Archive for the ‘Police Censorship’ Category

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Old Bailey A man investigated by police over a poem about transgenderism is launching a landmark High Court case to overhaul unfair police rules on hate crimes.Harry Miller is to seek a judicial review of the hate crime guidelines followed by police forces across Britain, claiming they are unlawful because they inhibit freedom of expression.

He argues that the current guidance, published by the College of Policing in 2014, the body responsible for training officers, promotes the recording of incidents as hate crimes even when there is no evidence of hate beyond the opinion of an accuser.

Miller’s legal team has highlighted a clause in the rules that state such incidents must be recorded by officers irrespective of any evidence to identify the hate element.

Miller is also challenging a decision by Humberside Police to record his re-tweeting of the poem as a hate incident — despite officers concluding that no crime had been committed.

He was quizzed by Humberside Police in January after posting the verse about men who transition to be women, which included the lines: You’re a man … And we can tell the difference … Your hormones are synthetic. He said he was dumbfounded by the exchange and furious when he found out that his sharing of the verse had been recorded as a hate incident.

Explaining his reasons for launching legal action, the businessman told the Mail on Sunday:

It is about the ability to have freedom of speech within the law and being allowed to have a debate without one group being able to call on the police to shut another group down.

Free speech is being closed down by a climate of fear and secrecy and the police are contributing to this Orwellian culture.

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cuba flag che guevara Geoff Oliver and wife Maria run El Cuba Libre restaurant in Hyde, Tameside, and were asked by police to take a Cuban flag with Che Guevera’s face superimposed on it.A Greater Manchester Police licensing officer visited the pub saying there had been a complaint about it.

Pub landlord Geoff Oliver said he was told to remove it from the window and was warned if he refused there could be consequences, with it potentially being recorded as a crime. He  described the incident as attempted political censorship and said the request was particularly offensive to his Cuban wife Maria.

The spin from the authorities is that a force licensing officer merely paid a visit on behalf of Tameside council to make him aware of the complaint and ask if he would consider taking it down. They insist he was not told he had to or threatened with an investigation.

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police federation logo The new head of the Police Federation John Apter, who represents 120,000 rank and file officers across England and Wales, has said his members were incredibly frustrated because they have been assigned to sorting out social media spats rather than tackling more serious crimes like burglary.

The new head explained that while resourcing remained the main issue facing policing, there was also a lack of common sense when it came to priorities.

Last week it emerged that Yorkshire Police had asked people to report insults on social media, even if they were not considered to be a hate crime. Other forces have been criticised recently for using computer programmes rather than experienced officers to decide whether a burglary is worth investigating. Such initiatives have led to criticism of the police and the observation that the service is out of touch with the public.

But Apter said nobody was more frustrated than police officers when they were prevented from attending burglaries and other serious crimes. Burglary is one of the most intrusive, horrible crimes that a householder can go through. It makes you feel incredibly vulnerable, but people can sometimes wait days for a police response, Apter said.

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yorkshire police advert 0400x0282 South Yorkshire Police first tweeted a straighforward poster about reporting hate crime:

SouthYorkshirePolice @syptweet:

Hate can be any incident or crime, motivated by prejudice or hostility (or perceived to be so) against a person’s race, religion, sexual orientation, transgender identity or disability. Hate hurts and nobody should have to tolerate it. Report it and put a stop to it #HateHurts

A couple of hours later the police outrageously tweeted again suggesting that people should also report non crimes like online insults:

SouthYorkshirePolice @syptweet:

In addition to reporting hate crime, please report non-crime hate incidents, which can include things like offensive or insulting comments, online, in person or in writing. Hate will not be tolerated in South Yorkshire. Report it and put a stop to it #HateHurtsSY

I wonder if they they then explain to burglary victims that they are too busy to investigate such crimes because they are busy investigating non-crime internet insults.

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poky video UK police are drilling down on a genre of rap music that they claim is driving rising knife and gun crime in London.YouTube has deleted about 30 of 50-60 targeted by the Metropolitan Police in a dedicated operation against drill music, which originated in Chicago and has become increasingly popular in Britain.

Senior officers say the videos, which frequently contain graphic threats and gun signs, glamourise violence. Detective Superintendent Mike West said the number of videos that incite violence have been increasing since late 2015.

The gangs try to outrival each other with the filming and content — what looks like a music video can actually contain explicit language with gangs threatening each other, he added. There are gestures of violence, with hand signals suggesting they are firing weapons and graphic descriptions of what they would do to each other.

Scotland Yard has compiled a central database of more than 1,400 indexed videos that are used to gather intelligence. Anyone identified in the videos can be targeted with action including criminal behaviour orders that can prevent them from associating with certain people, entering designated areas, wearing hoods or using social media and unregistered mobile phones.

Det Supt West said that only videos that raise the risk of violence are flagged, rather than drill music in general.

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failing justice oopsJustice is not seen to being done in the UK. A string of cases have emerged where men have been prosecuted for rape whilst evidence suggesting their innocence has been kept hidden away by the authorities. The presumption is that the authorities are willing to let innocent people be convicted so as to inflate the rape conviction rates to keep feminist campaigners happy.

But once exposed, this failure in justice is surely very corrosive in trying to keep society ticking over in increasingly tetchy times.

So even the police have decided something needs to be done about this disastrous approach to justice. Met police commissioner Cressida Dick has announced that the police will abandon the policy of automatically believing ‘victims ‘. [but using the word ‘victims’ rather suggests the she still automatically believes complainants].

Dick said officers must investigate rather than blindly believe an allegation, and should keep an open mind when a ‘victim’ has come forward. It is very important to victims to feel that they are going to be believed , she told the Times. [But what about when they are out and out lying]. She added:

Our default position is we are, of course, likely to believe you but we are investigators and we have to investigate.

Dick spoke about several other topics including a whinge about the violent undercurrent in some music, especially grime.Meanwhile Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecution overseeing this disgraceful period of injustice, will not get her contract renewed by the government.

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police humberside logoJoshua North, who was prosecuted by Humberside police with the help of counter-terror experts, has been cleared by a jury over his satirical Facebook post where he called for national batter gypos day. A costs order in North’s favour will be made.

North had responded on Facebook after national news reported that travellers had caused trouble in Cleethorpes. North said he made the statement to mock other people’s ‘hateful comments’.

North said the case had led to almost two years of hell for him and his family and noted that there was no investigation into my side of the story.

After he was cleared of inciting racial hatred Joshua North, from Cleethorpes, blasted the decision to prosecute him as political correctness gone mad.  He said:

I told the police, if you check all my other Facebook posts, it indicates that I’m very friendly to immigrants, other races and religions.

The decision to prosecute was criticised by North’s lawyer who said the case had been brought with ‘the full force of the resources of the counter-terrorism unit’. He said:

I am disappointed that the prosecution, who had the full force of the resources of the counter-terrorism unit behind them, did not at any point consider what kind of a person Joshua actually is.

Had they spent any time thinking about him, looking at his other posts or even considering the possibility of another interpretation other than that they fixed upon, it would have occurred to them that Joshua is the last person to incite racial hatred.

Instead, they fixed on an interpretation and they refused to consider any other possibility even after he had advanced his position in interview.

What we have is a young, kind, decent, liberal, broad-minded man who works hard and who has been put through hell.

After the case concluded, Humberside Police defended its decision to charge North, stating it takes hate crime allegations seriously.