Startling figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show that 170 of the 2,700 MoD Police officers currently on duty are under investigation for a wealth of criminal and negligence reasons. This is an increase of nearly 400% compared to just two years ago.
The figures showed that;
- 86 officers are being investigated for neglect of their duties.
- 43 for their general conduct whilst on duty.
- 5 for harassment and bullying.
- The rest face possible firearms, sexual conduct, drugs and fraud charges.
The Ministry of Defence Police are tasked with protecting the UK’s military infrastructure at more than 120 military sites around the UK including submarine and air bases and are the only British Police force that carry firearms as standard practice. The investigations come amid an uncertain future for the MoD Police as their budget is being halved from £360m to £180m which means cuts of up to 20% of its personnel and up to 50% of its stations by 2016. This has lead some to claim that low morale may have some part in the increase in investigations but the MoD have dismissed this.
A spokesman for the MoD Police said:
The Chief Constable expects all of his officers and staff to behave with the highest levels of professionalism and integrity, and any allegations of criminal or disciplinary conduct are taken very seriously. Where such allegations are made, they are fully investigated and, if substantiated, the MoDP will respond accordingly with criminal and or disciplinary action.