LONDON (AP) — Tensions between Britain's government and police leaders flared Saturday over Prime Minister David Cameron's recruitment of a veteran American police commander to advise him on how to combat gangs and prevent a repeat of the past week's riots.
The criticism, led by Association of Chief Police Officers leader Sir Hugh Orde, underscored deep tensions between police and Cameron's coalition government over who was most to blame for the failure to stop the four-day rioting that raged in parts of London and other English cities until Wednesday.
Cameron criticized police tactics as too timid and announced he would seek policy guidance from William Bratton, former commander of police forces in Boston, New York and Los Angeles. British police have branded the move misguided and an insult to their professionalism.
"I am not sure I want to learn about gangs from an area of America that has 400 of them," Orde said of Los Angeles, which the 63-year-old Bratton oversaw until 2009.