Elizabeth Filkin

There were cheers and jeers in the House this week when Elizabeth Filkin was named as head of the enquiry to advise on cleaning up the relationship between the Met and the media following the hacking scandal.

As former Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards she challenged vested interests at Westminster, until she was 'hounded out' by MPs in 2002 after questioning the probity of some of their number. She took on Keith Vaz - who this week chaired the Home Affairs Select Committee's questioning of recently resigned Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson - during her investigation into his links with the Hinduja family and accused him of deliberately trying to thwart her enquiries.

Supporters describe her as "fair but firm... someone who cannot be bribed, bought or bullied."

Filkin doesn't come with the typical background for a Government-appointed inquisitor. She is a former community worker, having worked in the London Borough of Brent back in the 1970s. She went on to to be an academic, as well as Chief Executive of the Citizens Advice Bureau.

Now over 70, in recent years Elizabeth Filkin may have been out of the limelight, but as Shari Vahl reports, her antecedence suggests she's someone who wants to get at the truth - and isn't too concerned who she upsets along the way.

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14 minutes

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Sun 24 Jul 2011 17:40

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