Sex-on-job policeman fired

LONDON Wed Jan 9, 2008 8:52am EST

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LONDON (Reuters) - A senior police officer who admitted to having sex while on duty has been fired, the police watchdog confirmed Tuesday.

Inspector Masood Khan, 41, who worked for the British Transport Police, was dismissed over his tryst with a 43-year-old woman in a room at Gatwick Airport railway station in July 2006.

At a misconduct hearing Tuesday, he pleaded guilty to one charge of "discredit" under the Police Code of Conduct after originally facing three charges, the Independent Police Complaints Commission said in a statement.

The charge read: "On 23rd July 2006 whilst on duty and in uniform at Gatwick Airport and holding the rank of Police Inspector and duty officer for the London South area of the British Transport Police, you brought discredit upon the police service by having sexual intercourse with the complainant."

The officer, of Coulsdon, south London, had been cleared of criminal charges last August after a trial at London's Southwark Crown Court.

Reports at the time said the inspector had met the woman through an Internet dating Web site, uniformdating.com, and had believed he would be off-duty when he arranged to meet her.

He had kept his earpiece in during the 20-minute rendezvous so he would be in radio contact with his colleagues in case of emergencies.

In a statement, Mehmuda Mian Pritchard, the IPCC commissioner, said the actions were unacceptable.

"The police service and the public have a right to expect the highest standards of conduct from officers," he said.

"Masood Khan's behavior is not of a standard we expect of an experienced officer.

"His actions have brought the police service into disrepute and ridicule and the panel has recognized this."

During the trial, the officer admitted to a lapse in judgment. "It was absolutely the wrong thing to do, morally and professionally. I should never have done it," he told the jury before it found him not guilty of criminal misconduct in public office.

(Editing by Luke Baker)

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