Further Inquiry into Neil Wallis's Connection with the Met

IPCC announce investigation into employment of his daughter

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The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) have announced that no further investigation is to be made into the conduct of Sir Paul Stephenson but that they will be holding an investigation into the role that former Assistant Commissioner, John Yates, played in getting a job for the daughter of Neil Wallis with the Police. Mr. Wallis has subsequently been arrested by officers investigating phone hacking by the News of the World where he was formerly deputy editor.

John Yates resigned from the Met last month following the departure of Sir Paul Stephenson. He was responsible for checking the credentials of Neil Wallis before the Met. employed him. He was also tasked with determining whether it was necessary to reopen the investigation into phone hacking in light of further press coverage in 2009.

Mr. Yates said that he simply acted as a post box when given the CV of Amy Wallis and forwarded it on to the Human Resources department giving no endorsement to the application.

Despite this Deborah Glass, Deputy Chair of the Commission said, "Bearing in mind his own very senior position within the Metropolitan Police and the significant public interest in
public bodies following the most scrupulous processes for employment, in my view this does indicate recordable conduct and I have determined that this will be the subject of an independent investigation."

The commission determined that there was no evidence that the judgement of John Yates was in any way influenced by hospitality received from News International or his friendship with Neil Wallis.

The commission also ruled that there was no need to look further into the hospitality given by Champney's Health Spa to Sir Paul Stephenson when Neil Wallis was a PR advisor to the owners.

Sir Paul said he was unaware of the connection with Mr. Wallis and that the perk was fully declared but Deborah Glass said, "The public will make its own judgements about whether any senior public official should accept hospitality to this extent from anyone - or indeed about a policy which regards hospitality as acceptable merely because it is disclosed."

Mr. Wallis was arrested in the early hours of Thursday 14th July at his Grove Park home. He was deputy editor of the News of the World when Andy Coulson was in charge of the paper. After Mr. Coulson's departure in 2007 he became executive editor but left the paper in 2009 to work for a public relations firm. The IPCC is also holding an enquiry into the contract between Chamy Media which was Neil Wallis' PR firm and the Metropolitan police. He was employed by the Metropolitan Police as a media adviser on a part-time basis from October 2009 to September 2010 whilst the Met's Deputy Director of Public Affairs was on extended sick leave.

August 17, 2011