Picture: Photographer told Wales is ‘hotbed for terrorism’ (update)
August 27, 2009
This locomotive, called ‘Edward’, was among the six shots captured by Stephen White
The trainspotting photographer quizzed by police after taking shots of some ‘interesting engines’ at an oil depot says police told him West Wales is a ‘hotbed for terrorism’.
Police said they stopped holidaymaker Stephen White because he had been seen acting suspiciously near the oil refinery at Milford Haven.
Speaking to Amateur Photographer (AP), this morning, White said he had taken six photographs from ‘public land’ – a verge at the side of the road.
The pictures show engines that were part of the oil depot.
White said that, the following day, police swooped on the campsite he was staying at after tracing his location from his car number plate, which had been caught on CCTV.
Police demanded White hand over his digital camera and memory card but he refused, telling the officers they needed a ‘court order’ to confiscate his equipment.
White said police accused him of ‘taking a photo of a secure oil bunker’, yet declined to see the images on his camera when offered.
In a statement Dyfed Powys Police told AP: ‘We can confirm that they [officers] sought an explanation from Mr White regarding his activities following a report of suspicious behaviour at an oil refinery in West Wales.
‘In the current climate the public expect us to take this sort of action – and it is our duty to do so.’
When quizzed further a police source later told AP: ‘There is obviously a heightened awareness and fear in relation to terrorism and other types of attack.’