Home International Only nine arrests in counter-terrorism stop and search by UK police

Only nine arrests in counter-terrorism stop and search by UK police


London : British police carried out a huge increase in the number of people being stopped and searched as potential terrorists last year but the result led to few arrests, according to new Home Office figures published Thursday.

The number of people stopped and searched under Section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000 rose to 210,013 in 2008/09, up by 66 percent from 2007/08, but led to only nine people being arrested for terrorism offences, the figures showed.

The use of the powers, which requires no grounds for suspicion, has increased from 42,800 in 2006/07, the year after the 7/7 bombings in London.

The rise was criticised by the opposition Conservatives as a “misuse” of police powers, saying that it has been targeted on innocent tourists and bystanders, including amateur photographers.

“Labour have trampled our civil liberties for far too long. Whether they’re trying to impose ID cards, or allowing hundreds of thousands of innocent people to be stopped and searched under terrorism powers,” shadow home secretary Chris Grayling said.

“They always seem to think the state knows best. We can’t go on like this. Conservatives will end the abuse of stop and search powers as part of a full review of all Labour’s counter-terrorism laws,” Grayling said in a statement obtained by IRNA.