The tide seems to be turning against Section 144, or at least against some aspects (which we would have said weren’t covered by S144 anyway)
Firstly, one of the few convictions has been overturned. Dirk was nicked on a roof in Brighton just after the new law came in, with two others. The other two were found not guilty of the crime of living in a residential property, but Dirk was found guilty on the basis of police claims that he had said something about living there. On appeal the conviction was overturned as the police claims were ruled inadmissible.
More details from the wonderful SchNews at http://www.schnews.org.uk/stories/JEMMY-BUGGER!/
“No comment” is always the best response if you don’t want to be misquoted.
And secondly we’ve seen protestors in Southwark successfully argue police out of using S144, and other spurious charges to try to remove them. 21/23 Park Street was occupied in protest at its sell-off at auction by the council, further reducing the amount of much needed social housing in the area. The council claimed they needed to sell the property to pay for new housing, but since 2010 they have sold or demolished 857 homes while building 26.
This event has covered by national and local press, as well as SchNews of course.
ASS have notices for responding to all sorts of threatened misuses of S144, as well as the standard Legal Warnings for non-residential properties on the website. If you think you might need one give us a call and we’ll tailor-make one to your needs.