A uniformed sergeant came to my door today saying he wanted to issue me with a warning under the Harassment Act for harassment of Erika Helps, regarding content I had put on the Internet about how I felt she treated me as a former volunteer. Erika Helps is the Chief Executive Officer of Rhondda Taf Citizens Advice Bureau, where I volunteered between 2006 and 2008. I do not believe I was harassing Erika Helps, who asked for content to be removed from this web page, which I duly did to protect my ISP from any legal action, as they may have faced under the Defamation Act 1996.
If Section 5 of the new Defamation Bill, currently being debated in Parliament, came into force to protect my ISP so that I was responsible for my posts, I would have refused to remove them. I believe I was acting no differently to one would expect me to in a democratic society. As it stands, according to the users of Yahoo! Answers there was no way to protect my right to free speech with the law as it currently is.
I said to the sergeant, I was not willing to accept that harassment warning, so could he please arrest me to give me the chance to defend that claim.
He said to me, not knowing who I am obviously, “You don’t have a law degree, don’t try to tell me the law.” I said to him, feeling apprehensive, “Yes I do, if you were to search my name on Google, you would see I’m the world’s leading authority on Internet trolling”
“I have research papers published on the Harassment Act 1997, of which you are claiming I have breached Section 1. You have no basis on which to issue this warning, and if Erika Helps wants to take any action, she should bring a civil claim under that Act in the County Court”
The sergeant, which I found out he was one after asking him to speak to one, said he had told Erika Helps this but said, “I am going to serve this warning on you”. I told him in my firm tone, feeling shaken, “I am not willing to receive this harassment warning, either you arrest me to give me the opportunity to defend myself, or you withdraw it”
He refused to withdraw it, and started to walk off, when I asked him for his number he refused to give it. I then phoned 101 to report him, setting out what happened, and that I felt he abused my right to a fair hearing under the Human Rights Act, by not giving me a chance to defend the claims against me by Erika Helps.