Top officer questioned over Shipman's victims
Friday 15th August 2014 @ 10:10 by Max Wieland

Relatives of the victims of serial killer Harold Shipman were being contacted this week as a major incident room was set up.



The unprecedented move comes after Greater Manchester Police Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney was served with a gross misconduct notice by police watchdog the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

It comes after allegations that GMP secretly disposed of human remains of Harold Shipman’s victims.

An IPCC spokesman said the Assistant Chief Constable was served with the gross misconduct notice for his alleged oversight in the disposal of body parts belonging to the victims.

At the same time, Greater Manchester Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy and two detectives were served with criminal and gross misconduct notices by the police watchdog.

They are under criminal investigation over allegations of a mishandled sex offence case.

The IPCC notices inform the three officers that their conduct or actions may have breached their standards of professional behaviour.

Another officer, now retired, is to be served with criminal and gross misconduct notices as part of the same investigation.

The watchdog launched an investigation in March after claims made by a whistleblower.

Sir Peter Fahy said: “As a chief constable you face making complex decisions on a daily basis about many high risk and challenging situations.

“It is right that this decision-making is scrutinised and that I am held to account as part of this investigation.”

Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd said: “Nothing has been placed before me at this time by the IPCC which would make me consider the position of the Chief Constable.

“I understand that this investigation will cause uncertainty and will be of concern to the people of Greater Manchester. That is why the IPCC must conduct its investigation both thoroughly and speedily.”

Shipman, who worked as a GP in Hyde, was convicted of 15 murders in 2000, but is believed to have killed more than 200 of his patients. He took his own life in Wakefield prison in 2004.