Adam Provan: Met 'missed chances' to save women from rapist officer'

Met police ‘missed several chances’ to save women from rapist officer who has now been jailed for 16 years for attacks on two victims

  • Adam Provan, 44, of Newmarket, Suffolk, was sentenced to 16 years in prison
  • The Judge slammed the Met for choosing to look out for ‘one of their own’

In the latest of scandals concerning the Met, Scotland Yard astonishingly missed several opportunities to remove a predatory police officer from the force who went on to rape two women. 

Disgraced former officer Adam Provan, 44, of Newmarket, Suffolk, abused his position to prey on young women and girls with a ‘cold-blooded entitlement to sex’.

During Provan’s sentencing on Tuesday, Judge Noel Lucas KC bluntly accused the Metropolitan Police force of protecting ‘one of their own’ after receiving numerous complaints from members of the public and an officer.

In one of the biggest failing of the force, an extended history of allegations, some dating back to the 1990s, concerning the officer’s overtly sexual behavior, were ‘swept under the carpet’.

Lucas said the ‘persistence and seriousness of Provan’s offending was clear when set out in the starkest terms’, bluntly adding that his actions have ‘brought disgrace on the police force’. 

Judge Noel Lucas KC sentenced disgraced former officer Adam Provan, 44, of Newmarket, Suffolkto 16 years in prison for eight counts of rape

Provan was found guilty of repeatedly raping a fellow officer between 2003 and 2005, as well as raping a teenager twice, that he’d met on a blind date after lying about his age, in August 2010. 

The officer was raped six times by her predatory colleague, with the court hearing gruesome details of the campaign of ‘abuse and harassment’ she suffered under Provan, including how he held a pillow over her face and burned her with a kettle.

Despite her repeatedly raising a harassment complaint to a line manager, she claimed she was ‘talked out of pursuing the allegation for the sake of her own career’. 

The court heard that she was deterred from making a full statement at the time, after being called a ‘griefy plonk’ by fellow officers.

Provan was simply given a warning by the disgraced force about his behaviour and told not to contact the woman. 

But, Provan continued to make make contact with her between 2005 and 2009.

Prosecutors said the woman, who is still a serving Met officer, ‘felt her allegations were swept under the carpet’.

Lauren Taylor, was raped by Provan in woodland in east London after a blind date to the cinema in 2010, when she was 16, waived her right anonymity and came forward to the police. 

Lauren Taylor, was raped by Provan in woodland in east London after a blind date to the cinema in 2010, when she was 16, waived her right anonymity and came forward to the police

Provan lied about his age ahead of the blind date with Lauren Taylor, when she was 16, saying he was 22 when he was 31

Provan lied about his age ahead of the blind date saying he was 22 when he was 31. 

Ms Taylor, who is now 29-years-old, said she was angry at his ‘lack of remorse’. 

She added : ‘He raped me. I remember holding on to the tree. I was kind of hugging the tree like emotional support, [pretending] I was anywhere else in the world but back there. 

Opportunities missed by the Met to save a woman from sexual predator Adam Provan

1. Within three months of joining the Met, Provan he was accused of sexually touching a 15-year-old girl in February 2003. He was interviewed under caution but no further action was taken by the Met. 

2. In September 2003, two members of the public raised concerns about Provan’s suitability for the role and warned the police about his tendency for ‘violent and sexual behaviour while growing up’. The Met said Provan was ‘referred to occupational health professionals’.

4. In 2005, a female colleague whom Provan was convicted of repeatedly raping raised a harassment complaint to a line manager but claimed she was ‘talked out of pursuing the allegation for the sake of her own career’.

5. Another female police officer in 2005 said that she was receiving ‘nuisance’ messages from Provan, but the complaint was dealt with ‘informally’ and not taken further.

I’m angry at what he’s done to me. I’m angry about who he was. He was a police officer, and we go to them to be protected, and I wasn’t protected.’

