This is how much Cleveland Police have spent in payments to informants
New figures reveal how much Cleveland Police have spent in payments to informers over the last five years.
The data, compiled following Freedom of Information (FoI) requests to forces nationwide, indicates that Cleveland paid £77,412 for criminal intelligence between 2014-19.
This compares to the £193,193 in payments made by Durham Constabulary and the £659,823 bill paid by Northumbria Police over the same period.
The Cleveland figures show a gradual drop from a high of £17,000 in 2014-15 to £14,845 in 2018-19.
A force spokesman said: “Intelligence that we receive from these individuals can sometimes be vital to investigations and this can be the difference between bringing a prosecution to court or not.
“Such information can also assist in the recovery of stolen property and the seizure of drugs.”
The Metropolitan Police were the highest spenders out of 27 forces nationwide with informants receiving £4,363,226 over the past five years.
North Wales Police spent the lowest amount, just under £55,000, during the same period.
Eighteen forces failed to provide figures in response to the FoI request from the University of Portsmouth journalism department.
A Taxpayers’ Alliance spokesman said: “It is critical that there is transparency in how taxpayers’ money is spent, even in the murky world of crime-fighting.
“All bodies, including the police, ought to be aware of the public interest in knowing where their cash is being spent, especially given that taxpayers are being asked to pay record amounts this year.”
The overall 2014-19 figure from the forces who did respond was £13.6 million.