PRESSURE was mounting on defiant Humberside Chief Constable David Westwood to resign today.
Home Secretary David Blunkett ordered his suspension over his force's `very serious failings' over the Soham murders.
Mr Blunkett demanded Mr Westwood's removal from active duty after an inquiry into the debacle concluded he should take personal responsibility for the mistakes that meant police intelligence about murderer Ian Huntley's past never emerged.
Sir Michael Bichard's inquiry revealed a `deeply shocking' catalogue of errors across all organisations that had contact with Huntley before he murdered schoolgirls Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman in August, 2002.
Mr Blunkett said it was difficult to disagree with Sir Michael's conclusion on Mr Westwood and ordered Humberside Police Authority to suspend him.
Huntley had been at the centre of four alleged rapes and indecent assault and four alleged incidents of under- age sex while in Grimsby during the 1990s.
None of these came to light until after his conviction for murder.
Sir Michael's report concluded that the Humberside force either deleted or failed to retain records of them.
This meant Huntley's murky past was not spotted during the vetting process in his appointment as caretaker at Soham Village College.
It revealed that the only intelligence report written on Huntley, which warned he was a "serial sex attacker", was deleted from Humberside's files a year after it had been submitted.
But Mr Westwood remains defiant.
He says he will stay in his post until his police authority meets to discuss any further action.
"Until they decide what their position will be, I remain chief constable," he said.
Humberside Police Authority is to meet this week to discuss the position.
In a separate report, HM Inspector Sir Ronnie Flanagan, criticised Cambridgeshire Police for their handling of the early stages of the murder hunt.