Police Scotland: New chief, Phil Gormley sworn in.
Phil Gormley has taken over from Sir Stephen House, who stood down as chief constable at the end of November after three years in the job.
Mr Gormley was previously the deputy director of the National Crime Agency. He has also served as the chief constable of Norfolk Police. And he was responsible for the merger of Special Branch and the Anti-Terrorist Branch to form the Counter-Terrorism Command while working as a commander with the Metropolitan Police.
Mr Gormley, who will receive a salary of about £212,000 a year, described his new job as the pinnacle of his policing career.
The new chief constable said:
“It’s an honour to have been selected to lead Police Scotland. I’m acutely aware of the significant responsibility and expectation that comes with role. This
is one of the most demanding jobs in British policing and I feel
immensely proud to have been chosen to lead the men and women of Police
Scotland through the next stage of its journey.” He
added: “There is no doubt we are in a challenging financial environment
– despite the savings already made, it is my responsibility working
with colleagues to deliver the best service possible with the available
resources. This will require
difficult decisions but I am determined that we will develop a service
the public trust and have confidence in and which our officers and staff
are proud to provide.”
Mr Gormley takes over in the wake of
criticism of the force’s policies on issues including stop-and-search
and armed officers, as well as its handling of the M9 crash near
Stirling in July that left two people dead after officers took three
days to respond.
The Scottish Police Federation, which
represents the vast majority of the force’s officers, has warned Mr
Gormley that he will be operating in a financial climate that has never
been more difficult. And it has said he will be facing a workforce that
has recently reported “unprecedented high levels of dissatisfaction with
Concerns have also been expressed about
Mr Gormley, who faced competition for the top job from Police Scotland
deputy chief constables Iain Livingstone and Neil Richardson, having spent his entire career in England.
But the Scottish Police Authority said
it was confident it had appointed the best person for the job of
“building on the progress that policing in Scotland has made, and to
address the issues and challenges that the service faces”.
Justice Secretary Michael Matheson
has said that Mr Gormley brings with him a “wealth of experience in
policing communities across the UK, including an extensive background in
Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokeswoman Alison McInnes said Mr Gormley must begin work immediately to address the challenges facing the force. She said:
“I have sought an early
meeting with him to discuss how he plans to ensure officers and staff
get the support they need to do their jobs well and enjoy them but the
SPA and Scottish government must also ensure they provide the resources
required. The public’s faith in Police Scotland must be restored and steps taken right away to get the force back on track.” Read in full here
Taxpayer foots bill for new Police Scotland chief constable Phil Gormley to live rent-free in lavish Gothic castle
The 200-year-old castle has a sauna, steam room and swimming pool
SCOTLAND’S new top police officer is to live rent-free at sumptuous gothic castle owned by the Holyrood government.
The 200-year-old castle is a mix of Italian and Gothic style
architecture and has a sauna, steam room and swimming pool along with
around 400 en suite rooms. The 90-acre estate has been the HQ for the
Scottish Police College since the 1950s. It is thought Gormley will use
accommodation previously used by the Scottish Police College director.
The offer to live at Tulliallan is part of his ”re-location package”.
Although Tulliallan is the HQ of Police Scotland, it is more of a
training centre. House used the facility sparingly, sometimes holding
press conferences and other corporate events at the Fife centre
Labour MSP Graeme Pearson, a former senior police officer & ex-director general of Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency said
the package is sending out “wrong signals” at a time when other part of
the Police Scotland are having to embrace cuts. He said:
”At a time when budgets for policing are
so very tight, I would have thought it proper for Mr Gormley to pay a
rent for for his accommodation. The provision in addition to what can
only be described as a generous salary sends out the wrong signals to
his staff who are struggling to cope with the budget cuts imposed on
Philip Michael C. “Phil” Gormley (born 1963, Surrey) is a high ranking police officer who became Chief Constable of Police Scotland in January 2016. Prior to this he was Deputy Director of the National Crime Agency.
He had previously served as Commander for Specialist Operations in the Metropolitan Police and as Secretary for the Association of Chief Police Officer‘s Terrorism and Allied Matters Committee 2005-2006, where he was involved in overseeing two undercover policing units, Special Demonstration Squad and the National Public Order Intelligence Unit respectively.
July 2008: ACPO lead for Mental Health & Disability issues. This
role took place at a time when the Independent Police Complaints
Commission was asked to investigate the issue of too many people with
mental illness being held in police cells rather than hospitals, a
widespread practice Gormley admited was ‘unacceptable. In 2010, under the aegis of Stephen Otter,
the Head of ACPO’s Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Business Area,
Gormley was appointed to look into issues around disability related harassment.
- 1985 – Starts his police career with Thames Valley Police, working both uniform and detective positions up to Superintendent position.
- 1999 – Chief Superintendent, OCU Commander for the Southern Oxfordshire division 
- 2003-05 – Commander, Specialist Operations, Metropolitan Police with responsibility for Firearms (SO19) & Aviation Security (SO18).
- 2005-06 takes lead on modernising the Specialist Operations division, in particular taking command of the Metropolitan Police Special Branch. In this he oversees the merger of Special Branch and Anti-Terrorism Branch to form Counter Terrorism Command. The decision to merge was announced in September 2005, though it did not formally complete until October 2006.
- 2007-10 – Deputy Chief Constable, West Midlands Police (appointed December 2006).
