The Metropolitan Police has apologised after an investigation from the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) discovered that officers had been sharing jokes about Auschwitz concentration camp.
It was also reported that there was an antisemitic joke made with reference to “killing flies”.
The investigation also uncovered evidence of bullying, misogyny and racist abuse amongst the officers. Police were also found to have made homophobic jokes, islamophobic jokes, and jokes about rape.
Fourteen officers were investigated with two being dismissed on grounds of gross misconduct.
A statement from the Met said: “The conduct of a team of officers at Charing Cross police station in central London does not represent the values of the Metropolitan Police Service.
“We are deeply sorry to Londoners and everyone they have failed with their appalling conduct and acknowledge how this will damage the trust and confidence of many in the Met.”
The statement continued: “Since this reprehensible behaviour was uncovered in 2017 we have taken a series of measures to hold those responsible to account and stamp out unacceptable behaviour.”
IOPC Regional Director Sal Naseem said that “While these officers predominantly worked in teams in Westminster, which have since been disbanded, we know from other recent cases that these issues are not isolated or historic.
“Our recommendations focus on the identified cultural issues and aim to ensure that those who work for the force feel safe with their colleagues and that communities feel safe with those whose job is to protect them. The MPS has to enjoy the trust and confidence of its own officers from diverse communities before it can hope to bridge the gap in trust and confidence with the communities it serves.”
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan called the officers’ conduct “totally unacceptable” and said that “It is right that the team concerned has been disbanded and the police officers found to be involved have been dismissed, disciplined or have left the police. Anyone found to be responsible for sexism, racism, misogyny, Islamophobia, antisemitism, bullying or harassment does not deserve to wear the Met uniform and must be rooted out.
“While I welcome the IOPC’s recommendations, more is required and I’ve been clear with the commissioner about the scale of change that’s needed to rebuild trust with Londoners.”
A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “It is deeply disturbing that those who are supposed to be protecting British Jews and other communities could be the very ones discriminating against us. The Met’s statement that it has taken action against those responsible cannot be mere words to make the problem go away, but rather must represent the start of a fundamental change in workplace culture.”