There are approximately seventeen thousand people wanted by the metropolitan police for various offences committed within the metropolitan police district. Yesterday in Romford a facial recognition trial run by the police took place. You may wonder, what is a facial recognition trial? The police use photos stored on their database from previous arrests and use them to catch criminals who are wanted.

The only problem is it only works for the criminals that have already been taken into custody. Cameras had been set up around Romford station and as people walk through a camera will take an image of a person and try match it with a picture from the database but if a match is not found the photo is discarded. Using this the police have managed to catch eight criminals in Romford.

A 15-year-old year old boy was arrested on suspicion of robbery. A 28-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and taken to an East London police station. Two men aged 46 and 25 were arrested on suspicion of possessing drugs.

These were only some of the arrests made, but this wasn’t the first time the trial had run. It was used twice in December n consecutive days and made four arrests in total. According to this we can see the trial was successful and the practices are getting better each time they are run. Although the police triumph some do not agree with using facial recognition.

There are pressure groups that have tried to stop this from taking place. The group Liberty believe ‘it presents unique threats to our rights and freedom.’ Many will support Liberty as a man was fined for refusing to reveal his face. He as fined £90 for pulling his jumper up above his chin. Silkie Carlo director of another pressure group called Big Brother Watch was appalled and enraged. One man was cuffed and put into the back of a van because he couldn’t give a successful fingerprint. People were stopped for as little as wearing their hoods up. Commander Ivan Balhatchet, strategic lead for live facial recognition said, because of weather the second day of facail recognition trial has been rescheduled to a later date.