Man believed to be a bailiff arrested during Bank of Ideas eviction as protestors leave site peacefully

Photo by: Crazy Bayliff

The Metropolitan Police have confirmed that a 45-year-old man was arrested following the eviction of the occupied UBS buildings known as ‘the Bank of Ideas’ in Hackney last night. He was subsequently taken to hospital due to a health condition, where he remains.

Officers have received and are considering footage of the incident for which the man was arrested.

The man, who is believed by police to be a bailiff, has been taken to a north London police station on suspicion of assault and causing criminal damage.

Just after midnight, police officers and bailiffs moved in to evict the UBS owned building on Sun Street, Hackney, which has been occupied by Occupy London protestors since November of last year.

According to the Bank of Ideas website around 50 protestors initially resisted peacefully but left the building shortly after.

The Police and enforcement officers then went to carry out an eviction of the Earl Street Community Centre, also a UBS-owned building.

Around 70 protestors had gathered outside the building in solidarity with those on the inside. According to a statement from Occupy London, protestors were brought out peacefully and were allowed to take their belongings with them.

But Occupy London reported that a photographer has been punched in the face by a bailiff and have complained of heavy-handed behaviour by both bailiffs and police.

A video on YouTube shows a man, believed to be a bailiff, trying to drive his car through a group of people and then driving off with a man, who is understood to have suffered minor injuries due to the incident, clinging on to the bonnet of the car.

Ronan McMern from Occupy London told EastLondonLines: “The most astounding thing about last night was the reaction of the police. Serious questions need to be asked about the inactivity of the police to deal with the actions of the bailiffs.”

According to McMern several people reported being assaulted by police as they stormed through the crowds to gain entrance into the Earl Street building.

According to the Metropolitan Police there have been no injuries to officers or protestors.

Photographer Jules Mattsson, who reported the assault allegation on Twitter told EastLondonLines: “a number of journalists had issues with enforcement officers. Some enforcement officers think they can act entirely outside the law.”

Occupy London have said in a statement that they are “gravely concerned that the police’s actions this morning demonstrated a greater concern for the well being of a building than the safety of the public.”

A High Court Possession Order on the ‘Bank of Ideas’ came into place at 2pm on Wednesday January 24. Since then according to their website the Bank of Ideas has been closed to the public and a team of volunteers has been cleaning the building.

Occupy London are urging anyone that witnessed events to report them to Shepherdess Walk police station.

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