Were you stopped and searched at the Stop the Racist March for England (Stop MFE) protest in Brighton on Sunday 27 April? Were you arrested or threatened with arrest for refusing to give your name and address?
No one has to give their name and address if they are stopped and searched by the police. This includes the use of blanket search powers under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice Act 1994, which allows a police officer to search anyone in a specific area for offensive weapons.
However, Netpol has received a growing number of reports of officers threatening arrest – or even making potentially unlawful arrests – because individuals are exercising the rights to withhold their personal information during a search. There is some evidence to suggest that certain police forces are prepared to overlook the questionable legality of these searches and arrests because of their value in gathering intelligence.
We are particularly concerned about reports of the misuse of section 60 from anti-fascist protesters who took part in the Stop the Racist March for England counter-demonstration on 27 April.
If you were stopped & searched in Brighton and were also pressured by police to give you name and address, we want to hear from you. Please get in touch – you can find out how to contact us here