Suspect accused of killing shot police officer Sgt Matt Ratana ‘worked for HMRC’

News

The man accused of shooting a police man dead in a London police station was a government employee, according to reports.

The Met Police officer, Sgt Matiu ‘Matt’ Ratana, was shot when preparing to search a suspect in a police station in Croydon in the early hours of Friday.

The suspected gunman has been widely reported to be Louis De Zoysa, 23, who was also hit by a bullet in the incident.

De Zoysa was an employee of HMRC when he allegedly opened fire on the officer, reports The Sun.

The Kiwi officer died of a gun shot wound to the chest.

Investigators are reportedly probing what clearance de Zoysa he had and whether it gave him access to any weapons, databases, or tax records.

The alleged killer remains in hospital, where he is receiving treatment after the September 25 incident.

Detective Superintendent Nick Blackburn, who is leading the murder probe,said at Croydon Coroner’s Court that the officer was shot in a custody centre after the 23-year old suspect was arrested on suspicion of possession of ammunition and drugs with intent to supply.

He added: “As a custody sergeant Ratana entered the holding room the suspect produced a firearm and discharged the weapon several times during which time police sergeant Ratana and the suspect were wounded.”

The coroner’s hearing was told a preliminary post-mortem found the officer’s cause of death to be a “gun shot wound to the chest.”

De Zoysa was described as remaining critically ill in hospital on Friday.

His family home in Norbury, South West London, and an address in Banstead, Surrey were being searched this week as the shooting probe continues.

The suspect is said to have opened fire while still in the handcuffs in the custody area of Croydon Police Station as officers prepared to search him with a metal detector.

The Met has said no police weapons were discharged in the incident.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct is investigating how the gun got into the custody suite.

New Zealand-born Sgt Ratana was killed just months before he was due to retire after 30 years’ service.

He had lived in London for decades, and was a popular rugby coach.

Last week, the fallen officer’s partner Su Bushby, paid tribute to him.

She said: “There aren’t really any words for how I am feeling right now about the loss of Matt; about losing someone I loved, and was so close to, in such a tragic manner.”