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Part 4 Public order and conduct in public places etc.

Harassment

125 Harassment intended to deter lawful activities

(1) The Protection from Harassment Act 1997 (c. 40) is amended as follows.

(2) In section 1 (prohibition of harassment)—

(a) after subsection (1) insert—

(1A) A person must not pursue a course of conduct —

(a) which involves harassment of two or more persons, and

(b) which he knows or ought to know involves harassment of those persons, and

(c) by which he intends to persuade any person (whether or not one of those mentioned above)—

(i) not to do something that he is entitled or required to do, or

(ii) to do something that he is not under any obligation to do.;

(b) in subsection (2), after “amounts to” insert “or involves” and after “amounted to” insert “or involved”;

(c) in subsection (3), after “Subsection (1)” insert “or (1A)”.

(3) In section 2(1) (offence of harassment) for “section 1” substitute “section 1(1) or (1A)”.

(4) In section 3(1) (civil remedy) for “section 1” substitute “section 1(1)”.

(5) After section 3 insert—

3A Injunctions to protect persons from harassment within section 1(1A)

(1) This section applies where there is an actual or apprehended breach of section 1(1A) by any person (“the relevant person”).

(2) In such a case—

(a) any person who is or may be a victim of the course of conduct in question, or

(b) any person who is or may be a person falling within section 1(1A)(c),

may apply to the High Court or a county court for an injunction restraining the relevant person from pursuing any conduct which amounts to harassment in relation to any person or persons mentioned or described in the injunction.

(3) Section 3(3) to (9) apply in relation to an injunction granted under subsection (2) above as they apply in relation to an injunction granted as mentioned in section 3(3)(a).

(6) In section 5(2) (restraining orders) after “victim” insert “or victims”.

(7) In section 7 (interpretation of sections 1 to 5)—

(a) for subsection (3) substitute—

(3) A “course of conduct” must involve—

(a) in the case of conduct in relation to a single person (see section 1(1)), conduct on at least two occasions in relation to that person, or

(b) in the case of conduct in relation to two or more persons (see section 1(1A)), conduct on at least one occasion in relation to each of those persons.; and

(b) after subsection (4) add—

(5) References to a person, in the context of the harassment of a person, are references to a person who is an individual.

126 Harassment etc. of a person in his home

(1) After section 42 of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 (c. 16) insert—

42A Offence of harassment etc. of a person in his home

(1) A person commits an offence if—

(a) that person is present outside or in the vicinity of any premises that are used by any individual (“the resident”) as his dwelling;

(b) that person is present there for the purpose (by his presence or otherwise) of representing to the resident or another individual (whether or not one who uses the premises as his dwelling), or of persuading the resident or such another individual—

(i) that he should not do something that he is entitled or required to do; or

(ii) that he should do something that he is not under any obligation to do;

(c) that person—

(i) intends his presence to amount to the harassment of, or to cause alarm or distress to, the resident; or

(ii) knows or ought to know that his presence is likely to result in the harassment of, or to cause alarm or distress to, the resident; and

(d) the presence of that person—

(i) amounts to the harassment of, or causes alarm or distress to, any person falling within subsection (2); or

(ii) is likely to result in the harassment of, or to cause alarm or distress to, any such person.

(2) A person falls within this subsection if he is—

(a) the resident,

(b) a person in the resident’s dwelling, or

(c) a person in another dwelling in the vicinity of the resident’s dwelling.

(3) The references in subsection (1)(c) and (d) to a person’s presence are references to his presence either alone or together with that of any other persons who are also present.

(4) For the purposes of this section a person (A) ought to know that his presence is likely to result in the harassment of, or to cause alarm or distress to, a resident if a reasonable person in possession of the same information would think that A’s presence was likely to have that effect.

(5) A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or to a fine not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale, or to both.

(6) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (alteration of penalties for summary offences), the reference in subsection (5) to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.

