COLCHESTER MP Sir Bob Russell has criticised the decision to allow deputy police and crime commissioners with criminal records to be appointed.

Speaking in the House of Commons Sir Bob argued deputies should be subject to the same rules as their bosses who had to have unblemished records to stand.

He said: “It is astonishing that people who stood for the post of police and crime commissioners had to have an unblemished record whereas they can cheerfully appoint any number of deputies who are not subject to the same requirements.

"How can the public have confidence when people with criminal records can hold such important roles in the new police regimes?”

Essex Police and Crime Commissioner Nick Alston has confirmed he will appoint a deputy but is yet to do so.

See the full story and reaction in Wednesday's Gazette.