We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Neil Wilby please sign in and let everyone know.

Peer Review of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) Professional Standards Board (PSB)

We're waiting for Neil Wilby to read recent responses and update the status.

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

In November, 2015 there was widespread press, and broadcast, publicity concerning an announcement by the chief constable of GMP that he had invited the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to conduct a review of the operations of his PSB.

https://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/...

In this regard, please provide the following information:

1. Date the Peer Review commenced.

2. The name(s)/rank(s) of the Gold Commander or Gold Command Group.

3. Date the Peer Review ended.

4. Date the Peer Review report was delivered to the GMP chief constable.

5. The operational name given to the Peer Review.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2018070000913

I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 23/07/2018.  I note you seek
access to the following information:

* Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), In November, 2015 there was
widespread press, and broadcast, publicity concerning an announcement
by the chief constable of GMP that he had invited the Metropolitan
Police Service (MPS) to conduct a review of the operations of his PSB.
https://scanmail.trustwave.com/?c=7089&a...
In this regard, please provide the following information: 1. Date the
Peer Review commenced. 2. The name(s)/rank(s) of the Gold Commander or
Gold Command Group. 3. Date the Peer Review ended. 4. Date the Peer
Review report was delivered to the GMP chief constable. 5. The
operational name given to the Peer Review.

Your request will now be considered in accordance with the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act).  You will receive a response within the
statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act.  

If you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please contact
us at [email address] or on the phone at 0207 161 3500, quoting the
reference number above. Should your enquiry relate to the logging or
allocations process we will be able to assist you directly and where your
enquiry relates to other matters (such as the status of the request) we
will be able to pass on a message and/or advise you of the relevant
contact details.

Yours sincerely

Peter Deja
Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team
 
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Information Rights Unit
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.

The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively, write to or
phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone: 0303 123 1113

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: [1]https://m.facebook.com/metpoliceuk 

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

References

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2018070000913

I write in response to your request for information that was received by
the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 23/07/2018. I note that you seek
access to the following information:

YOUR REQUEST

"Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

In November, 2015 there was widespread press, and broadcast, publicity
concerning an announcement by the chief constable of GMP that he had
invited the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to conduct a review of the
operations of his PSB.

https://scanmail.trustwave.com/?c=7089&a...

In this regard, please provide the following information:

1. Date the Peer Review commenced.

2. The name(s)/rank(s) of the Gold Commander or Gold Command Group.

3. Date the Peer Review ended.

4. Date the Peer Review report was delivered to the GMP chief constable.

5. The operational name given to the Peer Review."

SEARCHES TO LOCATE INFORMATION

To locate the information relevant to your request searches were conducted
within the MPS. The searches failed to locate any information relevant to
your request, therefore, the information you have requested is not held by
the MPS.

To assist you with your search for information, please contact Greater
Manchester Police, Information Compliance and Records Management Unit.

Below is a link to request information from Greater Manchester Police,
Information Compliance and Records Management Unit.

http://www.gmp.police.uk/live/nhoodv3.ns...

This notice concludes your request for information.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please
contact me on 0207 161 3311 or via email at [email address],
quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Ian Burgess
Information Manager

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Information Rights Unit
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.

The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively, write to or
phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: [1]https://m.facebook.com/metpoliceuk

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

References

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Thank you for the prompt response to this information request. I am grateful.

Please record this post as a request for internal review.

The grounds are as follows:

1. The finalisation of the request runs counter to public pronouncements made by Greater Manchester Police and its chief constable. They say a review took place on May 9th and 10th, 2016 and was conducted by a superintendent serving with MPS.

2. The finalisation of the request does not identify what type of searches have been made.

3. The finalisation of the request does not identify what business areas of the Metropilan Police were asked to conduct searches.

Accordingly, as entitled under the Act and ICO Guidance, I respectfully request that the request be considered afresh by a disclosure officer not connected to the first request.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018080000524

I write in connection with your request for a review of the handling
and/or decision relating to  2018070000913   which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on  09/08/2018.  

A review will now be conducted in accordance with the Code of Practice
issued under Section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).
 The reviewing officer will reconsider the original request before
responding to you with their findings.

There is no statutory time limit in relation to the completion of an
Internal Review.  However, the MPS aim to complete Internal Reviews within
20 working days or in exceptional cases, within 40 working days.  This is
based upon guidance published by the Information Commissioner.

If it is not possible to complete the Internal Review within this
timescale you will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

If you are unhappy with the outcome of an Internal Review you may wish to
refer the matter to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

R. Loizou
Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: [1]https://m.facebook.com/metpoliceuk

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

References

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018080000524

I am sorry you are disappointed with the outcome of your request for
information under the Freedom of Information Act.

Further to our earlier correspondence dated 13/08/2018, I am now able to
provide a response to your complaint concerning FOIA request reference
number: 2018070000913.

Background to your request:

This review concentrates on the following request that you submitted to
the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 23/07/2018:

In November, 2015 there was widespread press, and broadcast, publicity
concerning an announcement by the chief constable of GMP that he had
invited the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to conduct a review of the
operations of his PSB.
https://scanmail.trustwave.com/?c=7089&a...
In this regard, please provide the following information:
1. Date the Peer Review commenced.
2. The name(s)/rank(s) of the Gold Commander or Gold Command Group.
3. Date the Peer Review ended.
4. Date the Peer Review report was delivered to the GMP chief constable.
5. The operational name given to the Peer Review."
On 08/08/2018, we advised you that the MPS did not hold information
relevant to your request and we advised you to direct your request for
information to Greater Manchester Police.

On 09/08/2018, you requested an Internal review of our decision. You
stated:

Thank you for the prompt response to this information request. I am
grateful.

