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4 Jun, 2018 16:55

Skripal poisoning case cost taxpayer £7.5 million so far and could rise, PCC says

Skripal poisoning case cost taxpayer £7.5 million so far and could rise, PCC says

The police response to the alleged nerve agent attack on former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, has so far cost the taxpayer £7.5 million, according to the region's Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC).

Revealing the stats, PCC Angus Macpherson described the police’s operation as a "massive effort," adding that the cost quoted could rise.

Wiltshire Police also revealed that Det Sgt Nick Bailey, one of the first responding officers to find the Skripals, was contaminated at Skripal's home in the city, rather than the park bench where he found the Skripals slumped over.

It was reported that at the time of their discovery on March 4, Bailey had been wearing a body camera and gloves.

At the height of the investigation, as many as 140 officers from Wiltshire Police were involved in the case, which has also seen support provided by 40 other police forces across Britain.

The British government repeatedly claimed that Russia was behind the attack, an accusation which has repeatedly been denied by Moscow.

Both Skripals were hospitalized apparently as a result of a substance that they came into contact with. Britain claimed that substance was a deadly military grade nerve agent Novichok and that it was exclusive to Russia. However other countries that have reportedly produced quantities of the substance including the Czech Republic, Sweden, Germany and the UK.

After being discovered by DS Bailey, all three were hospitalized at Salisbury Hospital for treatment. Bailey was the first to be released, with Yulia and Sergei discharged on April 9 and May 17 respectively.

Businesses in the city, which complained of a 80% drop in revenues in the three months since the incident happened, have so far received compensation to the tune of £250,000.

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