Counter-terror police arrest Tory frontbencher
Crazed over-reaction much?
Shadow immigration minister Damian Green was arrested and questioned by Metropolitan police for nine hours yesterday.
His home and office in Kent were searched along with an address in West London. Green's office at the House of Commons was also searched. It is believed the investigation is linked to the leaking of embarrassing information from the Home Office - a Home Office official was arrested last week in connection with leaked documents.
David Davis told the BBC the case was reminiscent of Robert Mugabe's Zimbabwe.
A spokesman for the Met told The Register: "A 52-year old man was arrested in Kent yesterday he has been bailed to return to a central London police station in February."
A spokesman for the Tory Party said: "As Shadow Immigration Minister Mr Green has, on a number of occasions, legitimately revealed information which the Home Office chose not to make public. Disclosure of this information was manifestly in the public interest."
"Mr Green denies any wrongdoing and stands by his actions."
It is highly unusual for police to arrest serving MPs - an informal interview is the more normal route. Home Office officials insist the investigation was started after they complained to the Met and that no ministers were involved.
The leaks are believed to include: revealing that Jacqui Smith knew the Security Industry Authority had given licenses to 5,000 illegal immigrants, that an illegal immigrant was working as a cleaner in the House of Commons and a letter from Jacqui Smith warning that a recession would likely lead to an increase in crime.
Despite the denials it seems highly unlikely that the Met police would make such an arrest without informing ministers.
All the more so, after it emerged that Mayor of London Boris Johnson was told in advance of the operation and had expressed "trenchant" concerns.
A statement from Johnson's office said: "The mayor finds it hard to believe that on the day when terrorists have gone on the rampage in India that anti-terror police in Britain have apparently targeted an elected representative of Parliament for no greater crime than allegedly receiving leaked documents."®
Massive own goal by whacky jacky
I bumped into my criminal defence solicitor today and had a chat about this incident and he thought it was great as it now highlights in the public eye just how heavily the police are manipulated by government.
The talk in legal circles is that the home office did sanction the raid and arrest and Wacky Jacky was more than aware of the arrest of Damien Green despite her denials.
It would be interesting if it did go to a charging decision and trial as it would go before a jury and the level of disclosure is such that the police and home office would be obliged to disclose all material unless they seek Public Interest Immunity certificates, and thats only going to happen if they need to hide the fact they did know!
We need a Robert Mugabe icon for the police state we live in
I love that "Lord Mandelson of Fay" - le mot juste indeed.
And AC above: This cunning stunt...." The Spoonerism was intentional, I presume.
Now to my own comment:
Can one imagine any plod, with a career and pension to protect, setting up the arrest of a shadow minister - not for cottaging or shoplifting or child porn (crimes the public would readily understand to be abhorent in one so senior) - but merely for leaking information embarrassing to the government, and then violating an office in the House of Commons, unless he had explicit instructions from a very high level?
Jacqui and Gordon may pretend not to have known of it: if they didn't, they are incompetent, if they did - well it's only another NuLab lie, but redolent of the hidden agenda of nazification.
Poor, poor s*ds who still live in England's green and pleasant land; I've been lucky enough to flie the coop, and life here is just about liveable on a stingy British pension.
Even PH would realise that we haven't been told everything - if only it would come to court!
RE: Ray Hartman
[Armed to the teeth] "But the POWER to do so --- that power is reserved to each citizen."
Not unless they are a member of a militia, if I remember the US constitution (+amendments) correctly. Obviously not something that appeals to many gun owners and your government isn't exactly in a position to say "hand all those guns over, you're breaking the law..."
Either way around, it's got f-all to do with free speech. Unless you're also suggesting that the MP with the biggest gun should become Prime Minister?