NUJ condemns police search of 9 journalists
22 April 2013
The NUJ has condemned the search of journalists by Sussex Police on Sunday 21 April 2013.
A group of nine photojournalists were travelling to Brighton in a mini-bus to cover a far right march when police signalled that they should follow them off the road at Hickstead.
Although they immediately informed the police officers that they were press and not part of the protest, producing their press cards, the journalists were nevertheless subjected to a search for offensive weapons.
The laws cited were Section 60 of the Terrorism Act and Section 60AA of the Public Order Act.
Seven of the nine were searched and, after 20-30 minutes, were allowed to continue their journey to Brighton.
John Toner, NUJ Freelance Organiser, said:
"This was an unlawful use of the legislation to detain and search journalists. Sussex Police now seem to be aware of their blunder and we hope the officers concerned are given training in dealing with media workers.
"We will be taking legal advice on whether there is a potential claim against Sussex Police."