The UK’s most senior gay police officer has signed a six-figure deal with publisher Simon Schuster to write his story about life at the highest levels of the Met.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Brian Paddick, who recently retired from the force, claims that his boss Commissioner Ian Blair, knew within hours that officers had shot an innocent man at Stockwell tube station in July 2005.

Blair denies Paddick’s account of events, and relationships between them remain strained.

It was reported last week that at Paddick’s “farewell” meeting with his boss, Sir Ian insisted a member of staff remain in the room at all times, presumably as a witness.

A spokesman for the publisher said:

“Brian has left the force and has no restraint on what he can say apart from the libel laws. He’ll say exactly what he thinks about how the Met is run.”

In April Paddick, the most senior gay police officer in the UK, revealed he was to retire more than a year early.

It understood he asked to be allowed to stand down before the end of his current contract.

He left the force at the end of May. He has completed 30 years’ service and is entitled to a full pension.

Mr Paddick came to public prominence as borough commander of Lambeth, when his policy of targeting resources at class A drug dealers and taking a more relaxed approach to cannabis use caused right-wing outrage.

The policy was popular with locals, and his direct style of policing helped to foster a trust and respect with many who viewed the police with suspicion.

In 2002 a tabloid newspaper printed allegations from a former boyfriend that Mr Paddick had allowed cannabis to be smoked in his home.

No charges were ever brought against him and he was promoted.

Recently Mr Paddick has clashed with his boss, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair, over when the Met knew that they had shot an innocent man at Stockwell tube station on July 22nd 2005.

Sir Ian insists that he did not know Brazilian Jean Charles De Menezes was not a suicide bomber until the next day.

Mr Paddick gave evidence to an independent investigation that suspicions were raised almost immediately.

That inquiry is due to report later this year.

In June 2006 Mr Paddick was moved sideways by Sir Ian, and his career at the Met was not expected to develop beyond his current grade.

For all the controversy, Mr Paddick will be remembered for inspiring many other police men and women to be open about their sexuality.

Last year Mr Paddick refused to rule out standing as a candidate for Mayor of London. It is also thought he has been approached about TV and lecturing work after he leaves the Met.