Met Police warned gay officers about using Grindr, ex-detective claims

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A former detective has told a tribunal that the Metropolitan Police Service warned him against using gay dating app Grindr.

Kevin Maxwell, 36, is suing the Met on grounds of racial and homophobic discrimination.

Mr Maxwell claims officers were told at a briefing that their activity on social networking sites was being monitored and he was specially warned about Grindr.

“Clearly this made me feel uncomfortable,” he told the Central London Employment Tribunal this week.

“As an out gay man I was offended. I know many police officers who are gay and not necessarily ‘out’ at work, who use these type of ‘lawful’ social networking applications.”

The 36-year-old also claims to have been taunted on a police forum by colleagues saying he should become “a hairdresser or cabin crew”.

In a statement to the Central London Employment Tribunal, Mr Maxwell said: “The long-term strategy of the Metropolitan Police was not only in retaliation for my employment tribunal claims, but also an attempt to mitigate any negative publicity and damage to the MPS’s reputation caused by my claims, by harming my own reputation through a formal finding of poor performance or misconduct, to deter me from continuing with my employment tribunal, employment appeal tribunal, claims and defence.”

Mr Maxwell, who lives in a hostel in Kings Cross, north London, served within the Met’s Special Operations Counter Terrorism Command and was signed off work in 2009 after being diagnosed with clinical depression.

He started proceeding against the Met in May 2010.

Mr Maxwell won a previous discrimination case against the Met in January 2012.

An employment tribunal found the Met responsible for 44 counts of harassment and discrimination against Mr Maxwell. Most of the findings were upheld on appeal.

The Metropolitan Police denies the allegations and the tribunal, which is expected to last 10 days, continues.