December 24, 2008

The controversy over the arrest of Tory frontbencher Damian Green took a new twist today after it emerged the arresting officers were wearing sound recording equipment at the time.

Police arrested and held shadow immigration minister Green for nine hours last month in connection with a Home Office leak inquiry. It prompted Tory accusations of “heavy-handed tactics” by Scotland Yard and piled pressure on the officer in charge of the probe, Assistant Commissioner Bob Quick.

In a statement today, the Metropolitan police said a tape recording of Green’s arrest was made “without his knowledge”.

efoodsThe issue had now been referred to the UK’s covert surveillance watchdog “for their advice”, the force added.

The Met said: “A tape sound recording was made of the MP’s arrest and subsequent period in police charge, without his knowledge, prior to arrival at Belgravia police station from Kent.

“This was authorised at superintendent level to provide an accurate record of anything that may have been said by officers or the MP over a period of nearly two and a half hours.

“This was done with the best of intentions but to ensure total transparency this matter has been voluntarily referred to the Office of the Surveillance Commissioners for their advice.”

Full article here

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