As James Kelly’s bill for the repeal of the Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Scotland) Act 2012 has gathered momentum behind the walls of Parliament, it is regrettable that Police Scotland’s campaign of intimidation, harassment and victimisation of football supporters has not subdued. Fans Against Criminalisation deem the conduct of the police in Perth before, during and after last Sunday’s match between St Johnstone and Celtic to have been entirely unacceptable. Indeed, the aggressive mixture of nakedly violent policing tactics and the Orwellian surveillance of fans should be a cause of concern for us all.
Having reviewed the evidence available from the day’s events, we have now concluded that Police Scotland deliberately set out to incite disorder, and we fear that the police may adopt similar tactics once again at future fixtures in their attempts to demonise football supporters in defence of the Offensive Behaviour at Football Act and the generous budget which comes with it. We call on all fans to remain vigilant at matches, to ensure that they know their rights if approached by officers and to continue the fight to end this harassment.
One particularly troubling aspect from the weekend was the picture which has surfaced showing a Police Scotland officer holding a paper sheet, appearing to be looking over a series of pictures of fans faces.
For any fan who is concerned about the information that the police may hold on them, we have attached below a subject access form which can be used to request any details that Police Scotland may hold on you. Fans can only request this at their own free will, though Fans Against Criminalisation would appreciate feedback from those who complete this, so that we can build a broad database of details which the police are collating to help us put an end to this oppressive culture of surveillance of football supporters. Subject Access Request form