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Mcgrail trial day 2: Former Police Commissioner claims 'stitch-up'

Former Police Commissioner Ian Mcgrail has claimed a "stitch-up".

In a recorded police interview played in court, Mr Mcgrail is heard saying a serving commissioner of police had told him there was an active conspiracy against him and that his telecoms with his lawyers were compromised.

He later names Richard Ullger, saying "Mr Ullger told me people would lie if they have to in order to stick dirt" on him.

The comments were made when he was interviewed under caution. The former commissioner also claimed he was up against very powerful people. You can hear him crying as he said he feared for his life.

He’s on trial for an alleged sexual assault which he says never happened.

McGrail in police interview: a serving Commissioner of Police told me there is an an active conspiracy against me & my telecoms are compromised

It was an explosive day in court - with allegations of a stitch up made by the former police commissioner.

Body cam footage of Mr McGrail’s arrest in April was played to the court. The video showed it still was dark outside when officers knocked on the former Police Commissioner’s door before 7am .

In the footage Mr McGrail’s is in his pyjamas and he seems totally taken aback when officers tell him he is being arrested for sexual assault. He puts his head in his hands as if he can’t believe what he is hearing.

He asks what he is supposed to have done and who the woman is. “This is madness” he says. “It’s a persecution.. Somebody is driving this” he says.

You can see him get dressed and travel in a police car to the station.

Some family members were in tears watching Mr McGrail‘s arrest.

The recording of Mr McGrail’s police interview was then played to the court.

During this interview Ian McGrail tells officers he is “dead worried there is a master plan” to destroy his life - saying it is all linked to the ongoing inquiry.

He says he has been told by a serving commissioner of police there is an an active conspiracy against him and that he has been warned his telecoms are compromised.

“I am being stitched up big, big, big time and it’s the worst feeling” he says in the interview.

The officers assure him they are independent from the RGP and impartial.

On the subject of the alleged sexual assault itself- Ian McGrail denies it completely saying “categorically” it did not happen.

He describes it as “an injustice”.

Complainant's evidence draws to a close

Earlier that morning had seen the end of the complainant’s cross examination by defence lawyer Charles Gomez. She spoke from behind a screen. This followed an application made by the Crown to allow her to give evidence to the court without having to see the defendant. She reiterated it was her choice to make the complaint and she wasn’t pressured by anyone.

Mr Gomez said her written statement had been sent to the Chief Minister who was a core participant in the McGrailinquiry. Stipendiary Magistrate Charles Pitto described this as “fascinating” but said this line of questioning wasn’t relevant to the case.

The woman also said it was John McVea’s team who first asked her if she wanted to take action regarding her complaint. She reiterated it was her choice and there was no pressure from anyone.

Senior Investigating Officer John McVea is in Gibraltar leading the investigation into matters surrounding the McGrail Inquiry. He has been sworn in as an officer of the RGP but he has previously stressed that his investigation is independent.

The complainant also said she gave her emails and bank statements to the investigating team to look into. She said other than being offered whistle-blower protections, she hasn't been offered anything else. She told the court she wished to return to the police force "after all this is over".

The woman’s mother then gave her evidence - also behind a screen. She told the court her daughter had called her crying and distressed and told her about Mr McGrail grabbing her bottom. She said that they had decided it was best she didn’t report it in order to protect her career as a police officer - something she described a hugely important to the family. Like her daughter she wasn’t sure as to when exactly this was but confirmed it was summer 2018.

Investigating police officer, DC Hanley, then gave her evidence. She said as part of their investigation they had attempted to narrow down dates as to when the alleged incident could have taken place - reviewing diaries and calendars etc and that it could have occurred on numerous occasions.

The case continues. 

Former Gibraltar Commissioner of Police charged with sexual assault

Ian McGrail was arrested at his home this Thursday morning, 13 April, in connection with an alleged sexual assault on a female police officer in 2018

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