Police 'abused powers' in 3am arrest of Tower Hamlets councillor at home
PUBLISHED: 00:00 13 July 2012 | UPDATED: 10:07 13 July 2012
Police were tonight accused of abusing their powers over the arrest of a Tower Hamlets councillor at his home in the middle of the night to question him.
Labour’s Kosru Uddin was roused at 3am when police entered his home in Limehouse on May 17, and he spent the rest of the night in a cell.
He was later questioned about an alleged scuffle at the Town Hall the night before involving a member of Lutfur Rahman’s cabinet.
But no evidence of anything illegal was found and no charges were levelled against him, it emerged this evening (Thurs).
Labour’s deputy group leader on Tower Hamlets council, Motin Uz-Zaman, slammed the heavy-handed action as “abuse of power” when he called a press conference at the party’s constituency offices in Bethnal Green.
“Just because of an accusation, the police going into someone’s home waking them and their children up to ask questions is totally unacceptable.
“Those children will always remember that incident of the police coming in the night.
“It’s an abuse of power. He was not arrested at the Town Hall, but at his home at 3am.”
Cllr Uddin, 45, read out a prepared statement—but refused to answer the Advertiser’s questions.
He said: “I do not want to comment on my accuser’s motives or actions. I have been cleared. I was innocent and am glad that the justice system has now put that beyond doubt.”
Police officially informed him on Wednesday—two months after the Town Hall incident—that there was no case to answer and they would not be pressing charges, accordoing to his statement.
But Kosru’s arrest had clearly shaken him and his family.
“The last months have been extremely hard for both me and my family,” he added.
“Politics is often described as a cut-throat and malicious business.
“But the residents of Mile End East elected me to stand up for them. I take that role seriously and look forward to putting this unpleasant matter behind me.”
He then walked out of the press conference refusing to answer questions—while Cllr Uz Zaman took up the baton and criticised the police action.
Cllr Uddin had been widely reported to have made “threats to kill” in a confrontation with Cabinet member Rania Khan at the end of a rowdy council meeting on May 16.
Scotland Yard would not comment on allegations of police “abuse of power,” but confirmed Cllr Uddin was arrested just before 3am on May 17 on suspicion of making threats to kill and had been released on bail.