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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 September 2005, 16:46 GMT 17:46 UK
Met chief backs Moss drugs probe
Kate Moss
The model has been dropped by fashion retailer H&M
The UK's top police chief has backed a decision to investigate claims supermodel Kate Moss took cocaine.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair said the possible impact of such behaviour on "impressionable young people" had led to the inquiry.

It was ordered after photos allegedly showing Moss taking illegal drugs were published in a newspaper.

Chanel said it had no plans to use her again in the near future, and Burberry has cancelled an upcoming campaign.

This follows fashion store H&M's decision to drop her because of the allegations.

In a statement, Burberry said both the company and Moss had "mutually agreed that it is inappropriate to go ahead".

"Kate has always been a fantastic model and highly professional for Burberry," it continued.

'Evidence considered'

Speaking to journalists at the Police Superintendents Association Conference in Warwickshire, Sir Ian said he had been personally involved in the decision to launch an investigation.

"We have to look at the impact of this kind of behaviour on impressionable young people and if there is evidence something should be done about it," he said.

It is unfortunate that Kate Moss is caught up in this mess
Richard Addae, Tema, Ghana

It has not been confirmed whether police will interview Moss, who has declined to comment on the claims.

On Tuesday, H&M said continuing to use Moss would be "inconsistent with its clear dissociation of drugs".

Cosmetics giant Coty said Moss will keep a contract with its Rimmel brand.

She also has a deal with Dior.

The 31-year-old found herself at the centre of a series of stories about her lifestyle after the Daily Mirror published photographs allegedly showing her taking cocaine.

'Plead for mercy'

Fashion academic Jeremy Baker, of London Metropolitan University, told BBC Breakfast that Moss had every prospect of a successful future career if she repented.

Pete Doherty and Kate Moss

"Kate Moss has got to suffer, throw herself to public opinion and plead for mercy and then she can rebuild her career," he said.

"She's been damaged but she's very attractive, which is always a plus. She's the Greta Garbo of our generation."

Designer Zandra Rhodes said H&M had no choice but to ditch the model following allegations about her lifestyle.

She told the BBC: "She can't be seen to condone the use of drugs, she's going to have to at least look like the habit has gone."

In 1998, Moss spent time in the Priory clinic after admitting that her party lifestyle had taken its toll.

She has a daughter, Lila Grace, with her ex-partner, publisher Jefferson Hack.

Hear London's police chief on the Kate Moss allegations

Guardian Unlimited I'm sorry, says Kate Moss - 2 hrs ago
Sydney Morning HeraldOut of fashion - 3 hrs ago
CBC Kate Moss apologises for behaviour - 4 hrs ago
Telegraph Kate Moss a role model? I don't think so - 4 hrs ago
ABC Online Supermodel apologises after cocaine scandal - 4 hrs ago
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