A hairdresser won £220,000 damages yesterday after a jury found that he was assaulted by police and wrongfully arrested. This happened after counsel for Din Zung, 32, urged the jury to send a clear message that the public would no longer stand for "lying, bullying, racism and perjury" by the Metropolitan Police.
Central London County Court was told that police went to Mr. Zung's home over a dispute involving a leaking roof. Mr. Zung was arrested after refusing to allow officers in without a warrant. Akmal Khan, his solicitor, said his client's arms were twisted behind his back and he was handcuffed. "They punched and kicked him in the van and he was kicked in the kidneys". Another policeman used his back as a footstool and the driver turned round and insulted him verbally saying he had got no more than he deserved. The charge officer told him, "I've never arrested a Chink before." When he was released at 11 p.m. that night they threw him into the street in just jeans and flip-flops. "He had to walk two miles home," Mr. Khan said.
When Mr. Zung arrived home, the front door was open and his stereo and other property had been stolen. Doctors found extensive bruising to his back and kidneys and he was passing blood.
Mr. Zung made a formal complaint to the Police Complaints Authority. Despite a police surgeon confirming the injuries, the complaint was rejected and he decided to sue.
Ben Emmerson, counsel for Mr. Zung, urged the jury to send a strong message to Sir Paul Condon by awarding damages that would hit his budget. "In this case a small award would be regarded as a victory by the officers."
A statement issued on behalf of Sir Paul, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, said: "We believe the award to be excessive and we are going to appeal against the size of the award but not the verdict."
The Metropolitan Police said no action would he taken against the constables involved: Christopher Smith, Andrew Morris and Bob Davies.
In a separate case at the same court Terence Wilkinson, 27, was awarded £64,000 damages. He had accused other officers from the same area of wrongful arrest and assault, false imprisonment and malicious prosecution.
Counselfor (the party) - here same as barrister (UK) - a lawyer who has the right to plead as an advocate in a superior court
Solicitor (UK) - a qualified lawyer who advises clients, represents them in the lower courts and prepares cases for barristers to try in higher courts
TASK 1. Translate the following words and expressions from, the article above, match them on the left with the appropriate definition on the right.
|a complaint||refuse to agree to the plaintiff's reasons for proceeding in a civil action|
|bullying||the plaintiff's reasons for proceeding in a civil action|
|to be wrongfully arrested||intending or intended to do harm|
|to appeal against the verdict||an officer in charge of a case|
|malicious||use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants|
|charge officer||the decision of an arbitrator or court|
|false imprisonment||to take a thing or things belonging to someone without permission or legal right and without intending to return it|
|award||seize (someone) by unlegally authority and take into custody|
|to reject a complaint||application to a higher authority to change a decision that has been made|
|to steal property||wrong confine in|
TASK 2. Answer the following questions:
1. What did Mr.Zung's case against Metropolitan Police consist of?
2. What were the circumstances of Mr. Zung's arrest?
3. How did the Police Authority react to Mr. Zung's formal complaint?
4. What were Mr. Zung's further actions?
5. What were the formal grounds for filing the case?
6. Why was the amount of the award so important for Mr. Zung's counsel?
7. What actions will be taken against the police officers involved?