Police officers claiming more than £6,000 in overtime

Thousands of police officers are claiming a 20% increase on their salaries by making large overtime claims, an investigation by the Independent has revealed.

Freedom of Information requests responded to by 35 of the 51 forces in England, Scotland and Wales showed that more than 12,000 PCs claimed more than £6,000 each in overtime last year – a 20% increase on their salaries.

Nearly 500 constables made more than £15,000 on top of their salaries. One London-based PC earned more than £90,000 – an increase of at least £50,000 on his salary. Earlier this month, a London newspaper revealed one PC had used overtime to earn more than £100,000 a year.

The revelations have sparked debate as to whether the country’s police forces are adequately staffed and being managed properly, and whether officers who work up to 70 hours a week can perform as effectively as those who work nearly half those hours.

The Home Affairs Select Committee has pledged to investigate the findings after chairman Keith Vaz said the figures were “troubling”.

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