Solidarity demo for imprisoned activist Edd


6:16 pm - September 22nd 2011

by Adam Ramsay    


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Edd Bauer, the 22 year old who is being held indefinately before trial for the ‘crime’ of hanging a banner off a bridge at the Liberal Democrat conference, will have his second bail hearing on Monday.

Edd, who is Vice President Education at the Birmingham University Guild of Students was denied bail and sent to prison at a previous hearing because he is ‘part of a group‘ and because he was involved in the Fortnum & Mason’s occupation on the 26th of March. Denying an activist bail in this way is thought to be unprecedented.

There will be a solidarity demonstration supporting Edd and our right to protest on Monday in Birmingham. Details are at the Facebook event.

Edd, who is an occasional contributor to Bright Green, is a well respected student activist, known for his hard work, calm demeanour, and winning smile.

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Adam is a regular contributor. He also writes more frequently at: Bright Green Scotland.
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Reader comments


From your own, (Bright Green), blog:

“Two of the men were bailed on the condition that they do not enter Birmingham City Centre but the other one – a 22 year old from Fleet in Hampshire – was refused bail on the grounds of a previous conviction for aggravated trespass, as well as his continuing trial for the peaceful occupation of the Fortnum and Mason shop on March 26th of this year. He has been sent to prison awaiting a review of his bail.”

What a pathetic attempt to muddy the waters.

Yes, your comment is Falco.

So, now we have indefinite detention based on the police lying to people. The danger to the public is very clearly the police. We need to start talking about solutions like a five-year complete turnover of the police force’s front-line personnel with a new training syllabus.

Leon, grow up just a bit please.

The article presents this fellow as if he has been randomly selected for unfair treatment when in fact he has previous and it appears very likely that he has broken his bail conditions on the previous charge. He is also in prison “awaiting a review of his bail” not “locked up and having electrodes applied”.

There are problems with the police, there are indeed far more restrictions on civil liberties in this country than I am happy to see. This case is not some terrible example of poor policing though, it is a reasonable response to someone who may well have broken previous bail conditions.

4. David Boothroyd

I like the way the routine concept of being remanded in custody pending trial is recast as ‘indefinite imprisonment’ as though it is some totalitarian instrument. It is far from unprecedented to do so.

5. So Much For Subtlety

Edd, who is Vice President Education at the Birmingham University Guild of Students

Would it be too cheap a shot to point out he can’t spell Ed?

Edd, who is an occasional contributor to Bright Green, is a well respected student activist, known for his hard work, calm demeanour, and winning smile

He is also a habitual criminal. Why should he be granted bail?

@3 – What, unprecedented use of denial of bail in a clearly political way against a non-violent political activist? No, of course it’s not notable at all.

Political. Purely political.

@4 – Really? Because he hasn’t been convicted of anything yet. Your post is defamatory, on the other hand. And yes, it’s cheap nasty shot from a cheap, nasty personality.

Leon, learn to sodding read:

“Because he hasn’t been convicted of anything yet”

“was refused bail on the grounds of a previous conviction for aggravated trespass”

Leon Trotsky ,er, I mean wofson, I agree with falco and you saying ‘that’s you that is’ doses’t invalidate Falco’s comment

David – when was the last time an activist was an activist was remanded in custody in this way for doing something entirely peaceful and as un-disruptive as hanging a banner from a bridge? I can’t think of a time this has ever happened.

10. Leon Wolfson

@6 – Yes, and I stand by what I say.

“aggravated trespass”, also known as “an excuse to arrest anyone the police don’t like” – sneeze and they can arrest you. It’s a political “offence”, pure and simple.

@7 – Sockpuppeting isn’t funny, Falco

@ 9:

Your claim that “he hasn’t been convicted of anything” is untrue, whether or not you agree with Aggravated Trespass being against the law.

@10 – I see, embarrassing the government is a criminal offence. Gotcha.

Thanks for showing how little use you have for democracy.

Sockpuppet – “A sockpuppet is an online identity used for purposes of deception. The term—a reference to the manipulation of a simple hand puppet made from a sock—originally referred to a false identity assumed by a member of an internet community who spoke to, or about, himself while pretending to be another person.[1] The term now includes other uses of misleading online identities, such as those created to praise, defend or support a third party or organization.[2] A significant difference between the use of a pseudonym[3] and the creation of a sockpuppet is that the sockpuppet poses as a independent third-party unaffiliated with the puppeteer.”

and this is supposed to apply to me in which of your fevered dreams? Edd also, regardless of what you think of it, does have conviction. That reality is not the way you wish it to be is no excuse for this sort of idiocy.

@ 11:

You seem to be confusing the concepts “Aggravated Trespass *shouldn’t be* a crime” and “Aggravated Trespass *isn’t* a crime”. You can argue till you’re blue in the face that AT shouldn’t be a criminal offence, but it is, so to claim that Mr. Bauer doesn’t have any convictions is just wrong.

@13 – You seem to be mistaking political convictions for having actually done something which would be recognised as a crime by anyone NOT blindly following a political agenda.

Thanks for demonstrating your hatred for democracy, though.

You seem to be mistaking political convictions for having actually done something which would be recognised as a crime by anyone NOT blindly following a political agenda.

You seem to be confusing reality with perception. All crimes are inherently political – the whole establishment of criminal law is that it is an offence against the state. That’s why even offences against the person are prosecuted by the state. Aggravated trespass is no more and no less political than any other property-based law.

More briefly – it’s fine to oppose laws, or to disagree with them. It’s just a bit puerile to pretend they don’t count, because they’re ‘political’.

Is Leon Wolfson drunk?

The link in the first line doesn’t work.

@16 Leon is sally

@ 18 Try: http://brightgreenscotland.org/index.php/2011/09/solidarity-demo-for-imprisoned-activist-edd-bauer/

hmm, the info that I quoted doesn’t appear to be found anywhere on that site now. Am I missing it or is some stealth editing going on?