Please record this post as a request for internal review.

The grounds are as follows:

1. The finalisation of the request runs counter to public pronouncements
made by Greater Manchester Police and its chief constable. They say a
review took place on May 9th and 10th, 2016 and was conducted by a
superintendent serving with MPS.

2.  The finalisation of the request does not identify what type of
searches have been made.

3.  The finalisation of the request does not identify what business areas
of the Metropilan Police were asked to conduct searches.

Accordingly, as entitled under the Act and ICO Guidance, I respectfully
request that the request be considered afresh by a disclosure officer not
connected to the first request.

DECISION

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) has completed its review and has
decided to uphold your complaint and amend our response to a full
disclosure.

REASON FOR DECISION

As part of my investigation of your complaint, I have made further
enquiries with the MPS Directorate of Professional Standards and have
located the information you require held by the MPS

1. Date the Peer Review commenced.  

The Peer reviewed commenced on 9th May 2016.

2. The name(s)/rank(s) of the Gold Commander or Gold Command Group.
The MPS did not have a Gold Group for the Peer Review.

3. Date the Peer Review ended.
The Peer Review ended on 10th May 2016.

4. Date the Peer Review report was delivered to the GMP chief constable.  
There was a hot debrief 10th May 2016. The report was delivered on 22nd
December 2016.

5. The operational name given to the Peer Review."
The MPS Peer Review did not have a specific MPS Operation name. The review
was titled MPS Peer review of GMP PSB - 9th-10th May 2016.

The Information Manager with responsibility for your request was incorrect
to direct you to Greater Manchester Police for information held by the
MPS.
I apologise on behalf of the MPS for not having provided you with the
requested information in the first instance and for any inconvenience the
delay has caused you.

If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of this Internal Review you have
the right to appeal the decision by contacting the Information
Commissioner's Office (ICO) for a decision on whether the request for
information has been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of the
FOIA.

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

[Name]
Information Manager

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absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

This internal review is troubling:

1. It is sent out anonymously. In breach of College of Policing Code of Ethics (Courtesy and Respect).

2. It does not make clear whether the officer finalising the review was the same officer who finalised the request (College of Police APP).

3. It does not address the grounds of complaint concerning the type of searches and business areas consulted. That is important, both for greater public understanding of what went wrong and learning lessons.

4. It provides no explanation as to why a false outcome was provided to the request. Again this places you in breach of Code of Ethics (Duties and Responsibilities).

By way of counterbalance:

5. I am most grateful for the prompt response to the internal review request and the disclosure of all the requested information.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilbey

Thank you for your email.

I apologise for omitting my name from the end of my response to you. This was an oversight.

Your original request was dealt with by Information Manager (IM)Ian Burgess. I conducted the internal Review. It is our practice that an internal review is conducted by an individual not involved with the initial request.

I have advised in my response that I conducted additional searches within the MPS Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS). For your original request initial enquiries were made with MPS Press Office and MPS Special Enquiry Team by the IM but it was quickly ascertained that information was not held with them but with DPS who conducted the Peer Review.

With regards to your 4th point, I wrote the following in my response to you:

'The Information Manager with responsibility for your request was incorrect to direct you to Greater Manchester Police for information held by the MPS.
I apologise on behalf of the MPS for not having provided you with the requested information in the first instance and for any inconvenience the delay has caused you.'

Directing you to GMP was an error on the part of the IM due to incorrect interpretation of the enquiries he made relating to your request. This showed a lack of understanding of some of his obligations under the Act. I addressed this with the IM and his Line Manager as a learning point directly after sending my internal review response to you so that the IM can learn from this error. He was reminded that although the review relates to another police service, if the MPS holds the information, there is an obligation under the Act to either provide the information or an exemption under the Act as to why the information cannot be provided rather than direct an applicant to the police service that the review relates to who would also likely hold the information asked for.

I hope I have addressed the points you have raised

Thank you

Yvette Taylor - Information Manager - Freedom of Information Team, Information Rights Unit (IRU)
STRATEGY & GOVERNANCE, MetHQ
Metropolitan Police Service
MetPhone 780074 | Telephone 020 7161 0074 | E-Mail: [email address]   
Address - Information Rights Unit, PO Box 57192, London SW6 1SF

Please consider the environment before printing this email
PROTECTIVELY MARKED AS OFFICIAL SENSITIVE

Recipients of this email should be aware that all communications within and to and from the Metropolitan Police Service are subject to consideration for release under the Data Protection Act, Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations. The MPS will consider information for release unless there is are valid and proportionate public interest reasons not to, therefore, sensitive information not for public disclosure must be highlighted as such. Further advice can be obtained from the Information Rights Unit - 0207 161 3500.

show quoted sections

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

I acknowledge prompt receipt of a response to queries raised following the provision of your internal review finalisation. Thank you.

May I please, firstly, point out that my surname is spelt WILBY, not Wilbey?

Secondly, the response by Ms Taylor is comprehensive and adds considerably to the understanding of WhatDoTheyKnow readers and users, and the wider world, of what went wrong with the initial response to the request. It is also an object lesson for many other public authorities in how to deal effectively, and efficiently, with issues of this nature.

There is just one residual issue: It would strike me as extraordinary, in the light of my extensive interaction with four other police forces (GMP, NYP, SYP, WYP), that searches were not requested from DPS in the first place. If the internal structure is the same within MPS as the four forces mentioned, then Information Disclosure is a sub-unit of Professional Standards. The internal review outcome said, in terms, further searches had been requested of DPS. The implication being, to me at least, that DPS had provided a false response to the Information Rights Unit at the time when the request was finalised. Can you please provide clarity on that point. Once that issue is crystalised we can all move on from this request.

