MPs warned about crime czar’s ‘influence’ on politicians
PUBLISHED: 15:00 27 February 2014
Herts’ crime czar has an “undue influence” on the panel set up to keep him in check, MPs have been warned.
The claim was made to the Home Affairs Select Committee earlier this month by former member of Herts Police and Crime Panel Roger Seabourne.
The Three Rivers councillor quit the watchdog after claiming it was it “toothless” and could not hold police and crime commissioner (PCC) David Lloyd to account.
Cllr Seabourne, Lib Dem, told the Parliamentarians: “Things were happening that I was not happy with and I felt, having made my comments to the panel, that they either could not or would not do anything about them.
“I am not sure even now which it was.
“If they would not do anything, that is very sad. If they could not, that is very disturbing.”
He added: “The PCC has an undue influence on the panel and I would say it is not at the instigation of the PCC by any means.
“It just happens to be because of the political make-up of the panel.”
Cllr Seabourne also hit out at the appointment of commissioner Lloyd’s running mate and neighbour David Gibson as his deputy.
He said: “It is just not good public relations and the panel was not happy with that.
“It is his choice and I support his right to choose, but it was not a tactful appointment because the public perceive, ‘Oh, it is the police, jobs for their mates’ and they say ‘the police’, not ‘the commissioner’.
“That is what worries me.”
Commissioner Lloyd said: “Roger resigned from the Police and Crime Panel for his own reasons.
“He has stated his personal views on the panel numerous times before and these are a matter for the panel, which is a separate body to that of Police and Crime Commissioner.”
Councillor Seabourne made his comments as part of an ongoing inquiry into the police and crime commission system as a whole.
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