Police watchdog probe over Thames death

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IPCC to investigate circumstances surrounding death of Mohammed Iqbal Safi

THE Police watchdog has said it is investigating the death of an Afghanistan man who jumped into the River Thames just hours after he was arrested for immigration offences.

Mohammed Iqbal Safi, 18, from west London died after jumping into the River Thames on 30 October.

He had earlier been arrested on suspicion of immigration offences. He was taken to Fulham Police Station and released two hours later.

His body was found nine days later in the river at Southwark. A post mortem conducted at Southwark Coroners Court gave a cause of death as drowning.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said it is investigating the circumstances surrounding Mr Safi’s death.

IPCC Commissioner Rachel Cerfontyne said: “This is a very sad case where a family has lost a loved one and it is right that independent investigation is undertaken to see if there was anything police could have done while Mr Safi was in custody to have avoided this outcome.

“Our investigators will therefore consider a number of factors. This includes if Mr Safi displayed any indications while in custody that he was at risk of self harm and whether his grasp of English should have warranted the use of specialist provision such as a translation service. His time in custody will also be compared to the relevant MPS procedures concerning detention and release to ensure they were complied with.”

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