Once again, I am grateful for the time given to this review already and the explanations provided, so far.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Thank you for your email.

To clarify further, the IM dealing with your request was advised by a colleague in DPS that they (that specific individual) did not hold the requested information. The IM mistook this to mean that the information was not held by DPS at all. DPS did not provide a false response. The IM simply did not ask the correct questions when ascertaining if and where the requested information was held within the MPS.

As mentioned previously, this training issue has been highlighted to the IM and their line manager.

(Apologies, for misspelling your name previously)

Thank you

Yvette Taylor - Information Manager - Freedom of Information Team, Information Rights Unit (IRU)
STRATEGY & GOVERNANCE, MetHQ
Metropolitan Police Service
MetPhone 780074 | Telephone 020 7161 0074 | E-Mail: [email address]   
Address - Information Rights Unit, PO Box 57192, London SW6 1SF

Please consider the environment before printing this email
PROTECTIVELY MARKED AS OFFICIAL SENSITIVE

Recipients of this email should be aware that all communications within and to and from the Metropolitan Police Service are subject to consideration for release under the Data Protection Act, Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations. The MPS will consider information for release unless there is are valid and proportionate public interest reasons not to, therefore, sensitive information not for public disclosure must be highlighted as such. Further advice can be obtained from the Information Rights Unit - 0207 161 3500.

show quoted sections

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Having now established that disclosable information concerning the Greater Manchester Police (GMP) Peer Review is held by MPS DPS, may I please make a further request? I accept and understand that this second request will carry a different reference number and may attract exemptions, redactions under the Act. However, given the nature of the materials requested to be disclosed, and my experience as an information rights practitioner dealing almost exclusively with policing bodies, it is anticipated that the effects of such exemptions would be very limited indeed.

1. a. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between DAC Fiona Taylor and DCC Ian Pilling where the communication contains reference to the Peer Review.
b. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between Supt Gary Randall and any GMP officer where the communication contains reference to the Peer Review.

NB: In response to journalistic enquiries made of GMP's press office, it has been confirmed that DAC Taylor and DCC Pilling were the two senior officers whom, between them, agreed the Terms of Reference for the Peer Review. In a previous FOI request finalisation on the WhatDoTheyKnow website, GMP disclosed that Supt Randall was the officer who carried out the Peer Review.

2. Copy of Terms of Reference

3. Copy of Final Report delivered by MPS to GMP on 22nd December, 2016.

4. Copy of any response(s) received by MPS from GMP after the delivery of the Peer Review.

5. Copy of amended Peer Review, if any such amendments were made.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

 

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: PD008

 

I write in connection with your request for a review of the handling
and/or decision relating to 2018080000524 which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 23 August 2018

 

A review will now be conducted in accordance with the Code of Practice
issued under Section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act). 
The reviewing officer will reconsider the original request before
responding to you with their findings.

 

There is no statutory time limit in relation to the completion of an
Internal Review.  However, the MPS aim to complete Internal Reviews within
20 working days or in exceptional cases, within 40 working days.  This is
based upon guidance published by the Information Commissioner.

 

If it is not possible to complete the Internal Review within this
timescale you will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

 

If you are unhappy with the outcome of an Internal Review you may wish to
refer the matter to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

 

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

 

Information Commissioner's Office

Wycliffe House

Water Lane

Wilmslow

Cheshire

SK9 5AF

Phone:  0303 123 1113

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Peter Deja

 

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: [1]https://m.facebook.com/metpoliceuk 

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

References

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear   Mr Wilby

 

PLEASE NOTE – This is the correct letter for your request – please ignore
the first email on 3 September – ( where it stated internal review) that
was sent to you in error.

 

 

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: PD008

 

I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on23 August 2018.  I note you
seek access to the following information:

 

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

 

Having now established that disclosable information concerning the Greater
Manchester Police (GMP) Peer Review is held by MPS DPS, may I please make
a further request? I accept and understand that this second request will
carry a different reference number and may attract exemptions, redactions
under the Act. However, given the nature of the materials requested to be
disclosed, and my experience as an information rights practitioner dealing
almost exclusively with policing bodies, it is anticipated that the
effects of such exemptions would be very limited indeed.

 

1. a. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between DAC Fiona Taylor
and DCC Ian Pilling where the communication contains reference to the Peer
Review.

     b. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between Supt Gary
Randall and any GMP officer where the communication contains reference to
the Peer Review.

 

NB: In response to journalistic enquiries made of GMP's press office, it
has been confirmed that DAC Taylor and DCC Pilling were the two senior
officers whom, between them, agreed the Terms of Reference for the Peer
Review. In a previous FOI request finalisation on the WhatDoTheyKnow
website, GMP disclosed that Supt Randall was the officer who carried out
the Peer Review.

 

2. Copy of Terms of Reference

 

3. Copy of Final Report delivered by MPS to GMP on 22nd December, 2016.

 

4. Copy of any response(s) received by MPS from GMP after the delivery of
the Peer Review.

 

5. Copy of amended Peer Review, if any such amendments were made.

 

 

 

 

Your request will now be considered in accordance with the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act).  You will receive a response within the
statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act. 

 

If you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please contact
us at [email address] or on the phone at 0207 161 3500, quoting the
reference number above. Should your enquiry relate to the logging or
allocations process we will be able to assist you directly and where your
enquiry relates to other matters (such as the status of the request) we
will be able to pass on a message and/or advise you of the relevant
contact details.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

 

Peter Deja

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Information Rights Unit
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[1][email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.

