Wednesday, 19 January 2011

BBC journalist attacked investigating tobacco trade

BBC Scotland journalist Sam Poling and a film crew were attacked by a man brandishing a metal pole while investigating the illegal tobacco trade.

The attack (which you can see here) took place in Glasgow's Barras Market.

Poling said: "A man who had followed me into the industrial unit spotted the camera and went for it, violently shoving the security man who had tried to intervene.

"Seconds later, the man attacked me, injuring my hand as I pulled it up to protect my face. Unsatisfied with that, he then grabbed a six-foot metal pole and ran at me and the crew with it.

"Investigating criminal gangs like these ones always carry risks. And these are risks you have to add up. Are they worth taking in order to get the footage, to get the story told?

"After looking back at the hours of evidence I had recorded, and knowing the level of criminality we had discovered, which affects each and every one of us, I knew the answer."

  • 'Smoking and the Bandits' will be broadcast tonight at 1930 GMT on BBC One Scotland. It will be available on the BBC iPlayer for a week afterwards.

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