(7) In this section “dwelling” has the same meaning as in Part 1 of the Public Order Act 1986.

(2) A constable in uniform may arrest without warrant any person he reasonably suspects is committing or has committed an offence under section 42A (as inserted by subsection (1)).

(3) Subsection (2) ceases to have effect on the commencement of section 110 of this Act.

127 Harassment etc: police direction to stay away from person’s home

(1) Section 42 of the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001 (c. 16) (police directions stopping harassment of a person in his home) is amended as follows.

(2) For subsection (4) substitute—

(4) The requirements that may be imposed by a direction under this section include—

(a) a requirement to leave the vicinity of the premises in question, and

(b) a requirement to leave that vicinity and not to return to it within such period as the constable may specify, not being longer than 3 months;

and (in either case) the requirement to leave the vicinity may be to do so immediately or after a specified period of time.

(3) In subsection (7), for “contravenes a direction given to him under this section” substitute “fails to comply with a requirement in a direction given to him under this section (other than a requirement under subsection (4)(b))”.

(4) After subsection (7) insert—

(7A) Any person to whom a constable has given a direction including a requirement under subsection (4)(b) commits an offence if he—

(a) returns to the vicinity of the premises in question within the period specified in the direction beginning with the date on which the direction is given; and

(b) does so for the purpose described in subsection (1)(b).

(7B) A person guilty of an offence under subsection (7A) shall be liable, on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks or to a fine not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale, or to both.

(7C) In relation to an offence committed before the commencement of section 281(5) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003 (alteration of penalties for summary offences), the reference in subsection (7B) to 51 weeks is to be read as a reference to 6 months.

Trespass on designated site

128 Offence of trespassing on designated site

(1) A person commits an offence if he enters, or is on, any designated site in England and Wales or Northern Ireland as a trespasser.

(2) A “designated site” means a site—

(a) specified or described (in any way) in an order made by the Secretary of State, and

(b) designated for the purposes of this section by the order.

(3) The Secretary of State may only designate a site for the purposes of this section if—

(a) it is comprised in Crown land; or

(b) it is comprised in land belonging to Her Majesty in Her private capacity or to the immediate heir to the Throne in his private capacity; or

(c) it appears to the Secretary of State that it is appropriate to designate the site in the interests of national security.

(4) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to prove that he did not know, and had no reasonable cause to suspect, that the site in relation to which the offence is alleged to have been committed was a designated site.

(5) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction—

(a) to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks, or

(b) to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale,

or to both.

(6) No proceedings for an offence under this section may be instituted against any person—

(a) in England and Wales, except by or with the consent of the Attorney General, or

(b) in Northern Ireland, except by or with the consent of the Attorney General for Northern Ireland.

(7) For the purposes of this section a person who is on any designated site as a trespasser does not cease to be a trespasser by virtue of being allowed time to leave the site.

(8) In this section—

(a) “site” means the whole or part of any building or buildings, or any land, or both;

(b) “Crown land” means land in which there is a Crown interest or a Duchy interest.

(9) For this purpose—

  • “Crown interest” means an interest belonging to Her Majesty in right of the Crown, and

  • “Duchy interest” means an interest belonging to Her Majesty in right of the Duchy of Lancaster or belonging to the Duchy of Cornwall.

(10) In the application of this section to Northern Ireland, the reference to 51 weeks in subsection (5)(a) is to be read as a reference to 6 months.

129 Corresponding Scottish offence

(1) A person commits an offence if he enters, or is on, any designated Scottish site without lawful authority.

(2) A “designated Scottish site” means a site in Scotland—

(a) specified or described (in any way) in an order made by the Secretary of State, and

(b) designated for the purposes of this section by the order.

(3) The Secretary of State may only designate a site for the purposes of this section if it appears to him that it is appropriate to designate the site in the interests of national security.

(4) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to prove that he did not know, and had no reasonable cause to suspect, that the site in relation to which the offence is alleged to have been committed was a designated Scottish site.

