Yorkshire police officer accused of going on holiday to Greece while off sick

The South Yorkshire Police officer’s actions will be examined during a misconduct hearing in February

The officer has been accused of taking a trip to Greece in August 2020, after they were signed off as sick, and then lying to the force by claiming they were at a funeral in Belgium.

The allegations will be considered at a two-day misconduct hearing in Sheffield, which is due to begin on February 8, and if the officer is found guilty of gross misconduct they could be sacked.

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South Yorkshire Police said members of the public and the press will not be allowed to attend the hearing and the officer will not be named.

In a statement, the force said: “The officer has a number of health problems, which will be discussed throughout the course of the hearing.

“The legally qualified chair has decided that the health of the officer and the allegations are inextricably linked to the allegations and therefore a part public hearing could not be practicable.

“A decision has therefore been made that the hearing will be in private and the officer will not be named.”

Government guidance states police forces should always look to hold these hearings in public, but there “may be some circumstances where this is not appropriate” and the chair of a misconduct panel can order a hearing to be held in private.

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Last year former Prime Minister Theresa May said it is “immensely disappointing” that some police forces are failing to open themselves up to scrutiny by holding misconduct hearings in private.

The Conservative politician, who ordered all forces to hold misconduct hearings in public when she was home secretary in 2015, spoke out after analysis found at least one in four hearings were conducted behind closed doors.

She said: “It leaves the impression that the police, whose job it is to protect the public, are prioritising the reputation of the institution over the delivery of justice.”

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