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Anger at PSNI treatment of 14 year old

15 March, 2004

Sinn Féin councillor Sue Ramsey has said that the arrest, charging and violent treatment of a 14-year-old boy in West Belfast for carrying a hurley stick by the PSNI is further evidence of the lack of an accountable and representative policing service.

Sue Ramsey said:

"To arrest and charge a schoolchild for possession a hurl is a obscene. To label it an offensive weapon a disgrace. But even more serious the head injury that this 14 year old received when he was arrested points to a police force that treats young nationalists with violent disdain. This is nothing less than child abuse.

"The PSNI men who targeted this young nationalist would not have done so if they knew that they would be held to account for their actions. Their attitude towards this young GAA player is totally unacceptable and further highlights the unrepresentative nature of the current PSNI.

"The reality for nationalists living in areas like West Belfast is that the PSNI behave no differently from the RUC. The reality is that the PSNI continue to harass and target particularly young nationalists." ENDS

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