back to article Scotland Yard criticised over raid on Parliament

Scotland Yard and the Cabinet Office both came in for further criticism today over their roles in the arrest of Tory MP Damian Green for passing embarrassing documents to the press. Ian Johnston, the chief constable of British Transport Police, said in a report on the affair - censored in parts - that there was a "strong …

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'senior official'

Now, will the 'senior official in the Cabinet Office' who misled the police face disciplinary and/or legal proceedings? Wasting police time if nothing else? If not, why not?

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Stop

High Profile Cases Only?

"noble intentions are not good enough on their own when applied to high profile cases"

But are obviously good enough for the likes of you and me then?

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Big Brother

STBO

"The more we find out about my arrest the more disgraceful it looks." Damien Green

A combined op between NuLab & their tame plod enforcers? - aimed at silencing embarrassing (but not officially secret) opposition dissent.

How can it be anything but disgraceful?

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FAIL

What security failure?

Pretty obvious they were allowed into the building on purpose as part of a cynical campaign to browbeat the public into buying their global warming crap. No, you can bet if it had been fathers for justice or someone campaigning against the war they wouldn't have got anywhere near the place.

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Anonymous Coward

That again?

"noble intentions are not good enough on their own when applied to high profile cases"

Noble intentions should never even be considered in *any* case whatever its profile. It all comes back down to that standard police excuse that they were "acting in good faith".

Back in the day the police were corrupt and would kick the crap out of any suspect in the hopes of getting a confession and at least they were aware they were corrupt and tried to cover it up. These days they are perfectly open about it and simply say they were acting in good faith, which apparently excuses anything.

The basis of a lot of police activity at the moment seems to be to arrest everybody in sight and then release them on bail. That way there's a damn good chance that if somebody turns out to be guilty of something they'll have arrested them early on in the investigation which will give them good scores on some government KPI.

As an example it seems to be standard practice after a fatal RTA to arrest any involved driver who's still alive on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving. How many of these drivers are subsequently released without charge? It would be much better if the police had a very prominent KPI of "percentage of arrests that do not lead to prosecution". Try an FoI request to that effect and I'll bet they come up with some reason why they can't give a response. They need to be accountable on this score and until they are the "arrest everybody, some of them must be guilty of something" culture will continue.

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re:What security failure? - AC @ 12:04 GMT

This brings not reading the article to a whole new level...

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Silver Lining?

"The more we find out about my arrest the more disgraceful it looks." Damien Green

About the only positive aspect of this fiasco is that now even the formerly untouchable are subject to Plod's "acts of good fatih"

"It would be much better if the police had a very prominent KPI of "percentage of arrests that do not lead to prosecution" AC @12:09 GMT

Good idea, that should be compulsory, and it should be on a real-time ticker on Plod's website. Oh, and it should apply to ALL coppers too!

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@found the Met's inquiry had been "well motivated",

Wasn't the letter from the Home Office to the Met that kicked this off addressed to Dear Bob? One interpretation of this was someone asking a friend for a favour.

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Oh well that's okay then

I also take serious exception to

"noble intentions are not good enough on their own when applied to high profile cases"

So it's fine for you or I to be treated like criminals with no evidence and a lot of spin but if it's someone "important" they don't get manhandled? Not because it's not right to barge into their homes without legal backing but because it causes the media to criticise...

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Paris Hilton

Arrest everybody

@AC - "arrest everybody, some of them must be guilty of something"

Plus, what better way to populate a DNA database?

"Sorry, sir, you're free to go, but before you do, we just need to take a DNA sample..."

Paris because she's probably sampled a bit of DNA... but did she swallow the evidence?

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Arrest everyone in sight

I have heard it said (from a policeman) that they cannot investigate a crime without arresting. He then 'clarified' that they cannot interrogate under caution, for which they need to make an arrest, because any interrogation without a caution cannot be presented in evidence. I know that is completely backwards, but what I think he meant was that the whole procedure of gathering evidence is easier if they just arrest everyone - so they do. The legislation has made is so easy to arrest someone (or at least pretend they have a good and vald reason) that is is just easier these days....and there is virtually no comeback for arresting a totally innocent person.

