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Britain's ex-top cop: Too much police-press gossip

Britain's ex-top cop: Too much police-press gossip

There has been too much gossip between senior police officials and members of the press, the former head of Scotland Yard said Monday.
Paul Stephenson, who resigned last year over his force's failure to get to grips with Britain's phone hacking scandal, testified that relations between a small number of police managers and the media were closer than necessary.
"There was a little too much gossiping about things that ought to have been confidential," he told a judge-led inquiry which is sifting through the scandal's fallout. He called the leaks "hugely distracting and, in my opinion, unprofessional."
Stephenson didn't go into detail, but his comments are the latest to underline the often close _ and sometimes intimate _ relations between Britain's national press and its biggest police force.
Senior Scotland Yard official Sue Akers testified last week that journalists paid a tens of thousands of pounds' (dollars') worth of bribes to serving police officers, and Stephenson's former deputy, John Yates, was thrown onto the defensive Thursday after it was revealed that he'd shared Champagne with one of the many journalists who are now suspects in the scandal.
Stephenson resigned last year after it emerged that he was also linked with one of the scandal's suspects _ News of the World executive Neil Wallis _ whom he met for dinner or lunch at least half a dozen times.
Wallis also served as one of Stephenson's PR advisers and had been employed by a spa which gave the police chief thousands of pounds worth of free accommodation.
Stephenson told the inquiry that he had resigned out of a "sense of duty and honor" _ although he acknowledged that the decision to hire Wallis "played very, very badly."
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Online:
http://www.levesoninquiry.org.uk/
http://twitter.com/razhael


Updated : 2021-08-02 06:45 GMT+08:00