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Allegations of gross misconduct found proven

A FORMER police officer would have been dismissed for conduct amounting to gross misconduct had he remained in post, an accelerated hearing has found.

Former police constable Benjamin French was dismissed at an accelerated hearing for conduct amounting to gross misconduct.

The public hearing, held on Tuesday 23 May, found Benjamin French breached standards of professional behaviour on two occasions, namely standard two – authority, respect and courtesy – and standard nine – discreditable conduct.

The allegations against the former officer occurred while he was off duty in Cardiff in December last year.

Chief Constable Pam Kelly, who chaired the panel, said: “The behaviour of Benjamin French, a former Gwent Police officer, contradicts the high standards we expect of all our staff – whether on or off-duty.

“The allegations against the former officer were found proven following incontrovertible evidence against him.

“Our communities deserve the very best from those serving them and they deserve the highest of standards.

“We will continue to send a clear message to colleagues and the public that this behaviour has no place on our service, and we will pursue and remove those who damage confidence in Gwent Police.

“If he had not resigned from the service prior to this accelerated hearing, he would have been dismissed and it is right that we have continued with these proceedings.

“The purpose of the police misconduct process is not just to hold officers, or former officers as with this case, to account for their actions; it is to maintain public confidence in the police service, uphold high standards, deter misconduct and protect the public.”

The former officer resigned from his position in May of this year and did not attend the accelerated hearing in person.

He will be placed on the College of Policing’s barred list in due course.