THE News of the World
last night fought off a bid by police watchdogs to stop us revealing
the sensational truth about the shooting of Brazilian Jean Charles de
The leaked Independent Police Complaints Commission report
shows a catalogue of blunders and cock-ups. The dossier is so damning
it appears to spell the end for Met chief Sir Ian Blair.
the IPCC appealed to a judge to stop our story being published.
But Mr Justice Gray threw out their application for a gagging order.
Our lawyer Tom Crone said: "IPCC lawyers tried to gag us on the basis of confidentiality but failed."
The story they tried to ban
BELEAGUERED Scotland Yard boss Sir Ian Blair was last night fighting
for his job—after being exposed over a fresh catalogue of cock-ups
surrounding the tragic shooting of Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes.
The top-secret Independent Police Complaints Commission report into the scandal, leaked yesterday to the News of the World,
sensationally reveals a raft of incompetence, blunders and buck-passing
that seem to spell doom for the Metropolitan Police Commissioner.
Last night we beat off an attempt by the IPCC to stop us
publishing revelations in the 150-page dossier. Mr Justice Gray refused
to grant a gagging injunction to the police watchdog.
The dossier, leaked by Whitehall insiders, reveals that some of
Sir Ian's senior officers KNEW de Menezes was innocent and definitely
NOT a suicide bomber just hours after he was killed. But they failed to
tell their boss until the next day.
The report also reveals how officers:
USED the Prime Minister's name in a bid to stop the IPCC probe,
FAILED to pass on alerts from the undercover team that they were tailing an innocent man,
DELAYED five hours in deploying ‘specialist' firearms cops who could have taken him alive,
DOCTORED a Special Branch log of the surveillance operation leading to the shooting, as revealed by the News of the World in January, and
FOULED up orders to frontline men, ordering that the suspect be "stopped" which was tragically interpreted as "kill him".
Other startling findings include evidence that de Menezes, 27,
was high on cocaine when he was gunned down at Stockwell Tube station
last July 22.
But the worst news for Sir Ian is the revelation that some of
his most senior aides knew of de Menezes' innocence but kept it from
him for 12 hours.
An IPCC-linked source told us: "That's a cast-iron fact. The
question is why. The belief in Whitehall is that it's because Sir Ian
is notorious for taking bad news very badly—they just couldn't face
telling him so they left it until Saturday morning."
But they did not anticipate the publicity-hungry Commissioner
would seize the first chance, on his way into work next day, to
arrogantly boast to TV cameras what a terrific job his officers had
done in stopping a "suicide bomber".
Our IPCC source added: "Sir Ian has always insisted neither he
nor his senior officers knew the wrong man had been shot before about
10am Saturday. But the report proves two Yard departments knew the
truth by 9.45pm Friday.
"And Sir Ian's desperation to prevent the commission
investigating the shooting has done him great damage. Just 42 minutes
after the incident his office issued orders to exclude us from the
inquiry, even citing the Prime Minister...an appalling lack of
judgement. This could force him to resign."
De Menezes was killed the day after four alleged terrorists
failed to explode suicide bombs on London's transport system—just a
fortnight after the devastating 7/7 attacks that killed 52 innocents.
for de Menezes, he lived in the same block of flats as a prime suspect.
At 4.30am on Friday July 22, Special Branch (known as SO12) mounted an
undercover operation WITHOUT calling the specialist firearms team CO19.
They were only sent in at 9.30 when swarthy de Menezes left the
building and was mistaken for the bomb suspect. The report brands that
an "inexplicable failure" and major factor in the killing. Instead of
being able to safely apprehend the suspect on his way to the Tube they
arrived only after he had gone into the station.
An IPCC source said their report also spotlights "gross
negligence" of the SO12 watchers' team leader in failing to tell bosses
one of his men had definitely ruled out de Menezes as the suspect.
It was one of this group, says the report, that later
deliberately doctored their official surveillance log to suggest they
HADN'T identified de Menezes as the target.
The commission says loose language used by Yard commanders in
communicating with officers on the chase probably condemned de Menezes
to death. As he walked into Stockwell station, Commander Cressida Dick
ordered that he must be "stopped" getting on a train. Another officer
claimed she added "at all costs".
Commander Dick told the IPCC she meant the suspect should
simply be apprehended. But on the scene her officers took it to mean
The cocaine discovered in de Menezes' blood by forensic
scientists was "recent" abuse they concluded. He had been observed as
"very, very jumpy", fuelling belief that he was acting suspiciously.
Sir Ian Blair may seize on that as a crumb of comfort— but
Whitehall sources were last night convinced he's a dead man walking...