A group of Scotland Yard officers were suspended after "serious allegations" about their behavior during the arrests of five suspects last year, police said Tuesday.
London's police force did not go into detail, but Sky News television, The Times of London and the Daily Mail newspapers reported that six officers were accused of "waterboarding" drug suspects. None of the media identified their sources.
The papers gave varying accounts of the exact technique allegedly used by police, with the Times saying that officers are accused of pouring water on a cloth and placing it over a suspect's face to simulate the experience of drowning.
However the Times, in a related article posted to the Internet, cited an unidentified source as saying police may have shoved suspects' heads into bowls of water rather than use the waterboarding technique more familiar from its use by US interrogators to squeeze information out of suspected terrorists.