For the Coronation the police were given extra powers under a controversial new law, the Public Order Act 2023.
This resulted in protesters, including the chief executive of Republic, Graham Smith, being held in police custody for almost 16 hours, then bailed. They were later told that no further action would be taken against them.
As the Guardian reported yesterday, one of the series of arrests you couldn’t make up!
A police raid that morning in Haggerston, east London, about five miles away from the coronation at Westminster Abbey, took place shortly before 10.30am.
The police arrested 14 “on suspicion of conspiracy to cause a public nuisance.”
The article reports: “They had gathered in a small nondescript room in a rented work space in east London for a seven-hour seminar about the theory, history and practice of non-violent protest after expressing an interest in the social activist group Animal Rising.”
Once arrested: “They were put in minivans outside the building, with eight of the group taken to Brixton police station in south London and six to Stoke Newington in north London.”
Back in 2015 a book club meeting was disrupted when English Defence League members crashed the event under the mistaken belief that Russell Brand was going to be there.
Police were called to Bar Loco in Newcastle after reports that EDL members had disrupted a meeting to discuss the comedian’s new book Revolution by chanting and singing Islamophobic chants.
Police spoke to the group of 15 who then left, one of them saying that they were going for a curry.
At the time Brand joked about the book club meeting disruption by retweeting a message about him being due to sign books in London next month along with the message “Great. Now EDL know.”