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Police chief: arrest numbers not as high as we said

Cop watcher | 18.10.2009 11:29 | Climate Chaos

Nottinghamshire Police's Chief Inspector has admitted that the figure of 80 people arrested during the first day of the climate swoop at Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station was not correct. In fact only 52 people were arrested.

Nottinghamshire Police were providing regular updates on what they call "Operation Meridian" on their website throughout yesterday. This morning (Sunday 18/10/09) Update 8 consisted of an "interview" with Nottinghamshire Police Chief Inspector Linda McCarthy.

Strangely who this interview was with is not stated and the questions are omitted, although we are to take it that the exchange took place at 11.15am. Whatever its provenance, McCarthy reveals in this update, that the widely reported figure of 80 people arrested is inaccurate:

"I just want to clarify the situation around those people arrested. There are 52 people arrested for a variety of offences, not 80 as was given as an estimated figure last night. I’m sure you all appreciate the speed at which we were trying to give information throughout the day yesterday – but 52 is the correct figure."

This is considerable exaggeration, not least because ten of these arrests took place early yesterday morning before the action had even begun. Police would certainly have had more than sufficient time to process those initial arrestees, leaving them only 42 to deal with once things started to get more hectic.

Of course, the 80 arrested figure has already been widely reported. See e.g. Sky News' article headlined "Eighty Held After Power Station Clashes". In typically Orwellian fashion, the BBC have updated their original report to include the new figures, without any reference to their having ever claimed otherwise.

This highlights once again the problems with relying on the police for information. All too often "official" sources are regarded as more reliable than those from grassroots movements, but if they can't manage something as simple as counting the number of people in their cells, it is not obvious why this should be.

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Display the following 4 comments

  1. doesn't add up — counter-intelligence
  2. ++ insightful — bone_idol
  3. Simple really — who ate all the pi?
  4. now I've heard everything — ACAB