@15 – What bullshit. There’s a reason why some people are called political prisoners, after all. It’s precisely, in fact, what *civilised* countries and people condemn in the behaviour of totalitarian states, holding people in custody for purely political reasons.

Again, I’m sorry that you have this country so much. But I’ll fight for us to be a first world nation and not a police state of the sort you’re calling for so loudly.

@18 – Only if you’re Nick Clegg. Are you?

Well then.

@19 – You’re missing it. Two articles down from that one.

20 – Bit early in the morning for… festivities… isn’t it?

Let’s say he’s tired and emotional. Call the JRF hotline NOW.

@22 – I don’t drink. I also don’t think it’s acceptable to hold political prisoners, to have politically-driven arrests and sentencing and to live in a one-party state.

Shame you’ve disagreed with me. Repeatedly. On all points.

@23 – Of course, nobody can seriously disagree with your wonderful state. Heil Cameron!

Thanks for making your hated of democracy so blindingly clear.

OP,

Edd Bauer, the 22 year old who is being held indefinately before trial for the ‘crime’ of hanging a banner off a bridge at the Liberal Democrat conference, will have his second bail hearing on Monday.

The link in that line doesn’t work, but the Facebook page gives a bit more information than the article about the alleged offence. This Bright Green link works and also gives a bit more context.

Generally speaking, protest should not be criminalised*; at the same time, I can see why members of the public hanging such a banner on a bridge, over a road, is frowned on.

Denying an activist bail in this way is thought to be unprecedented.

Is the claim that it’s unprecedented to deny bail to people who have previous convictions and/or on trial for something else?

Another thing that the OP doesn’t mention but the Facebook page does is that, “At their bail hearing on Monday 19th, 2 [of 3 protesters] were released on bail, whilst Ed was remanded in custody.”

As someone interested in things related to civil liberties it irritates me somewhat when posters aren’t open / honest / forthcoming about the whole story. The Bright Green article I linked to is better than the OP. The Facebook page is better than the OP. It still has a problem though, “[Bauer] will have spent 10 days in prison before trial for peacefully protesting.”: no, he “was refused bail on the grounds of a previous conviction for aggravated trespass, as well as his continuing trial for the peaceful occupation of the Fortnum and Mason shop on March 26th of this year” (Bright Green).

(*Similarly, people shouldn’t be criminalised for protesting in shops, but at the same time they ought to move on when asked and face the consequences when they don’t.)

thanks for making your hated of democracy so blindingly clear.

Ah, another mindreader – just what the intertubes need!

What do the police think they’re playing at? Who makes these decisions?
They’re doing these sorts of things all over the place. Control orders, banning people from going into a city, attending political demonstrations, or using a computer.
When it’s done to EDL people no one copmlains though.

24 – Maybe you should start?

The reason we’re not taking you terribly seriously is that you’re being a hysterical loon. This story boils down to ‘chap with previous convictions is denied bail for repeat offence, pending trial’. Solzhenitsyn would not have thought it worth including in Gulag Archipelago.

Oh, and one-party state? What are you talking about now?

There is an unusual feature of this remand in custody. From the linked NUS website, it appears that Mr Bauer is being charged with the offence of ‘causing danger to other road users’. His actions in hanging the banner, are specifically mentioned in the 1991 Act as such an offence. This is not an imprisonable offence. It is unusual for a person to be remanded in custody when the offence charged is itself non-imprisonable. However, it is not illegal, nor is it completely unheard of. It depends very much on the past history of the accused (he is probably on Bail relating to the matters of March 26th) and what has been said about him and his alleged offence in court. It appears that this matter is to be reviewed on Monday (not a period of indefinite imprisonment!).

Ah, another mindreader – just what the intertubes need!

Although, brilliantly, he’s arguing that an offence introduced by a democratically elected Government (a Government, in fact that received more votes than any other in the history of the UK) should be struck off the books because he, personally, doesn’t like it.

Why do you hate democracy Leon?

@26 – So, you’re saying that a police force acting like, oh, China’s is compatible with democracy? Okay, that’s your view. I disagree with what you said.

@30 – I didn’t say that. You have said, repeatedly, everything I attribute to you on this site. Multiple times. That you need to make things up highlights how right I am to call you on them.

It’s “hysterical” to point to a political prisoner. Right. Of course, attributing mental illnesses to the enemies of your party’s plans. Social Darwinism is back, kids!.

31 – I think you’ll have to point me to the bit where I say that I think it’s acceptable to live in a one-party state. And if that’s not what you mean, perhaps you could explain just why it’s anti-democratic to have criminal offences passed by Governments?

I understand that you don’t like the law of aggravated trespass – I even understand why (though it’s probably worth noting that the point of this law was to stop illegal raves, rather than political protests). What I don’t understand is why you think it’s anti-democratic.

@32 – Nicely worded to avoid actually admitting what you’ve said.

And of course then you start lying to defend your position, making up nonsense about governments passing criminal offences somehow being related to the current situation, where existing laws are being abused.

Aggravated trespass is a bad law, but it need not necessarily be abused in a political way – the intent matters far less than how it’s used. But it is being abused. And at that point, defending it becomes a defence of the political abuse the people were protesting.

Again, keep arguing for the death of democracy in this country. China is laughing it’s ass off over this, I can guarantee THAT. The next time the Government tries to say anything about their practices, they’ll be bludgeoned over the head with the little fact they’re doing the same. And China will be RIGHT.

And of course then you start lying to defend your position, making up nonsense about governments passing criminal offences somehow being related to the current situation, where existing laws are being abused.

