Hundreds of UK Police Officers Accused of Sexual Abuse

A police officer stands outside London Supreme Court.
About 40 percent of the accusations of sexual abuse involved victims of domestic abuse.

More than 300 police officers in the United Kingdom have used their position of authority to sexually assault people, a new report has found.

RELATED: : Hundreds of Victims Report UK Soccer Child Sexual Abuse​

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary said the issue had now become the “most serious” form of corruption in England and Wales.

The watchdog gathered figures over the course of two years.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council described the problem as a “disease” and acknowledged that more effort needed to be made to “root it out and inoculate policing for the future.”

“It is the most serious form of corruption and it can never be justified or condoned,” said Chief Constable Stephen Watson, the NPCC’s lead for counter-corruption.

The report found that 306 officers, 20 police community support officers, and eight police staff were involved in 436 reported cases. Less than half of these, 48 percent, had been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

RELATED: UK Approves ‘Extreme Surveillance Laws’​

“Make no mistake about it, the sexual exploitation of vulnerable women is corruption,” Inspector Mike Cunningham, who led the review, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. “It is using authority for personal gain, which is a definition of corruption.

“It is the most serious corruption problem in the sense that it is the ultimate betrayal of trust, where the guardian becomes the abuser,” he continued. “That is what we are seeing in these cases, and we’re seeing too many.”

In a forward to the report, Cunningham noted that such corruption “betrays the trust of the public — particularly of some of the most vulnerable people in society, such as victims of domestic abuse.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *