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Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

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Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Panda on Wed 28 Mar - 21:08

This Statement deals with a few topics, I have just picked out the Mccann one .

50. The Inquiry understands that you were Chief Constable at the time when
Madeleine McCann was abducted in Portugal. The Inquiry is interested to
know how relationships with the media, both local and national, worked
during this time. Were changes in procedures made as a result of the very
large amount of media interest in the story? Was pressure put on your
personnel by the media? Are you aware of any personnel leaking information
to the media at this time, and if so, was disciplinary action taken?
Police Service of Northem Ireland 22
MOD100055406
For Distribution to CPs
Statement of Chief Constable Matthew Baggott
The investigation into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance began on 3 May 2007
by the Portuguese Authorities. On 4 May 2007, Leicestershire Constabulary took
up a liaison role with the Portuguese Police to assist them in their enquiries. On 8
May 2007 Leicestershire Constabulary was asked to co-ordinate the UK response
to assist the Portuguese enquiry on behalf of the UK Government and Association
of Chief Police Officers. The Gold Strategy set on this date established that it was
a Portuguese-led enquiry and that all actions would comply with requirements of
Portuguese law including their Judicial Secrecy Act.
As a result of this strategy, apart from one press conference, which was requested
by the Portuguese authorities, Leicestershire Constabulary made no comment to
the media in relation to the investigation and strict information security was applied
to ensure that the rights of all parties and the interests of the Portuguese Police
were protected. However, Leicestershire Constabulary did respond to media
enquiries over our role in the investigation in confirming details that were subject of
public record. This included the number of officers in various roles and the financial
cost of our involvement.
Due to the unprecedented media interest in the UK, a co-ordination group was set
up on behalf of law enforcement agencies and government departments to coordinate
the media interaction and ensure that a consistent stance was taken. This
co-ordinating group was chaired by the Head of Corporate Communications from
Leicestershire Constabulary. That group has continued to meet as required since
2007.
Throughout the enquiry there was intense local, national and international media
interest and speculation over every element of the investigation. Leicestershire
Constabulary received 53 FOI requests, one of which was repeated on 15
occasions, many of which came from the media. As a direct result of this and the
impact that it was having on the investigation Leicestershire Constabulary
developed a Freedom of Information Publication Strategy. This provided clarity
Police Service of Northem Ireland 23
MOD100055407
For Distribution to CPs
Statement of Chief Constable Matthew Baggott
about what information would be published, and at what time and to minimise the
number of requests made. The fact that we developed this publication strategy
became a national news story in itself.
The intense media interest meant that thousands of sightings were generated
world-wide many of which were reported to Leicestershire Constabulary - each
needing operational time to properly address. The Portuguese authorities informed
us that this was directing attention away from their core lines of enquiries.
Due to the vast quantity of local, national and international media that descended
on the village of Rothley, Leicestershire, where the McCann family live, a large
policing operation had to take place to ensure that villagers were able to go about
their daily business. We did have complaints from local residents about the
media’s behaviour.
Whenever any event took place in Leicestershire relating to the investigation this
again attracted huge interest to the extent that specific policing arrangements had
to be made with the local airport, hotels and venues for the meetings to ensure
there was no intrusion from the media.
Due to the thirst for information from the media, every individual working in
Leicestershire supporting the Portuguese investigation signed a confidentiality
agreement. Messages were also disseminated to all staff to make them aware that
even private conversations with friends could be reported on in the media.
In the Autumn of 2007 there was extensive conjecture about the investigation which
led me to write to all editors on two occasions (copies attached) imploring them not
to speculate around the investigation because of the implications it may have for
the enquiry. On each occasion I emphasised the importance of focusing in on the
search for Madeleine rather than any other issue. As a result of continued
conjecture by one Sunday paper Leicestershire Constabulary filed a complaint with
Police Service of Northem Ireland 24
MOD100055408
For Distribution to CPs
Statement of Chief Constable Matthew Baggott
the Press Complaints Commission. The outcome was that the paper in question
agreed to make a note on their file.
During the investigation the media quoted, who they claimed to be, unnamed
Leicestershire police sources. These comments reported by the media bore little
resemblance to the facts. However, Leicestershire Constabulary did conduct an
enquiry to establish if any police employee could be identified as leaking
information to the media. No such person was identified.
Although I am no longer Chief Constable of Leicestershire Constabulary, I am
informed that almost five years on there is still speculation within some news media
about Madeleine’s disappearance and that a number of groundless assertions
continue to be made about the enquiry and the actions taken by Leicestershire
Constabulary, UK Law Enforcement and the Police Judicaria.
Police Service of Northem Ireland 25
MOD100055409
For Distribution to CPs

