Justice Minister David Ford reviewing ombudsman report

Al Hutchinson Police Ombudsman Al Hutchinson has denied the work of his office has been interfered with

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Justice Minister David Ford has received the final report of an independent review of the Police Ombudsman's Office.

The review was commissioned following allegations made by the office's former chief executive.

Sam Pollock alleged the office's independence had been undermined by meddling from senior civil servants.

He resigned in April after making the claims.

The chair of the Community Relations Council, Tony McCusker, was tasked with leading the review.

He was asked to decide whether officials interfered in the governance of the office and whether officials made false or malicious allegations against Mr Pollock.

In a written response to an assembly question, Mr Ford said he had received the final report on 20 June.

He said: "I will be looking carefully at the report, reflecting on the findings and conclusions and considering the issues around publication."

A second report is also due by the end of June after the Police Ombudsman's Office asked the Criminal Justice Inspectorate (CJI) to review its independence from the PSNI.

It will be completed by CJI Chief Inspector, Michael Maguire.

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