Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Some things that they wanted to keep secret

I came across this list of 59 things that would have stayed secret if it wasn’t for the Freedom of Information Act. I will list a selection of them here:

»The Thatcher Government concocted a plan to search for the Loch Ness monster using a team of dolphins

»Foreign diplomats – who have diplomatic immunity – were accused of rapes, sexual assaults, child abuse and murders while working in Britain

»The Government agreed a £1.5m bailout of one of the most troubled schools in its flagship city academies programme ten days before the 2005 general election

»Politicians are spending £2.2bn a year of taxpayers’ money on private management consultants

»Tony Blair spent nearly £2,000 of taxpayers' money on cosmetics over six years

»Seventy-four police officers serving with the Metropolitan Police have criminal records

»Six British military policemen died at the hands of an Iraqi mob in Majar al-Kabir because nearby reinforcements decided it was too dangerous to rescue them

»Health tourists received free NHS kidney treatment worth about £30,000 a year, potentially competing with British patients for scarce transplants

»John Birt, Tony Blair's key adviser in Downing Street, identified the abolition of National Service as a significant factor in the “exponential” rise in crime over the past 50 years

»A cache of more than 300 weapons, including air pistols, swords and an improvised flame-thrower, were seized from schoolchildren in one year

»Police were instructed to let off offenders with a caution if they commit any one of more than 60 types of crime, ranging from assault to some types of theft, criminal damage and underage sex.

»Two hundred serving police officers have criminal records for offences that include assault, breach of the peace, theft and vandalism.

»Documents suggested that one in 15 officers has broken the law

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