Why did it take so long?

Screenshot 2021-10-08 at 11.21.12

On 5th January, 2021, a 38 year old serving Greater Manchester Police officer, PC Farooq Ahmed who had worked in the force’s Tameside Division for around three years, was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment, given a five-year Sexual Harm Prevention Order and his name added to the Sex Offenders Register for 10 years.

He had been convicted, a month earlier, at Manchester’s Minshull Street Crown Court of three counts of sexual assault of a girl under 13 years of age, as well as one count of making an indecent image of a child.

The offences took place between 2016 and 2018 and PC Ahmed, of Mossley Road, Ashton-under-Lyne, was suspended from the force after being charged with the offences.

He walked into GMP’s North Manchester HQ at Central Park with a confession note on 26th November, 2020. At the time, detectives said Ahmed’s ‘disgusting’ abuse has had a ‘profound’ impact on the young girl.

The victim was interviewed by specialist officers the following day and she detailed the abuse she suffered at the hands of the police officer.

On one occasion, Ahmed had used a mobile phone to film himself sexually assaulting her, which he then deleted from the device. He was arrested, charged and appeared at Manchester and Salford magistrates court on 4th December, 2020.

Detective Sergeant Zahid Latif, of GMP’s Oldham CID, said, after the conviction at Crown Court the following month:

“This was disgusting abuse of a young girl and it is important that justice has been served for her, who has been receiving support from specialist officers and partner agencies throughout this investigation.

GMP’s notorious Professional Standards Branch, the subject of considerable criticism elsewhere on this website, now claim they took action “to seek the officer’s dismissal from the police service at the earliest opportunity”.

No explanation is given as to how a delay of nine months came about before a Misconduct Hearing took place yesterday, 7th October, 2021, chaired by the force’s chief constable, Stephen Watson.

Farooq Ahmed will, in accordance with Police Regulations, have been on full pay since being suspended and will also receive his full pension entitlement, based on his years of service up to yesterday’s date.

After the hearing, CC Watson said: “I’m appalled by this disgusting abuse of a young girl and I am pleased that justice has been served which was a result of a robust and thorough criminal investigation undertaken by detectives from GMP’s Oldham CID.

“I expect our officers to uphold the highest standards of conduct with public safety being their main priority. Ahmed fell well below these standards when he committed these unforgivable offences and his actions do not represent what I expect of an officer of the Greater Manchester Police.”

The force’s press office has been contacted to seek clarification on the delay in convening the misconduct proceedings.

Page last updated at 1745hrs on Friday 8th October, 2021

Corrections: Please let me know if there is a mistake in this article. I will endeavour to correct it as soon as possible.

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Photo credit: Greater Manchester Police

© Neil Wilby 2015-2021. Unauthorised use, or reproduction, of the material contained in this article, without permission from the author, is strictly prohibited. Extracts from, and links to, the article (or blog) may be used, provided that credit is given to Neil Wilby, with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Published by Neil Wilby

Former Johnston Press area managing director. Justice campaigner. Freelance investigative journalist.

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