I really would arrest you

At a police station


Man: Oh, why do you put criminals behind bars?

Police: Oh, so that they can’t get out, so that they can’t escape?

Man: Oh, why can’t they escape?

Police: Are you kidding? With these bars? You see how strong they are! They’re made of solid iron.

Man: Iron!

Police: Hmm, these are good solid iron bars. Ha, you can’t bend these. You see.

Man: Ha, ha, oh, sure. Maybe you can’t, but I can.

Police: Will you stop that? I really would arrest you.

Man: Oh, no, no, don’t, don’t do that, officer. I just came here to find out about emergencies and to see how the police work.

I really would arrest you.

1- What does"would" mean in this sentence? ←

2- What is difference between " I really arrest you" and " I really would arrest you"?

Thank you

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I think it’s a warning. The policeman doesn’t really think he has to arrest the man, but if it really came to it, he would.

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Thank you so much, Torsten :rose:

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