Ellison Review — Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:21 pm on 6th March 2014.

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Photo of Lord Taylor of Holbeach Lord Taylor of Holbeach The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department 5:21 pm, 6th March 2014

I thank the noble Lord, Lord Rosser, for his support in receiving the Statement. I think that the whole House will have been shocked by the contents of the Ellison review.

I do not think that any of us here, regardless of party or even our interest in the subject matter, would underestimate the difficulties that this situation engenders. Getting the culture right, as the noble Lord, Lord Rosser, said, is a major task. He is quite right to point to the fact that the majority of police officers are engaged in their task in a true sense of public service, and we should thank them for that, but we need to have in place those vehicles which mean that when we have people who are not performing that task with honesty and integrity, we can deal with them thoroughly. The answer lies within the structure of the police itself. That is clearly the thought behind my right honourable friend’s Statement and her replies to questions in the Commons earlier today.

It is quite clear that we will continue a process of investigation into allegations of corruption and misconduct in the police. That is part of the package of measures which the Home Secretary announced. There is a more serious problem, in that existing convictions may now be insecure as a result of the findings of the report, and the Home Secretary has asked Mark Ellison to lead the investigation in this area, in conjunction with the Crown Prosecution Service and the Attorney-General.

I can only conclude that it is a particularly moving occasion in that we have the noble Baroness, Lady Lawrence, with us for the Statement, and I thank the noble Lord, Lord Rosser, for his support.