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EXCLUSIVE: 'Criminals' set to sue Met Police for allowing their names to leak in Operation Tiberius report

March 28, 2019

CLASH: Operation Tiberius could be raised in the High Court if lawyers believe there is a case (ITV) 

TWO suspected criminals named in a secret Met Police corruption report are considering suing the force for allowing the document to be leaked.

The Operation Tiberius report which looked at how organised crime gangs were corrupting detectives in north and east London was produced in 2002.

It summarised the results of an extensive anti-corruption probe that looked at organised crime networks that were suspected of using corrupt police officers to gain information so they could compromise investigations into themselves.

The Tiberius operation was carried out after seasoned detectives complained that it had become impossible to run a proper murder inquiry in east and north-east London because of the level of corruption and interference by criminals.

But, the document marked secret was leaked to The Independent newspaper in 2014, triggering a flurry of articles about the sensitive operation.

Until this year, the document had only been viewed by a handful of former police officers and journalists, including this website.

However, a full copy was published online earlier this year.

Despite the Met Police repeatedly saying the contents of the report could put lives at risk and compromise current policing tactics, it has told this website it is taking no action to get the document removed from the internet.

NO ACTION: The Met Police has said it will do nothing about the online leak (Parliament TV)

The two men are understood to believe the Met has a duty to limit who can see the report and claim it, therefore, should have taken action. 

They are exploring areas of defamation, privacy and safety issues as grounds for a claim against the force.

A Former Met Police detective sergeant, who now helps people with claims against the Met under the pseudonym Frank Matthews, has met with the pair.

He said: "I have met with them and they are looking to bring a claim for allowing their names to leak as suspected criminals. They are not happy that their names have leaked for obvious reasons.

"The fact the Met has allowed the document to remain in the public domain only compounds it."

Tiberius focussed on eight major crime syndicates said to be involved in "drug trafficking, extortion, money laundering and robbery," including the notorious Adams Family gang from north London and one run by late "Brinks Mat" gangster John Palmer.

SYNDICATE: The late John Palmer was named as  a gang boss in Tiberius (PA)

It also identified more than 40 named current and former detectives who were believed to be aiding the high-ranking criminals. 

Tiberius also named a number of suspected criminals and syndicate members.

When previously asked to discuss what happened in the wake of the Tiberius operation, the Met Police said: "We are not prepared to discuss publicly the details of Operation Tiberius, produced in 2002. 

"By its very nature it is a secret document that details the threat of corruption to police employees posed by serious and organised criminals.

"The passage of time does nothing to reduce the very real risks to anti-corruption tactics, intelligence sources or current operations."  

Police could seek a High Court injunction against anyone who published such sensitive material, ordering its removal and banning republication.

However, even after being sent by this website a link to the full version of the report published online, the Met said it was doing nothing to remove the sensitive information.

A spokesman said: "We don’t intend to take any action to get the report removed from the internet, wherever it is hosted."

Tiberius was largely based on police intelligence from informants and other sources such as surveillance, undercover operations and covert recordings or phone interceptions.

Most of the intelligence allegations made in the report have never been tested in court.

The Tiberius report recommended a series of actions for the Met Police to take to try to clamp down on organised crime and associated corruption, but according to former senior detectives few of them were ever carried out and the report was effectively "buried".

The Met refuses to address these claims but says it has stringent anti corruption measures in place.

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