Legal

Alleged assault of anti-fracking protester outside shale gas site – police to send file to prosecutors

Fylde police logo

Lancashire Police confirmed this afternoon that it was sending a file to the Crown Prosecution Service over the alleged assault of a protester outside Cuadrilla’s shale gas site at Preston New Road.

A post on the Fylde Police Facebook page at just after 5pm said that a 28-year-old man had been interviewed on Monday and reported for summons.

170719 Fylde Police Facebook

The alleged assault happened on 4 July and film of it was widely shared on social media. The police investigation was reported by the Blackpool Gazette, DrillOrDrop and The Canary website.

A 31-year-old protester made a formal complaint that he had been assaulted by security staff.

The police said today they had made further inquiries following the complaint. The post continued:

“On 17 July 2017, a 28-year-old male was interviewed under caution by officers regarding this and other matters.

“As a result of this the male has been reported for summons and a file will be sent to the Crown Prosecution Service.”

Updated 20/7/2017 to amend headline and text

20 replies »

  1. So the deliberate winding up of police and security men, pushing, shouting abuse and other shenanigans has [allegedly] lead to someone maybe losing their cool. That will mean that someone who went into an honest day of work will almost certainly lose his job, and maybe be unable to work in this field again.

    I wonder if he has a family? How will they feel?

    Shocking behaviour by activists on a daily basis is the crime here. Anarchism (and that is what it is) should not win.

    • The man who was [allegedly] assaulted did not shout abuse, or push, or shove or deliberately wind anyone up. It’s all on video.

    • The police are ‘trained’ ~ supposedly…these private security staff are just untrained things in uniform…if the police were really doing their job the security person in question would have been prevented from [allegedly] acting this way and ‘getting himself in to trouble”’and then there is just the small matter of the police having been sequestered by a private company…a private company whose activities and practices will pump toxins in to the water supply. He should have thought about his family before he decided to support a fracking organisation…if you are going to imply ‘moral’ judgement and behaviour here, it’s a two-way street and video evidence shows who is acting in a provoking and aggressive manner…without the authority to do so.

    • Wow, you have a sad grasp of reality. Security officers are not allowed to use aggression, especially on public land. If he lost his cool while dealing with a peaceful and non aggressive protector, then he is in the wrong profession, and the sooner he gets kicked out, the better

  2. That was the problem, he wasn’t working in the field, he began [allegedly] kicking and punching a protester on the road. That’s called assault. You clearly find democratic processes and rights too hard a concept to grasp. Presumably that’s why you hide behind an alias [edited by moderator]

    • [Moderator: Another contributor has requested that comments suggesting the identity of Anon be removed]

    • [Moderator: Another contributor has requested that comments suggesting the identity of Anon be removed]

  3. We don’t do sia training to loose control and use vioĺence to keep things secure. Insecurities are showing in the security and officers on this site, you can see it in their eyes and body language on the videos. Like at the road protests in the 90s it is only a matter of time before some of them turn on their masters and choose to serve the people over polititions and big business. Day in day out, whats it all about.

  4. “Anon” that’s a cop out even for a nom de plume? Who are you?

    “Someone maybe losing their cool”? “An honest days work”? Security staff are not beyond the law, though often it appears that way at Preston New Road.

    “Shocking behaviour by activists”? “Anarchism”? Were you there, have you ever been there or do you just comment from your pre-judged moral high ground? When democracy fails communities the only option is non- violent direct action but if violence is the response from “security staff” it will and should be dealt with by the courts.

  5. Non violent direct action MM?
    Firstly its violent, provocative and threatening. Look at the footage any day.
    Secondly, preventing a legal licenced activity by blocking access etc, is a crime.

    Are you suggesting that anything you disagree with warrants illegal acts? That is almost a definition of anarchism. Democracy was not ‘failed’. A subcommittee of the Planning Dept took a decision they were told they could not do legally, and that was overturned on appeal (part of the democratic process) and two planning inquiries+Sec of State for a democratically elected government.

