Attendees of the Extreme Chill festival who were subject to egregious police practices are taking the police to court.
Helga Vala Helgadóttir, the lawyer representing many of the attendees subject to overzealous and possibly illegal police searches at the festival earlier this month, told RÚV that there is a lot of evidence against the police in this case.
“There are many incidents,” she said. “There are many witnesses and, in our opinion, with such measures it is possible to go directly to court proceedings without the involvement of the prosecutor.”
As reported, police reportedly searched many people bodily, and opened many unmanned tents in the camping area, all without warrants. Another festivalgoer told DV that a bus was stopped by the police on its way to the festival. All the foreigners were reportedly ordered off of the bus, while the Icelanders were made to stay and subjected to questioning and searches by the police. Much of this activity was reportedly caught on video by festivalgoers.
“This year, the police held our festival guests in a death grip from the moment they arrived, and went way over the line as far as we are concerned,” the organisers wrote in a statement to the press shortly after the incidents. “We greeted numerous guests in the festival entrance who were in utter shock, and did not trust themselves to go back to the camping area after the encroachment and abuse of power of the police.”
Soon thereafter, they called upon all festivalgoers who were subject to police scrutiny to come to a closed meeting, with a lawyer, who would review testimony and video footage taken by the guests.
A date for the trial has not yet been set.
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