Bristol

Bristol City fans receive police payout over 'false imprisonment'

St Andrews stadium Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Ten Bristol City supporters were detained by police before the away fixture against Birmingham City at St Andrews in 2015

Ten football fans who claimed to have been falsely imprisoned by police before a match in 2015 have received an out of court settlement.

The Bristol City fans were detained by West Midlands Police before an away match at Birmingham City.

They claimed a breach of their human rights on the grounds that they were deprived of their liberty.

West Midlands Police confirmed it paid out damages relating to a "wrongful detention" at St Andrew's stadium.

The travelling Robins fans said they were accused of being hooligans and detained for 90 minutes before being sent back to Bristol on trains without being allowed to watch the game.

Bristol City Supporters Club & Trust said the group of supporters had been "vindicated" following the payout.

"We always believed that these supporters were unfairly treated," said chairman Stu Rogers.

He added: "West Midlands Police delayed, hindered and frustrated the process throughout in the hope we would just go away. We didn't.

"Whilst we will not now have our day in court to seek a ruling, we believe this is a moral victory and sends a clear message to police forces up and down the country. Do not misuse these dispersal powers.

"Fans simply will not stand for it."

Image caption James Bolam was one of the fans to claim false imprisonment by West Midlands Police

One of the fans, James Bolam, previously told the BBC he "was just intending to go to a football match, have a day out, which I'd paid for and then come home".

West Midlands Police said: "A civil action relating to the wrongful detention of Bristol City supporters resulted in the force paying them damages."

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