Occupy Sydney Headline Animator

Monday, 24 October 2011

Was NSW Police attack on Occupy Sydney lawful?

 At about 5am Oct 23 I doing the allocated the task of police liaison person at The Occupy Sydney site in Martin Place. Most camp occupiers were sleeping. There were about six to eight occupiers awake and there were also at least two visitors A person who was part of the occupier group suddenly came running over to the camp yelling " quick Police.Get the video cameras out. Immediately a large contingent of police appeared moving quickly from the direction of Hyde Park to my right.They formed a line about ten metres distant to the Occupy Area Eastern perimeter. A senior officer with a loud hailer summarily announced (to the effect) "you are in breach of (legislation name, offence: illegal camping) & have ten minutes to gather your posessions and move away." I walked directly to the senior officer making the announcement and was the closest non-police party to him.At no stage did the officer offer any peaceful solution nor did he allow a reasonable or humanly possible timeframe in which to comply with his "orders". The amount of property needing to be removed would have required at least an hour to collect and remove.From the end of the police officers announcement a period of only about 5 minutes expired before police attacked without warning. Several people including women were punched while held by multiple police officers. People were screaming in obvious pain as police visibly and roughly applied excessive force in wristlocks and other holds. 

  • Police knowingly issued orders which Occupy Sydney protesters could not comply with while ensuring the safety security of our posessions. Is it legal for police to issue directives with which people cannot reasonably comply, then act to enforce them? 
  • People have the right to act to protect property from a clear and imminent threat even when that threat is as a result of imminent actions by police. We believe that Occupy Sydney people arrested and charged including with incitement had the right to protect their property.
  • Police enforcement of the City if Sydney camping regulations a pretext to deploy unreasonable force. 
  • NSW Police ignored Homeless Protocol to which they are signatory in evicting Occupy Sydney.Basic common law principle is that a law applying to any group applies to all/
  • Police did not act on a single complaint including from Council or Banks. 
NSW Police eviction of Occupy Sydney Protest amounts to  draconian illegal and possibly corrupt use of Police powers.

 What can we do??
  1. File a complaint with ICAC . Any legals wishing to discuss email occupysydney@gmail.com 
  2. Look at other legal avenues to deal with police interference with peoples rights to protest.

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