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Police Brutality Not Forgotten

Protesters arrested, many brutally, at an anti-WINZ demonstration on the 16th of March will be rallying at the Auckland Central District Court (Alfred St) tomorrow, Wednesday June 28th, from 9am.

The protesters and their supporters will be picketing the court to express their anger at the police brutality used on peaceful protesters and will be pleading not guilty at a status hearing at 10am.

"It is clear that the police punched, kicked, throttled and assaulted us to distract us, and the media, from the substantive issues that we were trying to raise with the public; the bungling corporate disaster that is WINZ, and the inability of this Government to change it," said Julie Fairey, a spokesperson for the group Fightback which organised the original protest.

"Instead of focusing on getting across our message, and continuing our fight for a free education system in New Zealand, we have been sidetracked into battling for something that should never even have been under threat - the right to protest peacefully and freely without the threat of violence or intimidation from police."

A Police Complaint is currently being put together, including photographs of the protest. Some of these will be available to view at the picket tomorrow.

"Instead of wasting everyone's time and money with ridiculous, false charges like obstructing a footpath, the police should be facing assault and harassment charges themselves," said Fairey. "Over recent months we have seen the total inability of the police to deal appropriately with so many situations. A bigoted police force pursuing political ends is totally unacceptable. Clearly the police are failing the public."

Contact: Julie Fairey (021) 216-7868 Fightback spokesperson

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