Shami Chakrabarti, the shadow attorney general, has accused police of stepping out of line by announcing plans to push for the prosecution of more than 1,100 Extinction Rebellion protesters.
Errr, exactly how is this ‘stepping out of line’..?
Deputy assistant commissioner Laurence Taylor said on Friday that the Metropolitan police had a team of 30 officers preparing cases against those arrested during the protests over Easter, and that he anticipated putting “all of those [cases] to the Crown Prosecution Service for decisions”.
He’s simply announcing what he plans to do, which is well within his job description.
Chakrabarti said: “The deputy assistant commissioner would be wise to remember his constitutional role, which is not that of prosecutor, judge or commentator.”
Where to start?
Firstly, he’s not prosecuting, he’s putting that to the CPS to decide. Which will lead to a judgement from a jury. And since when was he unable to comment?
If so, I don’t recall it.
“The police perform a vital role in preserving the law and keeping the peace, which includes safeguarding the rights of peaceful protesters. The next Labour government will review the statute book to ensure that the right to peaceful protest is robustly protected.”
The next Labour government…? Oh, I didn’t realise we were talking about something so far in the future!