Andrew Snowden, Lancashire police and Crime Commissioner, alleged to be hindering a criminal investigation into ex Chief Constable?
A complaint was made to the Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner (‘the PCC’) Andrew Snowden of a criminal allegation against the ex-Lancashire police Chief Constable.
Ian Dickinson, the Governance & Policing Lead for the PCC has to date, made all decisions on behalf of Andrew Snowden. Mr Dickinson has been asked to clarify if Mr Snowden is aware of the following incident. Mr Dickinson has so far failed to confirm so for the purpose of this article, it is assumed that Mr Snowden is aware of the criminal allegations.
The complaint is now with the IOPC because the Crime Commissioner refused to record the serious complaint, a failure that was quickly overruled by the IOPC.
The IOPC went on to direct the Crime Commissioner to record and investigate the criminal allegation made against the ex-Chief Constable but the Crime Commissioner refused to do this!
Instead, the Crime Commissioner referred the complaint back to the IOPC, seeking the IOPC to make an ‘indication test’ (10.9 of the IOPC Statutory Guidance).
The allegation made against the ex-Chief Constable was that he brought a malicious civil application against Mr Ponting, a resident of Lancashire and an editor of this website.
The application was sought to prevent Mr Ponting from blogging about Lancashire police. (and only Lancashire police). This application which relied upon perjured evidence, was granted by a police defence barrister, QC David Knifton who was acting as a recorder at the time (a part-time judge).
Within the Civil evidence bundle, perjured evidence was positively identified and brought to the Chief Constables attention before the civil trial took place. This was done to ensure the Chief Constable had every opportunity to correct his perjured evidence bundle.
Rather than Investigate this serious criminal allegation that had supporting evidence, the Chief Constable put his own ‘civil application’ above the law and stated that the reported perjured evidence, will be tested in a civil hearing. (not in a criminal court as it should have been)
Perjury is a serious offence and Mr Justice Fraser is quoted as saying it ‘strikes at the heart of the administration of justice’ (Para 2, Mr Justice Fraser, The Queen v Jennifer Johnson).
There is never a lawful justification for the police to ignore a criminal offence in favour of a civil application, especially when the civil application heavily relies upon the alleged perjured evidence.
The ex-Chief Constable should not be allowed to hide behind his (ex) Chief Constable status or be in any way protected by the Police and Crime Commissioner, Andrew Snowden who has a duty to hold the chief constable to account.