The Curmudgeon


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The Buckles Squad

I am sure we all remember G4S, the private security company headed by the macerated Keith Chegwin lookalike Nicky Buckles. With the help of some friends in the Home Office, G4S made such a mess of its job providing security at the Olympics that the army had to be brought in to help, and Adam Werritty's replacement at the Ministry of War and Order has been moved to "think again" about the use of private contractors. Even the Minister for Murdoch, Jeremy C Hunt, has been having second thoughts; so naturally G4S is being allowed to recruit staff for Warwickshire police. The Warwickshire force is the smallest in England and Wales, so of course it has been cut by twenty per cent since 2008 and is required to save a further ten million over the next three years. The helpful people at G4S are advertising for "civilian investigators" whose duties will include dealing with "sensitive high-profile cases under limited supervision", which appears to mean that somebody thinks cases which are reported in the Press could do with a bit of amateur sleuthing. The Government has said that it will not be privatising "core policing" tasks during the present parliament, although evidently such peripheral fripperies as criminal investigation are up for grabs: successful applicants for the Buckles Squad will "investigate crime, gather evidence, seize and view evidential material, take statements from victims and witnesses, undertake house-to-house inquiries, prepare files for the Crown Prosecution Services, attend court hearings and give evidence, and identify and trace offenders". This will free up more real police to do the really important work, like clearing up the mess.


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