The UK Home Secretary has announced that she will overrule the use of ‘Orwellian’ non-crime hate incidents by police, in a potential win for freedom of speech in the UK, if the minister follows through on her words.
Home Secretary Priti Patel has said that she will overrule the recording of non-crime hate incidents by the police where a person’s freedom of speech is in question.
The move comes after a court found that British police had acted unlawfully towards a former cop, calling the man up regarding a number of posts he made online to “check” his “thinking”.
“The police will always have my backing to fully investigate hate crimes, but they must do so whilst protecting the fundamental right of freedom of expression,” Patel said according to a report by The Telegraph. “Some current practices are having a dangerous impact on free speech and potentially stopping people expressing their views.”
The Home Secretary will now force police to abide by a new code of practice which will ensure that people will not come under criminal investigation should they speak out on controversial topics, such as transgenderism.
“We want officers to focus on policing actual crime, not hurt feelings,” a government source told The Telegraph.
Speaking to Breitbart London, Father Ted Creator Graham Linehan — who has campaigned against transgender self-identification laws in the past — has said that previous policing guidelines had been used by online trolls to shield themselves gainst criticism while using the police to attack their enemies.
“The police in the UK have been acting on behalf of what is essentially a criminal gang of misogynists and conmen who use muddled laws to avoid scrutiny and criticism,” Linehan said.
Former Cop Harry Miller Wins Legal Victory Against UK’s ‘Orwellian’ Non-Crime Hate Incidentshttps://t.co/ExrjAv6HPI
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) December 21, 2021
Patel’s comments come after a court ruled against an English police force over its investigation of a former police officer Harry Miller regarding posts he made online.
Despite Humberside Police concluding that no crime had been committed by the former cop, they still opted to investigate the posts as a ‘transphobic’ ‘non-crime hate incident’.
Though stopping short of outright banning the future recording of such non-crime incidents, the judge presiding over the case, Dame Victoria Sharp, criticised the police guidelines currently in place.
“There is nothing in the guidance about excluding irrational complaints, including those where there is no evidence of hostility and little, if anything, to address the chilling effect which this may have on the legitimate exercise of freedom of expression,” the judge said.
Graham Linehan welcomed the Miller ruling, saying that he himself had been confronted three times by police reportedly “on the orders of online trolls”.
“I’m hoping Harry’s victory will spell the end of a grim chapter in UK policing,” Linehan said.
While not considered crimes, police in the UK have the authority to store information regarding these “hate incidents” on criminal databases.
As a result, non-crimes can become discoverable during background checks, which can possibly interfere with an individuals employment opportunities.