[Ed. – There doesn’t seem to be any other explanation for this. Certainly there’s no excuse.]
I’m pretty sure that we were all supposed to be on the same page when it comes to the whole free speech, satire is okay bandwagon. But if that’s the case, why were the British police tracking down the people who bought copies of the magazine when they put out that record setting edition?
Several British police forces have questioned newsagents in an attempt to monitor sales of a special edition of Charlie Hebdo magazine following the Paris attacks, the Guardian has learned.
Officers in Wiltshire, Wales and Cheshire have approached retailers of the magazine, it has emerged, as concerns grew about why police were attempting to trace UK-based readers of the French satirical magazine.
Wiltshire police apologised on Monday after admitting that one of its officers had asked a newsagent to hand over the names of readers who bought a special “survivors’ issue” of the magazine published after its top staff were massacred in Paris last month.
The case in Corsham, Wiltshire, was thought to be an isolated incident but it has since emerged that Cheshire constabulary and Dyfed-Powys police have also approached newsagents over the sale of Charlie Hebdo.
In at least two cases – in Wiltshire and in Presteigne, Wales – officers have requested that newsagents hand over the names of customers who bought the magazine.
That’s a few too many cases to be written off as an isolated incident or some rogue police chief.