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Met Police staff guilty of stealing stolen electronic goods

Met Police staff guilty of stealing stolen electronic goods

Some phones, iPods and sat nav devices contained personal data

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A member of police staff at the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) has pleaded guilty to the theft of stolen property, including mobile phones, Apple iPods and satellite navigation systems.

Some of the stolen electrical goods contained personal data, the MPS said. It insisted, however, that the force has "rigorous" procedures in place to protect the security of information.

"All MPS staff and officers are given clear instructions and training on the requirement to adhere to the MPS security, DPA (Data Protection Act) and FOIA (Freedom of Information) policy at all times and to ensure any breaches of security are reported," a spokesperson for the MPS said.

"We continually review our security standard operating procedures in order to mitigate any risk to the MPS or individual's data. We pursue the maximum penalty for data misues as we do not tolerate the abuse of trust that members of the public place in us to protect data.

Stephen Bowers, aged 56, a member of the police staff based in Southwark, pleaded guilty to the theft of items on 12 April 2012 at Southwark Crown Court. His wife, Elizabeth Bowers, 63, admitted to handling the stolen goods.

Bowers and his wife committed the offences between 1 January 2009 and 6 December 2011. They admitted to making £15,000 profit from the sale of the items. Stolen items were also recovered from the Bowers' home address, which was valued at a total of £6,130 if bought new.

The couple has been bailed to return to Southwark Crown Court for sentencing on 10 May 2012.

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