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Burning Poppy Pic on Facebook lands man in Police handcuffs

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Free speech: Man arrested for posting burning poppy picture on Facebook


Kent police have arrested a 19 year old man for posting a picture of a burning poppy on social network site Facebook


By James Temperton


Social network



Civil liberty campaigners have called the arrest "ridiculous"


A man who posted a picture of a burning poppy on Facebook has been arrested by Kent police.


The 19 year old man from Aylesham was arrested on suspicion of commiting an offence under the malicious communications act. The picture of the burning poppy was "reportedly accompanied by an offensive comment".


Read more: Facebook news | Facebook how-to guides


The man is due to be interviewed by police this morning for the alleged offence. Officers were contacted at 4pm on Sunday 11 November and made aware of the picture.


Nick Pickles, director of civil liberty campaign group Big Brother Watch said the arrest is "ridiculous" and the man's actions had "harmed no-one."


"It is not illegal - and nor should it ever be - to offend people and, however idiotic or insensitive the picture may have been.


"The incident is certainly not worthy of arrest and highlights the urgent need to reform a law that poses a serious risk to freedom of speech after several ludicrous prosecutions in recent months."


In October the director of public prosecutions in England and Wales, Keir Starmer, called for an an informed debate into online free speech.


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