Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 September 2014

Police officers sacked for playing backgammon and poker while on duty

An entire south London neighbourhood policing team has been axed after an internal investigation found some officers had been playing backgammon and poker, watching television and cleaning golf clubs while on duty.

Seven officers in total resigned or were dismissed from the Safer Neighbourhood Team in the Mottingham and Chislehurst North ward in Bromley, south-east London.

The disciplinary action followed an undercover operation by the Metropolitan Police Service's (MPS) Directorate of Professional Standards in 2010.

One sergeant and a constable were sackedfor gross misconduct. Another Pc and three of the team's community support officers resigned, while a fourth was dismissed.

Three of the officers were also charged with criminal offences.

In a statement, the Met said: “The disciplinary panel heard evidence that officers had played backgammon and poker whilst on duty, watched TV in the office, frequently failed to go out on patrol, had not worked full tours of duty and also claimed overtime that had not been worked.

“In addition, one officer had gone out for runs during the working day whilst a further officer cleaned his golf clubs in the office. These activities appear to have taken place at the expense of policing duties, such as patrolling the local area.”

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