UK police: Cops protected Olympic sites

2011-08-16 22:21

kalahari.com

London - British police revealed on Tuesday that they sent officers to protect major shopping centres and the 2012 Olympics sites after intercepting phone and social network messages saying they were targets for rioters.

Assistant Commissioner Lynne Owens of London's Metropolitan Police told a committee of lawmakers that police sent extra officers to London's Oxford Circus, two malls and the Olympic Park on August 8 after seeing messages on Twitter and the BlackBerry devices of people who had been arrested for rioting.

Owens said that "through Twitter and BBM there was intelligence that the Olympic site, Westfields [shopping malls] and Oxford Street were going to be targeted."

"We were able to secure all those places and indeed there was no damage at any of them," she said, according to London's Evening Standard newspaper.

Police and politicians claim young criminals used Twitter and Blackberry's simple and largely cost-free messaging service to co-ordinate looting sprees during the riots.

The government has said it will debate whether cell phone services could be disrupted or blackouts imposed on social networks during riots - proposals that have already been fiercely opposed by civil libertarians.

The acting chief of London's police force, Tim Godwin, told Parliament's home affairs committee that police had considered seeking approval to switch off such services, but decided against it. He said the legality of such action was "very questionable," and social networks were a useful intelligence asset.

Police have arrested more than 3 000 people over riots that erupted August 6 in north London and flared for four nights across the capital and other English cities.

A 16-year-old boy was ordered on Tuesday to stand trial for the murder of a retiree attacked when he confronted rioters in London, as judges and prosecutors used tough punishment and name-and-shame tactics against hundreds of alleged participants in the mayhem.

The government said police would get better training and stronger powers to deal with a new and unpredictable era of street disturbances.

"We will make sure police have the powers they need," said Home Secretary Theresa May — including, she suggested, the power to impose blanket curfews in troubled areas.

- AP

Read more on:    uk
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
5 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Tuesday Mitchells Plain - 19:35 PM
    Road name: M7 Vanguard Drive
    ROADWORKS - traffic restrictions between the R300 and Highlands Drive - expect delays
  • Tuesday Belhar - 17:58 PM
    Road name: Belhar Drive
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Alabama Drive
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Up to 60% off - clearance sale!

Save up to 60% on appliances, books, electronics, toys, movies and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Deal of the Week!

Get bestselling John Green novels now just R99 each! Hurry and get yours while stocks last. Shop here.

Mind blowing deals on beauty & fragrances

Save up to 30% off beauty and fragrances. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia Lumia 800

The stunningly social Nokia Lumia 800 features head-turning design, ...

From R2775.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

It is always easier to look out and see what needs changing. Looking in is a lot harder... Today you may need to look at what...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.