    Perhaps I should smash up parking ticket machines if I get a ticket? Or assault security staff if my football team loses?

    • [Moderator: Name removed at request of another contributor] if they couldn’t take that decision legally why did we waste 6 weeks at the enquiry ( when I say we I don’t mean you as I dont think you bothered to turn up did you?). If it had been illegal it would simply have been overturned. You seemed happy enough to protest about something as trivial as access to a paragliding launch area, so I am surprised you seem to have such double standards.

    • [Edited by moderator] Anon. Please publish a link to the alleged violent and threatening behaviour by the protectors…..you reckon it happens a lot, so you should have no problem.
      Protest is legal, and for you to state otherwise is wrong.

  6. ‘Are you suggesting that anything you disagree with warrants illegal acts? That is almost a definition of anarchism’

    it most certainly is not anywhere near a definition of anarchism

  7. Yes. Non-violent action is the way I have seen it from the protesters in every video I have watched. Anon really needs eyes testing.

    The comment about legality of blocking access is totally spurious, using the term “legally licenced” to give undue weight and imply that any activity carried out in furtherance of any activity, licenced or otherwise, is therefore legal. Which is of course nonsense, as comparison with holding a driving licence will demonstrate with a minute’s thought. But Anon only needs to look at the history of the actions at Balcombe and at Barton Moss to see the pathetic failure rate in the courts, the refusal by magistrates to accept the illegality of direct actions, not to mention the refusal of the crown Prosecution Service in many cases to take up police charges (and PNR is little different, as time will tell), to find the statistics show his suggestion to be wrong as a point of fact and practice.

    As well as some legal education, Anon also needs to examine the history of democracy as it unfolded in this case. The senior LCC development and planning committee (not some “subcommittee” of a “department”) was not told they could not refuse a planning application legally. Nonsense. They certainly had legal advice from QC David Manley (who gave the advice via a phone call when he was unlikely to have been in full possession of the facts of the case) through their own officers that a refusal against officer advice was precarious and therefore if challenged at appeal, might render them subject to appeal costs. The committee received separate legal advice from two other sources that the committee was fully entitled to come to a different decision from that of its officers, and in this case there was a rational argument for refusal on noise and landscape impact, according to the evidence that had been presented to the committee. Provided the refusal was supported by evidence at appeal, there was no serious risk of costs even if the appeal were allowed.

    It is not unusual for committee decisions to go against officer recommendation, as I know from my own experience as a councillor. Rightly. It is, after all, the councillors who are the elected representatives, not the officers who are employed to facilitate the council’s work. And in this case the committee decided to weigh the evidence presented to them over three days from experts and public, together with legal advice received and vote for refusal. Yes the main planning application went to appeal, and the appeal was granted. But it is significant that NO costs were subsequently awarded against the Council on the main application, proving the validity of the legal advice the committee had received from independent QC and barristers.

    Anon’s final arguments are the well-known device of [edited by moderator] the straw man argument [edited by moderator]. If he studies the subject as much as he professes he will know the truth, which assumption leads to the conclusion he intends wilfully to distort it for his own undisclosed ends. A shameful stance when he is promoting the Fylde, its environment and communities to years of being used as guinea-pigs in a doomed-to failure experiment. It is even more shameful when he condones aggression and violence by security staff. I content myself with knowing his self-intervention into debate is counter-productive, and he only serves to increase the resolve of those fighting to protect their families and communities.

  8. The way I have seen protestors acting in the past shows the excellent restraint adopted by the security guards. Someone comes up to me in the street and acts like that they are going down. Anyway no biggie, exploration is on the cusp now. Government have shown nothing will stop them hence signed off on whatever police costs it takes to get the job done. A few NIMBYs and lost souls are a mere hindrance. Its really sad they haven’t had more of an impact considering all their resources have been allocated to 2 sites, it just shows how little support the antis have.
    There is a rising appetite for energy security over the last few months.

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