There his responsibilities included “Force Planning, public relations
and information management strategy, Force Performance Management
Strategy, and the professional standards / anti-corruption unit”.
- 2010-13 – Chief Constable, Norfolk Constabulary (Appointed Jan 2010) on a wage of £134,000 per year. Of note is that the Deputy Chief Constable of Norfolk at the time was Ian Learmonth,
who was one of the senior police officers responsible for policing
around the 2005 G8 Summit, then Assistant Chief Constable for Operations
at Strathclyde Police.
- 2012 – Awarded the Queen’s Police Medal
- 2013-15 – Deputy Director General, National Crime Agency
- 2016 – Chief Constable, Police Scotland. Appointed 2 December 2015, with a starting salary of £212,000 per year, sworn in on 5 January 2016. Source
POLICE Scotland’s new chief
constable led the Metropolitan police branch that controlled a notorious
undercover unit whose officers had sex with their female targets.
Phil Gormley was in charge of
the Met’s Special Branch, which had responsibility for the disgraced
Special Demonstration Squad (SDS).
The SDS’s activities are now central to a judge-led inquiry into undercover policing in England and Wales.
MSP Graeme Pearson, former Director
General of the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency, called on the
police chief to provide answers on any links he had to the SDS.
Gormley, the former deputy director of
the National Crime Agency, came out of retirement to secure the top job
in Scottish policing and starts this week.
He succeeds Sir Stephen House, whose
term was marked by controversies on stop and search, armed policing,
call-handling and unlawful spying.
However, as Gormley prepares to take
over, the spotlight is on his career at the Met, where he was a
commander for four years from 2003.
The SDS was formed in 1968 – as the Special Operations Squad – in response to mass protests against the Vietnam War.
Over the next 40 years, SDS officers
would be embedded undercover into protest and environmental groups with a
view to keeping tabs on their activities.
The Unit was based inside the Met’s Special Branch – which focuses on national security.
However, the SDS has become discredited over the tactics used by its undercover officers over the decades.
A number of the plants formed sexual
relationships with female activists and one ex-officer, Bob Lambert,
even fathered a child with a protestor in the 1980s.
In November, it was announced that seven
woman received compensation for what the Met described as “totally
unacceptable” behaviour of some of its officers.
The compensation was linked to behaviour
by former officers for the SDS and the separate National Public Order
Officers also assumed fake identities by taking the names of dead babies and gave evidence in court using the false names.
The SDS also stands accused of spying in
the 1990s on the family of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence – an
allegation that led to Home Secretary Theresa May to announce the
Pitchford Inquiry. The SDS was eventually wound up in 2008.
According to his online Police Scotland
biography, Gormley became a Met commander in 2003: “Initially
responsible for firearms and aviation security, then for special branch
and counter terrorism.”
His NCA biography provides more details
of this stint: “From 2005 Phil led the modernisation of Specialist
Operations and took command of MPS Special Branch, driving forward the
merger of Special Branch and the Anti Terrorist Branch to form the new
Counter Terrorism Command.”
In 2005, when Gormley took command of Special Branch, the SDS – now called the Special Duties Squad – was still in existence.
In an official inquiry into SDS, carried
out by Derbyshire chief constable Mick Creedon, the two most senior
officers in the SDS pecking order were “Commander Special Branch” and a
Detective Chief Superintendent.
There is no suggestion Gormley was aware
of the SDS’ controversial operational practices, but calls have now
been made for openness on his knowledge of the Unit.
MSP John Finnie, a former police officer, said:
“I would be keen to understand what the
Scottish Police Authority (SPA) knew about Mr Gormley’s policing
background and what enquiries, if any, they made about his role with
Special Branch and the SDS. If the SPA were unaware of this hugely
significant matter, then, once again, it would bring into question their
competence. The public will rightly question how someone who was in
charge of Special Branch, which controlled the notorious SDS, is now our
Pearson, Labour’s justice spokesman, said:
“It would be helpful to hear from Mr
Gormley from the start what he knew about the Special Demonstration
Squad during his time in command and what decisions he took in relation
to the activities of that Unit. I believe as the incoming chief
constable of Police Scotland a candid response now would be the best way
to deal with this possibly damaging issue.”
The Sunday Herald contacted Police
Scotland, and asked the force if the incoming chief constable would like
to comment, but the force referred enquiries to the Met.
A spokesperson for the Met said:
“At this stage we cannot discuss which
officers had an oversight role of the SDS/NPOIU, as this is a piece of
work that is ongoing in preparation for the Public Inquiry.” Read in full here
Rantings of a Scottish WildCat..
SPECIAL BRANCH? SPECIAL DEMONSTRATION SQUAD? SECURITY SERVICES? “SPY SEX UNIT?”
HE WAS A SLEEKIT LYING SHAG MERCHANT THAT WORKED FOR SECRET SERVICES!
IS THIS A FUCKIN JOKE? CAUSE I AIN’T LAUGHIN!
HE IS HARDLY GONNAE HAVE HIGH MORAL STANDARDS NOW IS HE?!
HOW THE FUCK WAS HE EVEN AN OPTION?
& WHAT (if anything) DOES THIS MEAN IN REGARDS TO THE SCOTTISH CSA INQUIRY?
I WANT MAUGER AS CHIEF OF POLICE FOR SCOTLAND
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- Police TASER KIDS as young as 12
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