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Days imprisoned so far: 3708

Wednesday, 18 March 2009 15:53

Statement from Fiona Murphy (Babar Ahmad's solicitor) (18/03/09)

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The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Sir Paul Stephenson has
today admitted that his officers subjected Mr Babar Ahmad to grave
abuse tantamount to torture during his arrest on 2 December 2003. This
dramatic development arose during the course of Mr Amad’s civil trial
for battery against the Commissioner before Mr Justice Holroyde at the
High Court in London.
In the face of overwhelming evidence the Commissioner has made an
unprecedented admission that:
Metropolitan officers subjected Mr Ahmad to a sustained and brutal
o
beating occasioning him multiple injuries and despite Mr Ahmad
offering no resistance whatsoever;
An officer twice placed Mr Ahmad in a life threatening neck hold
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causing Mr Ahmad to feel that he was about to die;
Officers openly mocked Mr Ahmad's Islamic faith;
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Officers deliberately wrenched Mr Ahmad about by his handcuffs
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causing him excruciating pain;
An officer grabbed Mr Ahmad's testicles inflicting pain; and
o
Officers assaulted and abused Mr Ahmad in his home, then in a
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police van and then in the yard at Charing Cross Police Station –
long after his arrest.
Despite the gravity of these acts the Commissioner has refused to
apologise and he does not propose to take any action against those
responsible. He has offered to pay Mr Ahmad £60,000 in damages, in
addition to his legal expenses, from police funds. The agreed
compensation includes aggravated and exemplary damages to reflect
the shocking conduct of the Metropolitan Police as an institution as well
as of the individual officers.
The Commissioner decided to take the extraordinary step of admitting
liability when a pattern of similar allegations was uncovered against the
same officers. However when the Commissioner was compelled to
disclose evidence in this regard his lawyers informed the Court that “a
number of large mail sacks" had been "mislaid in the internal dispatch of
the MPS", containing what is believed to be yet further similar
allegations. Mr Justice Holroyde demanded further investigations to
locate the missing mail sacks and the Commissioner responded by
admitting liability. The Commissioner has yet to confirm the current
whereabouts of the mail sacks. Earlier in the proceedings several
officers including the supervising officer, refused to give evidence at trial
on behalf of the Commissioner.
Fiona Murphy, solicitor for Mr Ahmad of Bhatt Murphy said:
“It is deeply concerning that the Commissioner is prepared to allow
officers on his watch to violently abuse a member of the public with
impunity. The papers will be referred to the Director of Public
Prosecutions for urgent consideration of criminal charges against the
officers concerned and for an investigation as to whether events
surrounding the mislaid mail sacks constitute evidence of a conspiracy
to pervert the course of justice.
The horrifying nature and volume of complaints against these officers
should have provoked an effective response from the Metropolitan
Police and the IPCC long ago. Instead, it has fallen to Babar Ahmad to
bring these proceedings to achieve public recognition of the wrong that
was done to him. "
Attached to this press release are:
-    A Court Order confirming the Commissioner's admission of Mr Ahmad's
detailed allegations of assault and abuse;
-    A copy of the Particulars of Claim referred to in the Order;
-    Mr Ahmad’s counsel, Phillippa Kaufmann of Doughty Street’s chambers
opening note read to the Court on 16 March 2009;
-    Bhatt Murphy’s note of proceedings in open court on the afternoon of 16 March
2009 with passages pertaining to the similar allegations, missing evidence,
unwilling witnesses and lost mail sacks in bold.
Note to Editor
A statement on behalf of Babar Ahmad will be read outside the front
entrance of the High Court after a brief hearing on Tuesday morning, 18
March 2008.
Photographs of Mr Ahmad's injuries can be downloaded from
www.freebabarahmad.com.
Mr Ahmad's father and his solicitor, Fiona Murphy will be available for press
interviews        by        emailing        Sharine        Kowlessar       on
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The matters summarised in this press release have been rehearsed in open
court.
Due to concerns that reporters were not in attendance during the afternoon
of 16 March 2009 a note of the proceedings has been prepared by solicitors
and is attached.
At an early stage, the Met also mislaid all the relevant officers Incident
Report Books (the documents in which the officers' recorded their first
account of the events). They also mislaid eight tapes of interviews with a
significant witness.
The Met did not disclose several of the documents that proved Mr Ahmad's
case until they were compelled by three separate Court Orders to do so.
A Part 18 request is a formal process of questioning between parties in legal
proceedings.
Mr Ahmad instructed his current solicitors, Bhatt Murphy, in April 2006 in
connection with the events of 2 December 2003.

Last modified on Sunday, 26 September 2010 16:57
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