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  gillyspot on Wed 28 Mar - 22:11

Panda wrote:
Although I am no longer Chief Constable of Leicestershire Constabulary, I am
informed that almost five years on there is still speculation within some news media
about Madeleine’s disappearance and that a number of groundless assertions
continue to be made about the enquiry and the actions taken by Leicestershire

Constabulary, UK Law Enforcement and the Police Judicaria.
Police Service of Northem Ireland 25
MOD100055409
For Distribution to CPs

"groundless"? That Leicestershire Police witheld the statements of Arul and Katharina Gaspar from the PJ for almost 6 months? I call it FACT!

Thanks Panda for sharing this but it hasn't done my blood pressure any good.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  almostgothic on Wed 28 Mar - 22:41

Groundless eh?

Did we then imagine the link on the LP website to the McCann Limited Company 'Fund', which has been there for the duration? A link which was complained about by several people who were given very short shrift on the phone?
A 'fund' run by the ex-arguidos (and maybe aguidos-to-be once more) and their cronies and relatives for the benefit of said arguidos and their wider family.

Groundless? We must have dreamt it all then.

Do other crime suspects have their begging-bowl website links on LP's site? Betcha they don't.


Baggott obviously thinks Ethics is a county in the south of England ...

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  MaryB on Wed 28 Mar - 22:46

I just caught the end part of a programme on the phone hacking scandal tonight. Can't remember what channel. But it seemed to be an American programme. Anyway for quite a few years the police said their was absolutely no evidence of phone hacking. And it was only through the persistance of certain folk that the enquiry has reached the levels it has now. I know what that tells me.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  gillyspot on Wed 28 Mar - 22:49

MaryB wrote:I just caught the end part of a programme on the phone hacking scandal tonight. Can't remember what channel. But it seemed to be an American programme. Anyway for quite a few years the police said their was absolutely no evidence of phone hacking. And it was only through the persistance of certain folk that the enquiry has reached the levels it has now. I know what that tells me.

Very true MaryB

" And it was only through the persistance of certain folk that the enquiry has reached the levels it has now. I know what that tells me" - Since following the Madeleine McCann case I have now become aware of the deep corruption between media,police & politicians (not just in McCann case) - and I didn't need Leveson's millions to show me that.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  MaryB on Wed 28 Mar - 23:00

I must say I felt really shocked when I heard about payments to police. And government officials. This is surely very serious. In a third world country it would be condemned as out and out total corruption.+

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  gillyspot on Wed 28 Mar - 23:03

True you would expect this elsewhere in less developed countries but over here... sadly now I expect it too.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  NoStone on Thu 29 Mar - 7:20


"In the Autumn of 2007 there was extensive conjecture about the investigation which led me to write to all editors on two occasions (copies attached) imploring them not to speculate around the investigation because of the implications it may have for the enquiry. On each occasion I emphasised the importance of focusing in on the search for Madeleine rather than any other issue. As a result of continued conjecture by one Sunday paper Leicestershire Constabulary filed a complaint with the Press Complaints Commission. The outcome was that the paper in question agreed to make a note on their file."

I dont understand this!! On what grounds is the Chief Constable directing the media to look only at the search for the girl and away from other aspects of this case which put the focus on the Mc's as confirmed by their arguido status and the final PJ report?? The speculation may have impeded the enquiry? How? And what speculation? That the girl had been abducted?? At that time - as now - there is no evidence of an abduction and therefore no strength in directing resources and or the press towards a search.

This does not sound like impartial policing to me! Are not the press free to print what they wish (at risk of litigation if the sail too close to the wind!??) Since when in this country have the police being directing what the press have to say or is this a groundless point I make??

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Guest on Thu 29 Mar - 7:41

Well, I have seen it all now. Clarence Mitchell holding up e-fits, and pretending he's a Policeman; and Matt Baggott controlling what comes out in the press, pretending he's Clarence Mitchell. It's like that Mediaeval festival where the King and the Fool swap places for a day, except there's no Kings.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  gillyspot on Thu 29 Mar - 7:44

I can only find one reference to Leicestershire Constabulary on the PCC website.

