Photographer/Terrorist

Reuben Powell was detained for taking photographs in South-East London. A few days before that, press photographer Jess Hurd was questioned while shooting outside a hotel in Docklands. There have been numerous similar incidents over the last year or so.

Harassment of photographers by the police, CSOs, and private security staff is nothing new but it does seem to be reaching epidemic proportions.

In both these cases Section 44 of the Terrorism Act was used. It seems to be increasingly common for the police to circumvent “reasonable grounds” for a stop and search by invoking terror legislation. Such widespread abuse of power has worrying implications not just for photographers but also for the general public.

MP Austin Mitchell has raised an early day motion over the issue and is hoping to engage in talks with the Home Office. I'm not holding my breath.

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