ONE of Police Scotland's most senior officers has complained to the force's watchdog about alleged bullying.

Assistant chief constable (ACC) John Mauger has told the Scottish Police Authority that he was a staff whistleblower who made allegations of corruption against colleagues and is now being victimised as a result.

Mauger, who was an ACC at the old Central Scotland force, was placed on leave in 2010 after facing allegations of insubordination and inefficiency. He was off work for three years and started again in late 2013 as an ACC in Police Scotland.

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This year, the SPA confirmed all complaints and conduct issues against him had been "discharged".

Despite being cleared, Mauger believes he is still frozen out by not being given a role consistent with his seniority. Unlike other assistant chiefs, he does not sit on the high-powered police executive.

Mauger, who still collects a six-figure salary, has written to SPA chairman Vic Emery about his case.He wrote: "My position in the Police Service of Scotland is truly appalling. I am marginalised, I am isolated, I am disengaged, I am bullied and victimised. I am not given work."

He said he blew the whistle on "corrupt practices" in the service and claimed his complaints had not been dealt with properly. He alleged: "There appears on the face of it a conspiracy to pervert justice and procure misconduct in public office. I will not retire for the corruption of others, nor as the victim of bullying and marginalisation having whistle-blown and brought action against others."

Mauger asked for a meeting with Emery as a matter of "urgency".

A source close to Mauger explained why the ACC had contacted the SPA chairman: "He is being paid a lot of money to do nothing. He isn't part of the executive team in Police Scotland and the skills and experience built up over 30 years' service are being ignored. It is disgraceful."

Separately, Mauger also claimed officers less qualified than him occupy more senior positions.

Dunfermline Labour MSP Cara Hilton said: "I have met with Mr Mauger and raised his concerns with Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority. I'm working closely with Labour justice secretary Graeme Pearson on what is a very complex case, to ensure the very serious allegations made by my constituent Mr Mauger are investigated fairly."

A spokesperson for SPA said: "There is regular correspondence between senior officers within Police Scotland and the chair of the authority. It is not our policy to comment on any individual communication.

Police Scotland declined to comment.