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Last Updated:  Friday, 4 April, 2003, 18:37 GMT 19:37 UK
Lie detector threat for staff
Lie detector
It is estimated the tests could cost thousands of pounds
Staff and councillors in Shrewsbury are being asked to take a lie detector test in the hunt for a mole who revealed planned job losses.

Media published the report which listed the names of Shrewsbury and Atcham Borough Council staff who could be made redundant.

But now councillors say they are willing to pay for the tests to catch the culprit who leaked the document.

Mike Croston, monitoring officer for the council, said the move was agreed at a standards committee meeting.

They look wonderful in films but in real life they are not that reliable, and of course they cost a lot of money
Councillor Albie Fox

"The members and officers who had sight of the confidential report will be asked to take a lie detector test on a voluntary basis," he said.

"There are other courses of action we will be taking, including writing to all those people who had access to the report."

He said what concerned him the most was that names were published.

Conservative councillor Albie Fox, who is one of four members of the standards committee, said he did not agree with the idea of using a lie detector.

"They look wonderful in films but in real life they are not that reliable, and of course they cost a lot of money.

Anyone who feels they don't wish to take the test, I would suggest they've got something they don't wish to divulge
Councillor Danny Moore

"If they are so reliable why don't the police use them every day, that's my concern.

"Wasting money on something that may be a waste of time."

But Labour councillor Danny Moore told BBC News Online that seven of the eight people who sit on the standards committee think it is a necessary move.

"As an authority, we have a duty of care to protect individuals from any adverse publicity. This is a voluntary thing.

"Anyone who feels they don't wish to take it, I would suggest they've got something they don't wish to divulge."

Mr Moore added that he did not envisage a problem setting up the lie detector tests.

"I'm sure there are a number of companies who will provide such facilities and we would look to see who is available.

"But the real issue is about saying we will go to reasonable lengths to address this problem."




SEE ALSO:
Report gives polygraphs the lie
08 Oct 02  |  Technology
How accurate are lie detectors?
22 Aug 02  |  Science/Nature
FBI veterans face lie detector test
24 Mar 01  |  Americas


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