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The number of Londoners arrested for being offensive on social media has gone up by a third

Matilda Egere-Cooper

It would appear more of us in London are getting cuffed for saying offensive stuff on sites like Twitter or Facebook, according to recent statistics from the Metropolitan Police.

In the past five years, the number of Londoners nicked for allegedly breaching Section 127 of the Communications Act 2003 has increased by 37 per cent. So in 2010, 625 Londoners were arrested - but by 2015, this number shot up to 857. Of those 800-odd word slingers, 127 people (better known as trolls) were arrested for sending 'false message to cause annoyance, inconvenience or anxiety'.

Now if you’re wondering what sort of message counts as a criminal offence, it's anything 'that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character' - so it's not exactly complaining about finding your cat's hairballs in the toaster, as gross and offensive as that might be.

But the next time you feel like you need to get something off your chest on social media, it won't hurt to think twice: a successful prosecution could lead to six months in prison or a £5,000 fine. Ouch.

In more notorious London news, did you know a man was arrested for sunbathing in his trunks on Brick Lane? 

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