Former chief prosecutor Nazir to complain over police stop error

July 11, 2023
[caption id="attachment_740" align="alignleft" width="976"]Mr Afzal said he would complain to West Midlands Police because the mistake was made "down there" Mr Afzal said he would complain to West Midlands Police because the mistake was made "down there"[/caption] Nazir Afzal, A former chief prosecutor has said he will make a formal complaint over an error which led to his car's tyres being burst during a police stop. In Manchester on Sunday, he claimed that while he was slowing down for a police car, a "stinger" was thrown in front of his vehicle. He said "apologetic" Greater Manchester Police (GMP) officers then told him his car had been incorrectly logged as stolen by West Midlands Police (WMP). WMP has been asked for comment. Mr Afzal, who was Chief Crown Prosecutor for North West England from 2011 to 2015, told BBC North West Tonight he was driving with his son in the car when he noticed a police car's blue lights behind him. He said he had been driving at about 20mph (32km/h) and "slowed down straight away, but two seconds later, I saw a stinger thrown in front of my car". The device, which is made up of a grid of steel spikes, is used by officers to quickly bring a vehicle to a halt. Mr Afzal said his car "immediately came to a stop" and an unmarked police car pulled up in front of it. He said the officers soon realised they had made an error. "It was clear they had recognised who I was and that they had made a mistake," he said. He said the officers told him that had been "a spate of burglaries in the area I was driving through" and then let him see information on a laptop which "showed that my car had originally been reported stolen to West Midlands Police". He said the document showed that in the original report, "the registration of the stolen car was just one letter different to mine", but someone had later changed the registration "to match the registration of my car and had written the car had been reported stolen by 'Nazir Afzal'". He added that the incident had left his son traumatised and he would be making a complaint to West Midlands Police "because it appears it is down there that the mistake was made". In a statement, GMP said officers from its Roads Policing Unit had responded "to intelligence from another force" and "deployed a stinger device on the M56 near Wythenshawe". "A vehicle was brought to a safe stop, but enquires revealed the information provided was incorrect," it said. It added that arrangements were then made "to recover both the driver and the vehicle, in addition to the replacement of the four tyres".