Police officer sacked over housing benefit fraud

A Metropolitan police officer convicted of housing benefit fraud has been sacked from the force.

PC Stephen Holt, 43, had pleaded guilty to two criminal charges and was sentenced to do 200 hours community service at a hearing last month.

He was dismissed after a Scotland Yard misconduct panel found his actions had discredited the police service.

The Directorate of Professional Standards said there was "only one appropriate outcome".

PC Holt, who worked in a Safer Neighbourhoods team in Southwark, was suspended from police duties before his arrest in November 2011.

He admitted two counts of fraud at Croydon Crown Court on 15 November and was sentenced on 20 December.

Commander Allan Gibson of the Directorate of Professional Standards said: "Having considered all available options, the panel found that due to the serious nature of the offences for which he has been convicted, there was only one appropriate outcome in this case and PC Holt was dismissed from the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) without notice.

"There is no doubt that the actions of PC Holt brought discredit on the MPS and reflect badly on the thousands of officers who are honest and work tirelessly for the people of London."