Thursday, May 22, 2014

U.K.: Police watchdog probe into another six officers for failing to act on information about paedophile Lostprophets singer Ian Watkins BEFORE he tried to rape a baby

Six more police officers are being investigated over claims they could have stopped paedophile rock singer Ian Watkins before he abused two babies.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) is probing whether staff at three police forces failed to act because the ex-Lostprophets frontman was famous.

The watchdog has served gross misconduct notices on three South Yorkshire Police officers, two Bedfordshire Police officers and a South Wales police officer as part of its ongoing inquiries.

One officer from South Wales Police was issued with the same warning last year, taking the total now under investigation to seven.

Singer Watkins is currently serving a 35-year prison term for a string of child sex offences.

Described as a 'committed' paedophile, he used his fame to seduce young fans who allowed him to abuse their babies.

After his trial it emerged that police were allegedly warned of his child porn obsession four years before he was jailed.

Ian Watkins detective says case was one of worst in his career

Three independent IPCC investigations are ongoing into the on the response of South Wales Police, Bedfordshire Police and South Yorkshire Police to allegations that Watkins was abusing children.

The commission is investigating complaints around the handling of three reports made to South Yorkshire Police between March and May 2012 which contained allegations against Watkins with potential evidence.

A sergeant and two constables from this force have now been served with notices advising them that their conduct is subject to investigation.

The IPCC said it is also investigating Bedfordshire Police's handling of information from a member of the public who reported an allegation of child abuse against Watkins in October 2012. A sergeant and a constable have also been served with the notices.

The South Wales Police detective constable, who was attached to the Child Protection Unit, is the second officer from the force to be investigated.

IPCC commissioner Jan Williams said: 'We are making good progress with our three independent investigations and as result of our inquiries IPCC investigators have served notices on six further officers as part of the ongoing investigation - three from South Yorkshire Police, two from Bedfordshire Police and a second from South Wales Police.

'Arrangements are being made to interview the officers in the coming weeks.

'We have now conducted two interviews with a detective sergeant from South Wales Police about his actions in relation to information about Ian Watkins. We anticipate he will be interviewed again in the near future.

'We are continuing to gather and analyse information in all three investigations in order to establish what steps were taken by police in response to the allegations made against Ian Watkins, whether he could have been brought to justice sooner and whether his celebrity status had any impact on those investigations.'

The commission said it has received a substantial amount of documentation from the three forces which is being analysed by investigators.

Original report here




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