LONDON - Britain's police watchdog said on Friday it was investigating an allegation a senior Scotland Yard figure ordered officers to drop an inquiry into child sex abuse which involved Members of Parliament, judges, media figures, actors and clergy.
The allegation is one of three new claims being examined by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) which earlier this month revealed it would look into 14 cases where police were accused of suppressing evidence and halting paedophile inquiries because they involved MPs and police officers.
Among the latest accusations is one that detectives in central London had been investigating a high-profile child abuse ring and that a file had been submitted to start action against those suspected of involvement. "Two months later an officer was called in by a senior MPS (Metropolitan Police Service) officer and told to drop the case," the IPCC said in a statement.
The other two new allegations both related to police action during another abuse inquiry during the 1980s.
The IPCC has said it will investigate why detectives failed to act between 1970 and 2005 after victims and some former officers came forward to say inquiries had been either dropped or accusations ignored. "These allegations are of historic, high-level corruption of the most serious nature," said IPCC Deputy Chairman Sarah Green earlier this month.
London's Metropolitan Police are themselves currently investigating allegations of sex crimes involving powerful establishment figures from the 1970s and 1980s, including claims that three young boys had been murdered.
The government has also ordered a major inquiry into decades of child abuse and whether powerful figures covered it up, following a series of shocking scandals.