British photography editor stopped under terrorism law
June 9, 2009
The editor of a leading UK-based photography website says he was stopped by police for ‘taking photos of iconic landmarks’ in central London.
Mark Goldstein, who edits PhotographyBLOG, said he was stopped yesterday under Section 44 of the Terrorism Act by police targeting ‘individuals with cameras who are photographing famous buildings’.
Goldstein, who was on the south bank of the River Thames near City Hall, said: ‘After informing the officer that I run a photography website – and giving her my business card – I was issued with a Form 5090 (X), with no actual search taking place.’
He added: ‘The whole process was somewhat undermined by two other officers posing for photos with tourists whilst their colleague completed the paperwork.
‘I can only conclude that it was the bright pink Casio camera that I was testing at the time which attracted the police officer’s attention.’
Speaking this morning a Metropolitan Police spokeswoman said that, for security reasons, the force was not prepared to divulge whether or not officers have stepped up anti-terrorism operations in the capital.
‘We don’t talk about intelligence or security levels,’ she said, adding that in the past she has also been stopped while taking pictures using a compact camera, at nearby Tower Bridge.