Aggravated Trespass was a new offence, passed in 1994. It was designed with illegal raves in mind – where people would have a party in a farmer’s field without permission – but it’s applicable to any situation where someone enters someone else’s property with the intention of intimidating or obstructing lawful activity.

It’s not a very good law – most laws passed with the intention of stopping something specific aren’t – but it isn’t the abolition of democracy, and it’s silly to suggest that it is.

China is laughing it’s ass off over this, I can guarantee THAT.

I believe the Central Politburo speak of little else.

@34 – And again, you’re lying your ass off about what I said. A bad law, again, does not necessarily mean it’ll be abused, just that there is the potential for it. And it IS being used in a party-political way to suppress embarrassment for the government, and has now created a political prisoner. On top of the other massively anti-democratic moves by this government, there is a clear pattern emerging.

Again, thank you for demonstrating the raw hated you have for democracy, that you feel the need to lie about what someone else has said to defend political sentencing and political detention.

Leon,

@26 – So, you’re saying that a police force acting like, oh, China’s is compatible with democracy? Okay, that’s your view. I disagree with what you said.

Not sure if you’re addressing me (because that doesn’t relate to anything I wrote @26) or if the numbering has gone wrong.

@36 – No, that’s quite correct. I’m quite aware of the source of your self-mockery, given the source of the quote you used during your earlier posting. And what that post actually was aimed at.

On my screen Leon @38 is talking to 36, who happens to be Leon.

Is this the same with everyone else?

It would help, of course, if people used names not (or as well as) numbers.

This thread jumped the shark so long ago that it’s coming round again for another go.

@39 Ukliberty
36 and 38 comes up on my screen as you mate. Not entirely sure if that helps clarify anything at all, but there ya go.

Thanks Cylux.

I can’t talk with Leon because I don’t know if he’s addressing me or himself.

@ 35:

“And it IS being used in a party-political way to suppress embarrassment for the government,”

Trespass is against the law. Should people not be punished for breaking the law just because they do so whilst protesting against the government?

“and has now created a political prisoner.”

Edd Bauer has been denied bail. That’s not the same as being “a political prisoner”. He hasn’t been denied the right to a trial, or anything like that.

“Again, thank you for demonstrating the raw hated you have for democracy,”

Your hyperbole isn’t helping your case. It just makes you look like you’re a bit unhinged and/or trolling.

46. Leon Wolfson

@43 – Barring situations not applicable here, it’s a tort, not a crime. That you don’t know the difference is telling.

Moreover, it’s not even the crime in question, we’re talking about aggravated trespass, an offence which is clearly being used in a party-political manner. No, the law should not be used to punish people simply for embarrassing a political party, and your defence of that principle shows how little respect you have for democracy.

And is he in jail? Yes, no? If he is, then he’s a political prisoner because of the situations surrounding the case. It’s really quite simple. And don’t bother claiming he’s “only” being held until trial, it’s a common excuse used in totalitarian states around the world.

And I’m NOT engaging in hyperbole. That’s what you really hate, isn’t it. That I’m calling you out for what you truly are doing.

@42 – Is that your latest excuse? Heh.

@ Leon – Thanks for the redirect on the article.

“And don’t bother claiming he’s “only” being held until trial, it’s a common excuse used in totalitarian states around the world.

And I’m NOT engaging in hyperbole. That’s what you really hate, isn’t it. That I’m calling you out for what you truly are doing.”

Those don’t match up. You are taking this way too far; Edd does have a conviction, (whatever you may think about that conviction), and was already on bail for another charge. He will shortly appear in court and his application for bail will be reviewed and should that process decide that he has been held unreasonably, Edd should receive some sort of remedy.

What you keep doing is denying that Edd has any conviction, (simply because you don’t think he should have been convicted, not because he wasn’t), and claim that being held on remand is evidence of totalitarian oppression. It doesn’t work, you are wrong and you keep ascribing opinions to people with no evidence or justification. The obvious question is why?

About the “aggravated trespass” point – the subject of the OP hasn’t been charged with aggravated trespass in this particular case.

I think he’s been charged with this offence (BICBW)
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1991/40/section/6

Leon, it would make it easier to discuss things with you if you addressed people by name rather than post number, because there appears to be something wrong with the post numbers.

50. Leon Wolfson

@45 – I’m taking this too far? No, that I am not. This is part of a systematic campaign of harassment against the opponents of this government, which is using the police as a political weapon of punishment against their enemies and anyone who dare embarrass them.

And Remedy? What Remedy? No, you don’t get a remedy, you get held until trial. Even if you’re innocent, you don’t get squat. And of course the charge brought is such that there is basically no defence.

It does work, you’re arguing in defence of political policing and totalitarianism, and hence supporting them. “Just remand”, like China…holding people “before trial” for extended periods because of previous political offences. Not for doing anything which is a crime, as he didn’t, but because applying a criminal offence to normal activity allows control of enemies of the government.

The why is simple – because supporting this kind of behaviour DOES make you an enemy of democracy. Plain and simple. And given the way the Tories are working hard on that one-party plan, there are obvious connotations which you’re choosing to overlook. Democracy in this country is, sadly, on it’s death bed.

@47 – Then ask the site’s admins to fix them.

Leon @ 44:

“No, the law should not be used to punish people simply for embarrassing a political party, and your defence of that principle shows how little respect you have for democracy.”

I never claimed it should; I merely said that, if people commit a crime whilst demonstrating — such as, for example, trespassing on somebody else’s property — they should be punished for that, and not excused simply because it happened while they were protesting.

“And don’t bother claiming he’s “only” being held until trial, it’s a common excuse used in totalitarian states around the world.”

Seems to be an example of the fallacy known as Affirming the Consequent here:

Totalitarian states claim that they’re only holding people until trial.
The government claims that this person is only being held until trial.
Therefore, the government is totalitarian.

“And I’m NOT engaging in hyperbole.”

