Another Fine Mess

April 21, 2009 at 12:21 pm | Posted in Politics, Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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UPDATE 22-04-2009

All 12 people arrested after the Police raid, that was brought forward because information about the raid was photographed when the officer, then in charge of counter terrorism failed to hide it,  have been released without charge.  11 of them are still in custody as they are likely to be deported.  Is this another case of bad intelligence leading to bad feelings between different communities and the Police?  The problem for the Police here is that, as the raid was carried out in full daylight, people could see how OTT these raids can be.  If the officers have legitimate fears for their safety, then a degree of “heavy handedness” may be appropriate, but my understanding is that none of the people arrested were armed, so having Police officers point loaded pistols at you seems, to me at least, way over the top

So here we are. We’ve had the G20, with one death and at least one unwarranted assault by a member of the Police Service. The death of Ian Tomlinson needs to be investigated with absolute impartiality, otherwise public faith in the Police, already ebbing away, will decrease even further.

WHY?

Because of two things that have happened this week

First, the conspiracy laws were used to prevent a demonstration that could have happen at a power station in the East Midlands. Not only was the demonstration prevented by the arrest of 114 people A police spokesman stated
"The group were believed to be targeting the Ratcliffe-On-Soar coal-fired plant.

He added: “Information received during the operation indicates that a number of those arrested may be linked to a group of climate change protesters who have set up climate camps.

"This group have previously staged demonstrations at Drax power station in North Yorkshire, Heathrow Airport and Kingsnorth power station in Kent." "
But the protests at Drax, Heathrow and Kingsnorth went ahead, it may have involved some extra work for the police, but in all three demos the number of arrests was relatively low, the total number of arrests have been much lower. This is despite the over policing of Kingsnorth due to the policing as the police were "Responding to previous accusations of disproportionate policing measures, ministers had claimed that 70 officers were injured."

But as it later turned out, there was a degree of spinning, as, “It later turned out, however, that no injuries were sustained in clashes with demonstrators, with the figure including such incidents as a suspected wasp sting and sunstroke.”

Secondly we see heavy handed Policing, the woman hit by a baton by a sergeant during the G20 for continuing to arguie with him after he cuffed her and the threat of Life imprisonment to Damian Green for doing his job are just examples of Police acting above their powers

It seems to me that we have two things happening.

First we have a Police force that is capable, and willing, to use spin, and/ot force, rather than facts against people who would, by the law of the land, demonstrate against something which they oppose.

Secondly, and more worryingly we have some Police officers who themselves flout the law. If the officer involved in the Tomlinson attack was not a Police officer he would have been arrested for common assault if a Police officer was present. That officer broke the law, unfortunately for him he cannot be seen to have escaped the consequences, even if it destroys his career.

We must now stop the insidious erosion of human rights within this country, some Police officers may believe we are all guilty before being proved innocent and even then their cynicism may prevent them from accepting that anyone may be innocent. It’s time for you and I to say “Enough”

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