General legal advice for non-violent civil disobedient actions
- Bring nothing incriminating, or that the police could interpret as. Do not bring drugs, knives, scissors or any other bladed object or tool.
- Bring your ID card.
- Lock your phone with a code,or better: switch it off
- Take something to drink and eat.
- If you require medication, bring it with you.
- When in contact with the police, remain calm and resist provocations.
In case of arrest... There are two types of arrest possible in Belgium:
- Administrative arrest (max 12h) - the most likely type for this action
- Judicial arrest (max 48h) - unlikely for this action
What will happen during arrest:
- The police will take all your personal belongings and might body-search you. This will be done by a person of the same sex as the one registered on your ID.
- The police might interrogate you. Do not give any statement! Anser “No comment” to all questions, including informal ones.
- IMPORTANT Do not sign any document
- You can ask for - and have the right to!:
- water and food, toilet, medical assistance
- legal assistance (before an interrogation)
Legal risks of ‘Freeze’ in the public space
- Gathering remains prohibited during containment but the legal risk of ‘freezing’ in the public space with a group is low if:
- physical distance is respected and face masks are worn
- there is no material damage
- The police may react to your freeze actions by:
- dispersing you (asking you to move or using force to make you move)
- administratively arresting you with the accusation of disturbing the public order
- giving you an administrative (SAC) fine (max 350€) and/or a covid-fine (250€)
!! We will always contest or crowdfund to pay fines together. You will not be alone!! Legal risks of 'freeze' on a road
- Same risks as above BUT
- If they accuse you of endangering others (drivers, bikers, etc.) willingly, a severe sanction could be applied that could lead to lengthy and difficult legal proceedings.
- IMPORTANT: don’t block a road in such a way that it creates a danger!
Advice for road blockades:
- Be prepared: don’t block a road if you haven’t made a plan beforehand!
- Use pedestrian crossings: walk on the road at green light and stay on the street when it turns red.
- Make sure cars can (slowly) leave, for instance by keeping one lane open.
- Always make space for emergency services.