his Department takes to ensure that men with criminal records are not enrolled into the police force; and whether he will give an assurance that no such persons are now employed in any sections of the constabulary service.

Sir D. Maxwell Fyfe

Before a candidate is accepted for the Metropolitan Police Force detailed inquiries are made into his character and antecedents, and I am not aware that any officer now serving in the force has been convicted of a serious criminal offence. In other forces, the matter is one for the appointing authority, but I believe that the general practice is in line with that followed in the Metropolitan Police Force.

Mr. Lewis

I thank the Home Secretary for that reassuring reply, but since he will be aware that Christie did slip in as a War Reserve policeman, may I ask whether the answer applies to the Special Constabulary? Will he see that the answer which he has given in relation to the Metropolitan police is well circulated among other police forces?

Sir D. Maxwell Fyfe

I will certainly do that. The hon. Member has shown that he appreciates the difficulty in the great expansion of the War Reserve force, but I will with great pleasure look into both the points which he has raised.