"COMPLAINANT NAME:
Leicestershire Constabulary

CLAUSES NOTED: 1

PUBLICATION: Sunday Mirror

COMPLAINT:
Leicestershire Constabulary complained that an article had quoted a ‘Leicestershire police source’ being critical of the Portuguese police (in relation to the investigation into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance) when that was not the official view of the Force.

RESOLUTION:
The matter was resolved when the newspaper agreed to place a note of the complaint in its archive files, which made clear that the quoted source was not speaking on behalf of the Force."




http://pcc.org.uk/news/index.html?article=NDkyMA==

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Panda on Thu 29 Mar - 8:40



What about the Senior Police Officer, Stuart Prior becoming more than chummy with the Tapas Group?????? Gerry calling him "Stu", Rachel e-mailing him asking whether they should attend the Recon. Prior saying he thought 'no useful purpose would be served.' How could two instances of such
obvious a biased relationship be overlooked.?

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Panda on Thu 29 Mar - 8:43





Leveson inquiry: Press speculation 'hindered' Madeleine McCann inquiry

Former chief constable of Leicestershire police said a 'greater understanding of the complexity and consequences of speculation' should be learnt from the McCann case

Posted: 28 March 2012 By: Rachel McAthy
.


0 Comments and 0 Reactions




At the time Baggott said he wrote two letters to the press calling for 'restraint'
Copyright: Paul Faith/PA Wire The former chief constable of Leicestershire police, now chief constable of the police service of Northern Ireland, today said that "speculation" in the UK press did "hinder" the inquiry into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.

The inquiry was told that the Leicestershire force, covering the McCann's local area, was "asked to co-ordinate the UK response to assist the Portuguese enquiry".

In evidence to the Leveson inquiry chief constable Matt Baggott told the court the force received complaints about press behaviour "around disruption to daily life caused by a large media presence".

Baggott said he wrote two letters to "all the prominent editors" calling for "restraint in reporting on the case".

In the letters he wrote he had "been surprised at the reporting of some alleged facts" and was "deeply concerned at the implications".

He added that the reaction was "not hugely positive" given that "speculation continued".

Baggott also told the inquiry "there could have been a greater authority to explain the boundaries of what that press reporting should have been".

"The difficulty was it involved a European dimension as well as a national one. But there could be stronger guidelines and consequences."

He added that the speculation occurring in areas of the press "certainly hindered the inquiries to find and trace Madeleine simply because of the reaction that came from the media speculation".

Giving evidence to the Leveson inquiry last year the parents of Madeleine McCann said they were "tried by the media" in the wake of her disappearance.

They also spoke about a "tremendous amount of speculation", with coverage becoming often "exaggerated" and other reports being "simply made up" and "inaccurate, untruthful and incredibly damaging".

Asked what lessons could be learnt from the McCann case, Baggott today said while the inquiry is ongoing "the lesson to be learnt is probably a greater understanding of the complexity and consequences of speculation and loose reporting of facts".

"That is a serious issue for the press to consider", he added.

"I don't think some of this speculation was necessary ...it certainly wasn't practical and it certainly wasn't proportionate.

"... A greater understanding of consequence would have been appropriate."

Speaking more generally about police officers disclosing information he said there is a need for a "balance" to be found "between giving local colleagues the ability to storytell with the right ethical guidance and support, which is entirely appropriate, while making sure the very real issues of the inappropriate use of information, whether that's for personal gain or through gossip still remains under tight control".

"Our relationships with the media probably need to be reasserted based on what the man or woman on the street would think."

He added: "It should be amicable and it should be very friendly, but it should always professional and for a purpose."

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  NoStone on Thu 29 Mar - 8:45

gillyspot wrote:I can only find one reference to Leicestershire Constabulary on the PCC website.

"COMPLAINANT NAME:
Leicestershire Constabulary

CLAUSES NOTED: 1

PUBLICATION: Sunday Mirror

COMPLAINT:
Leicestershire Constabulary complained that an article had quoted a ‘Leicestershire police source’ being critical of the Portuguese police (in relation to the investigation into Madeleine McCann’s disappearance) when that was not the official view of the Force.

