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Thursday, 30 July 2020 10:30

Black Lives Matter litigation

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The police could be sued over tactics deployed during protests supporting the Black Lives Matters movement, the Gazette has learned.

The Black Protest Legal Support group was set up to provide free advice and representation to activists and protesters. Committee member Danielle Manson, a barrister at Garden Court Chambers, told a Public Law Project conference this week to ‘watch this space’ over the possibility of legal action.

 

Demonstrations and protests have been held across the globe, including in central London and other UK cities, following the death of George Floyd in the US.

Manson told the conference that members of the support group attended the marches as ‘legal observers… and act as watchdogs over the use of force being exercised by the police’. She spoke about two tactics she saw herself in central London - kettling (where police form large cordons to control large crowds) and facial recognition technology.

She said: ‘Having been on the ground myself, I felt there was tension. Protesters were angry. I would not have gone as far as to say there was an imminent breach of the peace. Once the police satisfied themselves there was an imminent breach of the peace, they made the decision to kettle.'

Manson said kettles were themselves not controversial. ‘But what we did find controversial and questionable was what the police were requiring for people permitted to leave the kettle. Examples I saw myself were police officers asking for personal details of those in the kettle [such as] name, date of birth and address.’

For full article https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/news/police-could-be-sued-over-black-lives-matter-protests/5105195.article?utm_source=gazette_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Paltry+return+for+McMillan+creditors+%7c+BLM+action+%7c+Employment+tribunals_07%2f29%2f2020

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