Section 14 - Dismissed: 28/11/19

Court date



City of London Magistrates

Hearing date:


28 November

Bench (DJ or JPs)


Judge Noble

Charged with:


S14 on 16th April at Waterloo

Represented by:


Birds, Khaliq

Please outline prosecution and defense case(s).


S14 on bridge. Defendant was sitting on the bridge holding a banner. Bodycam of officer speaking to him, showing him paper, then arresting him.

Defence case:

  1. Necessity (not really pursued at all)
  2. Justification of imposition of s14 order (small attempt to cross exam CI but not much really)
  3. Defendant didn’t hear the order to move


CI Galvin called to give evidence of continuation of s14 order after first 48 hours, reasons given for continuation ie serious disruption.


Police officer called to give evidence of warning defendant to leave, then arresting him when he didn’t.


Defendant is deaf in left ear and was clearly shown on the body cam footage saying he couldn’t hear and turning his good ear towards the officer, then appearing to listen to the police officer’s colleague who was talking to the defendant (other officer not called, don’t know why as he was clearly involved and the arresting officer had a thick Italian accent that was hard to understand in court sometimes and impossible on the body cam).


Defendant explained he had only just gone to the bridge, had had no involvement with XR beforehand, had only been on bridge five minutes and had no idea about s14 being imposed. He explained his nodding which seemed to show his understanding what was said to him as a reflex action which he does to avoid being seen as stupid when he can’t hear. Lots of noise around means he has real difficulty hearing anything, such as was on the bridge. So he nodded but was confused and as he can’t hear much was actually in an anxious state and didn’t understand what was happening as he hadn’t wanted or expected to be arrested and had only been there five minutes.


Defendant said that all he heard was the words ‘Public Order’  and ‘two minutes’ and hadn’t known what it meant.


The judge then asked to be shown the bodycam footage to see how long from being given the warning the officer gave the defendant before he was arrested. It was around 30 seconds.


 The judge then said he had had a similar case previously and asked the prosecution what the legal position was ie being arrested before the two minutes were up. The prosecution didn’t know and asked for time over lunch to read up about it and the judge said in a similar case he had dismissed the case and told the defendant he would rule after lunch to give the prosecution time to look up the law but he needn’t attend if he didn’t want to (ie he was going to dismiss the case).



Please note: this defence was actually suggested by the judge to the prosecution after hearing the evidence. At no stage did the defence lawyer take part in either initiating or picking it up as a possible defence.



Was defense evidence submitted in writing?






Did defense witness(es) give evidence in person? Were they cross-examined?


Yes, yes.

What was the verdict?


Dismissed – on a technicality that two minutes hadn’t elapsed since the warning was given. But even if it hadn’t been the judge would have found him not guilty as he wasn’t convinced that the defendant had actually heard the police officer.

What was the sentence?



What costs were awarded?



Please add anything else relevant.