Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Deputy chief constable is sacked

Derek Bonnard had been suspended by Cleveland Police pending the outcome of disciplinary proceedings

The Deputy Chief Constable of a scandal-hit police force has been sacked for gross misconduct.

Derek Bonnard had been suspended by Cleveland Police pending the outcome of disciplinary proceedings.

In October, Cleveland's former chief constable Sean Price was the first in 35 years to be dismissed.

Cleveland Police said six counts of gross misconduct were upheld and an independent panel decided to dismiss Mr Bonnard without notice.

Aming the six counts, he was found to have deliberately obstructed the criminal investigation known as Operation Sacristy, misused public funds in relation to a charity bike ride, misused a corporate credit card and inappropriately hired a vehicle which he crashed, costing the tax payer over £5,000.

The hearing followed an investigation carried out by the Independent Police Complaints Commission after a referral from Cleveland Police Authority in August 2011.

Mr Price's successor as Chief Constable of Cleveland Police, Jacqui Cheer said: "In May 2012, Derek Bonnard publicly stated he was innocent of any wrongdoing and wanted his name cleared.

"He also described the investigation as highly expensive, recognising that it was funded by tax payers.

"Quite clearly, he is not innocent of any wrongdoing, and he has succeeded in delaying his misconduct hearing, which has incurred additional cost for the tax payer.

"Mr Bonnard's actions were reflective of the culture at the top of the organisation at that time, and measures have been put in place to ensure that this type of behaviour is not repeated."

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