Suffolk: County’s police owed �17k for G4S Olympic security shambles

SUFFOLK Constabulary is still owed nearly �17,000 after sending extra officers to the Olympics to help fill in for the G4S security firm.

Nineteen forces across the country have submitted claims to the Government for a total of �5,647,913.

Extra officers had to be drafted in to help cover for the shortfall of staff promised by G4S, which failed to fulfil its commitment to provide enough security guards for the Olympic Games in August.

Home Office Minister James Brokenshire has said the amount of money owed to Suffolk Police as a result is �16,886.

Meanwhile, Norfolk Constabulary is still owed �32,705, while Essex is claiming an extra �2,461.

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Lisa Miller, a spokeswoman for Suffolk police, confirmed payment was still outstanding. The county supplied an additional eight officers, made up of seven police constables and a sergeant, on top of those who were already scheduled to help out at venues. The extra officers were used over a total of four days.

They were involved in policing the Olympic cycling road races, which were held in Surrey.

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A G4S spokesman said: “We have explicitly said that we would be paying for all the additional police force costs during the Olympics.

“We are waiting for negotiations with [London Olympic Games organising committee] LOCOG to see what the other costs will be.

“We have been absolutely explicit since July that no taxpayer or police authority would be out of pocket – we have been very clear about it.”

The G4S security shortfall also resulted in thousands of troops being called in from the Armed Forces at the last minute.

Police were used during London 2012 for security functions, including guarding sporting venues and protecting athletes staying in hotels.

Strathclyde Police faced the highest cost of providing additional Olympic security in a breakdown of costs issued by the Home Office. The Scottish force incurred costs of �1,492,087, equating to around a quarter of the total bill.

West Midlands Police is owed the next largest amount, with �1,080,766 outstanding for additional Olympic cover.

In September, Lord Coe, the London 2012 chairman, told MPs G4S “failed to understand the size and complexity” of the Olympic security job, and was caught out by its sheer scale.

Figures showed there was a 35% shortfall of G4S staff on its worst days during the Olympics, and a 4% shortfall even “on the best days”.

LOCOG had paid around �90million of the �236m overall cost of the contract when they stopped making any further payments on July 13 – two days after G4S finally revealed that it was going to be necessary to call in the military to cover the gaps.

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