A senior police officer was allowed to keep his £100,000-a-year job despite being a regular user of “high-class” prostitutes. An examination of his mobile phone during an investigation into unrelated allegations, which were later dropped, found he had made payments of hundreds of pounds to sex workers when he had an important command position in the Met Police. There were expectations among his colleagues for the officer to be sacked for discredited behaviour, and be hauled before a misconduct board. But according to multiple sources, Assistant Commissioner, Helen Ball, a close ally of then Met boss Cressida Dick, instead gave “words of advice” and the senior police officer was given a minor rebuke.
Whistleblowers expressed concern to the Daily Mail that it represented a double-standard, saying that junior officers would have been sacked for gross misconduct.
The senior officer at the centre of the row is still working for the Met Police on a salary of more than £100,000 and details of his conduct were never made public.
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A source told the Mail: “It was all kept incredibly tight. It appeared to be a clear case of gross misconduct and should have gone to a hearing where details would have gone on the Met’s website.”
The source added: “By using the services of sex workers, the senior officer was potentially exploiting vulnerable women, who we are supposed to protect, and leaving himself open to possible bribery attempts.”
Another whistle-blower said: “What this officer did was morally repugnant. He was using high-class prostitutes. It was a pattern of behaviour. The way this was handled is another indictment of Cressida Dick’s regime.”
Ex-Met chief superintendent Phil Flower, who held a senior position in the force’s Professional Standards unit during his career, said he found it “extremely surprising” that the officer had not been subjected to “a more robust decision”.
Since his appointment to Met Police chief last September, Sir Mark Rowley has planned to win back the trust of the public, including cracking down on wrongdoers in police ranks. He is under intense pressure to restore confidence following the murder of Sarah Everard by PC Wayne Couzens and Met Police officer David Carrick being unmasked as a serial rapist.
A recent damming review of the Met by Baroness Louise Casey found the force to be institutionally racist, misogynistic, and homophobic, prompting the Met Commissioner to call for more powers to sack hundreds of officers not fit to serve.
Earlier this month, Sir Mark Rowley wrote to the Home Secretary and Mayor of London. He revealed 161 officers with criminal convictions were serving in the force, while 196 individuals accused of sexual offences or domestic abuse were facing risk management measures and the prospect of losing their jobs.
Speaking generally, a Met spokesperson has said: “The Met expects the highest standards. Officers must not behave in a way that will discredit the police and undermine the public’s confidence in us.
“Police play a key role in protecting sex workers – both men and women – from physical and sexual violence, coercion, control, and exploitation. Alongside work being undertaken on a national level, the Met is finalising expectations of our workforce in this area.”
Express.co.uk has approached the Metropolitan Police for further comment.