Suspect in murder of Met Police sergeant named

A man suspected of shooting dead a Met Police sergeant has been named as Louis De Zoysa, 23.

Sgt Matiu Ratana, 54, died in hospital on Friday after being shot at in a custody centre in Croydon, south London. He was originally from New Zealand and had joined the Met in 1991.

De Zoysa, who is believed to have shot himself afterwards, remains critically ill in hospital. Police say they have not yet been able to speak to him as part of the murder investigation.

He had initially been arrested for an alleged Class B drugs offence and possession of ammunition when Sgt Ratana was shot during the early hours of Friday morning.

Officers had been preparing to search De Zoysa at the time and he was still handcuffed, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said.

Since then another man has been arrested in Norwich on suspicion of supplying a firearm and remains in police custody.

Colleagues, friends and rugby teammates of Sgt Ratana paid tribute to him this weekend, describing him as a ‘truly remarkable fellow’ who had been a ‘father figure’ to many. He leaves behind a partner and a grown-up son.

Matt Marriott, vice-chairman of East Grinstead Rugby Club, said of their former head coach: ‘I’ve actually never met anybody quite like Matt, he must have been an incredible policeman.

‘His attention to detail and his strive for perfection, his work ethic, just blew all of us away.’

He added: ‘He wasn’t just a coach to the players. He was a role model, a mentor, and often actually a father figure. We’re going to mourn him as a family member. He’s left a big hole, to be honest.’

Metropolitan Police deputy assistant commissioner Stuart Cundy said Sgt Ratana’s death had marked a ‘dark and sad day for the police family’.

He noted that police are ‘painstakingly’ searching four crime scenes in connection with the killing, including the custody suite where the incident unfolded.

Forensic searches are also being carried out in an area of London Road, Pollards Hill, Norbury, where the suspect was initially arrested by officers. Other searches are taking place at an address on Southbrook Road, also in Norbury, and at a second address on Park Road, Banstead in Surrey, where local officers from Surrey Police are helping.

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