After a few minutes, around thirty officers entered the pub and flooded out in to the beer garden. I was sat with Pompey Dave and a couple of other members of MFE, and we were asked to put down our drinks and ‘come inside’ as they would like a quick word. We were assured that once done we could come back out and finish our pints.
Once inside, this seemed far from likely as we were taken by individual officers to separate seats and asked to identify ourselves. Once the ID check was done, I was advised by the officer talking to me (PC Miah, who was courteous and professional throughout) that I was under arrest for ‘Breach of the Peace’. When I asked why, I was advised that they had ‘intelligence’ (Not the word I would use) that we were here to upset an Islamic conference locally by the extremist group Hizb-ut-Tahrir, and as such we were being arrested on suspicion of causing a problem.
I asked Constable Miah if it was likely that I was going to cause a fight dressed in a suit with a black tie, and also if I was indeed here to cause an issue why I hadn’t got off at a tube station nearer to the conference? The reply I got was that ‘We are just following up on intelligence’, and with that I was escorted out of the pub (After a toilet break, which PC Miah kindly allowed to stop my tortured bladder from having an issue in the Police van)