G20 police actions unacceptable, says tactics reviewer

THE man asked to review police tactics used at the G20 protests in London said yesterday the behaviour of some officers had been unacceptable.

Acting Chief Inspector of Constabulary Denis O’Connor also told a committee of MPs that he was very concerned about reports that some officers on duty during the demonstrations had covered up their identity numbers.

London’s Metropolitan Police has faced accusations of using excessive violence during the protests around the Bank of England, while the crowd-control method of kettling — herding protesters into a confined space — has also been criticised.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission is investigating three cases of alleged police violence at the G20 protests — including one woman victim and a man victim who later collapsed and died.

“What I saw was unacceptable,” O’Connor said when he was asked about video footage that has emerged of police apparently acting in a heavy-handed manner.

“My concern was obviously about the individual incidents where officers on the face of it appeared to break with their colleagues and assault people.”

The commission has already received 185 complaints, of which more than 50 were from people who allege they were assaulted by police or witnessed an assault at first hand.

Two officers have been suspended and one questioned on suspicion of manslaughter.

O’Connor is to produce an interim report by the end of June and a full review in September.


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