The Chief Constable of Cleveland Police, Sean Price, and his deputy, Derek Bonnard, have been arrested as part of a fraud and corruption investigation.
HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) had asked the Warwickshire Police Chief Constable, Keith Bristow, with the help of detectives from North Yorkshire police to conduct investigations into allegations of how some individuals within Cleveland Police Authority "may have conducted some of its business".
In a separate allegation the Chief Constable has been accused of using ‘undue influence’ to obtain employment for the daughter of Dave McLuckie, once the chairman of the police authority. Mr McLuckie had already resigned within days of the investigation starting two months ago.
The exact nature of the allegations is still unclear, but it is thought that they have been arrested on suspicion of misconduct in a public office, fraud by abuse of position and corrupt practice.
Two other people have been arrested in connection with this case. An unnamed man not connected to the Cleveland force or the Police Authority and a female who is understood to be a member of the police staff.
A Warwickshire Police spokesman said: “Police officers conducting a criminal investigation into a number of people with current or past associations with Cleveland Police Authority and the manner in which the authority may have conducted some of its business have this morning arrested three people on suspicion of misconduct in a public office, fraud by abuse of position and corrupt practice.”
“Two men and a woman were arrested and have been taken to a police station in North Yorkshire where they will be interviewed later today. A number of premises are being searched in connection with these arrests.”
A Sky news TV report earlier said that the Chief Constable of Cleveland Police, a relatively small force was paid one of the highest salaries of over Â£200,000 per annum as well as a ‘golden handcuff’ of some Â£50,000 a year so that the authority could keep what it called a ‘successful’ officer.
Both the Chief Constable and his Deputy were reportedly due to take part on a Community Click webchat tonight.