IPCC finds a case to answer for gross misconduct against five Thames Valley Police officers
*NOTE: The referral to the Solicitors Regulation Authority concerns a solicitor who was acting for, and advising the police officers in the immediate aftermath of Mr Ullah's death in 2008, and not solicitors currently acting for them.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has found a case to answer for gross misconduct against five Thames Valley officers in relation to events prior to the death of Habib Ullah in July 2008.
The officers will now face misconduct hearings as part of an internal disciplinary process.We have also passed details of our investigation to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) to consider the conduct of a Police Federation solicitor (*see note above). Mr Ullah died on 3 July 2008 following a drugs search by police officers. There was an IPCC investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death which concluded in December 2009. However, the inquest into Mr. Ullah’s death was abandoned in December 2010 when new evidence emerged during police officers’ accounts.
This led to the re-opening of the IPCC investigation in order to assess the impact the new evidence had on the original investigation, including seeking further opinion from restraint experts and doctors. In addition, the reasons for the discrepancies between officers’ statements provided to our original investigation and their accounts at inquest have been investigated.
The IPCC investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Habib Ullah in the Sharrow Vale area of High Wycombe was completed and a file was sent to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in February 2014.The CPS has today decided that there is insufficient evidence to charge any individual in relation to Mr Ullah’s death or in relation to allegations perverting the course of justice and all concerned parties have been notified. As a result, the IPCC has now provided the report and the underlying material to Mr Ullah’s family and HM Coroner in advance of an inquest. The full investigation report will be published at the conclusion of the coroner’s inquest.
IPCC Associate Commissioner Guido Liguori said: "This has been a complex investigation which as we have said has taken an unbearably long time for Mr Ullah’s family. I am very sorry for the prolonged distress this has caused, but it has been essential to ensure that our investigation was robust and thorough.
“Five officers and a solicitor were interviewed under caution and we felt there was sufficient evidence to refer to the CPS. In light of the CPS decision, we have now sent the report to the family of Mr Ullah and the SRA. In accordance with procedures under the Police Reform Act 2002 Thames Valley Police were sent a copy of the report in January 2014 and they have determined that five officers should now face gross misconduct hearings. We have also sent a copy of the report to the Coroner in advance of the inquest into Mr Ullah’s tragic and untimely death.”