The Home Secretary has said she is yet to receive the report on the unsolved murder of Daniel Morgan.
Mr Morgan, a private investigator, was killed with an axe in the car park of the Golden Lion pub in Sydenham, south-east London, on March 10 1987.
Despite five police inquiries and an inquest, no-one has been brought to justice over the father-of-two’s death, with the Metropolitan Police admitting corruption had hampered the original murder investigation.
The panel examining the case had been due to publish its findings, before being told by the Home Office that no parliamentary time could be found to allow this to happen.
Mr Morgan’s family have described the report’s delay as a “kick in the teeth” and served only to “betray and undermine the very purpose of the panel”.
Speaking to Channel 4 News on Friday, Priti Patel said: “I think it’s important that I, as Home Secretary, actually receive the report before it is published.
“I have yet to receive this report and I think it’s right that I receive the report and read it before laying it in Parliament.
“That is standard practice when it comes to reports of this nature and that is absolutely the right process to follow.”
In response, Daniel’s brother Alastair Morgan said on Twitter: “She would have received the report one day before publication, as is the convention, but she blocked publication and insisted she was entitled to redact if she saw fit. This was NOT part of the deal.”
Discussions between the panel and the Home Secretary to resolve the situation are ongoing, he later added.
Earlier in the week it emerged the Home Office stepped in to delay the publication, saying it wanted to review the document which is expected to contain “a sizeable chapter” on police corruption. It added that it would keep parts of it secret if it felt this to be necessary.
The Daniel Morgan Independent Panel said it had been told a publication date would not be agreed until the Government department reviewed the report to ensure it complied with human rights and did not compromise national security.
It released a forceful statement on Tuesday, saying: “A review of this nature has not been raised previously in the eight years since the panel was established in 2013.
“The panel believes that this last-minute requirement is unnecessary and is not consistent with the panel’s independence.”
Then-home secretary Theresa May announced in 2013 that an independent panel was being set up to examine the case.
The panel’s remit was to address questions relating to the murder, including police handling of the case, the role corruption played in protecting Mr Morgan’s killer, and the links between private investigators, police and journalists connected to the case.
The panel said that it has already worked with lawyers to ensure its report complies with human rights legislation, as well as a specialist Metropolitan Police team to ensure it poses no security risks.
It also said that the role of the Home Secretary was limited to reporting to Parliament on the panel’s work, receiving its report, laying it before Parliament, and responding to its findings.
A Home Office spokesman said: “Under the terms it was commissioned in 2013, it is for the Home Secretary to publish the report which she hopes to do as soon as possible.
“The Home Secretary also has an obligation to make sure the report complies with human rights and national security considerations.
“This has nothing to do with the independence of the report and the Home Office is not seeking to make edits to it.
“As soon as we receive the report, we can begin those checks and agree a publication date.
“The Home Secretary fully supports the family first approach and is hoping to meet them to discuss the report and its findings in person.”