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Lawrence inquiry evidence probed

Published 27/05/2015

Stephen Lawrence was murdered in a racist attack
Stephen Lawrence was murdered in a racist attack

A police watchdog investigation is examining whether senior police officers, including Britain's former top officer, failed to provide "full, frank and truthful" information to the Stephen Lawrence inquiry more than 15 years ago.

It comes after the father of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence last month made a complaint about former Metropolitan Police commissioner John, now Lord, Stevens over claims he withheld evidence from the 1998 Macpherson Inquiry.

In an outline of its investigation released today, the Independent Police Complaints Commission said it will look at what information was known by Lord Stevens' office when his evidence was submitted.

In a letter to the inquiry, Lord Stevens said no officer or former officer involved in giving evidence at the inquiry was under investigation for corruption.

But a second review of the case last year by Mark Ellison QC found corruption allegations about a Metropolitan Police detective who worked on the original investigation into the killing should have been revealed to the inquiry.

An IPCC statement said: "The Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating whether there was a failure of top rank or very senior police officers including, but not limited to, the former Metropolitan Police Service commissioner Lord Stevens to provide full, frank and truthful information on the issue of corruption to the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry in 1998.

"IPCC investigators will examine the information known and the decisions made in compiling a letter sent from Lord Stevens' office to the Inquiry dated 12 June 1998.

"The letter was the MPS response to a request from the Inquiry, sparked by a media report, as to whether officers involved in the Stephen Lawrence case were being investigated for corruption."

It will also investigate why no further response was provided to the inquiry following a formal request to be updated on developments about relevant anti-corruption enquiries.

Mr Lawrence, an 18-year-old would-be architect, was stabbed to death by a group of up to six white youths in an unprovoked racist attack as he waited at a bus stop in Eltham, south east London, with a friend on April 22 1993.

Following the release of the damning Ellison review last year, Neville Lawrence complained to the Metropolitan Police which referred itself to the IPCC.

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