RESOLUTION:
The matter was resolved when the newspaper agreed to place a note of the complaint in its archive files, which made clear that the quoted source was not speaking on behalf of the Force."




http://pcc.org.uk/news/index.html?article=NDkyMA==

So was the Chief Constable's direction to the press to stay away from criticism of the PJ? Fine, that's more within his remit I would say, but then why specificlly direct them to fous on the search for Madeleine i.e. the abduction thesis and not all possibile theses regarding her disappearence? It still sounds skewed.

..oh..and BTW - what direction have the LP or the MET for that matter, given to the press to stay away from critcism of the PJ since? There has been much of it printed in various forms but is there no interest in protecting the investigation since it has been shelved by the PJ???


Last edited by NoStone on Thu 29 Mar - 9:08; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Panda on Thu 29 Mar - 8:51



In the letters he wrote he had "been surprised at the reporting of some alleged facts" and was "deeply concerned at the implications".


Why didn't he make a formal complaint tio the PCC or Home Office?

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  NoStone on Thu 29 Mar - 9:30

"Asked what lessons could be learnt from the McCann case, Baggott today said while the inquiry is ongoing "the lesson to be learnt is probably a greater understanding of the complexity and consequences of speculation and loose reporting of facts".

But the abdduction thesis was/is speculation as there is no evidence to support it.

"Baggott also told the inquiry "there could have been a greater authority to explain the boundaries of what that press reporting should have been".

[i]"The difficulty was it involved a European dimension as well as a national one. But there could be stronger guidelines and consequences."


Sounds like he is asking Leveson for more control by the police over the press = less freedom of speech!!! The thing with freedonm of speech is it does let the truth surface, it also can lead to some awkward questions - questions that they would rather not have to answer.

"Throughout the enquiry there was intense local, national and international media interest and speculation over every element of the investigation. Leicestershire Constabulary received 53 FOI requests, one of which was repeated on 15 occasions, many of which came from the media. As a direct result of this and the impact that it was having on the investigation Leicestershire Constabulary developed a Freedom of Information Publication Strategy. This provided clarity about what information would be published, and at what time and to minimise the number of requests made. The fact that we developed this publication strategy became a national news story in itself."

So they had to manage the situation by developing a 'Freedom of Information Publication Strategy'. Dammed annoying this FOI business isn't it!!?? So much so you need a strategy to counter it - to 'minimise the number of requests'!!! If the requests were groundless or required a response of simple matter of fact - why would they be problematical?? Or was it that there were too many searching questions being asked, one 15 times which caused a real headache?? Just wondering!


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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  malena stool on Thu 29 Mar - 20:36

The Leicester Mercury is finally up to speed

http://www.thisisleicestershire.co.uk/Police-right-say-McCann-leaks-untrue/story-15654901-detail/story.html

Police 'right not to say McCann leaks untrue' .Thursday, March 29, 2012 Leicester Mercury
Follow.The police chief at the time Madeleine McCann went missing has defended his decision not to tell the media that leaked DNA evidence implicating her parents was wrong.

Matthew Baggott the then Chief Constable of Leicestershire – now head of the Police Service of Northern Ireland – was interviewed at the Leveson Inquiry into the media yesterday.

The inquiry has previously heard from Jerry Lawton, a Daily Star reporter, that Portuguese police were leaking DNA results wrongly implicating her parents with a hire car.

Lord Justice Leveson yesterday said Mr Lawton criticised the force, which he said knew the leaks were wrong, for not telling reporters off the record "don't go there'' with the hire car details.

The judge said he was concerned the force did not have the chance to respond and asked Mr Baggott if he would like to.

Mr Baggott said the force had to "respect the primacy of the Portuguese investigation".

He said there was also "an issue of Portuguese law, their own judicial secrecy laws".

This meant "it would have been utterly wrong" to have held an off-the-record briefing over the matter.

Madeleine's father Gerry, in his submission to the inquiry in November, told how he had urged Mr Baggott to write to media organisations urging them to stop inaccurately reporting details of the girl's disappearance.

Mr McCann said Mr Baggott, who left the Leicestershire force in 2009, wrote letters in September and October 2007.

"Our campaign team pressurised Leicestershire police to write to the broadcasters and editors and there's a letter from Matt Baggott, who was chief constable at that time, urging restraint and saying there was very inaccurate reporting," Mr McCann said.