(5) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction—

(a) to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months, or

(b) to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale,

or to both.

(6) For the purposes of subsection (1), a person who is on any designated Scottish site without lawful authority does not acquire lawful authority by virtue of being allowed time to leave the site.

(7) In this section “site” means the whole or part of any building or buildings, or any land, or both.

130 Designated sites: powers of arrest

(1) A constable in uniform may, in England or Wales, arrest without warrant any person he reasonably suspects is committing or has committed an offence under section 128.

This subsection ceases to have effect on the commencement of section 110.

(2) An offence under section 128 is to be treated as an arrestable offence for the purposes of the Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (S.I. 1989/1341 (N.I. 12)).

(3) A constable in uniform may, in Scotland, arrest without warrant any person he reasonably suspects is committing or has committed an offence under section 129.

131 Designated sites: access

(1) The following provisions do not apply to land in respect of which a designation order is in force—

(a) section 2(1) of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 (c. 37) (rights of public in relation to access land),

(b) Part III of the Countryside (Northern Ireland) Order 1983 (S.I. 1983/1895 (N.I. 18)) (access to open country), and

(c) section 1 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 (asp 2) (access rights).

(2) The Secretary of State may take such steps as he considers appropriate to inform the public of the effect of any designation order, including, in particular, displaying notices on or near the site to which the order relates.

(3) But the Secretary of State may only—

(a) display any such notice, or

(b) take any other steps under subsection (2),

in or on any building or land, if the appropriate person consents.

(4) The “appropriate person” is—

(a) a person appearing to the Secretary of State to have a sufficient interest in the building or land to consent to the notice being displayed or the steps being taken, or

(b) a person acting on behalf of such a person.

(5) In this section a “designation order” means—

(a) in relation to England and Wales or Northern Ireland, an order under section 128, or

(b) in relation to Scotland, an order under section 129.

Demonstrations in vicinity of Parliament

132 Demonstrating without authorisation in designated area

(1) Any person who—

(a) organises a demonstration in a public place in the designated area, or

(b) takes part in a demonstration in a public place in the designated area, or

(c) carries on a demonstration by himself in a public place in the designated area,

is guilty of an offence if, when the demonstration starts, authorisation for the demonstration has not been given under section 134(2).

(2) It is a defence for a person accused of an offence under subsection (1) to show that he reasonably believed that authorisation had been given.

(3) Subsection (1) does not apply if the demonstration is—

(a) a public procession of which notice is required to be given under subsection (1) of section 11 of the Public Order Act 1986 (c. 64), or of which (by virtue of subsection (2) of that section) notice is not required to be given, or

(b) a public procession for the purposes of section 12 or 13 of that Act.

(4) Subsection (1) also does not apply in relation to any conduct which is lawful under section 220 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 (c. 52).

(5) If subsection (1) does not apply by virtue of subsection (3) or (4), nothing in sections 133 to 136 applies either.

(6) Section 14 of the Public Order Act 1986 (imposition of conditions on public assemblies) does not apply in relation to a public assembly which is also a demonstration in a public place in the designated area.

(7) In this section and in sections 133 to 136—

(a) “the designated area” means the area specified in an order under section 138,

(b) “public place” means any highway or any place to which at the material time the public or any section of the public has access, on payment or otherwise, as of right or by virtue of express or implied permission,

(c) references to any person organising a demonstration include a person participating in its organisation,

(d) references to any person organising a demonstration do not include a person carrying on a demonstration by himself,

(e) references to any person or persons taking part in a demonstration (except in subsection (1) of this section) include a person carrying on a demonstration by himself.

133 Notice of demonstrations in designated area

(1) A person seeking authorisation for a demonstration in the designated area must give written notice to that effect to the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis (referred to in this section and section 134 as “the Commissioner”).

