Brighton peer arrested outside Houses of Parliament

Posted On 22 Oct 2014 at 12:10 am

Brighton-born peer Jenny Jones has been arrested outside the Houses of Parliament.

She was held briefly yesterday (Tuesday 21 October) by the Metropolitan Police before being “de-arrested” after giving details suitable for a summons.

Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb, 64, is the deputy chair of the London Assembly police and crime committee which oversees policing in the capital.

She was arrested for obstructing police while investigating complaints about a heavy-handed approach at the Occupy London protest in Parliament Square.

Today (Wednesday 22 October) at 6pm she is due to speak at the Occupy Parliament Square camp about policing and civil liberties.

Jenny Jones

Jenny Jones

She learnt last year that she was the subject of a file on the Met’s database of domestic extremists.

She said: “The police have a duty to facilitate peaceful protest in this country which people have a legal right to do but that appears to end as soon as you come within shouting distance of the Westminster village.

“The people who run this country should not be able to tuck demonstrators away out of sight.

“Parliament needs to listen and people should have the right to get their voices heard.”

Baroness Jones was one of 16 people who were arrested in Parliament Square today for obstructing police during a protest described as peaceful.

She may be prosecuted as a result of her arrest.

Scotland Yard said: “This morning there were around 15 people demonstrating in Parliament Square.

“The group on the grassed area had been sleeping on a tarpaulin, which is prohibited under the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act of 2011, namely they have items with them to enable them to sleep in Parliament Square.

“We informed them of the breach of legislation and asked them to leave.

“This was done on a one-to-one basis.

“They were told that if they failed to leave they would be removed from the site and would be liable to summons for the offence.

“The tarpaulin has been removed and 15 people have been arrested for failing to provide details suitable for a summons. They have been taken to a central London police station.

“Our role is to facilitate peaceful protest while balancing the needs of London communities and minimising any disruption.

“We will not take sides but we seek to apply the law fairly and proportionately.”

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