The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at [2]www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively, write to
or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone: 0303 123 1113

 

 

 

 

 

Peter Deja | Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team
STRATEGY & GOVERNANCE, MetHQ
Metropolitan Police Service

MetPhone 783640 | Telephone 020 7161 3640 | [email address] |
Address - Information Rights Unit, PO Box 57192, London SW6 1SF
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information not for public disclosure must be highlighted as such. Further
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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Case reference: 2018090000548

Dear Mr Wilby,
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUEST REFERENCE NO: 2018090000548

Thank you for your request for information which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 04 September 2018, seeking seek
access to the following information:

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),
Having now established that disclosable information concerning the Greater
Manchester Police (GMP) Peer Review is held by MPS DPS, may I please make
a further request? I accept and understand that this second request will
carry a different reference number and may attract exemptions, redactions
under the Act. However, given the nature of the materials requested to be
disclosed, and my experience as an information rights practitioner dealing
almost exclusively with policing bodies, it is anticipated that the
effects of such exemptions would be very limited indeed.
1. a. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between DAC Fiona Taylor
and DCC Ian Pilling where the communication contains reference to the Peer
Review.
     b. Copy of all email and letter correspondence between Supt Gary
Randall and any GMP officer where the communication contains reference to
the Peer Review.
NB: In response to journalistic enquiries made of GMP's press office, it
has been confirmed that DAC Taylor and DCC Pilling were the two senior
officers whom, between them, agreed the Terms of Reference for the Peer
Review. In a previous FOI request finalisation on the WhatDoTheyKnow
website, GMP disclosed that Supt Randall was the officer who carried out
the Peer Review.
2. Copy of Terms of Reference
3. Copy of Final Report delivered by MPS to GMP on 22nd December, 2016.
4. Copy of any response(s) received by MPS from GMP after the delivery of
the Peer Review.
5. Copy of amended Peer Review, if any such amendments were made.

I regret to advise you that we have not been able to complete our response
to your request by the date originally stated.

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act), we have 20 working
days to respond to a request for information unless we are considering
whether the information requested is covered by one of the 'qualified
exemptions' (exemptions which must be tested against the public interest
before deciding whether they apply to the information in question).

Where we are considering the public interest test against the application
of relevant qualified exemptions, Section 17(2)(b) provides that we can
extend the 20 day deadline.  

Please see the legal annex for further information on this section of the
Act.

For your information we are considering the following exemption:
Section 31 - Law Enforcement

I can now advise you that the amended date for a response is 20th October
2018.

Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience caused.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please
contact me via email at [email address], quoting the reference
number above.

Kind regards,

Suzanne Mason
Information Manager

LEGAL ANNEX

Section 17(2) provides:

(2) Where-

a) in relation to any request for information, a public authority is, as
respects any information, relying on a claim-
i) that any provision of Part II which relates to the duty to confirm or
deny and is not specified in section 2(3) is relevant to the request, or
ii) that the information is exempt information only by virtue of a
provision not specified in section 2(3), and
b) at the time when the notice under subsection (1) is given to the
applicant, the public authority (or, in a case falling within section
66(3) or (4), the responsible authority) has not yet reached a decision as
to the application of subsection (1)(b) or (2)(b) of section 2,
the notice under subsection (1) must indicate that no decision as to the
application of that provision has yet been reached and must contain an
estimate of the date by which the authority expects that such a decision
will have been reached.

 

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Information Rights Unit
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.

The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively, write to or
phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

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NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)'s handling of my FOI request 'Peer Review of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) Professional Standards Board (PSB)'.

1. By way of section 10 of the Act a public authority is required to respond PROMPTLY to an information request. The 20 working day limit is very much regarded as a backstop. NOT a target date for response.

2. Those requirements are underscored in the College of Policing's Authorised Professional Practice (APP). To attempt to operate either outside the stautory framework, or APP, is a breach of the College of Policing's Code of Ethics.

3. MPS has taken 14 working days to decide that it needs extra time to consider an exemption. That is wholly unsatisfactory, given the tightly drawn nature of the request and the previous history between requester and MPS on this particular topic. I would respectfully submit that the Code of Ethics is engaged.

4. Regrettably, that history, referred to at para 3 above, includes MPS lying about whether materials concerning the subject Peer Review were held by MPS, or not. That unfolded during my first request on this particular topic.

5. The exemption upon which MPS seeks to rely (section 31) appears to be a continuation of that propensity to deceive. Again, it is reference to the College of Policing's Guidance that adds force to the point that this exemption is most unlikely to apply in this case: Forces frequently invite operational counterparts and specialists from neighbouring forces to evaluate their operational performance. Peer reviews support the principle of police interoperability, continuous improvement and information sharing. They do NOT relate to those matters set out in either subsection (1) and (2) of section 31 of the Act, relating to Law Enforcement.

6. It is further noted that the intended reliance on section 31 is completely absent of analysis, insofar as whether s/s 1 and/or 2 may be engaged. It, further, does not analyse which parts of the request to which exemption from disclosure may be sought. On any reasonable, independent view it could not, conceivably, apply to questions 1, 2 and 4.

7. Taking paras 5 and 6 together the inescapable conclusion is that MPS has taken a decision to engage in further deceit, obfuscation in order to frustrate this request for disclosure. It is also respectfully submitted that this is part of a course of conduct to vex, annoy and harass a journalist in legitimate pursuit of his vocation.

8. Accordingly, it is requested that a Code of Ethics complaint is recorded against the directing mind(s) behind the decision to delay disclosure of the requested information. Provisionally, that is assumed to be Supt Randall and DAC Taylor.