(2) The notice must be given—

(a) if reasonably practicable, not less than 6 clear days before the day on which the demonstration is to start, or

(b) if that is not reasonably practicable, then as soon as it is, and in any event not less than 24 hours before the time the demonstration is to start.

(3) The notice must be given—

(a) if the demonstration is to be carried on by more than one person, by any of the persons organising it,

(b) if it is to be carried on by a person by himself, by that person.

(4) The notice must state—

(a) the date and time when the demonstration is to start,

(b) the place where it is to be carried on,

(c) how long it is to last,

(d) whether it is to be carried on by a person by himself or not,

(e) the name and address of the person giving the notice.

(5) A notice under this section must be given by—

(a) delivering it to a police station in the metropolitan police district, or

(b) sending it by post by recorded delivery to such a police station.

(6) Section 7 of the Interpretation Act 1978 (c. 30) (under which service of a document is deemed to have been effected at the time it would be delivered in the ordinary course of post) does not apply to a notice under this section.

134 Authorisation of demonstrations in designated area

(1) This section applies if a notice complying with the requirements of section 133 is received at a police station in the metropolitan police district by the time specified in section 133(2).

(2) The Commissioner must give authorisation for the demonstration to which the notice relates.

(3) In giving authorisation, the Commissioner may impose on the persons organising or taking part in the demonstration such conditions specified in the authorisation and relating to the demonstration as in the Commissioner’s reasonable opinion are necessary for the purpose of preventing any of the following—

(a) hindrance to any person wishing to enter or leave the Palace of Westminster,

(b) hindrance to the proper operation of Parliament,

(c) serious public disorder,

(d) serious damage to property,

(e) disruption to the life of the community,

(f) a security risk in any part of the designated area,

(g) risk to the safety of members of the public (including any taking part in the demonstration).

(4) The conditions may, in particular, impose requirements as to—

(a) the place where the demonstration may, or may not, be carried on,

(b) the times at which it may be carried on,

(c) the period during which it may be carried on,

(d) the number of persons who may take part in it,

(e) the number and size of banners or placards used,

(f) maximum permissible noise levels.

(5) The authorisation must specify the particulars of the demonstration given in the notice under section 133 pursuant to subsection (4) of that section, with any modifications made necessary by any condition imposed under subsection (3) of this section.

(6) The Commissioner must give notice in writing of—

(a) the authorisation,

(b) any conditions imposed under subsection (3), and

(c) the particulars mentioned in subsection (5),

to the person who gave the notice under section 133.

(7) Each person who takes part in or organises a demonstration in the designated area is guilty of an offence if —

(a) he knowingly fails to comply with a condition imposed under subsection (3) which is applicable to him (except where it is varied under section 135), or

(b) he knows or should have known that the demonstration is carried on otherwise than in accordance with the particulars set out in the authorisation by virtue of subsection (5).

(8) It is a defence for a person accused of an offence under subsection (7) to show—

(a) (in a paragraph (a) case) that the failure to comply, or

(b) (in a paragraph (b) case) that the divergence from the particulars,

arose from circumstances beyond his control, or from something done with the agreement, or by the direction, of a police officer.

(9) The notice required by subsection (6) may be sent by post to the person who gave the notice under section 133 at the address stated in that notice pursuant to subsection (4)(e) of that section.

(10) If the person to whom the notice required by subsection (6) is to be given has agreed, it may be sent to him by email or by facsimile transmission at the address or number notified by him for the purpose to the Commissioner (and a notice so sent is “in writing” for the purposes of that subsection).

135 Supplementary directions

(1) This section applies if the senior police officer reasonably believes that it is necessary, in order to prevent any of the things mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (g) of subsection (3) of section 134—

(a) to impose additional conditions on those taking part in or organising a demonstration authorised under that section, or

(b) to vary any condition imposed under that subsection or under paragraph (a) (including such a condition as varied under subsection (2)).

(2) The senior police office may give directions to those taking part in or organising the demonstration imposing such additional conditions or varying any such condition already imposed.

