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Sir Ian Blair

See vita →Wikipedia, Extract:

Ian Warwick Blair, Baron Blair of Boughton, Kt, QPM (born 19 March 1953) is a retired British policeman who held the position of commissioner of police of the metropolis from 2005 to 2008 and was the highest-ranking officer within the Metropolitan Police Service. On 2 October 2008 Blair announced that he would officially step down from the post on 1 December after disagreements with Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London.

Several months into his tenure, →Jean Charles de Menezes was shot and killed by armed police who mistakenly believed he was a suicide bomber. After Blair learned that the shooting of de Menezes had been a case of mistaken identity, he briefly considered resigning. During the investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) into the wrongful shooting, one of his Deputy Assistant Commissioners Brian Paddick stated that a member of Blair's private office team had believed the wrong man had been targeted just six hours after the shooting. This allegation was contradicted by New Scotland Yard, and Paddick said that this amounted to accusing him of lying. On 28 March 2006, Paddick accepted a statement from the Metropolitan Police that it “did not intend to imply” a senior officer had misled the probe into the shooting and that “any misunderstanding is regretted”. In 2007 Blair was criticised by senior colleagues at New Scotland Yard after he sought a £25,000 performance bonus during criminal proceedings over the shooting of de Menezes, while on a salary of £228,000 and with rank-and-file officers facing the prospect of pay cuts.

In 2005 and 2006 Blair was involved in Operation Finnean, a £280,000 investigation into supermodel Kate Moss's alleged possession and distribution of a Class A drug. It has been alleged that the operation was systematically sabotaged by officers eager to undermine Blair and Ghaffur's high profile stance on celebrity drug taking, and thereby erode their authority.

In November 2005, a controversy about detention without charge proposals led to Blair becoming involved in allegations of the police being “politicised”, when he and other senior police officers were known to have lobbied MPs to support Government proposals to hold terrorist suspects for 90 days. After the failure of the Forest Gate Raid, 2006, several sources once again called on Blair to resign. Prime Minister Tony Blair confirmed his support for the Commissioner.

The Metropolitan Police Authority requested on 28 July 2008 that Blair face an inquiry over a series of IT contracts with the Metropolitan Police worth £3 million won by Impact Plus, a consultancy owned by Andy Miller, who is a long-time friend of Blair. The commissioner denied any wrongdoing and said that he was “open and straightforward in informing both the Metropolitan Police Service and the MPA about [his] relationship [with Miller]”. He said that he had set out in writing his connection with Miller and had no part in the evaluation process. It has however been reported in the press that on one occasion another company was turned down for a contract won by Impact Plus, despite its bid being a third of the winning offer. In October 2008 it was reported that Blair had used public money to pay an estimated £15,000 to Impact Plus, owned by a skiing partner and close friend of Sir Ian for 30 years Andy Miller. Controversially no other company was invited to bid for the public relations contract. Martin Samphire of Impact Plus became Blair's 'image consultant'. Impact Plus received more than £3 million of police work from Scotland Yard over the six-year period of Ian Blair's rule.

In May 2008, it was reported in the press that Blair's contract as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service would not be renewed when it expired in 2010. On 2 October 2008, Blair announced he would resign as Metropolitan Police Commissioner, with effect from 1 December 2008. He blamed a lack of support from London mayor Boris Johnson, saying that “without the mayor's backing I do not think I can continue”. Home Secretary Jacqui Smith and Prime Minister Gordon Brown paid tribute to Blair's service. Blair is entitled to a full police pension. Blair was eligible to continue to receive his £234,000-a-year salary until his contract expired in February 2010. However, he lost his chauffeur-driven car and use of a £1 million flat in south-west London. In May 2010, Blair was appointed as a crossbench life peer, and became Baron Blair of Boughton in the County of Cheshire.