Police duo’s steroids shame

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TWO St Helens-based police officers have admitted being part of a gang involved in the supply of steroids.

One of the officers, Detective Constable Paul David Fletcher, 46, also admitted three offences of misconduct in a public office.

Those allegations included Fletcher providing secret intelligence to a man accused of gun offences.

Liverpool Crown Court heard how Fletcher met the man, who was on bail, on January 25 to discuss his arrest and the evidence against him.

Fletcher then told the man, known only as Man A, about the tactics that would be used against him and how he could frustrate the police inquiry.

The second charge, on the same date, involves him telling that man how another criminal had got a lenient sentence because he was a police informer. On the third charge, dated February 1, Fletcher admitted accessing police information and passing it on to another.

Fletcher, 46, of Downall Green Road, Ashton-in-Makerfield, had previously denied all charges, and was due to stand trial on November 15, but he decided to change his pleas.

Fletcher, a St Helens CID officer, also admitted a total of six offences of being concerned in the supply of controlled drugs between December 4, 2010, and February 2 this year.

One involved him being involved in the supply of class C drugs to fellow St Helens policeman Sgt Paul Hornby, 43.

Hornby, of Bembridge Court, Wigan, who had also been due to face trial changed his plea to admit possessing class C drugs on February 2.

Fletcher’s son Paul Michael Fletcher, 26, of Richmond Hill, Wigan, had previously admitted six offences of supplying a controlled drug – on five occasions to the undercover officer “Neil” and once to Hornby – between December 4 and February 2.

His cousin Carl Fletcher, 28, of Old Road, Ashton-in-Makerfield, had already admitted possessing class C drugs with intent to supply on March 23.

Alongside them in the dock was 23-year-old Terry Bridge, of Poplar Avenue, Wigan. He admitted two charges of being concerned in selling human growth hormone to Hornby on February 2, and possessing 19 different controlled drugs with intent to supply on March 23, including a variety of different testosterone substances and diazepam.

They were all further granted bail prior to sentencing on November 21.