9. The resolution of this internal review request and the ethics complaints should NOT be used by MPS to further delay disclosure. Your force is strongly urged to meet its statutory and ethical, professional requirements in this regard.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p...

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Edward Williams left an annotation ()

MPS has not complied with the FOIA.

They are supposed to say the EXACT exemption(s) under consideration.

for example 31(2)( b)
"b)the purpose of ascertaining whether any person is responsible for any conduct which is improper,"

they use this as a catch all. It won't survive a Tribunal hearing.

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018090001280

I write in connection with your request for a review of the handling
and/or decision relating to  2018090000548 which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on  25/09/2018.  

A review will now be conducted in accordance with the Code of Practice
issued under Section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).
 The reviewing officer will reconsider the original request before
responding to you with their findings.

There is no statutory time limit in relation to the completion of an
Internal Review.  However, the MPS aim to complete Internal Reviews within
20 working days or in exceptional cases, within 40 working days.  This is
based upon guidance published by the Information Commissioner.

If it is not possible to complete the Internal Review within this
timescale you will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

If you are unhappy with the outcome of an Internal Review you may wish to
refer the matter to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

R. Loizou
Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Please note that if the conduct complaints referred to a para 8 of my message dated 25th September, 2018 are not recorded by your Directorate of Professional Standards on, or before, 9th October then a non-recording appeal will be made to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr. Wilby,  

Freedom of Information Request Reference No:  2018090001280

Further to our acknowledgement, I am now able to provide a response to
your complaint concerning the delays in responding to request number
2018090000548.  

I note the following wording of your complaint:

"I am writing to request an internal review of Metropolitan Police Service
(MPS)'s handling of my FOI request 'Peer Review of Greater Manchester
Police (GMP) Professional Standards Board (PSB)'.

1. By way of section 10 of the Act a public authority is required to
respond PROMPTLY to an information request. The 20 working day limit is
very much regarded as a backstop. NOT a target date for response.

2. Those requirements are underscored in the College of Policing's
Authorised Professional Practice (APP). To attempt to operate either
outside the stautory framework, or APP, is a breach of the College of
Policing's Code of Ethics.

3. MPS has taken 14 working days to decide that it needs extra time to
consider an exemption. That is wholly unsatisfactory, given the tightly
drawn nature of the request and the previous history between requester and
MPS on this particular topic. I would respectfully submit that the Code of
Ethics is engaged.

4. Regrettably, that history, referred to at para 3 above, includes MPS
lying about whether materials concerning the subject Peer Review were held
by MPS, or not. That unfolded during my first request on this particular
topic.

5. The exemption upon which MPS seeks to rely (section 31) appears to be a
continuation of that propensity to deceive. Again, it is reference to the
College of Policing's Guidance that adds force to the point that this
exemption is most unlikely to apply in this case: Forces frequently invite
operational counterparts and specialists from neighbouring forces to
evaluate their operational performance. Peer reviews support the principle
of police interoperability, continuous improvement and information
sharing. They do NOT relate to those matters set out in either subsection
(1) and (2) of section 31 of the Act, relating to Law Enforcement.

6. It is further noted that the intended reliance on section 31 is
completely absent of analysis, insofar as whether s/s 1 and/or 2 may be
engaged. It, further, does not analyse which parts of the request to which
exemption from disclosure may be sought. On any reasonable, independent
view it could not, conceivably, apply to questions 1, 2 and 4.

7. Taking paras 5 and 6 together the inescapable conclusion is that MPS
has taken a decision to engage in further deceit, obfuscation in order to
frustrate this request for disclosure. It is also respectfully submitted
that this is part of a course of conduct to vex, annoy and harass a
journalist in legitimate pursuit of his vocation.

8. Accordingly, it is requested that a Code of Ethics complaint is
recorded against the directing mind(s) behind the decision to delay
disclosure of the requested information. Provisionally, that is assumed to
be Supt Randall and DAC Taylor.

9. The resolution of this internal review request and the ethics
complaints should NOT be used by MPS to further delay disclosure. Your
force is strongly urged to meet its statutory and ethical, professional
requirements in this regard."

DECISION

Section 10(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 states:

'Subject to subsections (2) and (3), a public authority must comply with
section 1(1) promptly and in any event not later than the twentieth
working day following the date of receipt.'

Therefore, in respect of your request, a response was due on or before 21
September.

However, Section 10(3) goes on to state:

'10—(3) If, and to the extent that—
(a) section 1(1)(a) would not apply if the condition in section 2(1)(b)
were satisfied, or
(b) section 1(1)(b) would not apply if the condition in section 2(2)(b)
were satisfied,
the public authority need not comply with section 1(1)(a) or(b) until such
time as is reasonable in the circumstances; but this subsection does not
affect the time by which any notice under section 17(1) must be given.'

So, section 10(3) enables an authority to extend the 20 working day limit
up to a ‘reasonable’ time in any case where;

* it requires more time to determine whether or not the balance of the
public interest lies in maintaining an exemption; or
* it needs further time to consider whether it would be in the public
interest to confirm or deny whether the information is held.

Consequently, this extension will only apply to requests where the
authority considers a ‘qualified exemption’ (an exemption that is subject
to a public interest test) to be engaged.

Therefore in order for it to be a valid extension, the exemption being
considered should be qualified and a notice should be issued prior to the
deadline.

In this case, I note the exemption being considered is qualified (section
31) and it was issued in time (on 20 September).  Consequently I consider
this to be valid in accordance with section 10(3).

For your information, I have made enquiries with the Information Manager
(IM) with responsibility for your request.  She is hopeful that a response
will be with you shortly.  I have asked the IM to complete your request as
a matter of urgency.

