HC Deb 19 May 1988 vol 133 cc1089-90
10. Mr. Wray

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many members of police forces have, for each year since 1974, been (a) tried and (b) convicted for conspiring to pervert the cause of justice.

Mr. Douglas Hogg

The available information about criminal charges brought against police officers does not identify separately charges of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice, and I regret that the information requested could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Wray

Does the Minister agree that there has been much anxiety about a number of cases over the years, culminating in two recent cases, the Chelsea gang case, and the Stirton case, where the dubious fabricated evidence has cost the taxpayer money? Will the Home Secretary review the present arrangements, by bringing out a Green Paper?

Mr. Hogg

There is absolutely no need.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett

Does my hon. Friend agree that the very small proportion of police officers who attempt to pervert the course of justice is symptomatic of what a good police force we have? Does he agree also that it compares favourably with police forces abroad, and that we should be concerned about the number of police officers who are injured?

Mr. Hogg


Mr. Campbell-Savours

Why is the Police Federation so reluctant to give legal support to Inspector Woollard? Does the federation believe that if he were to go to court some police officers would be prosecuted for offences?

Mr. Hogg

I should be inclined to ask the chairman of the Police Federation.