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City of Westminster Act 1996

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4Closure order

(1)Subject to subsection (2) below, the council may, not less than 14 days and no later than 6 months after the service of a closure notice, make a complaint to a justice of the peace acting for the petty sessions area in which the premises are situated for a closure order in respect of that closure notice.

(2)The council may not make a complaint under subsection (1) above if—

(a)(i)the premises have been closed to the public; or

(ii)they are satisfied that the use of the premises as a sex establishment has been discontinued; and

(b)they are satisfied that there is no reasonable likelihood that there will be a further breach of Schedule 3 in respect of those premises.

(3)Where a complaint has been made under subsection (1) above the justice of the peace may issue a summons directed to all persons upon whom the closure notice was served under section 3 (2) (a) (i) above to answer to the complaint.

(4)Where a summons issued under subsection (3) above is served a notice stating the date, time and place at which the complaint will be heard shall be served on all persons upon whom the closure notice was served under section 3 (2) (a) (ii) and (b) above.

(5)If, on hearing the complaint, the court is satisfied that—

(a)the closure notice was properly served;

(b)at the time the closure notice was served the premises were being used as a sex establishment in breach of Schedule 3; and

(c)(i)the breach of Schedule 3 has not been remedied; or

(ii)the breach of Schedule 3 has been remedied but considers that there is a reasonable likelihood that there will be a further breach of Schedule 3;

it may make an order under this section.

(6)The court may make such order under this section as it thinks fit and in particular may order that—

(a)the premises in respect of which the closure notice was served shall be closed immediately and remain closed until the council issues a certificate under subsection (11) below;

(b)the use of those premises as a sex establishment be discontinued immediately;

(c)the defendant pay into court such sum as the court determines and that the sum will not be released by the court to the defendant until the other requirements of the closure order are met:

Provided that no order may be made under paragraph (c) above unless the defendant has been convicted of an offence under Schedule 3 or this Act.

(7)A sum which has been ordered to be paid under subsection (6) (c) above shall be paid to the clerk of the court.

(8)Such conditions as the court thinks fit relating to the admission of specified individuals onto the premises may be applied by the court to an order made under subsection (6) (a) above.

(9)An order under subsection (6) (a) above shall not be made if closure of the premises would result in any person other than the occupier of the premises being impeded in his access to any other part of the building in which the premises are situated and of which he is the occupier.

(10)As soon as practicable after the making of a closure order the council shall give notice of the order by fixing a copy of it in a conspicuous position on the premises in respect of which it was made.

(11)An order made under subsection (6) (a) or (b) above shall cease to have effect and any sum paid by the defendant under subsection (6) (c) above shall be released by the court on the issue by the council of a certificate to the effect that they are satisfied that the alleged breach of Schedule 3 has been remedied and that the premises will not be used subsequently as a sex establishment in breach of Schedule 3.

(12)(a)Where a closure order has been made under subsection (6) (a) above, the defendant and any person having an interest in the premises may make a complaint to a justice of the peace acting for the petty sessions area in which the premises are situated for an order that the closure order be discharged.

(b)Where a complaint is made under paragraph (a) above, the justice may issue a summons directed to the council requiring them to appear before the magistrates' court to answer to the complaint.

(c)The court may not make an order under this subsection unless it is satisfied that the premises in respect of which the closure order was made would not be used as a sex establishment in breach of Schedule 3 if they were to be reopened.

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