London, June 18 (ANI): Britain's anti-terrorism watchdog has claimed that a number of innocent people are often stopped and searched to to provide racial balance in police statistics.
In his annual report on the operation of counter-terrorism legislation, Lord Carlile of Berriew described the searches as "almost certainly" illegal.
He said that he knew of cases where people were stopped and searched by officers even though they did not fit any known terrorist profile.
He accused the police of wasting time and money by carrying out "self-evidently unmerited searches", which were also an invasion of civil liberties.
According to the Times, under Section 44, police can stop and search anyone in a designated area without suspicion that an offence has occurred.
Last year the number of white people searched rose from 29,900 to 73,000, blacks from 3,600 to 15,200 and Asians from 5,500 to 20,700.
Although whites made up the biggest number, in terms of population, blacks and Asians were more likely to be stopped. (ANI)