Results of random searches under S.44 of the Terrorism Act 2000

The request was partially successful.

James Bridle

Dear Sir or Madam,

MPS Officers have recently been performing random stop and searches under S.44 of the Terrorism Act 2000. According to the officer in this video: http://tinyurl.com/6m4jv4 - no grounds for suspicion are required to undertake one of these searches.

Please can you provide the number of such searches (random, without grounds for suspicion) undertaken since the implementation of the Terrorism Act 2000, the number of such searches which have resulted in further action (i.e. with a result that is not releasing the person searched without charge), and for those searches, what action was taken.

Thank you very much.

Yours faithfully,

James Bridle

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Bridle

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2008080005128
I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 19 August 2008. I note you
seek access to the following information:

* MPS Officers have recently been performing random stop and searches
under S.44 of the Terrorism Act 2000. According to the officer in
this video: http://tinyurl.com/6m4jv4 - no grounds for suspicion
are required to undertake one of these searches. Please can you
provide the number of such searches (random, without grounds for
suspicion) undertaken since the implementation of the Terrorism
Act 2000, the number of such searches which have resulted in
further action (i.e. with a result that is not releasing the
person searched without charge), and for those searches, what
action was taken

Your request will now be considered in accordance with the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act). You will receive a response within
the statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act,
subject to the information not being exempt or containing a reference
to a third party. In some circumstances the MPS may be unable to
achieve this deadline. If this is likely you will be informed and
given a revised time-scale at the earliest opportunity.

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Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please
write or contact the Public Access Office, quoting the reference
number above.

Yours sincerely

K.Simmons
Policy and Support Officer
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SK9 5AF
Phone: 01625 545 700

show quoted sections

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

1 Attachment

Dear Mr James Bridle

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2008080005128

I write in connection with your request for information dated [if request
was dated, 19/08/2008 which was received by the Metropolitan Police
Service (MPS) on 19/08/2008. I note you seek access to the following
information:

MPS Officers have recently been performing random stop and searches under
S.44 of the Terrorism Act 2000. According to the officer in this video:
http://tinyurl.com/6m4jv4 - no grounds for suspicion are required to
undertake one of these searches.

Please can you provide the number of such searches (random, without
grounds for suspicion) undertaken since the implementation of the
Terrorism Act 2000, the number of such searches which have resulted in
further action (i.e. with a result that is not releasing the person
searched without charge), and for those searches, what action was taken.

Following receipt of your request searches were conducted within the MPS
to locate information relevant to your request. I can confirm that the
information you have requested is held by the MPS.

EXTENT OF SEARCHES TO LOCATE INFORMATION

To locate the information relevant to your request searches were conducted
at the Stop and Search Unit, Territorial Policing Headquarters.

RESULT OF SEARCHES

The searches located the record below relevant to your request.

DECISION

I have today decided to disclose the located information to you in full.

Please find attached record.

Inspector Andy Walker
TPHQ Stop & Search Team
Stop & Search Team
15th Floor
Empress State Building
Empress Approach
Lillie Road
SW6 1TR
www.met.police.uk/stopandsearch

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet which details your right of
complaint.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your interest in
the MPS.

Should you have any further inquiries concerning this matter, please write
to Inspector Andy Walker at the addresss above quoting the reference
number above.

Yours sincerely,

Abbey Adeboye
Information Manager
In complying with their statutory duty under sections 1 and 11 of the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 to release the enclosed information, the
Metropolitan Police Service will not breach the Copyright, Designs and
Patents Act 1988. However, the rights of the copyright owner of the
enclosed information will continue to be protected by law. Applications
for the copyright owner's written permission to reproduce any part of the
attached information should be addressed to MPS Directorate of Legal
Services, 1st Floor (Victoria Block), New Scotland Yard, Victoria, London,
SW1H 0BG.
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome and encouraged to
discuss the decision with the case officer that dealt with your request.

Ask to have the decision looked at again ***

The quickest and easiest way to have the decision looked at again is to
telephone the case officer that is nominated at the end of your decision
letter.

That person will be able to discuss the decision, explain any issues and
assist with any problems.

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within three months.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.
Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone: 01625 545 700

show quoted sections

Francis Irving left an annotation ()

James Bridle

Dear Sir or Madam,

Thank you for your response. It was the intention of my request to discover exactly what actions were taken following searches. Please can you clarify what those who received non-verbal warnings received them for, and what those arrested were charged with, and what constitutes 'other' in this context.

Yours sincerely,

James Bridle

James Bridle left an annotation ()

I'm keeping track of this request, as well as details surrounding the original incident, and any supplementary material, at http://44searches.wordpress.com/

Comments welcome.

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear James Bridle,

Thank you for your email below.

This office has now completed its enquiry into this case. If you have further enquiry, please contact the officer below.

Inspector Andy Walker TPHQ Stop & Search Team Stop & Search Team
15th Floor Empress State Building Empress Approach Lillie Road SW6 1TR
www.met.police.uk/stopandsearch
or email the mailbox below.
http://www.met.police.uk/stopandsearch/c...

Many Thanks,
Abbey Adeboye.

show quoted sections

James Bridle left an annotation ()

A follow-up request has been made: http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ac...

David Mery left an annotation ()

Surprisingly the MPS have not clarified that the "officer in the video" showing the stop of search of Terence is not a Met officer but a BTP one. There's a similar request addressed to the BTP created by Terence at http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ef... (The BTP claims in its 2007 annual report to carry more S.44 stops than all other forces combined.)

This request is for all S.44 Stop and Search, ie both S.44(1) - vehicle occupants - and S.44(2) - pedestrians-. I find the numbers in the given table surprising when compared to the data published in the S95 race stats documents (I include links to all the published ones in http://gizmonaut.net/bits/propaganda.html). According to the table published in the response there were 191,478 S.44 stops and search from Jan 2003-Feb 2008. The total number for the financial years 2003/4 to 2006/7, according to the S95 documents, is 76,177 (44, 380 S.44(1) and 31,797 S.44(2)). The difference appears too big to be accounted by the extra months covered by the table.

If you do a follow-up FOI request as mentioned in your blog post you may want to query this discrepancy.

br -d

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