Page last updated at 19:26 GMT, Thursday, 3 September 2009 20:26 UK

New powers ahead of demonstration

Police at the scene of the protest last month
There was trouble last month when two sets of protesters met

Police in Birmingham have been given new powers by the Home Office to clamp down on any violence that could break out at an upcoming demonstration.

West Midlands Police said they were putting extra officers in the city centre on Saturday ahead of of planned protest against Muslim extremism.

There was trouble last month when English Defence League protesters met members of United Against Fascism.

The new powers mean anyone protesting at The Bullring can be arrested.

Police cannot legally ban protests and detectives said they did not know of any planned counter-protests this weekend.

A total of 38 people were arrested following the clashes in the New Street area.

Three were charged but most have now been released on police bail.

A 32-year-old man was charged with using threatening, abusive and insulting words or behaviour, a 21-year-old man was charged with failing to comply with a football banning order and a 22-year-old was charged with being drunk and disorderly.

A 16-year-old boy was also given a final warning for using words or behaviour to cause harassment or distress.



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