The conviction of Commander Dizaei of the Metropolitan Police this week emphasises that the police are properly subject to the law in this country and that it will be applied to them just as to everyone else.
When a police officer behaves badly, then members of the public should know that, if they report that behaviour, their complaint will be taken seriously and, where the evidence supports it, action will be taken.
One of my duties as a member of the Kent Police Authority is to help sample complaints which have been considered locally by our professional standards department and to make sure that they have been dealt with in the way that my electors would expect.
Whilst Sir Ian Blair as Metropolitan Commissioner, quite wrongly, initially tried to avoid independent scrutiny of the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes at Stockwell, he was not allowed to get away with it. By contrast, Kent Police have been open to – and welcomed – very extensive independent scrutiny following complaints regarding the Climate Camp policing.
It is essential that the police be held properly accountable to the public. The justice system worked this week and, hopefully soon under the Conservatives, the public will also get the chance to elect those who oversee our police.