TWO senior police officers have won a whistleblowing and sex discrimination case over claims they falsely accused a former Bolton inspector of assault.

Supt Jane Higham and Det Insp Jane Escott were potential witnesses in a race discrimination claim brought by Insp Scott Winters against Greater Manchester Police (GMP).

An employment tribunal heard Supt Higham disclosed to police counsel, David Flood QC, an incident involving Insp Winters where he had grabbed a female colleague by the throat and threatened her.

Insp Winters insisted there had never been such a complaint, prompting a lengthy internal inquiry.

But the hearing was told Insp Winters had been given a warning by an assistant chief constable over the matter, which occurred at Tyldesley police station in 1998. Insp Winters was later transferred to Bolton.

Supt Higham and DI Escott were placed on restricted duties for part of the police internal inquiry, which they successfully argued amounted to sex discrimination.

Their lawyers insisted four other male officers had been allowed to remain on unrestricted service, despite having their honesty and integrity challenged over other misconduct claims.

Supt Higham, who was awarded £12,500, later said the case was "extremely embarrassing".

And DI Escott said she found a later BBC File on Four programme featuring Insp Winters, which GMP had failed to pass on an interview request about, was "hugely distressing". She was awarded £30,000 by the tribunal.