The Terrorism Act, Section 44 gave police powers to stop and search in the name of anti-terrorism. The extent of these searches has came to light as fruitless in a review by the new home secretary. Just 1 in every 200 stops lead to an arrest, and of these, none were arrests due to terrorism related offenses it may be possession of drugs or offenses like that they were taken into custody for.
It goes to show that violating civil liberties really doesn’t achieve much useful goals. The numbers work out at a successful arrest rate of 0.5% against 10% for stop and search conducted not using Terrorism as an excuse. Liberal Democrat peer Lord Ken MacDonald is conducting a review into the counter terrorism policy which should hopefully see some sanity come to the UK’s anti terror laws at last. The official review is expected to be published in the near future, and co-incides nicely with criticism of airport security just this week.