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letter to kent police legal services

ff | 14.08.2008 17:36 | Climate Camp 2008 | Liverpool

hands up who is havin difficulty gettin stuff back from the kent police?

at approx. 0400 hours, sat 2nd aug 2008, the following items were removed from a vehicle (reg. N*** ***)

3 lengths of hosepipe
1 leatherman
1 tin of spray paint
1 marker pen
1 marquee repair kit
several tubes of fabric glue

i was informed that i would be able to retrieve these items on mon 11th aug, once the climate camp had ended. we were told we would have 7 days in which to claim the property back.

we were then informed that the police,
1, would only return items seized from a vehicle to the vehicle owner.
2, had mislaid many of the stolen items.
3, had decided that they were not going to give them back anyway.
4, wanted every persons name and address before they would consider returning the property to whomever was willing to hand over these details.
5, would hand the items over on mon 11th aug.
6, would definitely hand them over on tue 12th aug.
7, the person who is dealing with this is having a day off today, tue 12th aug.

at this point i could no longer remain in kent and have therefore returned home.
however, i fear my property will languish in a police cell for some time if this absurdity can not be resolved.

can you help?

i had not been planning on staying until tue, it has inconvenienced me, my family, my friends and also cost me money.
it will cost me money to return to kent in order to retrieve these items.

i fully expect kent police to be held accountable for these costs and for questions to be asked as to why high ranking officers were giving misleading and contradictory information to british subjects who had neither been accused of nor arrested for any crime.

i would like to know how the senior officer can justify, not only, removing such everyday, commonplace articles one may expect to encounter in a vehicle that is equiped for a camping trip, but also, then holding said items for ransom in the manner of a child who takes his ball home just because he's not able to score a goal.

mostly, i would just like my stuff back.

therefore, i fully authorise medway police force, or whomever needs to be authorised, to release my property to any member of the climate camp who is also waiting for their property.
i think my property would be much safer with even the most random of strangers who have just shared the experience that i have had, rather than in the custody of the police force.

it would be much easier for me to retrieve my property from a fellow camper rather than continue in this fools errand of continuously being pushed from pillar to post by the inscrutable machinations of those responsible for the decisions so far listed.

i am sure that you are aware that a local couple,*** and ***, have kindly offered to facilitate the hand over of items for those of us who are not residents.
i also authorise them to claim my items.

one more thing.

i know this should go without saying, but call me cynical.
if my property is released, please make a note off where it has gone to. i know that none of us would like to see it disappear into the ether. i understand how easy it could be to pass it over and forget to register pertinent details.

so, feel free to pass on this email address to whatever kind person rescues my property, and between us i'm sure we'll be able to figure out a stress free and amicable method of exchange.

oh, and just to help matters some more, i shall post this email around relevant lists and media sources to ensure that as many campers as possible are aware of the situation and possible solution.

i look forward to hearing from you at the earliest opportunity.



Possible alternative procedure for return of property.

15.08.2008 19:32


Further to Mike's suggestion for return of property held by police, which is the normal procedure especially if you concede that the siezure was lawful by the police, and is a relatively simple procedure after reading up on the law which you can start by issuing a summons from a magistrates' court (please avoid political magistrates' courts, like City of Westminster MC).

If you are able to assess the purported grounds given by the police for the siezure and it turns out that 'there was no power to make the siezure' then you may like to consider getting a summons, to the Crown Court, for the Chief Constable for Kent under section 59 of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001. You can either read this act online at:, or from your local library: Archbold: Criminal Pleading, Evidence and Practice, mine is 2007 but the 2008 version may have this as well, chapter 15-137.

To get the summons started, you could just go down to the Magistrates' (or Crown) Court, and usually one of the staff will assist you to know what to put in it, it doesn't have to be perfect just put in the key required bits. The court will usually issue the summons, make sure you retain a copy of your application stamped by the court as received with the date. If the court won't issue the summons, you can send it by special/recorded delivery to the Chief Constable for Kent - Chief Constable Michael Fuller. Apparently their HQ is Sutton Road, Maidstone, Kent ME15 9BZ.

Finally, if the siezure is questionable you may want to consider reporting this as a theft, you could send your letter to the above address and request confirmation of receipt within a reasonable time, say 7 days.

Good Luck.

mail e-mail:


Display the following 5 comments

  1. Do you have a solicitor? — Mike
  2. fixit — Al Asitis
  3. Camp legal team are talking to Kent police — Onlyme
  4. Small claims court — victim of police crime
  5. and here's their reply — ff