Arrested photographer’s relief over bank picture justice

A photographer arrested by police for taking a picture of a bank has spoken of his relief at winning his three-year battle for justice.

Amateur photographer Anthony Finnegan won £10,000 compensation over his arrest
Amateur photographer Anthony Finnegan won £10,000 compensation over his arrest

A photographer arrested by police for taking a picture of a bank has spoken of his relief at winning his three-year battle for justice.

Anthony Finnegan, 45, of Castlefields, Shrewsbury, said he had been determined to clear his name ever since he was restrained by police officers while he was taking a picture of the doorway of NatWest bank in Mardol Head in the town in July 2009.

Mr Finnegan has claimed West Mercia Police has agreed to pay him £10,000 compensation plus his legal costs and will delete all records of his arrest.

He said he was delighted to have finally cleared his name following a drawn-out legal process and attempts to get hold of CCTV footage of the incident.

Mr Finnegan said he had not done anything wrong in openly taking a picture of the bank branch and was pleased the matter was now coming to a close.

He said: “I have got it all in writing that I have got £10,000 and they are going to apologise. But I have not received the cheque or letter of apology yet. It wasn’t about the compensation. It was about justice.”

A police spokesman said today the force would not be commenting on the matter as it was still going through the legal process.

Solicitor Fiona Murphy, from Bhatt Murphy, a London-based firm specialising in civil rights cases, represented Mr Finnegan. She said she was pleased to see the case ending with the force admitting liability and preparing to issue an apology to client.

“We welcome the decision to admit liability, to apologise and to destroy the records of Mr Finnegan’s detention,” she said.

“We hope that this complete resolution of the claim will enable the force to learn lessons from this regrettable abuse of police powers.”

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