Mayor appoints Chair of new Ethics Panel for policing in London

10 October 2013

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson has today announced that he has appointed Lord Carlile of Berriew, QC, the former Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation, as chair of a new Ethics Panel.

The Ethics Panel, which will complement the existing structures in place in the capital that oversee the way the city is policed, will examine issues of public concern around the ethics and quality of policing and make recommendations. This will help to provide reassurance and boost public confidence in policing – a key challenge that the Mayor has set for the Met. The role of the Chair will be to act as an independent, public-facing figurehead to lead the work of the Ethics Panel.

The Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime Stephen Greenhalgh said: ‘I am delighted that someone with the seniority and expertise of Lord Carlile has agreed to serve London in this way. This new panel will be truly independent and will offer advice on ethical issues that will help the Mayor’s Office in its role to ensure the efficiency and effectiveness of the Met and to boost public confidence in policing.’

Lord Carlile said: ‘I am very pleased to be asked by the Mayor to undertake this important role and I am now getting to work agreeing the parameters on how this Panel will operate.’

Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe said: ‘We welcome the appointment of Lord Carlile to chair the new Panel and we look forward to working with him and the other Panel members in the coming months and years. I am determined that we do all we can to ensure Londoners can have confidence in their police service. ‘I hope the independent oversight this Panel will provide, will help reassure the public that we are thoroughly scrutinised and properly held to account.’

Notes to editors

  • One of Lord Carlile’s early duties as Chair will be to advise on additional panel members and to propose an initial work programme, after consultation with the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and the Mayor.
  • The Panel is expected to be formally established and to begin work in the new year.
  • The Mayor has written to the Police and Crime Committee of the London Assembly offering them the chance to feedback on how the Panel operates and the topics it might explore.

Biography – Lord Carlile

Alex Carlile was born in 1948. He was brought up in north Wales and Lancashire, and was created a Life Peer in 1999. He was called to the Bar by Grays Inn in 1970 and became a QC in 1984. It was 1986 when he first became a Recorder of the Crown Court, and 1996 when he became a Deputy High Court Judge and Honorary Recorder of the City of Hereford. His Parliamentary career began when he was elected Liberal MP for Montgomery from 1983 to 1988, and Liberal Democrat MP from 1988 to 1997. He was Commons spokesman on many subjects at various times.

From 1980 to 1982, Alex was Chairman of the Welsh Liberal Party; Leader of the Welsh Liberal Democrats from 1992 to 1997 and President of Liberal Democrats Wales from 1997 to 1999. In the autumn of 2001, Alex was appointed Independent Reviewer of terrorism legislation. Outside Parliament, Alex Carlile was a Lay Member of the General Medical Council from 1989 to 1999. He is a Non-Executive Director of Wynnstay Group plc, and a Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. He is involved in several charities from NACRO to the White Ensign Association. He has a special interest in mental health.