Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 7th 2014 Contents A30
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Friday, February 7, 2014
A Metropolitan Police officer who lied about wit-
nessing the "plebgate" row has been sentenced to
12 months in prison.
PC Keith Wallis, 53, admitted a charge of miscon-
duct in public office last month at the Old Bailey.
Wallis, of West Drayton, sent a senior Tory official
an e-mail wrongly claiming he had seen a row involv-
ing MP Andrew Mitchell in Downing Street.
The incident involved another officer who refused
to allow the then chief whip to cycle through the
Deborah Glass, head of the Independent Police
Complaints Commission, said Wallis actions had
helped turn "a largely inaudible altercation lasting
less than a minute into a national scandal".
They had caused an "injustice" to Mitchell and
"brought shame upon the police service", she added.
And Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard
Hogan-Howe said Wallis would be the subject of a
misconduct process "as soon as possible", adding
that his actions had "fallen way below the standards
that me, my fellow police officers and the public
Mitchell, MP for Sutton Coldfield, was forced to
quit as the government s chief whip as a result of
the fall-out, of the Downing Street row. He has
admitted swearing during the original incident
but has always denied the allegation by the officer
present, PC Toby Rowland, that he used the word
After media reports of the incident in Downing
Street, in September 2012, Wallis sent an e-mail
to John Randall, then Mitchell s deputy in the
whips office, claiming to be a member of the
public who had witnessed the argument and
heard Mr Mitchell use the word "pleb".
He said he had been sightseeing near Downing
Street with his nephew, when he was, in fact,
off duty at the time and thought to have been
nowhere near Downing Street.
Passing sentence, Mr Justice Sweeney said
Wallis had been guilty of "sustained, and in sig-
nificant measure, devious misconduct which fell
far below the standards expected of a police offi-
Ahead of sentencing at the Old Bailey yesterday,
Wallis s lawyer, Patrick Gibbs QC, appealed for
his client not to be sent to prison.
He added that Wallis had been drunk when
he sent the e-mail and that events had got "com-
pletely out of hand" afterwards.
He had come to convince himself that he had
actually witnessed the false incident he had
reported, Mr Gibbs said. (BBC)
Lying policeman jailed for a year
Six members of Russian punk rock collective
Pussy Riot have signed an open letter insisting
Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova not
be billed as members.
It said the two had forgotten about the "aspirations
and ideals of our group".
The pair performed alongside Madonna at a concert
in New York on Wednesday.
They were jailed for two years after singing a protest
song in a Moscow cathedral in 2012 but were freed
Known as "Masha" and "Nadia", Alyokhina and
Tolokonnikova spent 16 months in prison.
The six members of the collective who signed the
letter---Garadja, Fara, Shaiba, Cat, Seraphima and
Schumacher---say they wish to remain anonymous.
They said that their group belonged to a "leftist
anti-capitalist ideology" but that the pair had become
"institutionalised advocates of prisoners rights".
The letter read: "Unfortunately for us, they are
being so carried away with the problems in Russian
prisons, that they completely forgot about the aspi-
rations and ideals of our group---feminism, separatist
resistance, fight against authoritarianism and per-
sonality cult, all of which, as a matter of fact, was
the cause for their unjust punishment."
The remaining members of the group criticised
the pair for appearing at the Amnesty International
concert in New York.
"Our performances are always illegal , staged only
in unpredictable locations and public places not
designed for traditional entertainment," the group
It said that although the pair had repeatedly stressed
they were no longer members, the public announce-
ment before their speech spoke of "the first legal
performance of Pussy Riot". (BBC)
Russia's Pussy Riot
disowns freed pair
Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina
Links Archive February 5th 2014 February 8th 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page