Expert witness formally complains to Independent Police Complaints Commission
“I personally was appalled by the overt and blatant lies that officer told on oath” – Ronald Cufley, expert witness
Police are investigating a claim that a detective committed perjury in a doomed £1 million case triggered by corporate investigators Kroll.
An expert witness for the defence in the trial has made a formal complaint to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), accusing a detective at the City of London Police of lying on oath by falsely claiming that he had found crack cocaine at the home of the London businessman targeted in the investigation.
The IPCC has referred the complaint to the City of London Police to investigate.
At the trial, the businessman, Ian Puddick, was cleared of accusations of “harassment”.
Exaro revealed in September how officers raised concerns about the legality of raids carried out by the City of London Police as part of the case.
Kroll, the US-based corporate spooks, had persuaded the City of London Police to conduct an investigation into Puddick.
A series of e-mails from within the highly secretive corporate-investigations giant detail how it sparked the police action as part of a Kroll operation to protect the reputation of a client, Guy Carpenter, the global reinsurance company.
Kroll told police that Guy Carpenter, then a sister company to the corporate spooks, was the target of a harassment campaign by Puddick, who runs a plumbing business. It claimed that Puddick began the campaign after finding out that his wife, who was working as a secretary to a Guy Carpenter reinsurance broker, was having an affair with her boss.
Ronald Cufley, an expert witness who frequently gives evidence in court relating to computers and who worked for the defence in Puddick’s trial at Westminster magistrates’ court, was so “appalled” by what he witnessed during the hearings that he made the formal complaint to the IPCC about the detective. Exaro is not naming the detective for legal reasons.
According to Cufley’s letter of complaint, the detective suddenly claimed during the trial that crack cocaine was found at Puddick’s house during a raid. Cufley claims that the detective plainly lied because there had been no previous mention or record of any drugs find.
Exaro has obtained a copy of the complaint, which details the extraordinary background to the false claim about crack cocaine.
In his letter, Cufley asked the IPCC not to refer his complaint to the City of London Police, otherwise the force would end up investigating its own officers.
“It cannot be known who was involved in the association with Kroll, which would taint their ability to carry out a fair investigation,” he wrote.
Despite this, the IPCC referred the case to the City of London Police.
An IPCC spokesman said: “The complaint was forwarded to City of London Police with the complainant’s consent for them to deal with in the first instance.”
The IPCC routinely initially refers complaints to the police force concerned.
Cufley told Exaro that he agreed to an initial investigation to be carried out by City of London Police, otherwise his complaint would not proceed.
Cufley said: “City of London detectives are investigating and conducting interviews with those who witnessed the evidence in question, including the district judge and Michael Wolkind, barrister for the defence. I personally was appalled by the overt and blatant lies that officer told on oath.”
Puddick is preparing to sue the City of London Police for malicious prosecution.
A spokeswoman for the police force said that she was unable to comment for legal reasons.
Kroll declined to comment.