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Police Reform Act 2002

Paragraph 19: Investigations by the Commission itself

109.An investigation by the Commission is a totally new concept which has come about mainly because of the recommendations of the Home Affairs Committee (report of 1997-98) (accessible via and the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry (recommendation 58 of the Macpherson Report) (accessible via Both recommendations for independent investigations reflect the long-standing demands from all sectors of the community and from the police service itself. Independent investigations will be used on the most serious complaints or conduct matters and those of the highest public interest.

110.This paragraph will apply where the Commission has determined that it should itself carry out the investigation of a complaint or conduct matter. The Commission will designate a person from its own staff to take charge of the investigation so that it is clear who has responsibility for managing the day to day running of the investigation and for producing the report at the end. In the case of the Commissioner or Deputy Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis, the Secretary of State will nominate the person who is to be appointed in charge of the investigation.

111.In an investigation by the Commission, its investigators will have all the powers and privileges that would be available to the police in such an investigation. The powers and privileges, which will include all new future powers and privileges, will be exercisable throughout England and Wales.

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