West Midlands police force is considering launching new investigations based on footage from Channel 4's controversial documentary Benefits Street, after being "inundated" with comments from viewers concerned that it may have featured criminal activity.

The force said on Tuesday it was assessing whether footage from Benefits Street, which focuses on a community in Birmingham's Winson Green, could assist in ongoing investigations, or could warrant new inquiries being launched.

Media regulator Ofcom is understood to have received more than 100 complaints about the documentary series, which launched on Monday night, relating to unfair, misleading and offensive portrayals of benefits claimants, alleged criminal activity and excessive bad language.{jcomments on}

The five-part series, made by independent producer Love Productions, features the inhabitants of James Turner Street, which Channel 4 claims has one of the highest proportions of benefits dependents in Britain.

‘Benefits and Work’ deplore the negative portrayal of benefits claimants in the media. We are deeply concerned about the deluge of threats and intimidation on social media that followed the broadcast of the programme ‘Benefits Street’.

We are so concerned about the devastating impact that this portrayal of benefits claimants is having, that we feel it’s important for members and readers to be able to make their own complaints to Ofcom.

You can do it from here

Read the full story on The Guardian website.

Read Tom Pride’s blog which shows some of the threatening tweets.


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