A former Metropolitan Police officer who was found to possess extreme pornography and indecent images of children after detectives searched his house has been sentenced.
Detectives in Wandsworth launched an investigation after former PC Swaleh Chaudhry was seen filming a woman as she was getting changed in a clothes shop in South Side Shopping Centre, Wandsworth. He was off duty at the time.
Police were called to the shop just before 17: 00hrs on Wednesday, 30 March and Chaudhry, 36, who at the time was attached to the Met’s Taskforce, was arrested at the scene and immediately suspended from duty.
He has since resigned.
On Friday, 22 July Chaudhry appeared in custody at Kingston Crown Court where he was sentenced to 10 months’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months. He was also given a Sexual Harm Prevention Order.
He had previously pleaded guilty to:
- one count of voyeurism;
- one count of possession of extreme pornography;
- three counts of making an indecent image of a child.
A misconduct hearing was held on 31 May when gross misconduct was found proven against Chaudhry and the panel ruled that he would have been dismissed without notice had he not resigned.
Commander Kyle Gordon, who leads the Met’s Taskforce, said: “Former Constable Chaudhry’s behaviour was repugnant. His actions go against everything we stand for.
“Holding the office of constable is a privilege and it comes with great responsibility. He showed himself to be totally unsuitable to hold this office and undeserving of the trust of the public, and it is right that he has resigned.
“He was investigated, charged and put before the courts by Metropolitan Police officers within 48 hours of the incident.
“I hope that this swift action demonstrates our absolute determination to root out those people in our organisation who let down the public and also let down the many thousands of hard working and dedicated officers with whom they serve.”
During the course of the investigation, electronic devices belonging to Chaudhry were seized and forensically examined. It was discovered that he was in possession of extreme pornography and indecent images of a child.
We cannot and are not waiting for the findings of ongoing inquiries to begin rebuilding the public’s trust and confidence that police officers will protect and respect them. We have already taken a number of significant steps to start real change across the organisation. These include two independent reviews, an examination of all current investigations of sexual and domestic abuse allegations against Met employees and an increase in the number of investigators in our professional standards directorate.
The Met is driven by the values of professionalism, integrity, courage and compassion. We only want the best and will always act when our employees fall below the exemplary standards we and the public expect.