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Complaints against UK police reach record high

3 February 2015 14:03

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The number of complaints filed against British police in England and Wales has soared to a record high, with the country’s police watchdog calling for radical reforms of the system, Press TV reports.

Figures from Britain’s police watchdog, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), on Monday showed that a record 34,863 complaints were made in 2013-14, up 15 percent from the previous year.

The largest number of complaints involved police neglect or failure in duty followed by cases regarding police being rude or intolerant.

IPCC chairwoman Anne Owers said the watchdog upheld 44 percent of the appeals from people whose complaints had been investigated by the local police force as well as 49 percent of appeals made by the people whose complaints were not recorded by police in the first place.

The IPCC chairwoman called for an overhaul of the police’s complaint system in order “to make it more accessible and straightforward and to strengthen independent oversight.”

“Better public confidence in policing crucially depends on confidence that, where things may have gone wrong, appropriate action will be taken as soon as possible,” said Owers.

Gavin Thomas, the vice president of the Police Superintendents Association, described the figures as a “disappointment;” however, he also welcomed the findings as they “indicate that we are starting to see a service that is starting to creak under pressure” by the government’s recent cuts to the force.

Rising number of corrupt police

The figures came just days after a report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary’s (HMIC) showed a rise in the number of British police officers who deal drugs or abuse their power for sexual gratification.

The HMIC report published on January 31 revealed that in the 12 months to the end of March 2014, 406 investigations into sexual misconduct by UK police had been carried out.

Also during the last two years, 9,000 alleged police corruption investigations were carried out, 5,700 of which led to “no further action.”

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