Category Archives: Uncategorized

PDF of the Judgement on all Four Judicial Reviews

This was released by the High Court at 10:00 AM today, Wednesday 18th of July.

hicks-others-commissioner-police-metropolis-judgment

The claimants need a little time to look into our options, but we strongly disagree with the conclusions of this judgement and may seek to appeal it.

“So, what happened about your trial, guys?”

We keep being asked this question but – frustratingly – the answer is still ‘watch this space’. As the court hearing adjourned at the very beginning of June and the judges mentioned that they wouldn’t have time to consider a verdict until the end of June – we’re assuming that we will get the results some time in July.

The case had hundreds of pages of evidence (at least 3 moving-house-sized boxes’ worth) and obviously the judges will want to weigh up all the evidence and all legal precedents very carefully.

We hope and assume we will have the results before the Olympics begin, and that if there are any learnings or recommendations from the judgement that they will be applied to the policing of the Olympics, but… we’ll just have to wait and see.

Stay tuned – you’ll be the first to know.

Pre-emptive arrests planned for Olympics

Article from the Guardian – Olympic Games 2012: police plan pre-emptive arrests to stop disruption.

They plan to arrest people pre-emptively to stop disruption. Not criminality. The ‘gold commander’ in charge of this large scale operation will be Commander Broadhurst – the same person who was in charge of the policing of the royal wedding.

If this sounds horrific to you and you can make it to any of the Olympic sites or live in any of the surrounding burroughs – you could volunteer to become a community legal observer during the Olympics. Newham Monitoring Project is running training on Saturday the 9th of June and Friday the 15th of June.

The case has been reported everywhere from the BBC to the Morning Star to the Daily Mail.

Under the media tab there is an in the news section which we are updating daily with all the coverage. Check it out.

Pageantry & pre-crime: Royal Wedding arrests Judicial Review begins Monday at the High Court

This Monday 28 May, sees a landmark Judicial Review begin at the High Court examining policing tactics – including the use of ‘pre-crime’ arrests – employed around last year’s Royal Wedding, which will likely impact future policing of upcoming events such as the Jubilee and the Olympics. [1]

Zombies in the Evening Standard newspaperHannah Eiseman-Renyard, one of the fifteen people granted leave to challenge their arrests by way of a Judicial Review, said: “Saturday 29 April last year was a day of contrasts. On one hand there was pageantry, celebration, pomp and ceremony as William Windsor and Kate Middleton got married. However, on the other hand, dozens of innocent people were arrested by the Metropolitan Police, handcuffed and detained for crimes which they had not committed, in an apparent attempt to silence potential dissent.”

“These ‘pre-crime’ arrests were supposedly to pre-emptively ‘prevent a breach of the peace’. In reality, they are part of a trend of increasingly heavy-handed tactics employed against peaceful protestors, aimed at creating a ‘chilling effect’ to dissuade others from protesting in the future. With this Judicial Review, we plan to challenge the validity of this style of policing and our unnecessary arrests – the use of such tactics raises questions of constitutional significance with regard to the role of policing in a democracy.”

The Judicial Review hearing will be heard with three other cases arising out of the police’s actions over the course of the Royal Wedding bank holiday weekend: two concerning raids on squats on 28 April by officers of the Metropolitan Police Service and the other arising out of another pre-emptive arrest of a minor on the day of the Royal Wedding. The 15 claimants, who were all released without charge once the public celebrations had finished, are being represented by Karon Monaghan QC and Ruth Brander. [2] The claimants in the three other cases have different legal teams.

“It is our view that the treatment of our clients was unlawful under common law and was in breach of their fundamental rights,” said a spokesperson from Bhatt Murphy, the civil liberties solicitors who are representing the claimants. “The apparent existence of an underlying policy that resulted in those arrests is a matter of considerable concern with implications for all those engaged in peaceful dissent or protest.”

Who was arrested?
Those arrested were not a cohesive group and they did not have cohesive aims. Some were people on their way to peaceful protests, others were people the police merely suspected of being protestors. Those arrested include members of the ‘Charing Cross 10’ who were on their way to a republican street party, the ‘Starbucks Zombies’ who were arrested from an Oxford Street branch of Starbucks for wearing zombie fancy dress, and a man who was simply walking in London and was arrested by plainclothes officers because he was ‘a known activist’.

Daniel Randall, one of the ‘Charing Cross 10’ arrestees, said: “The British Transport Police officer’s comment confirmed our suspicions that the police were using pre-emptive arrests as a political tactic to keep republican voices off the streets and out of the public eye.”

Erich, a Starbucks Zombie arrestee, said: “I was told by the police, ‘if you’re going to dress like that, you’ve got to expect to be arrested’. And I thought I had to break the law to be arrested.”

Notes
[1] The website Pageantry and Precrime has blog posts, accounts, and footage from various arrests on the day of the royal wedding. It aims to gather all public domain information on the court case into one place https://pageantryandprecrime.wordpress.com/
[2] Bhatt Murphy is a leading civil liberties firm which specialises in police misconduct, prisoners’ rights, deaths in custody and immigration detention. Karon Monaghan QC –
http://www.matrixlaw.co.uk/Members/29/Karon%20Monaghan.aspx. Ruth Brander – http://www.doughtystreet.co.uk/barristers/ruth_brander.cfm

1 Year On: arrestees & their solicitor talk to the Guardian

Daniel Randall of the Charing Cross 10, Hannah Eiseman-Renyard of the Starbucks Zombies and their lawyerr Sophie Naftalin of Bhatt Murphy Solicitors talk to the Guardian.

“Fifty-five people were arrested on the day of the royal wedding last year, 30 of them for a potential breach of the peace. A year on, 15 of them are taking the police to court for a judicial review to challenge the tactics that were used that day against a ‘hypothetical protest that had already been criminalised’. They tell the Guardian why they want the law to change and discuss what the practice could mean for the policing of protests at the Olympics”

Guardian Video

One year on – see you in Soho

It’s not as big an event as the court case at the end of May, but but to mark the one year anniversary of the police’s ‘precrime’ pre-emptive arrests over the royal wedding, there will be a gathering in Soho Square (the site of a number of the arrests including the Starbucks Zombies, the Frith Street Two, and others).

Come as you are. Bring your friends, bring your cameras, bring some food & drink to share.

We are not afraid. We will not be silenced. We will see them in court.

Facebook event is here.