| Cressida Dick |
Oxford, Oxfordshire, England
|Alma mater||Balliol College, Oxford|
In January 2015, Britain’s most senior female police officer, Cressida Dick, left the Metropolitan Police Service after 31 years, having climbed the ranks from beat bobby to national counter-terrorism chief and having been in charge of the Met’s response to 9/11, the 7/7 bombings and the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes.
FCO Director General
Cressida Dick joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on 19 January 2015 but her new role was shrouded in intense secrecy.
In response to Freedom of Information Act requests from The Intercept, the Foreign Office repeatedly declined to disclose even the most basic details about Dick’s position. Government officials handling the FOIA requests said that members of the public were not entitled to know anything about Dick’s job title, role and responsibilities, or the amount of money she was earning – despite the fact that specific salaries earned by senior Foreign Office officials, as well as their job titles, were usually routinely made available online.
In two separate refusal letters issued in February and March 2015, the Foreign Office said that it would not hand over the information because it relates to “bodies dealing with security matters,” and so the government was “not obliged to consider the public interest in disclosure.” It would acknowledge only that Dick has been appointed in a “director general” position.
Met Police Commissioner
- “I am delighted Her Majesty has agreed my recommendation after a rigorous recruitment process which highlighted the quality of senior policing in this country."
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said:
- "Cressida Dick will be the first female Commissioner of the Met in its 187-year history, and the most powerful police officer in the land."
The appointment was criticised by the family of Jean Charles de Menezes, the Brazilian man who was killed after the 7/7 London bombings, when he was mistakenly identified as a terror suspect during an operation Cressida Dick led in 2005 as national policing lead on counter-terrorism. A jury later found there was “no personal culpability for Commander Dick”.
Cressida Dick's first day as Metropolitan Police Commissioner on Monday 10 April 2017 coincided with the funeral at Southwark Cathedral of Police Constable Keith Palmer who was stabbed to death by Khalid Masood on 22 March 2017.
On 16 May 2017, Metropolitan police detectives announced for reasons of "national security" that it had been decided WPC Yvonne Fletcher's alleged murderer, Saleh Ibrahim Mabrouk, would not be taken to court. Senior policing sources told The Telegraph that the case against Mabrouk – a former minister in Muammar Gaddafi’s government and a high-ranking member of the team tasked by the regime with suppressing opposition – was dropped after a decision taken at the “highest level”. The source added: “Number 10 was involved.”
Home Secretary Amber Rudd said:
- “I cannot comment on the details of this case. I would however like to acknowledge the hard work and commitment the Metropolitan police have shown over a prolonged period of time to bring to justice those involved in the murder of WPC Yvonne Fletcher.
- “WPC Fletcher was one of their own. Her murder remains as shocking and senseless as the day it occurred and I understand that the decision will be deeply disappointing and frustrating for all her family, friends and colleagues.”
Manchester Arena bombing
On 30 May 2017, Jonathan Cook published an article entitled "MI6, Theresa May and the Manchester attack" in which he wrote of the "close ties between the British spy agency MI6 and UK-based Libyans, most of them from Manchester. Back in the late 1990s, MI6 effectively sponsored their trips overseas to become fighters against Muammar Gaddafi. They came to be known as the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, or LIFG. And here’s the rub. Because when MI6 began funnelling British-Libyan fighters to Libya in 2011, Theresa May was Home Secretary. May must have known of the MI6 policy and doubtless approved it."
In November 2017 Westminster Magistrates Court issued an arrest warrant for Hashem Abedi, brother of the bomber Salman Abedi, and prosecutors have asked Libya to extradite him to face 22 counts of murder in the UK. Hashem Abedi is being held by Libya’s Special Deterrence Force, a Tripoli-based militia with close ties to Abdelhakim Belhadj, an Islamist extremist who is currently suing MI6 and former Foreign Secretary Jack Straw.
- "Cressida Dick leaves Metropolitan police after 31 years"
- "SECRECY SHROUDS UNKNOWN ROLE OF TOP UK GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL"
- "UK Appoints First Woman Scotland Yard Chief in 187-Year History"
- "Met appoints its first female commissioner Cressida Dick"
- "PC Keith Palmer: Thousands of officers lining funeral route"
- "Laughing and smiling: the Gaddafi aide days after hearing he won't face charges for 1984 killing of WPc Yvonne Fletcher"
- "Yvonne Fletcher murder inquiry dropped over national security fears"
- "MI6, Theresa May and the Manchester attack"
- "Libyan extremist accused of delaying extradition of Manchester terror suspect until MI6 torture case is resolved"