As a response to your request is currently outstanding, I am unable to
complete a full internal review in relation to your request.  However,
should you be dissatisfied with the MPS response to your request when you
receive it, you may request an internal review in relation to that
decision.

I would like to take this opportunity to apologise on behalf of the MPS
for any inconvenience caused by the time taken to respond to your Freedom
of Information Act request.  

https://ico.org.uk/media/for-organisatio...

Other matters

For your information, I passed your complaint regarding the Code of Ethics
to DPS on 1 October.  They should be in touch with you directly.

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

If you are dissatisfied with this response please read the attached paper
entitled Complaint Rights which explains how to contact the Information
Commissioner with your complaint.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please
contact me quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

S. Stroud
Information Rights Unit
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Information Rights Unit
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.
 Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
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NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

At its lowest, this is a hopelessly misconceived response to an internal review request. At its highest it is an attempt to deliberately deceive and prevaricate.

It does not directly address the grounds of complaint.

It has no basis in fact, or law.

The working hypothesis is that it is designed simply to vex, annoy and harass a journalist attempting to follow his vocation. As such it is a clear breach of the College of Policing's Code of Ethics. Accordingly, please ask the Directorate of Professional Standards to record a complaint against 'S Stroud', and the directing minds behind this response, which are provisionally assessed as Supt Randall and DAC Taylor.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

2 Attachments

Dear Mr Wilby

 

Please see your complaint attached, this has been recorded as Ref
PC3962/18

 

Kind regards

 

Customer Support Team

 

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email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Sending out two anonymised, error-strewn, generic documents with a covering email, also anonymised, is not a good start to a complaints process in which the person affected should be placed at its centre

Neither is improperly recording the complaints, or correctly identifying the subjects of it.

Perhaps you might adopt these views in any learning outcome to this complaint?

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby,

I apologise for the generic nature in which you have been contacted following the recording of your complaint on PC 3962/18. I understand the manner in which this is dealt with is standard across the board however your comments are noted and duly accepted! I will ensure this is passed on accordingly for review and where possible appropriate action taken asap.

Please accept my apologise regarding this matter and I hope we can address the concerns you raised within your complaint.
Kind regards

Sergeant Kirsty Payne - Directorate of Professional Standards
Address 22nd Floor, Empress State Building, Lillie Road, London SW6 1TR

Please DO NOT respond directly to me regarding this matter, your email will be deleted and will go unanswered.
All responses are to be to be sent to DPS Mailbox – CST.

show quoted sections

Edward Williams left an annotation ()

"Complaiant" has requested "an" FOI The " complaiant" alleges that MPS has engaged in "deciet" to frustrate and delay responding .

Let me fix that for you, officer -

The complainant made a FOIA request, and now alleges the MPS engaged in deceitful behaviour to defeat the request.

Neil Wilby left an annotation ()

A complaint to a police force should present a golden opportunity to impress, increase public confidence. Whatever the merits, or ultimate outcome.

The Metropolitan Police Service has got off on the wrong foot, by not reading, let alone understanding, what is in issue. Regrettably, one senses it will get worse, rather than better.

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Case reference: 2018090000548

Dear Mr Wilby,

Please accept my sincere apologies for the lengthy delay in responding.

I am still awaiting a response, but I have sent a chaser and hope to be
able to get back to you within the next few days.

Thanking you for your patience in the matter.

Kind regard,

Suzanne Mason
Information Manager

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Please provide me with name, rank and collar number of officer(s) who are delaying this response. I can then take up their misconduct, disregard for the law with MPS’s Directorate of Professional Standards.

Further, and in any event, the request will be referred to the Information Commissioner’s Office on Monday morning with a request for them to issue an enforcement notice.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

May I please have the courtesy of a response to my message sent on 20th October, 2018?

In the meantime, I am also going to ask my MP to write to the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, and the Home Secretary, regarding this blatant law-breaking; breaches of ethical, professional standards; and alleged 'cover-up' of wrongdoing by very senior officers in another police force (GMP).

Public confidence in the police service will continue to suffer, as a result of the adverse publicity that MPS continues to attract over this information request.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Case reference: 2018090000548

Dear Mr Wilbey,

I apologise for not responding to your email dated 20/10/2018.  This was
due to a staff shortage in the team this week, hence your message was only
forwarded to me today.
As you have indicated that you wish to complain, I have forwarded your
message to the team so that the complaint process can begin.

Kind regards,

Suzanne Mason
Information Manager

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NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

I refer to the communication sent to me yesterday (24th October) by Suzanne Mason.

The following points are made by way of response:

1. The communication appears to be calculated to vex, annoy and harass.

2. I do not accept that staff shortages were responsible for delaying the forwarding of an email for 4 days. To an investigative journalist that seems to me, at least, far-fetched.

3. It does not address the single issue with which Ms Mason was tasked. Deliberately, in my respectful submission.

4. There is no update provided as to when this request, tightly drawn and requiring very little exertion, will eventually be finalised. On 8th October I was informed in writing that the request was being given urgent attention.

5. Not for the first time, within the instant request process, the Metropolitan Police Service has managed to spell my name incorrectly. It is WILBY, not Wilby. Again, deliberately, in my submission.

In summary, I ask again: Who are the MPS officers responsible for delaying this request? It is a straight question, perfectly reasonably framed, and one to which I am entitled to a straight answer. If indeed such a concept exists in MPS. Present evidence indicates not.

Once they are identified, how, whether and, if so, in what form, I complain to DPS, or pursue a private prosecution (lay an information) against those officers, is a matter for me. Not Ms Mason.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018100001166

I write in connection with your request for a review of the handling
and/or decision relating to  2018090000548 which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on  20/10/2018.  

