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Police expenses row ‘referred to watchdog’

Questions: Concerns surrounding anomolies over Mr Grunshaws expenses are expected to be referred to the IPCC

Questions: Concerns surrounding anomolies over Mr Grunshaws expenses are expected to be referred to the IPCC

Concerns surrounding “anomalies” within the expenses of Lancashire’s newly elected police commissioner are understood to have been referred to an independent watchdog.

As reported by the Lancashire Evening Post yesterday, questions have been asked about the expenses Clive Grunshaw claimed as a public servant.

It is believed the issue has now been passed over to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

A spokesman for the IPCC today said the watchdog is awaiting a referral.

Mr Grunshaw has been accused of “doubling milage” payments.

Mr Grunshaw, who is also a Labour Lancashire county councillor used to serve on the Lancashire Police Authority, before it was replaced by the controversial new PCC post.

Documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act appear to show that on 23 occasions in three years Mr Grunshaw claimed expenses from both the county council and the police authority for separate meetings which were held on the same day in or near Preston.

On each occasion he claimed round-trip mileage from his home in Fleetwood, which is 23 miles from Preston, for both meetings even though some of the second meetings began the same time he claimed he had returned to Fleetwood from the first engagement.

Mr Grunshaw today said he has requested that an investigation be launched.

He said: “Every expense claim I have made has been genuinely intentioned and related to my ward and Police Authority duties, so far as I was aware.

“At no point have I wilfully submitted claims which I know to be untrue.

“These allegations of discrepancies, regarding alleged overlaps in my expenses claims, were presented to me on Friday evening.

“I have requested that a full investigation is launched into these allegations.

“I welcome this and will comply fully with the investigative process. I understand that the matter has now been referred the Independent Police Complaints Commission and, therefore, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

Sam Chapman, editor of the Top of The Cops website, obtained the figures.

He said it was announced at the Lancashire Police and Crime Panel meeting yesterday that the matter had been referred.

Mr Chapman said he is not calling for Mr Grunshaw to resign nor is he saying he has done anything wrong.

But he did say the matter needs a “full investigation”

Lancashire Police declined to comment.

 

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