UK Police Arrest 4 People Who Commented on New Zealand Attack on Social Media
Police alleged the man was 'making reference and support for the terrible events'
Police in Greater Manchester, UK, have arrested four people for commenting online and in person about the recent New Zealand shooting.
The first arrest was that of a 24-year-old man from the Oldham for “malicious communications” on social media.
Police alleged the man was “making reference and support for the terrible events,” and took him into custody on March 16th.
Another person, a 38-year-old woman from Rochdale was arrested for “a racially aggravated public order offense” which involved comments made online about the New Zealand attack.”
Later, a 34-year-old woman and a 33-year-old man were also arrested on suspicion of a 'racially aggravated' public order offenses after “a report of a taxi driver being abused and threatened by members of the public who were referencing the terrorist attacks in New Zealand.”
“The events which happened two days ago in New Zealand continue to cause huge upset with people of all faiths from across Greater Manchester," Assistant Chief Constable Russ Jackson said.
“Over the weekend we have had, however, a small number of incidents where people have either posted or made remarks referencing the horrible events in New Zealand, particularly online where people often think it is acceptable to abuse others.
“Some of these comments are frankly disgusting. I am amazed how some people think it is acceptable to make such careless and disrespectful remarks,” he added.
Chelsea Clinton Blamed for New Zealand Mosque Attacks by Muslim Students | Neon Nettle https://t.co/yzDc0N9nMD— Mdl-Murray (@MdlMurray) March 17, 2019
“People are entitled to free speech, and this is always respected, however, where this crosses the boundary into criminal offenses, let me be really clear, we will make arrests, and if the evidence is there, we will seek the prosecution of those involved.”
In a separate case, an 18-year-old man from New Zealand is facing 14 years in prison for sharing a live stream video on Facebook of the Christchurch mosque shooting massacre.
Police confirmed man, who cannot be named from legal reasons, was not involved in the attacks.
One of the gunmen is reported to have filmed the shooting incident at the mosque before broadcasting it live on social media, along with a manifesto outlining his views.
Police asked people not to share the distressing footage and said they were working to have it removed it from the internet.
Police would not explain the motives behind the attacks and advised mosques in New Zealand to shut their doors.