Two police officers from London and Manchester police forces are accused of abusing their positions in the cadet training programmes for their own sexual purposes. Four more officers are being investigated by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) over how they handled the reports of the abuse.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) is now urgently reviewing all cadet training programmes.
The Greater Manchester Police (GMP) constable has been arrested and released on bail. The police sergeants conduct is also being examined.
The Metropolitan Police has confirmed one of its constables had been suspended and was the subject of a criminal investigation following allegations he abused his position for a sexual purpose at a London-based cadet training camp.
IOPC Deputy Director General Ian Todd said:
“We are sufficiently concerned by these two referrals to ask all police forces in England and Wales to urgently review their own volunteer police cadet programmes to ensure they have robust safeguarding procedures in place. I must stress that the two investigations are unconnected and we have no information to indicate this may be a wider problem.
However, some of the evidence emerging from these investigations indicates that there may have been opportunities to act sooner on the allegations that we are now investigating.”
Commander Mark McEwan who is the leader for the Metropolitan police on crime prevention has commented “Following these allegations, the Met carried out a full review of safeguarding and vetting in relation to the VPC programme and meetings have been held with all VPC coordinators and supervisors about their safeguarding responsibilities, and compliance with policy.”
“Each Met borough has a dedicated programme coordinator assigned to it – something unique to the MPS – and all adults who work on the VPC programme have been subject to enhanced vetting checks, and receive additional safeguarding training.”
A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police spokesman has said that a review of its cadet scheme has been undertaken and has identified where safeguarding measures and training could be improved.
NSPCC public affairs manager Andrew Fellowes said:
“Strong safeguarding arrangements are crucial in any organisation and these investigations in relation to police volunteer cadet programmes for children are very concerning.”
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