A Roman Catholic Detective Inspector is bringing a claim against Scotland Yard for ‘religious belief, race and disability discrimination’, reports the Daily Mail.
The claimant, DI Paul Armstrong, who is a Roman Catholic, claims his Ulster Protestant boss, DCI Mark Roycroft, unfairly criticised him in an annual appraisal and that it was motivated by ‘sectarian bias’. Mr Armstrong also claims that Mr Roycroft bullied and harassed him because of his religious background.
In the tribunal papers, Mr Armstrong claims the problems started in June 2007 at Charing Cross Police Station. He says: ‘I was subjected to bullying and harassment by my then line manager, DCI Mark Roycroft [an Ulster protestant] who prejudiced me unfairly in my annual appraisal; he made comments that were untrue and misleading, which I sincerely believe were motivated by his sectarian bias towards Irish Catholics. This is direct discrimination.’
He goes on to say: “The actions of DCI Roycroft towards me and his damaging of my character … have effectively ruined what was, up until then, a very successful career.” He alleges he was excluded from CID management meetings, not supported for promotion and overlooked for other new postings.
However, former colleagues of Mr Roycroft, described him as an officer of high integrity and said there was no substance to Mr Armstrong’s claims. They asserted that Mr Roycroft was a highly respected detective who had led a number of successful investigations in the Met.
Scotland Yard chiefs are still debating whether to contest Mr Armstrong’s ‘highly unusual’ claim against the force.
Mr Armstrong’s allegations are due to be further outlined at the Central London Employment tribunal in September.