A review will now be conducted in accordance with the Code of Practice
issued under Section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).
 The reviewing officer will reconsider the original request before
responding to you with their findings.

There is no statutory time limit in relation to the completion of an
Internal Review.  However, the MPS aim to complete Internal Reviews within
20 working days or in exceptional cases, within 40 working days.  This is
based upon guidance published by the Information Commissioner.

If it is not possible to complete the Internal Review within this
timescale you will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

If you are unhappy with the outcome of an Internal Review you may wish to
refer the matter to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

R. Loizou
Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team

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NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
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any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018100001166

Further to our earlier correspondence dated 26/10/2018, I am now able to
provide a response to your complaint concerning Freedom of Information Act
(FOIA) request reference number: 2018090000548.  

I am very sorry that you have not yet received a response to your FOIA
request.

Section 10(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 states:

'Subject to subsections (2) and (3), a public authority must comply with
section 1(1) promptly and in any event not later than the twentieth
working day following the date of receipt.'

In the circumstances of your request, neither the information requested
nor a refusal notice was provided to you within 20 working days.
Therefore, the MPS have not complied with the requirements of section 10
of the Act.

Enquiries in relation to your request are ongoing and a response will be
provided to you as soon as possible. The Information Manager with
responsibility for your request will endeavour to provide you with a
response on or before 13/11/2018

As a response to your request is currently outstanding, I am unable to
complete a full internal review in relation to your request. However,
should you be dissatisfied with the MPS response to your request, you may
request an internal review in relation to the decision.

I would like to take this opportunity to apologise on behalf of the MPS
for the delay in responding to your Freedom of Information Act request.
The progress of your request will continue to be monitored.

If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of this Internal Review you have
the right to appeal the decision by contacting the Information
Commissioner's Office (ICO) for a decision on whether the request for
information has been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of the
FOIA.

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

[Name]
Information Manager

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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
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email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

I refer to your communication of even date.

Quite apart from the utterly woeful, inadequate, unlawful nature of the response, it was sent out anonymously. That is in breach of the College of Policing's Code of Ethics.

Please pass this email to your professional standards directorate with a request to identify the officer sending it - and to record a complaint against them.

I also still require complaints recording against the officer(s) responsible for delaying this request. For all the reasons set out in previous communications. Lessons need to be learned by the MPS that they cannot simply ignore the requirements of Parliament at their own whim.

The conduct of this request has been beyond disgraceful and simply affirms the 'Lie, deny, delay' view of the MPS that many journalists, such as myself, hold.

Your prayer for a further 15 days relief in which to finalise this request is not accepted. Neither is the mealy-mouthed apology. MPS, accordingly, is urged to deal with this request TODAY and bring this fiasco to an end.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

I refer to my previous communications in regard to this troubled matter. The responses to which by MPS, thus far, can only be characterised as a campaign by a police force to vex, annoy and harass a journalist in his role as "social watchdog".

More particularly, the refusal by MPS to identify the officers concerned in unlawfully delaying the finalisation of this information request has now been referred to the Independent Office of Police Conduct.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018110000213

I write in connection with your request for a review of the handling
and/or decision relating to  2018090000548 which was received by the
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on  25/10/2018.  

A review will now be conducted in accordance with the Code of Practice
issued under Section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).
 The reviewing officer will reconsider the original request before
responding to you with their findings.

There is no statutory time limit in relation to the completion of an
Internal Review.  However, the MPS aim to complete Internal Reviews within
20 working days or in exceptional cases, within 40 working days.  This is
based upon guidance published by the Information Commissioner.

If it is not possible to complete the Internal Review within this
timescale you will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

If you are unhappy with the outcome of an Internal Review you may wish to
refer the matter to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO).

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

R. Loizou
Support Officer - Freedom of Information Triage Team

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr  Wilby

Freedom of Information Review Reference No: 2018110000213

Further to our earlier correspondence dated 06/11/2018, I am now able to
provide a response to your complaint concerning Freedom of Information Act
(FOIA) request reference number: 2018090000548.  

This review concentrates on the E mail you sent us on 29/10/2018:

I refer to the communication sent to me yesterday (24th October) by
Suzanne Mason.

The following points are made by way of response:

1. The communication appears to be calculated to vex, annoy and harass.

2. I do not accept that staff shortages were responsible for delaying the
forwarding of an email for 4 days. To an investigative journalist that
seems to me, at least, far-fetched.

3. It does not address the single issue with which Ms Mason was tasked.
Deliberately, in my respectful submission.

4. There is no update provided as to when this request, tightly drawn and
requiring very little exertion, will eventually be finalised. On 8th
October I was informed in writing that the request was being given urgent
attention.

5. Not for the first time, within the instant request process, the
Metropolitan Police Service has managed to spell my name incorrectly. It
is WILBY, not Wilby. Again, deliberately, in my submission.

In summary, I ask again: Who are the MPS officers responsible for delaying
this request? It is a straight question, perfectly reasonably framed, and
one to which I am entitled to a straight answer. If indeed such a concept
exists in MPS. Present evidence indicates not.

Once they are identified, how, whether and, if so, in what form, I
complain to DPS, or pursue a private prosecution (lay an information)
against those officers, is a matter for me. Not Ms Mason.

As advised to you in my email dated 30/10/2018, your complaint with
respect to timeliness of responding to you was upheld.

You have questioned the reasons for the delay in responding to you.

The delay cannot be attributed to one specific individual.  Unfortunately,
as advised by Ms Mason, the current level of FOIA requests is extremely
high.

