No 'brothels' or booze on duty

24th October 2007, Comments 0 comments

24 October 2007, BRUSSELS (AFP) - A Brussels police chief has warned his officers to abstain from visiting "brothels" and drinking alcohol during working hours, Belgium's La Derniere-Heure newspaper reported Tuesday.

24 October 2007

BRUSSELS (AFP) - A Brussels police chief has warned his officers to abstain from visiting "brothels" and drinking alcohol during working hours, Belgium's La Derniere-Heure newspaper reported Tuesday.

The article about the warning, made in response to "baseless rumours" about the conduct of certain officers in the suburb of Saint-Josse, has caused "lots of commotion," a police spokesman told AFP.

In an office note dated 28 May, reprinted by La Derniere-Heure, police chief Erwin Renard reminded staff of "certain ethical rules" that had apparently been ignored while he was on sick leave.

He wrote: "These staff think that working hours are for drinking alcohol when no other drinks are available, playing sport, frequenting 'brothels' or other massage parlours, developing intimate relationships with residents of their neighbourhood or during their patrols...".

He warned that such acts "would no longer be tolerated."

"Police will only be respected if they set a good example," wrote Renard, whose force patrols Brussels' north railway station area, one of the capital's main red light districts.

But spokesman Roland Thiebault said no such abuses had actually taken place.

"Mr Renard, who is known for his irreproachable integrity, was informed of certain rumours. The only aim of his note was to remind (staff) of the basic values of the police force," he explained.

"These were clearly baseless rumours. Had there been concrete facts we would, of course, have parted ways with such staff," he said.

[Copyright AFP 2007]

Subject: Belgian news

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