NEWS

Fewer complaints of police corruption

Complaints to the police internal affairs bureau concerning alleged corruption in the force have declined over the past two years, while 80 officers were charged in 2002, the bureau chief told a parliamentary committee yesterday. Vassilis Serdaris said between 2000-2001, his bureau received 46 percent fewer complaints from members of the public than in 1999, when it started functioning. Between 2001-2002, he said, there was a further 1.26 percent decline. At the same time, anonymous complaints dropped slightly, from 54 percent of the total number in 2001 to 50 percent last year – when 25.7 percent of all complaints resulted in a pretrial investigation, 24 officers were arrested red-handed and a total of 80 were charged. Serdaris told the committee on transparency that the drop in complaints reflected an improvement in police behavior, an explanation that several MPs rejected.