A controversial internet photo-mapping programme has captured the moment when it got itself nicked by police in Bradford.

Google’s Street View – which aims to map major roads in the UK with photographic shots of street scenes – has already received huge numbers of complaints from individuals who felt their privacy was invaded when they saw pictures of themselves on the web.

Internet search engine company Google sent cars fitted with photographic equipment roaming the country, including Bradford.

But Google sparked an internet giggle this week when the Street View shots of Bradford revealed a police car pouncing on the Google vehicle outside the Alhambra.

The distinctive Google car, with a roof-mounted camera network, had strayed into a bus-only lane and received the attention of the law.

Anyone logging on to the service and going to the ringroad between the old police station and the Alhambra can clearly see that the Google car is parked up in the former police station grounds and a squad car is closing in.

The Google pictures were taken last summer when the company was photo-mapping the entire country ahead of the service launch last month.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “On July 29, 2008, police pulled over a vehicle which had a camera on top, driving in a bus only lane.

“It became apparent that he had liaised with each local authority, letting them know he was coming and what he was doing in the area.

“There were no prosecutions made.”

A Google spokesman said: “Street Views takes Google Maps to a new level, allowing you to explore and navigate a neighbourhood through panoramic street-level photographs.

“When capturing the images, Street View drivers are subject to the same rules as any other road users.

“We’re happy that this was dealt with at the time by local authorities.”

One witness to the event posted on a website: “I was going on my lunch break at work and noticed a black car that had stopped at a red light. It had a Google sticker on the side and a large camera ‘thing’ on top.

“A police car pulled up right behind it and put on its lights and the officer inside was motioning the car to pull over.

“Then I realised why, as the car was in the lane to go straight ahead, which was marked bus/bicycle/taxi only.”

e-mail: james.rush @telegraphandargus.co.uk