Sadiq Khan heavily criticised in report over departure of Cressida Dick – who felt 'intimidated' into resigning

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has been criticised over the departure of Met Commissioner Cressida Dick in an official report, which said Dame Cressida felt intimidated into resigning

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London Mayor Sadiq Khan did not follow due process in what amounted to the “constructive dismissal” of Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, according to an official report.

The findings of a special commission into the departure of Dame Cressida last February is highly critical of the Labour mayor and said his actions “failed to respect the dignity of the Commissioner as an individual and as a holder of high office.”

The report found that “she was left in a position.. that she had no option but to announce that she would step aside, in part to protect the Metropolitan police itself".

The findings by Sir Thomas Winsor, the former chief inspector of constabulary states: “The circumstances in which she reached that view had been largely created by the actions of the Mayor and his staff.

Cressida Dick
Cressida Dick
Sadiq Khan
Sadiq Khan

“No good reason has been identified as to why such a resolution had to be reached on 10 February 2022 itself.”

Sir Thomas found Dame Cressida “felt intimidated” following an ultimatum from Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.

The report went on: “In this case, none of the statutory steps set out in section 48 of the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 and summarised above were followed.

“The Mayor, through his Chief of Staff, gave the Commissioner an ultimatum on 10 February 2022: If the Commissioner did not attend a meeting and convince the Mayor that her plan of 4 February 2022 would be improved, he would make a statement to the media.

“That statement would make clear that he no longer had trust and confidence in the Commissioner, and that he intended to start the statutory process for her removal.

“When the Commissioner did not attend that meeting, the Mayor’s Chief of Staff reiterated the Mayor’s position and gave her less than one hour to decide what to do.

“She felt intimidated by this process into stepping aside, and I can understand that reaction. The Commissioner felt that, in the interests of Londoners and the Metropolitan Police, she had to ‘step aside’, as a prelude to her eventual resignation.”

Sadiq Khan has criticised the findings of the report.

Mr Khan responded: “Londoners will be able to see that this review is clearly biased and ignores the facts.

“On the former Commissioner’s watch, trust in the police fell to record lows following a litany of terrible scandals. What happened was simple – I lost confidence in the former Commissioner’s ability to make the changes needed and she then chose to stand aside.”