(3) A person taking part in or organising the demonstration who knowingly fails to comply with a condition which is applicable to him and which is imposed or varied by a direction under this section is guilty of an offence.

(4) It is a defence for him to show that the failure to comply arose from circumstances beyond his control.

(5) In this section, “the senior police officer” means the most senior in rank of the police officers present at the scene (or any one of them if there are more than one of the same rank).

136 Offences under sections 132 to 135: penalties

(1) A person guilty of an offence under section 132(1)(a) is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks, to a fine not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale, or to both.

(2) A person guilty of an offence under section 132(1)(b) or (c) is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

(3) A person guilty of an offence under section 134(7) or 135(3) is liable on summary conviction—

(a) if the offence was in relation to his capacity as organiser of the demonstration, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks, to a fine not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale, or to both,

(b) otherwise, to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

(4) A person who is guilty of the offence of inciting another to—

(a) do anything which would constitute an offence mentioned in subsection (1), (2) or (3), or

(b) fail to do anything where the failure would constitute such an offence,

is liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 51 weeks, to a fine not exceeding level 4 on the standard scale, or to both, notwithstanding section 45(3) of the Magistrates' Courts Act 1980 (c. 43).

(5) A constable in uniform may arrest without warrant anyone he reasonably believes is committing an offence mentioned in subsections (1) to (4).

This subsection ceases to have effect on the coming into force of section 110.

137 Loudspeakers in designated area

(1) Subject to subsection (2), a loudspeaker shall not be operated, at any time or for any purpose, in a street in the designated area.

(2) Subsection (1) does not apply to the operation of a loudspeaker—

(a) in case of emergency,

(b) for police, fire and rescue authority or ambulance purposes,

(c) by the Environment Agency, a water undertaker or a sewerage undertaker in the exercise of any of its functions,

(d) by a local authority within its area,

(e) for communicating with persons on a vessel for the purpose of directing the movement of that or any other vessel,

(f) if the loudspeaker forms part of a public telephone system,

(g) if the loudspeaker is in or fixed to a vehicle and subsection (3) applies,

(h) otherwise than on a highway, by persons employed in connection with a transport undertaking used by the public, but only if the loudspeaker is operated solely for making announcements to passengers or prospective passengers or to other persons so employed,

(i) in accordance with a consent granted by a local authority under Schedule 2 to the Noise and Statutory Nuisance Act 1993 (c. 40).

(3) This subsection applies if the loudspeaker referred to in subsection (2)(g)—

(a) is operated solely for the entertainment of or for communicating with the driver or a passenger of the vehicle (or, if the loudspeaker is or forms part of the horn or similar warning instrument of the vehicle, solely for giving warning to other traffic), and

(b) is so operated as not to give reasonable cause for annoyance to persons in the vicinity.

(4) A person who operates or permits the operation of a loudspeaker in contravention of subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to—

(a) a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale, together with

(b) a further fine not exceeding £50 for each day on which the offence continues after the conviction.

(5) In this section—

  • “local authority” means a London borough council (and, in subsection (2)(d), the Greater London Authority),

  • “street” means a street within the meaning of section 48(1) of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991 (c. 22) which is for the time being open to the public,

  • “the designated area” means the area specified in an order under section 138,

  • “vessel” includes a hovercraft within the meaning of the Hovercraft Act 1968 (c. 59).

(6) In Schedule 2 to the Noise and Statutory Nuisance Act 1993 (consent to the operation of loudspeakers in streets or roads), in paragraph 1(1), at the end add “or of section 137(1) of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005”.

138 The designated area

(1) The Secretary of State may by order specify an area as the designated area for the purposes of sections 132 to 137.

(2) The area may be specified by description, by reference to a map or in any other way.

(3) No point in the area so specified may be more than one kilometre in a straight line from the point nearest to it in Parliament Square.