Yes you are. You claim that this is all part of some sinister plot to outlaw protest and make Britain a one-party state.

Tell me, how many students took part in the demos, and how many have been imprisoned?

I like how this germ has so much time on his hands. Yet another lazy ass student who puts actual study last.

Another Commie Islam lover.
Which is why supposed UK universities are hotbeds of dark ages Islamic fundamentalism.
Perhaps this ‘liberal’ should concentrate on that destruction of liberty and not smash up shops and hang crap from bridges.

‘Winning smile’?!! Really?

53. Leon Wolfson

@49 – Yes, you did. If you defend the government on this, you are. And again, you’re calling for punishments for simple trespass, which is a tort! You’re even going beyond the government’s stance!

And Affirming the Consequent? Yes, there’s more than one way to be a totalitarian state. But taking THIS path is no better than the other paths. Why is this relevant, again?

This is an attack at the heart of the democratic system in this country. One you’re not only not condemning, you’re encouraging. The students? Well, that’s why they’re criminalising squatting. *Next* time, they’ll be able to send the lot to jail even when they avoid all the other crimes…and anyone who strikes on private property, and…

And yea….50 – Yes kids, remember, the EDL are on YOUR side of this argument. Little neo-fascists like this are YOUR buddies. Doesn’t this make you SO glad that you’re on the RIGHT side.

This “Commie Islam lover”, Hawkish Jew, points to where you are. On the far side of the barrier that marks civilisation.

@47 – Then ask the site’s admins to fix them.

Assuming this is addressed to me, because Falco @47 did not express a problem with the site:

Leon, “ukl” is the same number of characters as “@47”. Instead of being a lazy prick about it, why not just write @ukl? Or be a lazy prick. Your call.

Not for doing anything which is a crime, as he didn’t

Aggravated trespass is a crime.

56. Leon Wolfson

@54 – Because not everyone has three characters in their name, and when you’re referring to multiple posts by someone, clarity is necessary.

You’re being the prick, not me, claiming some mysterious force is altering post numbers for you. I’m seeing it as a typical diversionary tactic.

57. Leon Wolfson

@55 – No, he was accused of a crime. That’s quite different from having commited one. Especially when the police lied in one of the cases he was involved in, another one involved no especial action on his part and the third is a clear case of “embarassed the government”.

Suu Kyi and Nelson Mandella “committed” crimes as well. A political prisoner is a political prisoner, no matter for what, and it speaks just as much of the nature of the state that holds one as it does a thousand or ten thousand. It still marks that state as utterly uncivilised.

Seems only Leon himself cares about him being Jewish again.
Paranoid delusions?
‘Hawkish Jew’??!!! Seems only YOU called yourself that!

And yeah…criticising Islam is SUCH an anti-Semitic thing to do!
NURSE!!!!!!

59. Leon Wolfson

Yes, I’m sure you need a nurse, Bill.

But back to the topic. Trying to pretend that minorities are not disproportionate affected when a government turns totalitarian is quite futile on your part, and your interjection into Davey Boy’s rant is telling. Tell me, shill or sock puppet?

Intolerance is intolerance, thanks for demonstrating you’re a barbarian too!

The right to all forms of peaceful public protest are being closed down using one pretext or another.

Leon,

@54 – Because not everyone has three characters in their name, and when you’re referring to multiple posts by someone, clarity is necessary.

Um yes, clarity – that’s my point. Perhaps try writing our names instead of being lazy and writing a number that turns out to be wrong.

You’re being the prick, not me, claiming some mysterious force is altering post numbers for you. I’m seeing it as a typical diversionary tactic.

You are clearly utterly mental.

Here is a screenshot.
http://imgur.com/cpYY2

Now accuse me of changing the numbering…

Leon,

@55 – No, he was accused of a crime. That’s quite different from having commited one.

He was convicted of aggravated trespass, which is a crime.

You saying “it isn’t a crime” is stupid, because it is. Clue: there is a difference between “that shouldn’t be a crime but it is a crime” and “that shouldn’t be a crime so it isn’t a crime”.

63. Leon Wolfson

@61 – *Bong* altered image. Next.

(No, I’m not doing further analysis beyond that check, if it fails)

You’re the one with the conspiracy theory about post number altering, again, take it up with the site admins, not me. You’re deliberately, again, trying to distract attention from the topic of this thread – it’s both selfish and obvious.

And again., the typical tactic of the next step, saying enemies of the state have mental deficiencies…

The key issues are surely these:

1. So Bauer has ‘previous’ for AT. That in itself is not sufficient reason to deny bail.
2. He has been charged (but not yet tried) in relation to the F&M ‘incident’. That in itself is not sufficient reason to deny bail.

As we have seen in recent weeks, the lower judiciary in this country – having been instructed (sorry, ‘advised’) that they can effectively throw away the established guidelines when dealing with public order issues which are remotely related to political action – have illustrated their eagerness to do precisely that. It seems that this attitude is now no longer confined to ‘major’ disorder, but is being implemented across the board wherever dissent is being shown, however peacefully.

Let us bear in mind that ‘remand in custody’ is one of those ‘genteelisms’ (a fair bit lower down the scale from describing torture as ‘enhanced interrogation’ or ‘sensory deprivation’ it’s true, but working to the same pattern). It actually means ‘imprisonment without trial’, and we mustn’t forget that that is precisely what is involved. There is absolutely no certainty that Bauer will get bail on Monday but – even if he does – he would still have been imprisoned before he’s even had a chance to challenge the State’s version of events. And it was only a banner drop ffs!

We are clearly witnessing a concerted attempt to chill any meaningful actions of dissent in this country. We’ve had political policing for years (you could go back to the Miners’ Strike, Brixton & Toxteth and beyond for evidence), and of course we have long had political sentencing thrown in as well (from The Shrewsbury Two via Mark Barnsley to Woollard & Fernie this year). The only difference seems to be that now the judiciary aren’t even bothering to try to hide it.

