Liam Deacon, Breitbart, August 16, 2016
The office of London’s first Muslim mayor has secured millions of pounds to fund a police “online hate crime hub” to work in “partnership with social media providers” to criminalise “trolls” who “target… individuals and communities.”
The London mayor’s office for policing and crime (Mopac) will spend £1,730,726 of taxpayer’s money policing speech online after applying for a huge grant from the Home Office Police Innovation Fund (PIF), it was announced in a statement.
“The purpose of this programme is to strengthen the police and community response to this growing crime type” is was announced, and will “involv[e] a dedicated police team” backed by “volunteers”.
London’s Metropolitan police force said they welcomed the extra workload and wished to encourage offended people to report perceived hate crimes in ever increasing numbers.
“The Metropolitan police service is committed to working with our partners, including the mayor, to tackle all types of hate crime including offences committed online,” a spokesman for the Met said.
“By establishing this unit, we are sending a strong message to those who use online forums to spread hate that their actions will not be tolerated. The Metropolitan police service continues to have a zero-tolerance approach to all forms of hate crime.
“The Met encourages all victims of hate crime to report any incident to the police and will make every effort to hold offenders to account and bring them to justice.”
Sadiq Khan launches crackdown on Brexit vote hate crime https://t.co/adhAsfLjuV < probably the only politician taking this seriously
— Aisha S Gani (@aishagani) July 8, 2016
Convictions for crimes under Section 127 of the Communications Act of 2003, a law increasingly used to prosecute “internet trolls”, have increased ten-fold in a decade, official figures revealed in May last year. They showed 1,209 people were found guilty of offences under the law, compared with 143 in 2004, according to the Ministry of Justice.
The law criminalises “using [a] public electronic communications network in order to cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety,” and can result in a six-month prison term or fine of up to £5,000.