Sunday, December 11, 2011

A thin white line in NSW

Two senior policemen found doing cocaine at big party at a Paddington pub

TWO senior policemen who tested positive for cocaine the day after a work bash at a Sydney pub will be sacked. Shane Diehm, a detective inspector, and Inspector Matthew Dennis will be dealt a "loss of confidence" motion by Commissioner Andrew Scipione and stood down.

A third officer, Australian Federal Police sky marshal Darren Kolosque also faced the sack after a separate investigation by the AFP. He has resigned.

The three were at a party on August 5 for the retirement of former detective superintendent John Alt, a respected commander who left the force last year.

Among more than 100 guests were officers from the force's Professional Standards Command which investigates police misconduct, such as drug and alcohol abuse.

Tipped off about the trio's activities a day after the function, NSW Police and the AFP arranged for drug tests. Inspectors Diehm and Dennis were investigated but refused to "make admissions" on where they acquired the cocaine or how much they had consumed.

The test on Insp Diehm, who was crime manager at Tweed-Byron Local Area Command, returned higher traces of the drug. The Sunday Telegraph understands neither Insp Dennis, who was at Hunter Valley Local Area Command, nor Insp Diehm will face criminal charges.

A senior police source told The Sunday Telegraph this was because the drugs had been consumed and there was no criminal charge that could be applied.

A separate inquiry by the Police Integrity Commission is investigating an alleged conversation about securing a medical payout through the police death and disability scheme instead of being sacked.

The scheme is currently the subject of controversy after changes were made by the NSW Government preventing officers from manipulating the system.

Days after the Paddington function, Insp Diehm was called to a meeting with PSC officers and suspended on full pay. And Insp Dennis, who was driving to the Snowy Mountains for a holiday, was called and asked to pull into Queanbeyan police station for a drug-test.

Agent Kolosque, a former NSW policeman and recipient of a bravery award, is understood to have confessed when quizzed by AFP investigators.


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