The policing of fracking and fossil fuel extraction/exploration activities in your constabulary

Liam Ward made this Freedom of Information request to Hertfordshire Constabulary

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Hertfordshire Constabulary,

I am writing on behalf of the Office of Keith Taylor MEP; I would like to make the following requests relating to the policing of any fracking, oil and/or gas drilling/exploration protests and opposition in your constabulary in the last five years.

The questions should follow logically and should not prove too burdensome to answer. I have tried to be as clear as possible, but please let me know at the earliest possible opportunity if you require any clarifications.

I am requesting all of the information in digital form, an excel file for data is preferred to graphs and tables embedded within pdf files.

Can you please provide the answers to the following questions, in every case I am asking for details within the last five years and by 'drilling' I mean shale gas exploration, conventional and unconventional oil and gas drilling:

Staffing

1. Have there been any licences granted for drilling in your constabulary?
2. Have there been any licences granted for drilling in your constabulary that has required your force to deploy officers to manage/police any opposition/protests in relation to those drilling licences?
3. If yes, in relation to which licences and sites has officers from your force been employed?
4. How many officers have been on-site to police protests since the first deployment until the present day - a cumulative total is requested?
5. Have all of the officers on-site been from the Hertfordshire Police?
6. If not, from which constabularies and in what numbers were officers drafted?
7. Which force was responsible for covering the cost of bringing in officers from outside the Hertfordshire Police?
8. What has the total cost been, so far, to the Hertfordshire Police, for bringing in officers from outside the Hertfordshire Police?

Costs

9. How many staff hours in total, from the first deployment until the time of this request, has been diverted to policing the aforementioned protests?
10. How many Hertfordshire Police officers have been taken from other, regular duties to police the protests?
11. How many Hertfordshire Police officers are working overtime to cover the protests?
12. What is the highest payment/remuneration paid to an officer for one shift covering the protest, including any bonus or overtime payments? How long was said shift?
13. What is the average amount of extra/bonus/overtime remuneration paid to all of the officers who have been responsible for policing these sites?
14. What has been the total cost to Hertfordshire Police for the policing of drilling sites, from first deployment until the time of this request?
15. How much have the firm/s operating the licence/s paid Hertfordshire Police to cover the cost of the policing efforts?

Arrests

16. How many arrests have been made during the policing operation at the site/s? (Can arrestee details be categorized by age, gender, and town/city of residence, please?)
17. What were the grounds of each arrest?
18. How many of those arrested were later charged? (Can the details of those charged be categorized by age, gender, and town/city of residence, please?)
19. Of those charged, how many cases progressed to court? (Can the details of the people in those cases be categorized by age, gender, and town/city of residence, please?)
20. How many charges were dropped before any court appearance? (Can the details of those charged, whose charges were later dropped, be categorized by age, gender, and town/city of residence, please?)
21. Of the cases that progressed to court, how many defendants were found guilty of the charge against them? (Can the plea of the defendant, their age, gender, and town/city of residence also be provided, please?)

Use of force

22. How many reports of violence or aggression against your officers have you received - in relation to the policing of the site/s?
23. Have any of your officers reported any injuries sustained during the policing of the site/s?
24. If so, what were their injuries and how were they sustained?
25. How many official complaints have Hertfordshire Police received by protesters and local residents about the policing of their activities at the site/s?
26. What were the complaints relating to?
27. How many 'use of force' reports have been submitted by officers at the site/s? (I would like the day as the number of reports per day, from the first deployment until the present day)
28. Can you provide any further details of the nature of the force detailed in the reports? If so, what force was used against protesters?
29. What equipment are officers permitted to use in the course of their policing at the site/s (i.e. batons, cuffs, spray, etc.)?
30. How often has Hertfordshire Police had cause to use any of that equipment, and what specifically, since first deployment at the site/s and the date of this request?
31. Are officers been given any specific training before being deployed on the site/s for the first time?
32. If so, what is the training?
33. If no, why not?

Training and guidelines

34. Does Hertfordshire Police have any specific guidelines relating to the policing of protests at the site/s - particularly relating to 'slow walking' protests?
35. If so, what are those guidelines and how were they communicated to protesters?
36. Is there a record of the number of times protesters broke those guidelines and what action was taken?
37. If yes, please provide those details.

Yours faithfully,

Liam Ward

no-reply@bch.ecase.gsi.gov.uk on behalf of FOI Team, Hertfordshire Constabulary

Our ref: FOI2017/00445

Dear Mr Ward,

I am writing with regards to your request for information, was received
9th August.

We have started to consider your request and in order to retrieve all of
the information requested is likely to exceed the cost threshold under
Section 12 of the Act. Before applying this exemption to the information
you have requested, I would like to invite you to refine your request if
feasible to do so.

Please advise me within 20 working days if you will be refining your
request and forward the amended version or if you would like to withdraw
your request.

As you will appreciate the statutory timescale for our response to your
request will not commence until we are supplied with the further
information which we require. In the event that we do not hear from you we
will assume that you do not wish to proceed with your request.

Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future
communications.

Yours sincerely,
Sonia Chopra-Miah

Hi Sonia,

Thanks for your message, I will happily limit my reference terms to the last two years, and simplify my questions as follows:

Costs

1. Has your force been involved in the policing or management of any fracking or oil and gas drilling/exploration protests in the last two years?
2. How many operations, relating to the above, have your force been involved with?
3. What has been the total cost to your constabulary of policing these protests (itemised per operation is possible)
4. Have you received any outside funding, i.e. from the firms operating any drilling of fracking licences, towards the cost of the policing operation?
5. If yes, how much and from who (itemised per question 3 if possible)?

Arrests

6. How many arrests were made during the operations outlined above?
7. Who was arrested and on what grounds (here I am requesting suitably anonymised data limited to age, gender, town/city of residence, and the reason for arrest)?
8. How many of those arrested were later charged (here I am requesting suitably anonymised data limited to age, gender, town/city of residence, and the reason for arrest)?
9. Of those charged, how many cases progressed to court (here I am requesting suitably anonymised data limited to age, gender, town/city of residence, and the reason for arrest)?
10. Of the cases that progressed to court, how many defendants were found guilty of the charge against them (here I am requesting suitably anonymised data limited to age, gender, town/city of residence, and the reason for arrest)?

Use of force

11. How many reports of violence or aggression against your officers involved in the above operations have you received?
12. How many of your officers reported any injuries sustained during the operations (and what were their injuries and how were they sustained)?
13. How many official complaints have Hertfordshire Constabulary received by protesters about the operations (and what were they relating to)?
14. How many 'use of force' reports have been submitted by officers working on the operations?
15. Are officers been given any specific training before being deployed on these operations?
16. If so, what is the training?
17. If no, why not?

Yours sincerely,

Liam Ward

Dear Hertfordshire Constabulary,

I am looking for the response to my message dated 5 September 2017: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/t...

Yours faithfully,

Liam Ward

R Freedom of Information Act team, Hertfordshire Constabulary

Dear Liam,

I have had a look into this request and I must apologise to you as this case has been closed in error. Your refinement email was logged under a different 'document type' on the system and as a result was overlooked and closed as it appeared that the refinement was not received within 20 working days.

I have reopened the request and lines of enquiries and will provide a response as quickly as possible.

I apologise again for the confusion with this on our part.

Kind Regards

Sonia Chopra-Miah

Information Rights Practitioner

show quoted sections

no-reply@bch.ecase.gsi.gov.uk on behalf of FOI Team, Hertfordshire Constabulary

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Ward,

I am writing in response to your request for information, received 9th
August.

Yours sincerely,
James Hodson