If you or one of your mates is one of them, you’ll be worried and unsure about what to do. Before you do anything, read this first.
The dilemma is this – if you hand yourself in, you are DEFINITELY throwing away your chance of walking away from all this. If you don’t hand yourself in, you MIGHT get caught anyway – or you might not. And they MIGHT give you a slightly tougher sentence – or they might not.
Handing yourself in does NOT guarantee a softer sentence. Those who gave themselves up after disorder at the Gaza protests a couple of years ago, DID NOT get noticeably lesser sentences than others.
The fact they have published your photo means that they probably DON’T KNOW WHO YOU ARE. The police have a hard job tracking people down just from a photo.
Even if you have previous convictions, there are lots of reasons why they still won’t know who you are. They may not be able to get a link to your police record just by having a photo. If the picture they have is not clear, or you have changed appearance, they have no chance.
GOING TO A LAWYER at this stage may NOT BE A GOOD IDEA. If you go to a lawyer for advice they will tell you to hand yourself in – they will be duty bound to do so.
Having the name of a good lawyer to keep in your back pocket in case the worst happens may be a very good idea.
You might want to read the advice FITWATCH gave after the Millbank demo. It may be relevant.
STAY PROUD of yourself. The police were brutal and violent on Thursday. Defending yourself and others against police attack should not be treated as a criminal act.
IF you are arrested:
Say NO COMMENT to ALL questions in interview. DO NOT justify yourself to the police. DO NOT comment on why you were there. DO NOT comment on who you were with. DO NOT comment on what you did. SAY NOTHING – for your own protection and that of others.
Get in touch with defendants support at Green and Black Cross.