Charges against Matthew Doyle, 46, accused of inciting racial hatred on Twitter have been dropped, in a humiliating episode for the Met
26 MARCH 2016 | UPDATED: 26 MARCH 2016 | BY THOMAS BURROWS FOR MAILONLINE
Charges against a talent agency boss accused of inciting racial hatred on Twitter have been dropped, in a U-turn by the authorities.
Police charged private schoolboy Matthew Doyle, 46, with a public order offence on Friday after he tweeted about confronting a Muslim woman and asking her to 'explain Brussels'.But the Metropolitan Police faced humiliation later the same day when the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said they did not agree with their decision, adding that they did not even have the legal power to bring the charges.
Mr Doyle, an LSE alumnus, from South Croydon, was due to appear at Camberwell Green Magistrates’ today.
But in a statement last night the Met revealed the charge had been dropped.
It said: ‘Following discussion with the Crown Prosecution Service, Mr Doyle is no longer charged with the offence and will not be appearing at court.
‘Police may not make charging decisions on offences under Section 19 of the Public Order Act. There will be further consultation with CPS.’
The CPS guidance says people ‘can only be prosecuted [under that section of the act] with consent of attorney general.’
It adds that the case must be ‘referred to CPS’s counter-terrorism division to be dealt with by specialist prosecutor’.
The offence carries a maximum jail term of seven years.
Mr Doyle, who was educated at Wellington College, had been charged early on Friday for posting tweets likely to stir up racial hatred.
The Met would not reveal which particular tweets led to the charge but revealed it was for ‘more than one message’.
It also added that he had been charged under Section 19 of the Public Order Act ‘following an investigation by officers at Croydon police community safety unit.’