POLICE charged £250 per video of the Brighton Cat Killer after he died in prison.
Steve Bouquet was filmed being questioned by police over suspicions of stabbing cats across the city.
A documentary maker contacted Sussex Police for a copy of this footage and was told police were charging £250 for a clip.
Sussex Police said this “administration time charge” was “standard practice and accepted in the manufacturing industry”.
Other police forces have said they would release similar footage without charge.
Bouquet was convicted in July last year after stabbing cats across the city.
The 54-year-old killed nine cats and left seven others injured.
He performed the spree between October 2018 and May 2019 before being caught by CCTV set up by the owner of a dead cat.
Bouquet was jailed for five years and three months but died in hospital on January 6 this year.
Police interrogations are routinely videotaped for use in court and handed out by the police during or at the end of the trial.
A documentary filmmaker contacted Sussex Police in July this year.
In an email detailing the price of each clip, Sussex Police said: “We only offer a single license with a minimum price of £250 for non-exclusive use for up to three years.
“Please let me know if you want to buy.”
Sussex Police defended the charge.
A spokesman said: “We provide the media with a variety of information and materials on police affairs, operations and investigations on a daily basis, which can be freely used for simultaneous reporting.
“We support the principles of open justice and the broader benefits to our local communities of sharing this information legally and proportionately to prevent and detect crime and build trust in reporting.
“In this case, evidence used in court was made freely available to all media for use at the time.
“For requests to use non-contemporaneous material and where there is no other police purpose, we may charge an administration time fee so as not to burden the taxpayer.
“This is common practice in the manufacturing industry and is accepted.”
Five neighboring police forces said there were no circumstances under which they would sell police interviews to the press.
A Met Police spokesman said: “We only release footage if it will be used concurrently as part of an appeal or if it has been submitted in court as evidence.
“We don’t charge for that.”
A spokeswoman for Essex Police said: “It’s a categorical no from us. And I refer you to the College of Policing Code of Ethics for further guidance.”
Meanwhile, Surrey Police said: “We do not charge for providing video to the press.”
Kent Police said they were not aware of any instances where they had charged the press over videos.
And Hampshire Police said: “As a force we would not, under any circumstances, charge a fee for this.”
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/20661156.brighton-cat-killer-sussex-police-charge-250-interview-clips/?ref=rss Brighton Cat Killer: Sussex Police are asking £250 for interview clips