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Thursday, 27 May 2010

Bogus cop is stoking up race row (UK)

A BOGUS police officer is operating in and around Worksop telling people to remove their England shirts and take down their flags.

A probe was launched after the Guardian revealed that a woman in the town had been asked to take down her England flags by what she thought was a genuine police officer.

It has now emerged that someone is posing as a Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) and was in Clumber Park last weekend asking people to remove their England shirts.

Chief Superintendent Dave Wakelin said: "I am aware of last week's publicity regarding the story that one of my staff members advised a local Worksop resident to remove her flag from her balcony as it was upsetting foreign residents."

"We are now absolutely certain that these were not bona-fide members of Notts Police, and this, linked to reports that over the weekend similar incidents occurred with people in Clumber Park being told remove their England shirts, leads me to believe that there is someone in our local community intending to cause unease."

My staff and I respect the right of local people of whatever nationality to display their flags over the coming months and beyond."

"Only if the behaviour of anyone leads us to suspect they are intending to incite racial hatred will the police become involved."

"The mere showing of a flag or the wearing of a football shirt will not attract, on its own, any form of intervention by my officers."

"In relation to the incidents at Clumber Park over the weekend, I am keen to establish the identity of a white man, aged 40 to 50, 5ft 8" to 5ft 10" tall, of medium build, with stubble. He was wearing trousers and a shirt that gave him the appearance of a PCSO."

"If anyone knows of this man's real identity I would be grateful for his details to be passed either direct to us on 0300 300 999 or Crimestoppers 0800 555 111."

He also urged people to drink responsibly during the World Cup so that alcohol-related violence does not ruin the sporting event,

Bassetlaw MP John Mann said it was of "considerable concern" that someone was impersonating a police officer.

"Someone is trying to cause trouble when the whole of the community wants to get behind our England cricket, football and rugby teams. Particularly with the World Cup coming up everybody wants to get behind the England football team," he said.

"We want to see flags up everywhere"
Worksop Guardian