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Bushey man makes formal complaint after he claims he was 'assaulted' by Hertfordshire Constabulary officers
A man from Bushey who claims he was assaulted by police officers when they pulled his car over has made a formal complaint against Hertfordshire Constabulary.
Sebastian Karaket, 21, claims he was left with a swollen and bruised face, handcuff marks on his wrists and dents on his car bonnet after he was "forcibly restrained" by police.
Mr Karaket was driving down Croxdale Road in Borehamwood at 11.30pm on Friday, January 3, with his friend Reece Hawker, when he was pulled over by police officers.
He says the police officers questioned him about his speed, saying he was going "a little too fast over the mini roundabout".
Mr Karaket insisted he was going 30mph in a 30mph zone and was well within the law.
They then questioned him about his tyres, saying they might be illegal because of the tread depth, which Mr Karaket says he strenuously denied.
Mr Karaket said a police officer questioned his behaviour, which he called "unreasonable", suggested "something is going here" and that he would search him and the car to rule anything out.
Mr Karaket then refused to be detained for the search and asking if he was under arrest.
The police officer then told Mr Karaket he was not under arrest, but they had the power to search him and arrest him if they found anything suspicious.
Mr Karaket said he protested further, before he was restrained with his head against the bonnet of his car by three police officers while a search is carried out.
He said he was then handcuffed, searched and briefly held in the police van before being let go.
Mr Karaket, a delivery driver, claims the officers were "aggressive" and "intimidating" from the start and denies he did anything to antagonise them.
He said: "They grabbed my elbows and smashed my face against the bonnet of my car. My face was left swollen and bruised and there are dents on my car from where my head was. I felt scared, they were all bigger than me.
"I was doing nothing illegal. My driving licence is my life, I would lose my job and my house if I couldn’t drive, I would do nothing to risk it."
He said he had a distinctive car and he and his friends were repeatedly pulled over by police in Borehamwood.
He said: "They pull me over at least once a day when I’m minding my own business, I feel as though I’m being harassed.
"The police are meant to make you feel safe and secure not so terrified you have to record them. They’re meant to fight gangs and violence, yet they’re the worst of them."
Mr Hawker, 17, and James Mayers, 17, who both witnessed the incident, said Mr Karaket had done nothing to antagonise police officers and the police had not used reasonable force in restraining him. They added the handcuffs had been too tight and had left "marks like razor cuts" on his wrists.
A spokesman from Hertfordshire Constabulary said the police force was investigating the incident.
The spokesman said: "A complaint has been made about an incident which occurred in Croxdale Road, Borehamwood, at around 11.45pm on Friday.
"The matter is being fully investigated and until this is concluded it would be inappropriate to comment any further."
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