It is no surprise that after 34 years of loyal service to News International, Trevor Kavanagh is trying to persuade people to think the police, goaded by “witchunters”, are behaving heavy handedly.
In listening to his pleading, let us not forget that at the High Court last week, his employers, News Group Newspapers, were forced to admit that executives and staff had lied to the police, misled the public and destroyed evidence.
Then last week the Metropolitan police admitted to the court that it had not done enough to get to the bottom of the hacking scandal at Wapping.
So the notion that the police might politely ring up to make an appointment to see a Sun journalist for a civilised chat is far-fetched.
It takes some nerve for News International, in the form of Kavanagh, to be accusing the police of wasting time and resources. It is News International’s behaviour that is to blame for police having to devote immense time and resources to establish the facts.
By deliberately lying to the police and trashing evidence they have made the job far more complex and expensive than it should have been.
If further justification is needed, in the Dowler case, Surrey police revealed they had been bullied and deceived by News International.
The police are no doubt conscious of the remarks from the former Chair of the Press Complaints Commission Baroness Buscombe who said:
“There’s only so much we can do when people are lying to us. We know now that I was not being given the truth by the News of the World.”
I am sure the public will be able to judge for themselves Kavanagh’s motives in making this attack.
Ken Livingstone today launched a new campaign against rising violent crime and police cuts in London, pledging to:
1. Reverse Boris Johnson’s cuts to 1700 police officers
2. Reinstate sergeants to all 600 Safer Neighbourhood Teams, more of which will be beefed up to a minimum of nine officers, reversing the Tory Mayor’s cut to 300 sergeants in 2011.
According to the Metropolitan Police violent crimes such as robbery, residential burglary and rape have all risen while police have been cut. Knife crime has risen every year under Boris Johnson.
Police officer numbers peaked in 2010 at 33,260 officers. According to the Metropolitan Police there are currently just 31,657 officers in London. On Tuesday 24th January 2012 Boris Johnson admitted cutting 1700 police officers on LBC.
Ken Livingstone said,
“Boris Johnson has admitted cutting 1,700 police officers. If I am elected, I will reverse his cuts. And I will reinstate sergeants to all 600 Safer Neighbourhood Teams, more of which will be beefed up to a minimum of nine officers.
At a time when violent crimes including robbery, knife crime and rape are all rising in London it’s time to reverse the Tory Mayor’s cuts to the police and make the streets safer.”
Labour’s London Assembly transport spokesperson, Joanne McCartney AM said,
“Londoners across the capital have been appalled by Boris Johnson’s police cuts. It’s essential that there is a visible policing presence on our streets.
Boris Johnson’s decision to cut 1700 police officers, including 300 experienced local police team sergeants shows why he is increasingly known as a Mayor who is completely out of touch.”
Metropolitan Police officer numbers 2008 – 2011:
Date Police officer numbers
31/03/2008 – 31,398
31/03/2009) – 32,543 (funded by Ken Livingstone’s last Mayoral budget in February 2008)
31/03/2010) – 33,260
31/01/2011) – 32,380
31/10/2011) – 31,478
Text of letter for people who can’t see embedded Google Docs:
Dear Mr Watson
Re: Email Hacking at The Times newspaper
Thank you for your letter dated 23 January 2012, and subsequent letter clarifying the position around the evidence given by The Times to the Leveson Inquiry.
I write to reassure you that the concerns raised within your letter are under investigation and officers from Operation Tuleta are dealing directly with the victim.
pp Deputy Assistant Commissioner Akers