Street preacher wins nearly $19,000 for illegal arrest

 January 13, 2024

This story was originally published by the WND News Center.

A street preacher in the United Kingdom has won a settlement of nearly $19,000 in compensation and costs after being arrested, wrongfully, by police in Scotland.

The Christian Institute reports street preacher Angus Cameron has won £5,500 in compensation and £9,400 in costs in settlement.

On the hook for the damages are police in Scotland, who detained the pastor of Cumnock Baptist Church over a "hate crime" that didn't exist.

Cameron donated all of his compensation to The Christian Institute, which supported him throughout his ordeal, the report noted.

Simon Calvert, the deputy director for public affairs for the institute, explained Cameron was preaching in Glasgow city center when he was approached by a police officer who claimed to have been told that "homophobic language" was being used.

Angus denied that.

Then the officer "announced that he was under arrest for 'breach of the peace with homophobic aggravation.' He was handcuffed – despite being entirely peaceful and compliant," the institute reported.

The report continued, "Angus was searched in the roadway, in full view of passing traffic and pedestrians, before being put in the back of a police van for over an hour. He was finally released to be told the matter would be dealt with 'in due course.' His preaching was not targeting individuals; he did not use offensive language; he was not aggressive; he did not try to offend; he simply quoted the Bible. There was no criminality at all."

Then when prosecutors declined to pursue the case, he was told he would still have a record of a "non-crime hate incident."

"Despite the police knowing full well that the complaint against him did not amount to a criminal offense, this respected community leader was informed his good name was to be associated with ‘hatred’ and potential criminality in police records," Calvert said. "We were pleased to be able to help Angus bring a legal action and we believe it was because of the strength of his legal claim that the police were forced to reach an out-of-court legal settlement and pay damages and legal costs."

As part of the settlement, police also agreed to erase references to the "non-crime" hate incident.

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