Ex-GMP chief constable Ian Hopkins paid £213k – a year’s salary – for less than nine months’ work after being forced out

Former chief constable Ian Hopkins was paid £213,000 in wages during the last financial year even though he was forced to step down in December, the Manchester Evening News can reveal.

It equates to a full year of salary, even though he only worked for less than nine months.

Mr Hopkins was asked to leave his role as chief constable of Greater Manchester Police in December after a damning police inspectorate report revealed the force had failed to record an estimated 80,000 crimes in one year.

But he remained on the payroll.

Taxpayers were funding two chief constables – one of them Mr Hopkins and the other the acting chief constable who stepped into his shoes, Ian Pilling, who had been his deputy chief constable.

The latest GMP accounts – published without fanfare on the force’s website – reveal Mr Hopkins was paid £213,000 during the 12 months to April, the ‘financial year’ covering 2020/21.

His departure on December 18 last year meant he only actually worked a few weeks shy of nine months, but he continued to be paid following his exit.

His contract was due to expire in October of this year.

It is understood he is no longer on the payroll, although the precise terms of his departure have not been revealed.

The MEN understands that Mr Hopkins has been paid the balance of his contract up until October when it was due to elapse and that this will be reflected in next year’s accounts

The latest unaudited statement of accounts show Mr Hopkins was paid £213,000 during the financial year to April 2021, up from £208,000 the year before.

He was paid no expenses, other benefits or pension contributions during year, according to the accounts.

The financials also show Mr Pilling, who stepped temporarily into the chief constable role, was paid £168,000 during the year.

Mabs Hussain, who filled in as deputy chief constable, was paid £121,000, not including pension contributions of £37,000.

Six other unnamed senior figures – five assistant chief constables and a civilian assistant chief officer – were each paid between £95,000 and £121,000 in wages.

The accounts show 10 employees were paid in excess of £100,000 during the year, up from eight the previous year.

Some 1,530 staff were paid more than £50,000, up from 1,283 employees during 2019/20.

Overall, the force spent almost £571m on wages and overtime last year compared to £561m the year before.

The vast majority of GMP’s spending is taken up by wages.

Last year, GMP’s budget rose by £49.5m to £645.2m, the vast majority coming from central government (£467.2m) and a sizeable chunk from the ‘police precept’ portion of local council tax bills (£161.7m), according to the accounts.

Other public bodies outside policing pay far more to their senior officials. The chief executive of Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, Sir Mike Deegan, was paid £275,000 during 2020/21 while eight other execs were paid at least £170,000, according to its latest accounts.

Last month Mr Hopkins, who says he is a ‘retired police chief constable’ on his Twitter account, became non-executive director at the firm Red Snapper, which provides a range of services to law enforcement, justice, cybersecurity and related public sector organisations.

One of its core functions is providing agency staff to police forces, including GMP – for roles including taking statements, analysing crimes, disclosure, computer forensics, training and crime scene investigation.

In May he was succeeded by Stephen Watson, previously chief constable of South Yorkshire Police.

He has vowed to turn around GMP and has already stamped his mark on the force, which remains in ‘special measures’.

Terry Woods, the current deputy chief constable of Lancashire Police, will take over from GMP’s current deputy chief constable, Ian Pilling, at the end of the year.

A wave of new chief superintendents will be hired to take charge of GMP’s 10 divisions – an arrangement which has been in place for decades until the last two chief constables.

Mr Watson has vowed to quadruple the number of arrests and put local policing at the centre of everything GMP does.

He has said he is ready to ditch GMP’s troubled computer system iOPS, or at least part of it, if it cannot be fixed.

In his introduction to the accounts, Mr Watson said: “I am acutely aware of the challenges that currently face the force, but I am convinced that a new and brighter chapter is perfectly achievable.

“Whilst much remains to be done, and rapid improvements must be made, there is also much to be proud of in what the force achieves everyday.

“Greater Manchester Police is an immense force for good and I have the great privilege of being able to get stuck-in alongside great people who want to deliver an outstanding service to all of the communities that we serve.”

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