1. What will Happen to my Friend in Custody?

Custody can be a slow process. Your friend has the right to a phone call to inform someone of their arrest. They are also likely to be interviewed, for which they are entitled to a solicitor.

It may take a long time – many hours – for an arrestee to arrive at a police station, especially if there has been a mass arrest. On arrival at the station, they will be ‘booked in’. This means their photograph, fingerprints & DNA will be taken, and their personal belongings taken from them. They will then be put in a cell.

They are likely to be interviewed by the police, and they have the right to free legal advice from a solicitor for this. We strongly advise using a solicitor experienced in protest law.

They also have the right to a phone call to inform someone of their arrest, to food, and to medical attention if needed.

If they are under 18, they must have an ‘appropriate adult’ present at their interview. If you are the parent or guardian of a young person who has been arrested, please call us and we can talk you through what this role involves.

For a more detailed description of your friend’s rights in custody, please read this guide.

Key Messages

  • No Comment
  • You do not need to answer police questions, so don’t.

  • No Personal Details
  • You don't have to give details under ANY stop and search power.

  • No Duty Solicitor
  • Use a recommended solicitor with protest experience.

  • No Caution
  • They admit guilt for an alleged offence that might never get to court.

  • What Power?
  • Ask "What power?" to challenge a police officer to act lawfully.