(Compare and contrast, as they say in exam papers, the treatment of the alleged millionaire’s daughter who is up for violent disorder and burglary, but who has been granted bail on condition she sleeps in Daddy’s mansion with those who have been persistently denied bail on lesser charges).

It’s interesting to ponder – should the present tendencies evident in the judiciary’s behaviour continue – whether more and more dissenters will start to think that they may as well be hanged for a sheep as for a lamb.

Now accuse me of changing the numbering…

altered image. Next.

Ding! We have a winner.

(No, I’m not doing further analysis beyond that check, if it fails)

Just scroll up.

You’re the one with the conspiracy theory about post number altering, again, take it up with the site admins, not me.

Seriously, why not just address people by name instead of number? What’s your problem with this? It would certainly prevent me from derailing the thread with this so-called conspiracy theory.

And again., the typical tactic of the next step, saying enemies of the state have mental deficiencies…

No, just you.

The Judge,

The key issues are surely these:

1. So Bauer has ‘previous’ for AT. That in itself is not sufficient reason to deny bail.
2. He has been charged (but not yet tried) in relation to the F&M ‘incident’. That in itself is not sufficient reason to deny bail.

I don’t think anyone has claimed it is. The claim is those two points and he belongs to a particular organisation and all this suggests that he can’t be trusted to behave himself while bailed.

And contrary to the claim in the OP, he isn’t being detained indefinitely: there will be another bail hearing this Monday, and the trial is scheduled for late October.

I’ve also noted discrepancies with the numbers, any effort on additional clarity would be appreciated.

Looking back, the facts seem to hove got lost in the hysteria, (yes I’m looking at you here Leon). I would like to know:

How long has Edd been on remand?

Is this an unusual length of time?

Would a person in his position, (previous conviction and on bail for another charge), normally be remanded?

If Edd has been on remand for an unusual length of time, for reasons that do not normally justify it, is there any evidence that this is malice rather than incompetence?

Answer those, (with evidence where appropriate), Leon and we may be able to make some progress.

68. Leon Wolfson

@64 – Or, as in my case, start avoiding the police on all occasions. If I could help a police enquiry now, I wouldn’t (and there is no duty to do so, outside terror cases). My last contact was handing in to a station a mobile I found in a bush…I’d leave it there now, it’s not worth the risk.

This is doing a real number on my community’s relationship with the police, too.

@66 – Ah, right, so belonging to a particular, entirely legal protest group is now grounds for refusal of bail? Ding, China Tactic!

(And no, I’m not playing your “wah the numbers are wrong” game any more.)

69. Leon Wolfson

@67 – Why does it matter, you’ve picked a side. The facts have been talked about, the unprecidented refusal since WW2 on this kind of charges…but the facts are not the issue, refusal to accept the state’s mandate on the necessity of holding someone non-violent without trial (something the UK is criticised for, overuse of remand) is “hysterical”.

@66 – Ah, right, so belonging to a particular, entirely legal protest group is now grounds for refusal of bail? Ding, China Tactic!

The whole reason appears to be:

1. His previous conviction

2. His being on trial for another charge of aggravated trespass

3. His having been arrested for allegedly commiting the offence in this particular case

4. His membership of a group (anticuts, according to the OP) that appears to support kinds of protest that might constitute aggravated trespass (e.g. ‘occupations’) and suchlike.

Again note that the other two protesters were granted bail.

(And no, I’m not playing your “wah the numbers are wrong” game any more.)

That’s fine, 66 is correct (assuming you’re addressing me). But I’m still puzzled about your pigheadedness with regard to addressing people by name.

@UKLiberty – I can only assume it’s because he’s an arse. If anyone else, (Leon suffering from an inability to communicate due to severe pratishness), knows the facts of this case please post them.

ukl@66:

[i]”all this suggests that he can’t be trusted to behave himself while bailed.”[/i]

Suggests to [i]whom[/i], exactly? A magistrate who will automatically believe anything the police/CPS tells him? Or one with an ideological axe to grind?

Even if that were the case, there is such a thing as [i]conditional bail[/i]. And we are talking about a non-violent offender (or one accused of a non-violent offence) here.

as above:

[i]”he isn’t being detained indefinitely: there will be another bail hearing this Monday, and the trial is scheduled for late October.”[/i]

The presumption made by the magistrate who imprisoned him in the first instance is not particularly likely to be replaced by an opposite presumption on Monday. The judiciary don’t like to be seen to be critical of one another, especially if they sit on the same bench/circuit.

If this becomes the case, then Bauer will be imprisoned without trial for at least a month. It’s almost certain that – even if convicted – he would get a sentence which didn’t involve a custodial element. Nevertheless, he would have been imprisoned for a period just long enough seriously to disrupt his life, and for no purpose other than to screw some prison time out of him. [i]This[/i] is the danger in the way that the junior judiciary is behaving at the moment.

Falco@67:

[i]”Would a person in his position, (previous conviction and on bail for another charge), normally be remanded?”[/i]

For a charge of this nature, I would think it would be rather unlikely.

73. Leon Wolfson

@72 – Exactly. He’s not being accused of breaking a bail condition, so they could easily have bailed him on condition that he not do any more protests until his court date.

Except that would have made the political nature of the persecution even clearer, of course, so they went for the option which also is an added punishment. The UK already massively overuses remand…

74. Accelorata Jengold

The man in question seems to be the sort of spoilt middle class fop who thinks he can waltz into anywhere he likes as many times as he wants and hold his protest/event and the police will just tell him to go home- if they even dare to interrupt his legal right to be an arse to all those trying to get on with their lives in the immediate vicinity.

