A man claimed to have refused to exit a car to let UK border agents leave an operation has been acquitted.
Nicholas Sigsworth, 33, was alleged to have resisted, obstructed or hindered three officers carrying out their duties in Glasgow’s Kenmure Street in Pollokshields on May 13, 2021.
Crowds had gathered that day after two Sikh men were detained by the Home Office for alleged immigration violations.
The charge stated that Sigsworth repeatedly refused to leave a police motor vehicle.
It was claimed Sigsworth, of York, went on to struggle with the constables.
Sigsworth faced an alternative charge of conducting himself in a disorderly manner by refusing to leave the vehicle, struggling with the officers and committing breach of the peace.
Constable Steven Fergus, 34, told Glasgow Sheriff Court that he was stationed at his police van as the protests took place.
He stated that there was a broadcast put to the people on the road that the owner of a Skoda Fabia should identify themselves.
The officer said: “This was because it was blocking the road which stopped UK border agents from leaving.”
PC Fergus said that the car was across two lanes at Kenmure Street’s junction with Leven Street.
The officer told the court that nobody claimed ownership of the Skoda.
PC Fergus went on to state that a recovery vehicle later attended the scene to remove the Skoda.
The officer claimed a member of the public went under the vehicle while a man he identified as Sigsworth entered the Skoda.
Prosecutor Ryan Watson asked the witness what Sigsworth did when he entered the car.
PC Fergus replied: “He immediately tried to close the door of the vehicle but myself and a colleague took hold of the door before it was closed.”
The officer stated that Sigsworth failed to engage with him or the other officers.
He added: “PC Andrew Hamilton spoke with Mr Sigsworth and asked him if he could get out the vehicle as it was because it was being uplifted but he didn’t engage in conversation at all.”
PC Fergus claimed that he put handcuffs on Sigsworth and removed him from the Skoda.
The officer added: “Mr Sigsworth resisted by tensing his arms and try and pull himself back into the vehicle.
“As he was handcuffed, he was prevented from doing so.”
The officer told the court Sigsworth was then put into a police cell van and taken to a station.
Mr Watson asked the officer what concerns the police had that day.
He replied: “Multiple concerns, concerns that a member of the public could come to harm themselves and put themselves in a position of danger.
“Also, that harm might come to the UK border agency workers at the time.”
The officer stated that eggs were thrown at the police and the atmosphere was hostile.
Paul Gallagher, defending, asked the officer if it was possible that Sigsworth did not hear the request to remove the Skoda.
PC Fergus replied: “It is possible.”
The officer also denied suggestions from Mr Gallagher that he and his colleagues were heavy handed.
Sheriff Amel Elfallah found Sigsworth not guilty of the charge.