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4 Oz police officers sacked for racist emails

Four Australian police officers, including a sergeant were sacked, two demoted and another four fined today over circulation of pornographic and racist emails within Victoria Police.

world Updated: Aug 26, 2010 20:05 IST

Four Australian police officers, including a sergeant were sacked, two demoted and another four fined today over circulation of pornographic and racist emails within Victoria Police.

The dismissals are part of Operation Barrot, established in June to investigate a series of emails circulated on the Victoria Police system prior to December 18, 2009.

Yesterday Police Chief Commissioner Simon Overland described the material as "extreme" and "shocking".

The emails were allegedly distributed over the Victoria Police email server.

The force says the sacked officers are a sergeant, two leading senior constables and one senior constable.

The emails allegedly contained highly offensive material, including sexual, violent, homophobic and racist content. It is believed that the sacked officers include a
highly experienced detective sergeant from Wonthaggi and a detective senior constable from another station.

A senior constable has been demoted and two other officers have been fined USD 2,000 each and put on good behaviour bonds.

Police said that in the past two days, 10 members had appeared before hearings over the emails to be told of the sanctions imposed.

Two officers scheduled to appear in hearings this week recently resigned. Police Association boss Sen-Sgt Greg Davies said the members were among a small group disciplined as part of Operation Barrot.

"The operation went right through the entire force email system and out of more than 11,500 people, something in the order of 25 have been disciplined over it," he said.

There is nothing criminal alleged, there is no child porn or anything like that. They're all breaches of the internal policy of what you can and can't send by email.

Davies said while he accepted officers were aware of the standards required, the four sacked officers faced a bleak future.