75. Chaise Guevara

@ Leon

“And no, I’m not playing your “wah the numbers are wrong” game any more.”

Numbered posts do disappear from LC threads. I asked Sunny about this before and he said he tends to just delete posts outright if doing so wouldn’t confuse the thread (e.g. by making it look like someone else was arguing with thin air).

I personally think this is unhelpful, because it causes problems like those seen in this thread. But it does happen, so if UKliberty claims that the numbers are confused due to disappearing posts, he’s likely to be correct. And in those circumstances any reasonable person would agree to start referring to people by name.

The Judge, unlike certain other posters here I try not to pretend I can mindread. I can’t therefore answer your question about what the magistrate thought or his ideological axe, only the reasons reported by the sites I’ve looked at so far: Bright Green Scotland, the Facebook page in support of Bauer, and Red Brick Paper (University of Birmingham’s student newspaper).

I happen to think there are good points to be made about policing and protest in this country (for example kettling and FIT etc) but to compare this particular arrest (allegedly for something that is an offence, i.e. he wasn’t just standing in one place with a placard) and temporary imprisonment with real indefinite detention (say, the Belmarsh lot) or what happens elsewhere in the world where there is terrible repression is to not only reduce or dilute the meaning in language but also, perhaps more importantly, to demean the experiences of people who have suffered and are suffering elsewhere. I am sure Edd Bauer is not having a pleasant time but I imagine it’s rather more pleasant than being castrated or having an eyeball gouged out. If people got over the hyperbole there might be a more reasonable discussion to be had.

Falco, I don’t know the answers to any of your questions.

77. Leon Wolfson

@Chaise Guevara – Quite, but they’ve been saying I’m unreasonable from well before in this thread, so why should I help them out? They haven’t even read the post where the unprecedented nature of this has been pointed out…

Nasty? Yes, but so’s their attitude towards democracy in this country. Also, if I start calling them names, I know I’ll absent mindedly call them rude versions. Call it a character flaw 🙂

@76 – I think you need to read up on the definition of *Indefinite* detention, and especially given it’s the reasoning of because he was associated with a perfectly legal group. This is, again, China’s style of policing you are defending.

It’s the same thing, and you’re trying to talk down the destruction of democracy in this country.

Just purely as a matter of context here, I think I recognise that bridge. It’s not open to the public, and it was presumably in the area restricted during the conference (it crosses Broad Street from the ICC).

Have to say though, if they are prosecuting for the danger to traffic, there is a lot more distracting things often visible on Broad Street…

[i]“Would a person in his position, (previous conviction and on bail for another charge), normally be remanded?”[/i]

I only found this out recently but replace < with [ to get italics.

80. Chaise Guevara

@ 77 Leon

“Quite, but they’ve been saying I’m unreasonable from well before in this thread, so why should I help them out? ”

I haven’t read the entire thread, but you did seem to spend the first few posts conflating what is with what should be, and then making random accusations against everyone else. You HAVE been being unreasonable. And now you’ve admitted you’re going out of your way to be unhelpful. I really don’t think you’re on the moral high-ground here.

81. Leon Wolfson

@80 – No, I haven’t. I’ve pointed out the consequences of defending this kind of indefinite detention. They, as you are now, have said “but it’s okay, he’s only x”, to which the answer is that “only x” is what China says, and it’s making a mockery of democracy.

Thanks for clarifying YOUR position. It’s thanks to people like you that the government is getting away with this. Because you’re letting it be done in your name.

ukl@76:

I agree that the phrase indefinite detention does conjure up the situations you’ve referred to. However, in strict point of language, Bauer’s imprisonment is indefinite, because – even if reviews are possible – no term has been set to it. He literally does not know when he’ll see his home again.

“I am sure Edd Bauer is not having a pleasant time but I imagine it’s rather more pleasant than being castrated or having an eyeball gouged out.”

I hope that you didn’t intend this to be the impression, but it comes across as saying, “As long as our system isn’t quite as barbaric as that of PRC or Bahrain, then we can hold our heads high”. I think we can be more ambitious for our system than that.

Shatterface@79:

Quite. I post in a number of places, some of which use BB code and others (like here) HTML tags. I can no longer easily remember which is which.

83. Leon Wolfson

@82 – Absolutely. It’s amazing how low a level of ambition many people have for our democracy.

However, in strict point of language, Bauer’s imprisonment is indefinite, because – even if reviews are possible – no term has been set to it.

There’s a bail hearing on Monday isn’t there? ‘Indefinite imprisonment until Monday’ has a certain ring to it.

Leon,

Quite, but they’ve been saying I’m unreasonable from well before in this thread, so why should I help them out?

It’s not so much “helping me out” as you making clear who you are talking to.

They haven’t even read the post where the unprecedented nature of this has been pointed out…

I read a post on Bright Green that cites an unnamed solicitor with “30 years experience” who says it’s unprecedented. Is that the post you mean?

I think you need to read up on the definition of *Indefinite* detention,

ISTM what people usually mean by “indefinite detention” is someone detained for a long period of time and usually not knowing when there will be a hearing to determine what will happen to him. Bauer has been detained since 16 September and will have a second bail hearing this Monday and a trial in October. What you are doing is inadvertantly comparing these two weeks to, say, the people held in Belmarsh without trial for years. This isn’t sensible.

… and especially given it’s the reasoning of because he was associated with a perfectly legal group.

It is a group that advocates unlawful means of protest, as anyone with half a brain and an internet connection can discover from the group’s website. By the way, saying something is unlawful is not the same as saying it should be unlawful.

… and you’re trying to talk down the destruction of democracy in this country.

This is, again, China’s style of policing you are defending.