Add that to the propensity for the police to raid on the lightest inteligence (tomato plants) and to do every raid mob handed at the slightest excuse (usually health and safety!) and for the kudos of being involved in 'antiterrorist' operations, and this was bound to happen........and has happened many times. The only difference this time was the height of the stinking pile they found themselves on top of.

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Linux

@Adam Salisbury

"About the only positive aspect of this fiasco is that now even the formerly untouchable are subject to Plod's "acts of good fatih""

Actually Green's managed to have his DNA removed from the police database already as his was an "exceptional case" (exceptional in that he'll be in charge of the police in a few months time). There are 850,000 innocent people on that database who should have been ahead of him in the queue.

I understand that the incoming Tory government will keep the DNA of innocents for 6 years rather than the current 100. So not only has he been treated far better than the hoi polloi, he doesn't plan to afford the plebs the same rights when he gets into power.

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@Drem

... well damn, and now I also have to go and explain why I was rambling about Green on a completely unrelated website.

<-- me

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Re: What security failure?

"Pretty obvious they were allowed into the building on purpose as part of a cynical campaign to browbeat the public into buying their global warming crap."

So we can expect Plane Stupid demonstrators to come and go as they please, too? Didn't think so.

Try not to buy into the "government mentioned it, must hate it" mentality which will inevitably lead to more knee-jerk idiocy when the Tories get back in, fuelled by lazy, despicable commentards in the mainstream media for whom "climate change" and "global warming" have a psychological effect limited to whether they think they might be able to grow grapes on their farm ("just like the Vikings/Romans/hordes of Mordor!"), whether those nasty utility companies (whose privatisation they advocated) will prevent them from spraying down their Range Rovers on an hourly basis, and whether their local Tesco (whom they hate publicly but not in practice) will still be stocking British (the commentard foams at the mouth in patriotic fervour) fruits and vegetables.

Everyone regards the government as a bunch of liars, but regarding "global warming" as something they've invented purely to spite you and your friends does quite a bit of disservice to the people, typically in the developing world, who have to live with the actual presence of some nasty effects of the phenomenon. Of course, since it doesn't involve the Celebritards (Strictly Come Dancing, Ant, Dec, X-Factor, Simon Cowell, J. K. Rowling, and the rest of the media-opiates of the modern Kingdom of the Britards), most people are likely to be unaware of such "foreign matters", but unless the Tories actually pull their fingers out, you'll be hearing quite a bit more about the twin demons of "global warming" and "energy dependency" in the near future.

I look forward to hearing more about "carbon capture" as the Britards reach for the bluntest tools in their shrinking tool bag. Especially since the average Britard probably won't be lectured about that "energy efficiency crap", either.

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FAIL

Why am I not surprised?

(1) Call reporting initial problem - turned out to by a lying politician.

(2) Overresponse by police - turned out to be completed unwarranted.

(3) Secret tape recordings - more unwarranted police action

What I really want to know is:

(1) When does the original liar go to trial for this?

(2) When does plod get taken to task for original overresponse?

(3) When does plod get taken to task for improper recordings?

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Anonymous Coward

@Peter 45

"He then 'clarified' that they cannot interrogate under caution, for which they need to make an arrest, because any interrogation without a caution cannot be presented in evidence."

Except it isn't true. PACE stipulates no such thing.

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@Peter 45, @AC

If it isn't true, it is a very widely held belief amongst constables.

Similarly because PACE allows a search of the home of someone arrested, constables believe that the desire for of a search satisfies the necessity criteria for an arrest.

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Anonymous Coward

@Adam 52

Indeed for an interview to be admissable as evidence in court the interview must have taken place under caution. However plod can caution somebody without arrecting them, but they must be able to demonstrate that the suspect knew they were under caution and the easiest way to demonstrate this is to have arrested them. Another way to demonstrate it is to interview them in the presence of their legal representative, but for some reason plod don't like to do this.

I can't imagine why, but having a suspect advised of his legal rights during questioning seems to get right up there noses.

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