years ago today, section 146 of the Legal aid Sentencing and Punishment
of Offenders Act 2012 came into force. The amendment was to ensure
scrap metal dealers couldn’t use cash.
British Transport police unlawfully came out of their Railway jurisdiction supported by the BMRA. They raided by force a motor salvage operator, fully licensed and registered ATF, cutting the bars off his security office and dragging him out of the window, hog tying him in the back of a dog van and driving him to their London station, where he was brutally assaulted and taken into unconsciousness, his money and property stolen. He believes he was raped with a baton although strongly denied by transport police, there is a police officer witness statement that claim one of his uniformed attackers had said “That’s what you get for f**king with the BTP mafia” and their own expert medical witness claimed the bruising around his buttocks seemed to be that of a baton and he later needed surgery for a fissure to his anus that he didn’t have before entering the station.
He was charge with 15 offences under the Scrap Metal Dealers Act despite being licensed under the Vehicle Crimes Act and not trading in ferrous metals, only cars in that ATF. In the two years that followed he was acquitted from his first trial by the first judge when the CPS could offer no evidence against him (because there wasn’t any).
Despite this the CPS were misled by tampered with warrants , and by falsified video evidence into believing that this very first arrest under LASPO was 1) lawful 2) there was overwhelming evidence and 3) that the motor salvage operator was guilty of 15 offences under an Act of Parliament that didn’t apply to him.
For two years the man attended 11 court hearings, four trials until he not only proved that British Transport Police had no evidence but he was an innocent man. In November 2014 he was eventually found not guilty of the remaining false charge against him.
Those two years destroyed not only two successful businesses, a family and the man’s emotional and physical wellbeing, it created the Scrap Metal Dealers Association, designed by Scrap Dealers , motor Salvage operators and Collectors to protect their livelihoods and stop them from being targeted by unlawful police practices.
It is ironic that the very police that unlawfully abused our member outside their jurisdiction today have the right to be armed walking our streets.
As an industry we the small fry, have to stick together to protect our businesses. Every day across the country Councils are abusing their positions and illegally taking money from us. Every day our Association telephone rings with sites and collectors complaining about out of control authorities abusing their positions , whilst criminals are free to trade unabated.
As we reflect on the damage that unlawful policing did to not just one member but hundreds across the country, we grow stronger in seeking justice for our members and their families.
Had it not been for the actions of those corrupt officers that tampered
with evidence, our Association wouldn’t exist. Had justice been served,
we would not need to continue to fight.
Scrap dealers protecting scrap dealers.