Due to the nature of FOIA requests, it is impossible to regulate the
number of requests that a public authority receives. For example, there
was a 42% increase in FOIA requests for October 2018. A manageable
caseload for a FOIA Information Manger is between 15 and 20 requests. Most
Information Managers currently have a case load in the region of 30
requests. This is being managed by some Information Managers working
additional hours to clear overdue requests.

You have commented: Not for the first time, within the instant request
process, the Metropolitan Police Service has managed to spell my name
incorrectly. It is WILBY, not Wilby. Again, deliberately, in my submission

I understand from previous correspondence with you that an 'e' has been
inserted in error in your name but I am unsure of the error you are
referring to above.

May I apologise again for the continued delay in providing you with a
response to your FOIA request. I have asked Ms Mason to provide you with
an update as she had hoped to have completed your response by today.

If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of this Internal Review you have
the right to appeal the decision by contacting the Information
Commissioner's Office (ICO) for a decision on whether the request for
information has been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of the
FOIA.

For information on how to make an application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at www.ico.org.uk.  Alternatively,
write to or phone:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  0303 123 1113

Yours sincerely

Yvette Taylor
Information Manager

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absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Case reference: 2018090000548
Dear Mr Wilby,

Please accept my sincere apologies once again for the continued delay in
responding to your request for information.

I have today received some information which I need to review and seek
approval from the business unit before responding to you and I am hopeful
that we will be able to do so early next week.

Once again, I apologise the inconvenience that this delay has caused you
and I thank you for your patience in the matter.

Kind regards,

Suzanne Mason
Information Manager

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absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
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the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Please see news article at below weblink that has been written about the handling of both this request and one concerning the same subject matter to Greater Manchester Police:

https://neilwilby.com/2018/11/11/mystery...

It will be updated shortly to reflect the latest sub-optimal responses from Suzanne Mason and Yvette Taylor.

It goes without saying, that I am absolutely appalled at the cavalier way this request and the various internal reviews have been handled.

MPS needs to take a long hard look at itself and assess whether it is a fit for purpose public entity. Particularly when measured against compliance with the applicable law. Parliament did not intend for law enforcement agencies to treat it with contempt, otherwise a separate section would have been included in the Act.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

This is text abstracted from a communication sent by Suzanne Mason on 13th November, 2018.

Case reference: 2018090000548

Please accept my sincere apologies once again for the continued delay in
responding to your request for information.

I have today received some information which I need to review and seek
approval from the business unit before responding to you and I am hopeful
that we will be able to do so early next week."

It is now nearly the end of that particular week, yet there is still no disclosure, no explanation, no apology.

As before stated, on numerous occasions, the situation is beyond disgraceful that a law enforcement agaency can treat a statutory obligation with such utter contempt.

It is now SEVEN weeks since I was told on 8th October, 2018 that this request was being looked at URGENTLY.

The article written and published on my website, about the Metropolitan Police Service breaking the law, will now be updated, yet again, with the latest broken promise: https://wp.me/p6Q3hf-2gh

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

It is noted, with considerable dismay, that my communications dated 18th and 21st November, 2018 have been completely ignored.

There is still no disclosure, despite the latest assurance of Suzanne Mason that it would materialise on 18th or 19th November, 2018. It is now the 29th.

The manner in which this request is being handled can now be characterised as an opportunity being used by the Metropolitan Police Service as a means to vex, annoy and harass a journalist who is simply following his vocation as "social watchdog". A law enforcement agency engaging in such a course of conduct is, for very obvious reasons, a source of increasing distress and alarm.

In the meantime, so as to afford me some protection in that the wider world has a greater understanding of this matter, I have published another article which details the troubling course of conduct referred to in the paragraph above.

https://wp.me/p6Q3hf-2hS

Would you please ensure that Supt Gary Randall and DAC Fiona Taylor both see this article, please?

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby,

Thank you for your email.

I have been tasked to complete your request on Suzi's behalf and am currently in the process of reviewing the requested material. I hope to be in a position to respond to you shortly.

Yours sincerely

Damion

show quoted sections

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

This is a list of the broken promises made by MPS in the course of the request.

8th October, 2018 – "We will respond shortly, matter being dealt with urgently".

20th October, 2018 – "Chaser sent to business area, finalisation within a few days"

30th October, 2018 – "Response on, or before, 13th November, 2018"

13th November, 2018 – "Early next week [taken to mean 18th or 19th November, 2018]'

Now you say:

29th November, 2018 - "Hope to be in a position to respond to you shortly"

What you don't say is:

"I've forwarded the published article to Supt Randall and DAC Taylor"

"I apologise profusely for yet another broken promise".

"Ms Mason is no longer dealing with this request because [.................]"

"A review of the disgraceful manner in which this information request has been handled is being undertaken at a senior level in MPS".

"This has gone on long enough, I will stay as long as it takes this evening to finalise the request and ensure you have it before I go home".

The article that chronicles the broken MPS promises will be updated accordingly.

https://neilwilby.com/2018/11/23/your-ch...

I ask again that the article is forwarded to Supt Randall and DAC Taylor. Thank you.

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby,

I am sorry for the delay in responding to your application. There will be a short delay before I will be in a position to complete your request. I will come back to you as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely

Damion

show quoted sections

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Thank you for letting me know.

Will disclosure likely be made before the Christmas break (21st)?

Yours faithfully,

Neil Wilby
Investigative journalist

Twitter: @Neil_Wilby
Web: neilwilby.com

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Wilby,

It should be completed by this date. My assessment of the located records is complete and my work is now being double checked.

Kind regards

Damion

show quoted sections

We don't know whether the most recent response to this request contains information or not – if you are Neil Wilby please sign in and let everyone know.

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