One of the reasons why I think you’re unreasonable – irrational, even – is that you invent things about other posters. For example, there you have said I’m “defending China’s style of policing” and I’m trying to “talk down the destruction of democracy in this country”. There is absolutely no evidence of this. Indeed there is evidence to the contrary. Try to argue with what people say rather than what you imagine them to say or believe.

Watchman,

Just purely as a matter of context here, I think I recognise that bridge. It’s not open to the public, and it was presumably in the area restricted during the conference (it crosses Broad Street from the ICC).

I trust what you say, but the photo here from the student newspaper shows a bus going under the bridge.
http://i52.tinypic.com/2rpef79.jpg

87. Leon Wolfson

@85 – It’s 100% clear who I’m talking to on my screen. Once more: Take your whining about that up with the site admins, and quit disrupting debate with it.

“what people usually mean”

Excuses. Rationalisations. Anything but face the actual consequences of the policies you’re supporting.

“It is a group that advocates unlawful means of protest”

Really? So it’s banned? No, wait, it’s fully legal to have a website saying that and you’re advocating yet another major change in the law. I don’t care about your sophistry, either.

And I am inventing nothing. The consequences of what you are defending ARE Chinese-style police practices. They are anti-democratic. You are trying to weasel your way out of your support for these.

I’m not going to play your semantic games, if there are consequences then I will keep pointing them out. It’s the only responsible thing to do. Otherwise, you’re arguing that if I placed a hammer to fall when the door was opened, and asked someone to go through, I’d not be liable for the result. I would be, I am, you would be, you are.

88. Leon Wolfson

@86 – And it’s clearly not even hanging down further than the pipe, so it’s not causing an obstruction. Your defence of this as anything but a blatantly political arrest over the crime of embarrassing a political party is transparent and pointless.

Leon @ 87:

“Excuses. Rationalisations.”

Pointing out the use of logical fallacies is perfectly appropriate in a debate, actually.

(In case you were wondering, the fallacy here is the Fallacy of Equivocation, which is where a debater uses a term with two or more meanings to mislead people. So, Edd’s imprisonment is technically “indefinite”, as it hasn’t had an end determined yet; but talk of “indefinite imprisonment” is also used to refer to imprisoning people for years without the prospect of being tried or released, which isn’t the case here. So the use of the term “indefinite imprisonment” creates a misleading image of this case, making it appear more draconian than it actually is.)

90. Leon Wolfson

@89 – That’s *precisely* the Chinese argument as to why their indefinite detention is acceptable. Thank you for demonstrating it. Will you be here all week?

91. Chaise Guevara

@ 81 Leon

“They, as you are now, have said “but it’s okay, he’s only x”, to which the answer is that “only x” is what China says, and it’s making a mockery of democracy.”

I don’t remember saying that. What is okay, and what is X?

“Thanks for clarifying YOUR position. It’s thanks to people like you that the government is getting away with this. Because you’re letting it be done in your name.”

Yeah, this is the sort of thing I’m talking about. I haven’t said anything yet about whether or not I approve of this guy being refused bail. I told you about how Sunny tends to moderate comments, then said that you had been acting irrationally towards UKL, XXX et al early on in the thread. Apparently criticising you means that what the government does is all my fault.

Pro-tip: you’re inevitably going to see fascists coming out of the woodwork if you can’t tell the difference between a fascist and someone who disagrees with you.

92. Leon Wolfson

@91 – If you can’t support the basics of democracy, then you’re not a moderate left winger, despite your claims. It’s that simple. Keeping on claiming that this kind of thing is compatible with a modern state, and insisting it despite the evidence, is the sort of thing which leads me to conclusions about you which you won’t like, yes.

And now you’re making actual threats. Well, don’t worry, I don’t have anything else to say to you, Guevara. You’re not living in the same country I am, that’s for sure.

Leon @ 90:

Affirming the Consequent again, I’m afraid. Your argument seems to be:

China uses “detained awaiting trial” as an excuse for denying political prisoners the right to a fair trial.
The government says that Edd is being detained awaiting his trial.
Therefore, Edd is a political prisoner and the government is trying to deny him the right to a fair trial.

What you fail to take account of, however, is the fact that governments might say that somebody’s been detained awaiting their trial for other reasons than covering up human rights violations — maybe, for example, such people actually are only being detained until their trial. Just because the Chinese government misuses the term, it doesn’t follow that everybody does.

94. Leon Wolfson

@93 – Great, you go on believing you’re somehow justified in supporting this. Different world than me. Not talking to you any more in this thread, it’s pointless trying to discuss things like this rationally with those like you on the right.

Leon @ 92:

Erm, where has Chaise threatened you?

Anyway, I’m not entirely sure what it is you’re objecting to. You seemed to start off the thread by saying that Aggravated Trespass shouldn’t be against the law (and, bizarrely, claiming that it isn’t), but now you seem to be complaining about the practice of refusing bail to defendants. Is it the first, second, or a mixture of both?

96. Chaise Guevara

@ 92 Leon

“If you can’t support the basics of democracy, then you’re not a moderate left winger, despite your claims. It’s that simple. Keeping on claiming that this kind of thing is compatible with a modern state, and insisting it despite the evidence, is the sort of thing which leads me to conclusions about you which you won’t like, yes.

And now you’re making actual threats. Well, don’t worry, I don’t have anything else to say to you, Guevara. You’re not living in the same country I am, that’s for sure.”

You are truly bizarre. I never said this was compatible with a modern state. I do support the basics of democracy. I certainly never threatened you (WTF?). I never said I was a moderate left-wing, either – I AM one as it happens, but I guess that just shows that a stopped clock is right twice a day.

I’d ask you again to explain what you said in your previous post, but it’s clear that you’re not reading the same thread as anyone else.

