Assault claim photographer wins damages from the Met

A photographer who complained that he was assaulted by Metropolitan Police officers while covering a protest has won an apology and out of court settlement from the force.

Marc Vallée also issued proceedings against commissioner of police for the Metropolis Sir Ian Blair for the ‘battery’and infringement of his freedom of expression which he claims breached the Human Rights Act.

Vallée was covering the ‘Sack Parliament’protest in London’s Parliament Square in October 2006 when he received injuries that needed urgent medical attention and treatment after the incident. His legal costs will also be met by the police.

He claims that he was “grabbed” by a policeman who “roughly shoved him” and that he was “propelled through a police line and on the ground where he landed, both winded and shocked”.

The solicitor representing Vallee Chez Cotton of Hickman and Rose said: ‘This was an extremely unpleasant incident. Neither the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police or his officers has any legal power, moral responsibility or political responsibility to prevent or restrict what the media record.

‘Mr Vallée is a well-respected photojournalist, lawfully present to photograph a political protest outside parliament, yet he was brutally prevented from doing so by the police. It is right that Mr Vallée has received an apology, an out of court settlement and that his legal costs will be met by the police.”

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