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Occupy Montreal Protesters Branded by Police


Occupy Montreal protesters were tagged by police with numbers only seen under a UV light. (Photo Courtesy: Nina Haigh/Facebook)

Some members of the Occupy Montreal movement are considering legal action against the Montreal police after they were branded without their consent.

Police expelled the group of protesters from Victoria Square last Friday, as part of the group handcuffed themselves to the outdoor kitchen.

"The police asked us to move and we did not comply," said activist Bed Godin. "They removed us by using force."

Protesters were taken to a bus, where officers processed them, and marked some with an ink that could only be seen under a UV light.

"They took pictures and then they wrote one number. I got the number 5 in black marker," he said.

Police say it was to identify the demonstrators, and described it as the best technique to prevent the group from returning to Victoria Square.

They also said it's a technique long used by clubs and bars.

Constitutional lawyer Julius Grey, however, said protesters weren't in a bar and that the police violated the activists' civil rights.

"If the police said, ‘May we do this?' and the person said, ‘Yes,' then I don't think there would be any problem… You can't do something physically to somebody. You can't brand them, mark them, touch them, cut their head… physical acts," he said.

Ben Godin and others are now considering a civil suit against police.

Meanwhile, the Occupy movement has now moved to the gazebo on Mount Royal.

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