21 August 2013

The issue of Schedule 7 has achieved a little prominence with the detention for 9 hours of David Miranda, partner and helpmeet to journalist/blogger Glenn Greenwald, on 19 August.

This makes it more urgent than ever to have reports of journalists being stopped - in strict confidence if need be.

Terrorism Act Schedule 7 stop?

The NUJ is seeking information from members who have been stopped and questioned under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000.

This may happen when journalists are returning to the UK from other countries. Perhaps you have been asked questions about the nature of your research. Maybe your phone or laptop has been examined. It could be that the questions you were asked did not relate to terrorism in any way. If you have had similar experiences, we would like to hear from you. Please email campaigns@nuj.org.uk. All information will be treated confidentially.

What makes Schedule 7 exceptionally scary is that it seems to overide the automatic right to a lawyer enshrined in the Police and Criminal Evidence Act, and appears to allow police to question you before your lawyer has arrived. The Freelance has even heard of people (not journalists) who found themselves being questioned under Schedule 7 and demanding that the police arrrest them, under a named charge, thereby ensuring they got access to a lawyer!

Some people travelling within the UK via an international rail terminal or airport have also - reportedly - been questioned under Schedule 7, even though they weren't actually going abroad or arriving from abroad.(The Schedule is supposed to be specific to "Port and Border Controls"

As ever, please use our Policing incident report form to tell us about any interactions in the course of your work in which the police were either especially obstructive or particularly helpful.

Last modified: 05 Mar 2013 - © 2013 contributors
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