Episode 044 is the 1701st episode of The Bill.

Another body is found on the banks of the Thames. Nick begs Cass to stick her neck on the line and find out if it's a girl he knows. After witnessing club girl Sandie being strong-armed out of Mick Mortimer's office PC Nick Klein is frantic. Sandie was stitched up by DS Phil Hunter to save the operation (and his reputation) but yet another girl is fished from the river. Nick suspects he may be in too deep and begs Cass to stick her neck on the line and find out if it's a girl he knows. Phil has been manipulating the undercover operation since day one, now it's shipment day. The drugs arrive from Holland, the money is ready and the locations are all set, but why does the DCI have such a bad feeling, and since when did Phil play by the rulebook? Unwilling to let sleeping dogs lie, Supt Tom Chandler visits Anne Merrick to prove his innocence. There's a can of worms there that don't want opening, especially with Anne's distressed mental state. There are disastrous consequences ahead. It's a humiliating moment for Sgt Craig Gilmore when Luke brings in a drunk and disorderly, who just happens to know them both. And PC Tony Stamp experiences trauma when Robbie unwittingly gives local journalist, Simon Kitson, a reminder of his sexual abuse case. [Source:] Jim Alexander makes his first appearance as Carl Jones for 6 episodes until Episode 073.

In a settled transmission policy for the first time since moving from three half-hour episodes a week, now broadcasts twice a week on a Wednesday and Thursday, barring significant commitments by the ITV network to live sporting events and awards shows, when episodes are brought forward or deferred.

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