Portugal police announced this month that a new team had been appointed to re-examine the original investigation into Madeleine's disappearance.

It follows a review by Scotland Yard officers which began in May last year.

Madeleine disappeared from the family's holiday accommodation in Portuguese resort of Praia de Luz in May 2007. She was a few days short of her fourth birthday at the time.


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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  NoStone on Thu 29 Mar - 22:37

How nteresting is this??:-

Madeleine's father Gerry, in his submission to the inquiry in November, told how he had urged Mr Baggott to write to media organisations urging them to stop inaccurately reporting details of the girl's disappearance.

Mr McCann said Mr Baggott, who left the Leicestershire force in 2009, wrote letters in September and October 2007.

"Our campaign team pressurised Leicestershire police to write to the broadcasters and editors and there's a letter from Matt Baggott, who was chief constable at that time, urging restraint and saying there was very inaccurate reporting," Mr McCann said.


Not much pandering to the arguido's by the LP there then is there!!??

Nevermind a full and proper investiation into the disappearence of the little girl - there should be a full public inquiry into the behaviour of all the UK authorities in this whole matter IMO!!!

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  tanszi on Thu 29 Mar - 23:33

i agree its mind boggling.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Guest on Fri 30 Mar - 7:39

NoStone wrote:

Madeleine's father Gerry, in his submission to the inquiry in November, told how he had urged Mr Baggott to write to media organisations urging them to stop inaccurately reporting details of the girl's disappearance.

Mr McCann said Mr Baggott, who left the Leicestershire force in 2009, wrote letters in September and October 2007.

"Our campaign team pressurised Leicestershire police to write to the broadcasters and editors and there's a letter from Matt Baggott, who was chief constable at that time, urging restraint and saying there was very inaccurate reporting," Mr McCann said.



Mister McCann says lots of things, which might or might not be true. This week, we already learned that on Planet Gerry, Portugal is on the Mediterranean and doesn't have a Navy.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  gillyspot on Fri 30 Mar - 10:35

Leicestershire Police's FOI strategy is a simple one. Don't answer any questions.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Panda on Fri 30 Mar - 10:44

gillyspot wrote:Leicestershire Police's FOI strategy is a simple one. Don't answer any questions.

I know,it really is diabolical and an acute explanation of just how undemocratic Britain is. If you are interested in Politics, George Galloway won in
Bradford last night by a landslide Victory, 10,000 votes over his nearest rival.. voters letting our Political Parties just how little "Respect" the population
have for them.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Badboy on Fri 30 Mar - 12:42

Iris wrote:
NoStone wrote:

Madeleine's father Gerry, in his submission to the inquiry in November, told how he had urged Mr Baggott to write to media organisations urging them to stop inaccurately reporting details of the girl's disappearance.

Mr McCann said Mr Baggott, who left the Leicestershire force in 2009, wrote letters in September and October 2007.

"Our campaign team pressurised Leicestershire police to write to the broadcasters and editors and there's a letter from Matt Baggott, who was chief constable at that time, urging restraint and saying there was very inaccurate reporting," Mr McCann said.



Mister McCann says lots of things, which might or might not be true. This week, we already learned that on Planet Gerry, Portugal is on the Mediterranean and doesn't have a Navy.
PORTUGAL IS ON THE ATLANTIC,I BELIEVE.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

Post  Chris on Fri 30 Mar - 13:15

Badboy wrote:
Iris wrote:
NoStone wrote:

Madeleine's father Gerry, in his submission to the inquiry in November, told how he had urged Mr Baggott to write to media organisations urging them to stop inaccurately reporting details of the girl's disappearance.

Mr McCann said Mr Baggott, who left the Leicestershire force in 2009, wrote letters in September and October 2007.

"Our campaign team pressurised Leicestershire police to write to the broadcasters and editors and there's a letter from Matt Baggott, who was chief constable at that time, urging restraint and saying there was very inaccurate reporting," Mr McCann said.



Mister McCann says lots of things, which might or might not be true. This week, we already learned that on Planet Gerry, Portugal is on the Mediterranean and doesn't have a Navy.
PORTUGAL IS ON THE ATLANTIC,I BELIEVE.

So is Spain until you get past Tarifa, Algerciras etc.

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Re: Leveson Enquiry ... Statement of CC Matthew Baggott

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