A major protest is taking place outside a north London police station hours after a 14-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of possessing cannabis.
The youngster was arrested by police in Grahame Park, near RAF Hendon at 2.40pm and taken to Colindale Police Station.
According to Scotland Yard, as they tried to arrest the teenager, the officers were confronted by a group of men who ‘obstructed a police vehicle from leaving the scene’.
A group of 30 or 40 demonstrators congregated outside Colindale police station after a 14-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of possession of cannabis
Two men were arrested on suspicion of obstructing officers while constables attempted to load the boy into the back of a police van
A Section 35 dispersal order has been placed over the entire area, according to Scotland Yard
Backup units arrived at the scene and arrested two men, aged 23 and 25.
Police said officers on patrol in The Concourse, NW9 stopped and searched the teenager under the Misuse of Drugs Act.
Following the arrests, a group of 30-40 people marched down to Colindale police station to demand the release of the boy and the two men.
Officers were deployed outside the police station and a Section 35 dispersal order was authorised.
A 19-year-old man was arrested outside the police station on suspicion of assaulting an officer.
According to police, ‘a number of officers’ received minor injuries in skirmishes, but nobody has required hospital treatment.
The arrests happened less than 24 hours ahead of a major Black Lives Matter protest outside Tottenham police station in memorial of Mark Duggan.
According to Black Lives Matter UK: ‘A police unit have just raided the @4FrontProject office in North West London, and started making arrests. Team members and the Graeme Park Estate community are at Colindale Police Station demanding immediate release. Huge police line. If you can, head over there now.’
On Twitter, BLM UK added: ‘4Front do vital work in the community advocating for young people being harassed by police daily. This is one day before a commemorative protest for Mark Duggan which 4Front co-organised.’
Speaking outside Colindale Police Station, Temi Mwale of the 4Front Project said: ‘Today started calmly, it started peacefully with us as community workers asking why a 14-year-old was being arrested? What has he done so we can inform his mum? That is all we wanted to do.
‘But they [police] said they did not want to engage with us and did not want to tell us and they aren’t able to tell us anything.
‘We had his mum on the phone and we want to be able to tell her what they are doing.
‘I can’t go into too much detail, but this is several times this month this same young person has been harassed and been arrested.
‘We had to sit down in front of the van and say until you tell us so we can inform his mum, you are not going anywhere.’
Responding on Twitter to allegations against the Met, Chief Superintendent Roy Smith wrote: ‘There was no “raid” this was simply officers on patrol who searched a 14 year old boy and found cannabis. Due to his age & potential vulnerability this had to be dealt with at the police station. I’m happy to meet community members in due course to share the full facts. As with all lawful police activity I would urge people not to obstruct or interfere at the scene. We have lots of mechanisms to listen, learn & be challenged in a calm way & I will personally meet with those involved if they wish.’