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Brit police plan to stop-and-search to prevent Royal Wedding disruption


March 29, 2011 - London

The police in Britain are considering using stop-and-search powers to prevent protesters from disrupting the Royal Wedding after 149 people were charged following a mass protest in London.

Metropolitan Police Commander Bob Broadhurst said officers would be taking action to prevent a repeat of the kind of violence seen during the march against Government spending cuts.

Broadhurst admitted the police operation had "failed in parts" but insisted that officers were not able to arrest potential rioters ahead of the demonstration.

He said the force will take a different approach to policing Prince William's wedding to Kate Middleton on April 29, watching out for every threat "from terrorism downwards".

Broadhurst revealed police had picked up some suggestions that the wedding may be a target following last November's student protest in London.

"Saturday was almost a litmus test to see if would face violence. We'll be working to make sure we know if people are going to target the wedding," Sky News quoted him as saying in a statement released by Scotland Yard.

"The wedding is primarily a security operation meets a ceremonial event. With a security operation we have different powers we can use to ensure security.

"Our policing response to a repeat of this putting security at risk would be bolder. My message to those who may be thinking about it is 'Don't'," he stated.

Section 60 of the Criminal Justice Act 1994 enables officers to stop and search anyone within a designated area during a specified time, but they cannot be detained unless evidence of wrongdoing is found.

Broadhurst said the Met "always" looks at the powers available to them "to try to quell violence before it happens".

ANI

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