A POLICE officer who used intelligence and number plate recognition systems for non-policing purposes has been sacked by Essex Police.

The sergeant, based at Grays - who isn’t being named by police - also instructed officers to carry out duties which did not have policing purposes.

He was dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct by a panel chaired by the constabulary’s Assistant Chief Constable Matthew Horne.

The panel found he had “breached expected standards” of honesty and integrity and orders and instructions. He was also guilty of discreditable conduct.

ACC Horne said: “We know that, in policing, information and intelligence can be readily accessed and it often contains sensitive personal information or intelligence that can help prevent and solve crime.

“This was an experienced officer and by accessing information systems without a policing purpose he knew that if he was discovered his actions would be likely to result in gross misconduct proceedings and potentially end his career.

“In this case it was necessary to do so to maintain public confidence in policing. To misuse police information in this way strikes at the very heart of policing by consent.”