In July 2012 Mark Ellison QC was commissioned to conduct a review examining allegations of corruption surrounding the initial, deeply flawed, investigation of the murder of Stephen Lawrence. He was also asked to examine whether the Metropolitan Police had evidence of corruption that it did not disclose to the Macpherson Inquiry and thirdly, whether there was inappropriate undercover activity directed at the Lawrence family? On corruption, Ellison finds that specific allegations of corruption were made against 1 of the officers who had worked on the investigation of Stephen Lawrence's murder, Detective Sergeant John Davidson. The allegations were made by a police officer to his superiors but were not brought to the attention of Macpherson. The MPS's record-keeping on its own investigations into police corruption are a cause of real concern. Key evidence was the subject of mass shredding in 2003. Ellison identifies the wholly inappropriate use of an undercover officer during the Macpherson Inquiry. A Special Demonstration Squad (SDS) officer, referred to as N81, had been deployed into one of the groups seeking to influence the Lawrence family campaign, effectively becoming an MPS spy in the Lawrence family camp during the course of judicial proceedings in which the family was the primary party in opposition to the MPS. N81 also met the detective writing the MPS's submissions to the Macpherson Inquiry, a completely improper action. SDS officers also operated as if exempt from the proper rules of disclosure in criminal cases. And this means there is a real potential for miscarriages of justice to have occurred.
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