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Investigation into police response to Ian Watkins accusations continues

By | Published on Monday 26 January 2015

Ian Watkins

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has entered the next stage of its investigation into the way police responded to allegations of child abuse made against former Lostprophets frontman Ian Watkins prior to his arrest in 2012.

As previously reported, the IPCC’s investigation was launched shortly after Watkins’ arrest amidst claims police had failed to properly respond to earlier reports of the singer’s crimes. The investigation initially focussed only on South Wales Police, but now also covers Bedfordshire Police and South Yorkshire Police, with eight officers currently facing scrutiny. The investigation into Bedfordshire Police is apparently nearing completion, though the IPCC said the examination of the other two forces will take longer to complete.

In a statement, IPCC Commissioner Jan Williams said recently: “There is understandably significant public interest in determining exactly what steps were taken by police in response to the allegations made against Ian Watkins, and whether he could have been brought to justice sooner. While our investigations into the three forces have run separately, there are clearly links between them and probing a substantial number of reports and allegations over a four year period has been a complex process. We are working hard to complete our enquiries as soon as possible”.

As part of its enquiries, the IPCC interviewed Watkins’ former girlfriend Joanne Mjadzelics in February last year. She was recently cleared of sharing indecent images of children with Watkins, after arguing that she had encouraged him to send her pictures in order to expose his crimes.

Speaking outside Cardiff Crown Court earlier this month, she told reporters: “I shouldn’t have even been [taken to trial] just for doing the police’s job that they couldn’t be arsed to do”.

Watkins, of course, was sentenced to 29 years in prison in December 2013 for crimes against children described by the judge presiding as reaching “new depths of depravity”.