New SIO appointed to head historical abuse enquiry



ONE of the UK's most experienced Senior Detectives has been appointed as the new Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) of the ongoing historical abuse enquiry in Jersey.

The new man in charge of the day to day running of it is Michael (Mick) Gradwell, currently a Detective Superintendent serving with Lancashire Police. Subject to final arrangements he hopes to take up appointment in early September of this complex enquiry.

It is hoped that Det Supt Gradwell, who is currently serving on the Major Investigation Team at Lancashire Police, will begin his new role as the SIO of the enquiry in September.

He has extensive experience of large major complex enquiries, including being the SIO for the 2004 Morecombe Bay incident which involved the deaths of 23 illegal Chinese immigrants. This was followed by a two year intensive international investigation which resulted in the conviction of three people for manslaughter and other offences.

Dealing with such cases has given Det Supt Gradwell extensive experience of dealing with the media on a local, national and international level. He has also built strong relationships with other law enforcement agencies, some of which are from international jurisdictions.

He has led on a number of other major crime investigations including the murder of Sophie Lancaster who was stamped to death in a park in 2007 owing to her alleged ˜Goth' appearance.

He also has experience of dealing with historical abuse and serial offenders and is a member of the European Homicide Working Group.

Det Supt Gradwell was awarded the Justice Shield in 2006 for his work on international law enforcement - which is the highest Criminal Justice award - and in 2007, he was awarded the Association of Police and Public Security Suppliers (APSS) technical innovation award for developing an evidence presentation system for use in complex trials. He has also worked for the Council of Europe lecturing in Georgia on human rights issues and in Lithuania on human trafficking.

Commenting on his appointment, Chief Officer Graham Power said: ˜Mick was picked from a short list of five very strong candidates. We are confident that his range of experience makes him the ideal choice to help drive forward the ongoing historical abuse enquiry.    We were particularly impressed with his reputation as a determined investigator who has proved able to uncover the truth in difficult and complex cases, and his credibility at International Level.

˜While our new DCO, David Warcup, will have overall strategic responsibility for the enquiry, it is Mick who will take on the key day to day role. We look forward to welcoming him on secondment to the States of Jersey Police and are sure that he will be an asset to the team, taking on the challenging SIO role as previously filled by Lenny Harper. His deputy will be Det Insp Alison Fossey of the States of Jersey Police who will work closely with Mick as he becomes part of the historical abuse enquiry team.'

Deputy Home Affairs Minister Andrew Lewis added: ˜This position attracted applications from 27 senior detectives.   The number and calibre of the candidates demonstrates the high regard in which the law enforcement community holds both the force and the enquiry.   We have appointed a senior investigating officer who has an international reputation for resolving long-running and complex investigations.   This should send out a clear message that the island regards this investigation as a leading priority and that we are determined that everything possible is done to ensure that all allegations will be subjected to a thorough investigation to the highest standards.'

Media information:

 Det Supt Gradwell is available to speak to the media via the Lancashire Police press office which can be contacted on 01772 412333.

 He advises that he d"s have meetings throughout the day but will return any calls as soon as possible.

 Louise Journeaux
Press Officer
The States of Jersey Police
01534 612109


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