Black Maria

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Black Maria

a police van for transporting prisoners
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
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Prisoners being taken under armed guard in buses, (Prison Dept 'Black Marias of today), have been shot at and seriously wounded.
It was also an age when local police boxes, truncheons, police whistles and "black marias" were an accepted part of the bobby's arsenal in a world of petty larcenies and the occasional headline-grabbing gruesome murder.
White Maria (although we don't really need to call her White Maria as there are clearly no Black Marias on the Conservative benches), is a 50-year-old mother-of-three who has managed to make a million pounds on her home in Wimbledon, South West London, and was helped by abusing parliamentary rules.
Shortly afterwards I had a dozen policemen and two Black Marias at my door, arresting me and charging me with a crime I didn't even know had been committed.