Page last updated at 19:00 GMT, Wednesday, 14 October 2009 20:00 UK

Man wins 22K payout over arrest

Ken Hinds

Mr Hinds said police should 'say sorry' when they realise a mistake was made

A youth worker wrongly arrested after he watched a stop and search at a north London station has won a £22,000 payout from British Transport Police (BTP).

Ken Hinds, who chairs a stop and search monitoring group, was accused of threatening police during the incident at Seven Sisters station in May 2004.

The settlement came as the BTP faced a High Court trial in November over false imprisonment and malicious prosecution.

After the apology Mr Hinds told police: "When you do make mistakes, say sorry".

The BTP said it regretted the incident and the officers had since been "appropriately disciplined".

It has also agreed to pay Mr Hinds' legal costs.

My message to them is: we understand you've got a difficult job and you won't get it right 100% of the time
Ken Hinds

Mr Hinds, 50, from Edmonton, north London, who also sits on the Metropolitan Police's Black Independent Advisory Group and is the chairman of the stop and search monitoring group in Haringey, was acquitted following a trial in 2005.

He was arrested on 28 May 2004 as he waited to pick up his 12-year-old son, before being taken to Wood Green police station and charged under the public order act.

The jury at his trial heard the accounts of the two officers involved were suspiciously similar.

Later a police misconduct inquiry found one of the officers had e-mailed his statement to the other.

'Not malice'

Following the apology, Mr Hinds said: "My message to them is: we understand you've got a difficult job and you won't get it right 100% of the time.

"When you do make mistakes, say sorry, it's not a big deal. I should not have had to take legal proceedings to force you to do so."

BTP regrets the circumstances of the incident and an apology was issued to the man who was subject to their actions
British Transport Police spokesman

His lawyer, Fiona Murphy of Bhatt Murphy Solicitors, said this was a "shocking" case.

"Mr Hinds is committed and dedicated to assisting the police in encouraging confidence in the black community in how London's policed," she told BBC London.

"It is shocking that when he raised a complaint, they did not apologise promptly and they defended this case for as long as they can."

A BTP spokesman said the action of the officers "were a result of inexperience and not malice".

"Following the investigation the officers were appropriately disciplined including formal written warnings and the identification of training needs.

"BTP regrets the circumstances of the incident and an apology was issued to the man who was subject to their actions. He was also awarded compensation," he said.



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