A FORMER Yorkshire chief constable is to face gross misconduct proceedings for allegedly breaching professional standards, the police watchdog has said.

Mike Veale will face the proceedings accused of breaching “standards of professional behaviour” during his time as the chief of Cleveland Police.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said it had carried out investigations into allegations from the second half of 2018, before Mr Veale stepped down from Cleveland Police in 2019.

Veale had previously led a controversial inquiry into sexual allegations against the late prime minister Edward Heath when he was in charge of Wiltshire Police, and since leaving Cleveland in 2019 has acted as an advisor to Leicestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner.

The IOPC said it had passed on its findings to the Cleveland PCC in February.

A spokesperson for the watchdog said: “We found that there was sufficient evidence to indicate that Mr Veale had breached the standards of professional behaviour.

“Following discussion, we have accepted the then PCC’s determinations that Mr Veale should face proceedings for gross misconduct.

“The allegations relate to conduct between July and December 2018 when serving as chief constable.

“It will be for the PCC to formulate the nature of the misconduct charges, based on our findings, and to bring those proceedings to a future misconduct hearing.

“All concerned parties have been notified.”

In 2019 the IOPC said it was investigating Mr Veale for “alleged inappropriate behaviour towards colleagues, discrimination, and unprofessional behaviour”.

Cleveland PCC Steve Turner said: “The matter will shortly be referred to an independent panel, chaired by an independent lawyer, to hold a misconduct hearing to consider the evidence, make appropriate findings and determine any appropriate outcome.”

Depending on the outcome, Mr Veale could be barred from serving as a police officer again.