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Innocent dad Andrew Long's terror as late-night police 'bust' goes horribly wrong

Police have apologised after mistaking him for a 'dangerous' offender

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Andrew Long at the service station

Baton-wielding police officers swooped on an innocent father-of-two in a terrifying late night ‘bust’ which went horribly wrong.

Andrew Long, from Great Harwood, said he feared for his life after he was ‘set upon’ by four plain clothes officers at a service station at around 11pm.

He said his brand new car, which had only been delivered earlier that day, sustained thousands of pounds worth of damage in the ordeal, including a head-on collision with a police vehicle.

Lancashire Police have offered sincere apologies for the ‘traumatic’ ordeal, saying officers mistakenly believed him to be a dangerous criminal.

Andrew said he had pulled into a Texaco service station on Rossendale Road in Burnley where officers, who had been following him, jumped out of their car brandishing their batons, shouting at him to get out.

The self-employed courier, 31, said: “I felt like I was going to get killed - they were attacking my car and smashing it up.”

Damage to Andrew Long's new car during his mistaken arrest

In an attempt to escape, Andrew drove away, only to crash head-on into a police BMW which was part of the operation.

Andrew said he repeatedly protested his innocence until police confirmed his identity.

He said: “They dragged me out of my car, put my hands behind my back and manhandled me. I felt victimised, like a murderer or something.”

Andrew, who will now need to take time off from work to recover, said his Nissan Qashqai sustained around £9,000 in damage and had been driven for less than 20 miles before the incident on Monday, July 30.

Andrew, who has two sons aged nine and three, said he visited hospital the following morning with neck and head injuries with headaches, lower back pain and cuts on his wrists - all after a sleepless night recounting the traumatic events.

He added: “I’m jumpy and anxious. If I heard sirens now, it would tip me over the edge.

“I’d like to see an apology and some compensation - I’m going to need help with my mental health after this.

“They just left me there, traumatised.”

A spokesperson for Lancashire Police, said: “This was a genuine error and we can only apologise.

“Our officers acted with the best intentions and on the honest belief that the gentleman was another man who has been wanted for a significant amount of time in connection with serious offences and is considered to be dangerous.

“We are sincerely sorry for what the gentleman experienced and understand that it must have been very traumatic for him.

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“A senior officer has spoken with him and explained the situation and reiterated how truly sorry we are.

“Our professional standards department has been informed and will be reviewing the matter and our actions internally.”