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SOCPA - barbara tucker in court again today - report

rikki | 19.09.2006 15:49 | SOCPA | Indymedia | Repression | London

the police tried more confused and bizarre tactics against barbara tucker in a pre-trial hearing today at westminster magistrates court. superintendent terry is behaving more and more like a madman obsessed by a personal vendetta against this peaceful anti-war campaigner

barbara appeared at westminster magistrate court 1 today for a pre-trial hearing relating to her arrest for alleged 'obstruction of the highway' outside downing street on the day of the massive london demonstration (5th august) against the illegal occupation of lebanon. the whole of this case has been very bizarre from the start. as reported previously (in brian haw article at, barbara was standing outside downing street and police tried to use an array of laws to remove her, finally settling on the classic 'obstruction of the highway' (all by herself?). she was illegally (PACE regulations) held in tight handcuffs for more than two hours (pics at before being released in kentish town on bail.

attending bail at charing cross on the 7th september, she was further assaulted, held for 23 hours under very dubious legal grounds, denied a solicitor, and hauled to court where police were hoping to have her thrown in prison until a november trial. fortunately, court staff were suitably shocked and managed to contact her solicitor who saved the day. barbara was however given a conditional bail curbing her rights of freedom of speech or assembly by preventing her from approaching downing street. this bail condition was thrown out as unlawful in court last week ( at the same time as another police case against her was deemed 'void ab initio' by the judge (a strong legal term implying a wholly flawed and possibly corrupt prosecution).

but the police vendetta (seemingly led by superintendent terry at charing cross) carried on, and last night she was harrassed by police again while peacefully standing with a banner outside downing street. in the ensuing altercation, police waved their machine guns at one man as she was pinned against the railings and rear-handcuffed before being held for several hours again at charing cross on a section 5 public order offence ('behaviour liable to cause alarm or distress'). (report at there is an irony in the police using this legislation against her, given the effect their campaign is having on her.

in court today over the 'obstruction' allegation, barbara learnt that the police were now trying to convert it after the event to a socpa-related offence, and that the crazed superintendent terry was demanding to be a witness even though he hadn't even been present on the 5th august. she also learnt that the prosecution had not prepared their primary disclosures for the court, and it also came to light that during her 23 hours in custody, barbara had not even been charged or cautioned for the alleged obstruction!

further dates in november were set for a hearing, but it would not be surprising if the case gets thrown out like previous ones. in the meantime, barbara is launching actions against the police for at least two unlawful arrests, and contemplating what possible legal means she can employ to bring an end to the intimidation campaign against her.

steve jago was also in court today, and like barbara last week, has had the conditions on his bail removed as they were deemed unlawful.

in the same court previously this morning, the metropolitan police commissioner, who is implicated in barbara's socpa cases, and whom she intends to subpoena as a witness in a future case, pleaded not guilty to health and safety breaches over the fatal shooting of jean charles de menezes last year. barbara is understandably shaken and concerned at being surrounded by gun-toting police while she carried evidence of government war-crimes on her banner - people have been shot for far less!!

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Display the following 2 comments

  1. time for — SuperTerry
  2. She is... — Bob