Public Sector: IPCC - 'Boundaries blurred' over Wallis hire

A police regulator has found that professional boundaries were blurred between figures at the Metropolitan Police Service and the News of the World over the appointment of Neil Wallis.

Following investigations carried out by the Independent Police Complaints Commission, the watchdog said 'there was a case to answer' in relation to misconduct by the force's former director of public affairs Dick Fedorcio.

Deborah Glass, IPCC deputy chair, criticised actions taken within the service at a time when news of the phonehacking scandal - which led to the closure of the News of the World - had started to emerge.

'Senior people appear to have been oblivious to the perception of conflict. It is clear to me that professional boundaries became blurred, imprudent decisions were taken and poor judgement shown by senior police personnel,' she said. However, Glass added that allegations of corruption were unfounded.

CIPR director of policy and comms Phil Morgan, respon-ding to the findings, said: 'While it is clear that no corruption was involved in either case, the IPCC has identified the problem as one of public confidence going forward.

The focus for the MPS now should be in rebuilding that confidence, which must start within the service itself.'

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