POLICE STATION

POLICE STATION

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Anybody accused of a criminal offence, whether arrested or as a voluntary attendance at a police station, is entitled to free and independent legal advice from a solicitor of their choice, or the duty solicitor. Football supporters all too often do not use their right to legal advice particularly when arrested for a minor offence. We hear reasons such as: “I thought I’d get out quicker without a solicitor” “there was no point for such a minor offence, I didn’t think I’d get charged” “I was told it would take longer if I had to have a solicitor”  –  those are the most common.  The majority of our enquiries are from supporters who have been charged at the police station, or received a summons to attend court who may never know if legal representation at the police station could have made a difference to their case.

Football supporters should also be aware of the increasing use of police questioning outside the police station.  We are aware of interviews being conducted inside the homes of supporters, and in a variety of locations.  There is a fine line between legitimate questioning of a suspect by police (for example to establish identity) and an interview taking place. A police officer should always tell a suspect of their right to legal advice. This does not always happen. Answers given by supporters can be used against them at court. If it feels like an interview, it is probably is an interview and you are entitled to legal advice, this is your right to legal representation, we recommend you use it.

Anybody accused of a criminal offence, whether arrested or as a voluntary attendance at a police station, is entitled to free and independent legal advice from a solicitor of their choice, or the duty solicitor. Football supporters all too often do not use their right to legal advice particularly when arrested for a minor offence. We hear reasons such as: “I thought I’d get out quicker without a solicitor” “there was no point for such a minor offence, I didn’t think I’d get charged” “I was told it would take longer if I had to have a solicitor”  –  those are the most common.  The majority of our enquiries are from supporters who have been charged at the police station, or received a summons to attend court who may never know if legal representation at the police station could have made a difference to their case.

Football supporters should also be aware of the increasing use of police questioning outside the police station.  We are aware of interviews being conducted inside the homes of supporters, and in a variety of locations.  There is a fine line between legitimate questioning of a suspect by police (for example to establish identity) and an interview taking place. A police officer should always tell a suspect of their right to legal advice. This does not always happen. Answers given by supporters can be used against them at court. If it feels like an interview, it is probably is an interview and you are entitled to legal advice, this is your right to legal representation, we recommend you use it.