The record figures include 12 people arrested for the Westminster terror attack last March.

I have a concern to do with the 228 people who were released without charge.

I wonder whether the Conservative government has been using the Terrorism Act provision to arrest people without allowing them to hear the evidence against them, in order to remove political enemies at sensitive times.

Some of us have made it clear that provisions awarded by the Conservatives to themselves are open to abuse.

I don’t think it’s good enough to say simply that 228 people – 55 per cent of the total in 2017 – were released without charge. Why were they arrested in the first place? What was the evidence against them at the time?

I want to be sure these powers are not being abused – and these figures give me no joy at all.

The number of people arrested for terrorism-related offences in Britain rose by 58% to a record high of 412 in 2017 – one of the most intense periods of terrorist attacks in recent history.

The Home Office quarterly statistics published on Thursday show that there were 412 arrests in 2017 compared with the 261 terror-related arrests in the previous year.

The record figures include 12 people arrested for the Westminster attacks in March, the 23 people linked to the attack in Manchester in May, 21 arrests connected with the London Bridge Attack in June and one person arrested in connection with the Finsbury Park mosque attack later that month. A further seven arrests were made in connection with the attack on Parsons Green tube station in September.

The figures reflect the growing threat from Jihadists in Britain. The director general of MI5, Andrew Parker, spoke in October of “a dramatic upshift in the threat this year” to the “highest tempo I’ve seen in my 34-year career”.

The detailed Home Office figures show that the 412 terror-related arrests in 2017 resulted in 135 people being charged – 110 of them for terrorism-related offences. More than half – 228 or 55% – were released without charge while a further 33 were released on bail pending further investigation, and 13 faced alternative action.

So far 29 of the 110 people charged with a terrorist offence in 2017 have been prosecuted. All of them were convicted. A further 76 are awaiting prosecution. The remaining five cases have either not proceeded or are pending.

Source: UK terror-related arrests rose almost 60% to record high in 2017 | UK news | The Guardian

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