Line of Duty 3 will begin filming in April for a likely end of year broadcast

BBC2’s hit drama series about police corruption starring Martin Compston and Vicky McClure is likely to be broadcast at the back end of this year

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Line of Duty fans will have to wait a little longer for their next fix of internal affairs intrigue.

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A senior source on the police drama tells RadioTimes.com that filming of series three is due to begin in April, with the completed run scheduled for delivery to the BBC around autumn.

That suggests a late autumn/winter airing of the long-awaited return of writer Jed Mercurio’s hit drama which is set in a police corruption unit and stars Martin Compston and Vicky McClure.

But will Keeley Hawes be reprising her intense and enigmatic role as corrupt copper Lindsay Denton? Our source was tight-lipped so we’ll have to wait and see whether she will find a way out of the long prison term she was facing at the end of series two.

However, BBC controller of drama commissioning Ben Stephenson has already promised that the third series will be  even better than the previous two.

He revealed at the Edinburgh Television Festival that writer Mercurio has “outdone himself” after reading a first draft of the script.

“I have just read episode one of Line of Duty three and I was sitting alone in my flat on Sunday evening reading it. And I literally said to myself ‘Oh my God I can’t believe that’s happening’. And I said ‘Oh my God, Jed is so clever he has outdone himself’.”

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Last year Stephenson commissioned two more series of the drama following the success of the second run, meaning that series four is likely to air in 2016.