Leeds & West Yorkshire

Ex-West Yorkshire Police chief court claim 'disingenuous'

Mark Gilmore Image copyright PA
Image caption Mark Gilmore was chief constable of West Yorkshire Police form April 2013 to August 2016

A retired chief constable's court action against a police and crime commissioner is "disingenuous", a court has heard.

Former West Yorkshire Police chief Mark Gilmore left the force in 2016 amid allegations of misconduct.

He claims PCC Mark Burns-Williamson acted unlawfully by failing to complete a disciplinary investigation.

At the High Court, lawyers for Mr Burns-Williamson said Mr Gilmore retired to avoid further scrutiny.

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A series of misconduct allegations were made against Mr Gilmore in 2014 whilst he was suspended from duty as a result of a separate investigation into his relationship with a car dealership.

The court heard more than 50 officers had made allegations against Mr Gilmore.

These included abusing overtime payments, making inappropriate sexual comments to female colleagues and asking staff to pick his wife up from the airport.

Lawyers for Mr Burns-Williamson said that when the allegations were put to Mr Gilmore in 2016 he resigned.

They called on judge Mr Justice Supperstone to decide whether legislation requires a police commissioner to make a "case to answer decision" when the officer who was under investigation has retired.

Image caption Mark Burns-Williamson has called Mr Gilmore's claim 'disingenuous'

Jeremy Johnson QC, on behalf of Mr Gilmore - who denies the allegations - said that all his client wanted was a decision on the investigation.

John Beggs QC, who is representing Mr Burns-Williamson, said Mr Gilmore's claim was "disingenuous".

"But for (his) decision to retire he would have received the decision," he said in a written case outline.

"Further, he knew what the decision would be, which is precisely why he retired when he did, taking his pension and avoiding any further investigation or public misconduct hearing.

"His claim is disingenuous."

Mr Justice Supperstone is expected to publish a ruling in the near future.

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