Derry republican to challenge stop and search validity

Justice

A republican from Londonderry has said he is to challenge the validity of police stop and search powers after he was subjected to around "200 searches in the past five years."

Steven Ramsey, from Creggan in Derry, said he has no convictions but has been stopped around 40 times a year.

His lawyers, Madden & Finucane, will put the case to the High Court later this month.

Mr Ramsey says he has logged dates, times and locations of searches.

'Target me'

Mr Ramsey said: "At the start it was just me, then they started on my wife too. Once they see her they take a U-turn to stop and search.

"My seven-year-old wee girl is petrified.

"I've never been charged with anything and nothing has ever been found in my car. It's just harassment."

Mr Ramsey said he was part of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement but is no longer associated with any group.

"My family would be very republican and they target me," he said.

A PSNI spokesperson said: "The Police Service's use of stop and search has, and will continue to be, scrutinised by the Policing Board's Human Rights adviser and the independent reviewer of the Justice and Security NI Act 2007.

"Any member of the public who has a complaint in relation to stop and search can bring it to the police ombudsman who will conduct a full and independent investigation."