Provan exhibited his insidious ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ character early on his career, when he was accused of sexually touching a 15-year-old girl three months into the new job. 

The Met took the decision to interview him under caution but decided against any further action. 

Members of the public who knew Provan growing up tried to warn the force about his tendency for ‘violent and sexual behaviour ‘ and unsuitability for the role of a police officer.

Instead of removing the officer, the Met said Provan was ‘referred to occupational health professionals’. 

Judge Noel Lucas KC slammed the Met’s handling of the female officer’s complaints in 2005, adding that had an investigation been opened, the 16-year-old victim may have been spared.

Lucas directed him comment towards Provan and said: ‘While this cannot be laid at your door, I find it highly troubling that [the female officer’s] colleagues in the Metropolitan Police in 2004 and 2005 were more concerned about looking out for ‘one of their own’ than in taking her seriously and investigating her complaints about you.’ 

Prosecutor, Anthony Metzer KC, told the court that Provan had ‘an extended history of allegations’ of sexual misconduct dating back to the 1990s, including ‘stalkerish behaviour’ 

The Met said: ‘We are working to identify if there may be further victims and would encourage anyone with information to come forward. 

‘We are also reviewing Provan’s full history in the Met, and before he joined, to identify any concerns and whether we could have taken action against him sooner.’

This is the biggest scandal in the Met since David Carrick, a former Met firearms officer, carried out more than 80 sexual offences, including 48 rapes, and was jailed in February for a minimum of 30 years 

Louisa Rolfe, an assistant commissioner at the Met, said Provan ‘abused his position as a police officer to win the trust of both these women’, dubbing his actions ‘utterly deplorable’. 

She added: ‘Both women have been enormously strong and courageous in giving evidence and ensuring Provan is now behind bars. I am so sorry for the pain and suffering he has caused them.

‘We are examining Provan’s criminal and conduct history in the Met so we can fully understand whether we could have acted sooner to bring him before the courts, or have stopped him joining the police.’

Rolfe also apologised to the female Met officer, adding: ‘She was let down by a system she trusted and was serving.’

Ms Taylor, who is now 29-years-old, said she was angry at Provan’s ‘lack of remorse’

The first victim, a female officer, said: ‘I shared [with the police] that [Provan] had been harassing me, burnt me, followed me, burnt his car up for insurance money, and was violent. 

‘I listened to them tell me it would follow me for my service if I wanted anything done. 

‘It was exactly as he told me it would be: he had control and I wouldn’t be believed or supported.

‘I was now labelled a ‘griefy plonk who would do your legs’. I had got Adam moved and I was the problem. 

‘I felt punished but kept smiling, working hard and saying nothing … I was the victim, but I felt like the suspect.’

The force confirmed that they would be reviewing an earlier investigation that found Provan was posting a telephone number through a woman’s letterbox in another force area. 

Louisa Rolfe, an assistant commissioner at the Met, said Provan ‘abused his position as a police officer to win the trust of both these women’, dubbing his actions ‘utterly deplorable’

He was arrested in 2016 after intelligence identified that it was his number.

Provan was also found to have stored the numbers of 751 women in his phone with their names and ages, the court heard; the  Met is ‘looking’ at the possibility of contacting them. 

Prosecutor, Anthony Metzer KC said that it was ‘strongly suggested’ there was sexual activity with the women, many of whom were young.

Provan was a first convicted of raping Ms Taylor after a trial in November 2018, for which he was jailed for nine years. 

Following the conviction, he was officially dismissed from the Met in March 2019. 

The disgraced officer managed to successfully appeal his convictions after spending three years and three months in jail, which were quashed in February last year, prompting a retrial in June at Wood Green crown court, north London.

Provan was charged with six additional counts of rape in relation to his former Met colleague, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and was unanimously convicted by a jury of eight counts of rape after a seven-week trial.

Judge Noel Lucas KC sentenced him to 16 years in prison.

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