British police forces arrested at least nine people a day for “offensive” online comments last year.

Figures obtained by The Times through the Freedom of Information Act reveal that 3,395 people across 29 forces were arrested last under section 127 of the Communications Act 2003, which makes it illegal to intentionally “cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety to another”, in 2016.

The true figure is likely to be significantly higher, as thirteen police forces refused to provide the requested information and two did not provide usable data.

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