From today’s Sunday Times:
Strathclyde police is to seek guidance from the Crown Office on whether to investigate Labour’s biggest donor in Scotland and the awarding of contracts worth £20m by Glasgow city council.
Senior officers are requesting clearance for an inquiry after allegations of improper links between Willie Haughey, a leading businessman, and Steven Purcell, the council’s former leader.
Can anybody point me to another example of the police ’seeking guidance’ before investigating possible fraud – or any other offence?
Do the police these days ‘request clearance’ to investigate a bank robbery?
Since when did the police require ‘permission’ to do their job and gather evidence and then present it to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service?
The Crown Office is responsible for the prosecution of crime in Scotland – it is the province of the Police to investigate and then to convince the Crown Office that they have enough evidence and competent witnesses for the Crown Office to mount the prosecution.
Can any Scottish lawyers point me to the legislation that says the police require permission to investigate a possible offence – ‘cos I can’t find it.
UPDATE: A reader has just e-mailed me to enquire why the elite Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency would not be investigating this – which enquiry led me to this article from 2008/2009. I quote:
Brazen gangland bosses are trying to target staff from the nation’s top CRIMEFIGHTING squad.
The SCDEA chief Gordon Meldrum said: “We know for a fact that they have tried to infiltrate the agency. There have been various attempts.
It was revealed earlier this week how crooks had tried to infiltrate Strathclyde Police, Scotland’s largest force. SCDEA chief Mr Meldrum reckons the tentacles of serious organised crime are far more widespread.
He says the Government and the Crown Office are also under attack.
It makes you wonder just whose permission they are actually seeking……..