@31. Merrymaker: “This is not an imprisonable offence. It is unusual for a person to be remanded in custody when the offence charged is itself non-imprisonable. However, it is not illegal, nor is it completely unheard of. It depends very much on the past history of the accused (he is probably on Bail relating to the matters of March 26th) and what has been said about him and his alleged offence in court. It appears that this matter is to be reviewed on Monday (not a period of indefinite imprisonment!).”

Thanks for that, especially for answering one of the questions I had relating to the immediate prosecution.

Non-partisan coverage of this case seems to be non-existent. From the campaigners’ Facebook pages, we learn that he was denied bail in a Magistrates’ Court, but but was that by a District Judge or by a part timer? What bail terms did Bauer agree at his previous court appearances? Without that information, it is impossible to say much more than that Bauer clearly pissed somebody off.

The Judge,

“I am sure Edd Bauer is not having a pleasant time but I imagine it’s rather more pleasant than being castrated or having an eyeball gouged out.”

I hope that you didn’t intend this to be the impression, but it comes across as saying, “As long as our system isn’t quite as barbaric as that of PRC or Bahrain, then we can hold our heads high”.

Um, no.

Leon @87, what is “indefinite” about the period of time until the end of October?

… you’re advocating yet another major change in the law. I don’t care about your sophistry, either.

Where? Evidence please.

The consequences of what you are defending ARE Chinese-style police practices.

They wouldn’t have bailed the other two protesters in ‘China’.

@86 – And it’s clearly not even hanging down further than the pipe, so it’s not causing an obstruction.

What does “obstruction” have to do with it? AIUI he’s been charged with hanging something over a road, not causing an obstruction.

Your defence of this as anything but a blatantly political arrest over the crime of embarrassing a political party is transparent and pointless.

I haven’t “defended” the arrest at all. Criticism of something does not entail support for some other thing.

@89 – That’s *precisely* the Chinese argument as to why their indefinite detention is acceptable.

Please cite.

And now you’re making actual threats. Well, don’t worry, I don’t have anything else to say to you, Guevara.

Seriously, I urge you to seek help before returning to the intertubes. There is no evidence at all Chaise threatened you.

100. Leon Wolfson

@99 – Nice to know you’re illiterate. You’re certainly emoting over my posts, not reading them. And yes, there was a VERY explicit threat. Don’t worry, I won’t be responding to your little gang of fascists again in this thread.

101. Chaise Guevara

@ 100

Would you care to point out the “very explicit” threat? Y’know, the one you made up and that everyone else has pointed out that you’re lying about? Or perhaps you like to grow up a bit and apologise for making up stupid lies about people?

Leon,

And yes, there was a VERY explicit threat.

You’ll be able to quote it then.

Hi,

I have some personal knowledge of this case. Thank you to “The Judge” for his intelligent comments in what is otherwise a disaster of a thread.

In response to Charlieman, it was a District Judge sitting alone at Birmingham Magistrate’s court. To my knowledge he hasn’t broken any of the conditions on his bail from the Fortnum and Mason’s charge, which, as I understand it, were only to turn up at court on a set date and not to go to London on the weekend of the Royal wedding. In any case the issue of breaching bail conditions didn’t come up in court. In her decision the DJ made reference to the Bail Act and gave the reason for her decision as purely the fact that he was already on bail when arrested. The issue seems to be, simply, that he was rearrested whilst on bail- the fact that both the “offences” are nonsense is irrelevent.

Thanks to Hannah for the background (and for trying to drag this thread back onto the rails again!)

It’s interesting to note how many of the most egregious decisions regarding sentencing and bail in recent weeks have come from District Judges sitting alone, rather than from lay magistrates sitting en banc. Nicholas Robinson got his six months for two bottles of water from a DJ, for example.

DJs used to be called ‘stipendiary magistrates’. Has the change in their title caused some of them to think that they are real judges, and caused them to act with the severe idiocy often seen in the professional judiciary (4 years for a Facebook message, for example), because that’s how the DJs think that judges should behave? Does form determine content?

105. Chaise Guevara

@ 104

I suspect the problem is a combination of a lack of professionalism and the fact that a single person holds authority, which reduces the odds of decisions being moderated and makes it more likely that personal feelings and prejudices will make themselves apparent.

In this case, however, from what Hannah’s saying I’m unsure whether this was a bad decision or the best interpretation of the act in question. It doesn’t seem to make sense to take into account the fact that someone was on bail when they were arrested unless they breached their bail conditions – but that doesn’t mean it’s not on the books.

I was a lay magistrate for many years (now retired). I have conducted many bail hearings. It is important to understand that the purpose of grant of bail (as opposed to simple adjournment or, alternatively, remand in custody) is for the accused to promise that they will return to answer to their bail on the next due date, and to also that they will not offend whilst on bail. Bail hearings do not try the accused for an offence. Rather, they try to assess risk: risk of flight, or of interferring with witnesses, or of committing another offence. The hearing is investigative rather than adversarial, and the magistrate is entitled to consider all relevant factors in the assessment process. There is no standard of proof required. Bail may or may not have conditions attached. Whether a condition has been breached may, or may not, be relevant in a further bail hearing. Having said all that, I still think it unusual that Mr Bauer was denied bail given he is charged with an non imprisonable offence

@The Judge
This was a particularly imperious one, she was also rude to probation officers and a police officer present in earlier cases.

@Chaise Guevara

I’ve been unable to work out which section of the Bail Act is the one in question, but it would be clearly absurd if you automatically have to be remanded in custody for a second arrest even if neither charge you’d expect to receive a custodial sentence from.

I think the main problem is that this kind of legal technicality is made likely, or even inevitable, by the Police’s habit of repeatedly dragging protestors before the courts on flimsy pretexts in order to discourage protest and prevent embarrassment at high profile events such as the March 26 demo, royal wedding and party conferences.

108. sean4thedefence

Try s52 and Schedule 12 Crime and Immigration Act 2008


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