I just read this article in the guardian, thanks to a post on Jyoti’s Blog – it’s the story of a guy that was arrested on the tube under the ‘prevention of terrorism act’, had his flat searched, DNA and fingerprints taken and has now been landed with what looks like it may be a permanent police record despite being found innocent, just because he was carrying a rucksack and wearing a coat.
This is some seriously fucked up stuff. Really really scary – if it had gone another way he might have ended up with a bullet in his head like that poor Brazillian lad. He’s done nothing, is entirely innocent, and yet is now ‘on file’.
Why is London turning into some crap version of a Judge Dread cartoon? This doesn’t make us safer from terrorism. It makes all of us more distrustful of the police – surely that’s a really bad policy at this time, when trust in the police is already pretty damned low. It’s not going to put terrorists off, just make them more determined to beat the system that has presented them with this challenge.
If they need to stop people, surely the least they can do is wipe records clean when a person is proven to be utterly innocent, to treat them and their possessions with respect. Instead, he’s treated with suspicion all along, has his privacy violated in a number of ways, his girlfriend is terrified, and his chances of ever getting a work visa in the US are now utterly buggered.
It’s nice to know that the people that are supposed to be looking after us are doing such a damn fine job of breeding fear.
Once again, I feel sorry for those police officers who entered the force to actually protect and help people. They are going to be labeled along with the muppets that arrested David Mery as some kind of Miliitia.
Very scary stuff. Way way scarier than the threat of a terrorist attack, seriously.
Soundtrack – my last.fm ‘neighbours’ radio station. (no, that doesn’t mean I spend all day listening to tracks by Kylie Jason and Stefan Dennis)by