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PM's police idea 'stupid', says Hugh Orde

By Sam Marsden

Published 29/07/2011

Sir Hugh Orde
Sir Hugh Orde

The former Chief Constable of the PSNI has dismissed David Cameron's suggestion that foreign police chiefs could be brought in to turn around UK forces as "simply stupid".

Sir Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers (Acpo), has written to the Prime Minister asking him for a meeting to discuss his comments in the House of Commons last week.

Mr Cameron suggested that the phone hacking crisis called for "radical" changes to British policing to open up forces and to bring in some "fresh leadership".

"At the moment, the police system is too closed. There is only one point of entry into the force. There are too few, and arguably too similar, candidates for the top jobs," he told MPs.

"Why should someone who has been a proven success overseas not be able to help us to turn around a force here at home?"

Sir Hugh, who is considered a frontrunner to become the next Metropolitan Police Commissioner after Sir Paul Stephenson resigned over the phone hacking scandal, said he was "slightly surprised" by the Prime Minister's comments.

"The notion that you can ship someone in from another country to run a police force in a different environment and a different culture is simply stupid," he said.

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