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Protection from Harassment Act 1997

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4 Putting people in fear of violence.E+W

(1)A person whose course of conduct causes another to fear, on at least two occasions, that violence will be used against him is guilty of an offence if he knows or ought to know that his course of conduct will cause the other so to fear on each of those occasions.

(2)For the purposes of this section, the person whose course of conduct is in question ought to know that it will cause another to fear that violence will be used against him on any occasion if a reasonable person in possession of the same information would think the course of conduct would cause the other so to fear on that occasion.

(3)It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to show that—

(a)his course of conduct was pursued for the purpose of preventing or detecting crime,

(b)his course of conduct was pursued under any enactment or rule of law or to comply with any condition or requirement imposed by any person under any enactment, or

(c)the pursuit of his course of conduct was reasonable for the protection of himself or another or for the protection of his or another’s property.

(4)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

(a)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years, or a fine, or both, or

(b)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum, or both.

(5)If on the trial on indictment of a person charged with an offence under this section the jury find him not guilty of the offence charged, they may find him guilty of an offence under section 2 [F1or 2A].

(6)The Crown Court has the same powers and duties in relation to a person who is by virtue of subsection (5) convicted before it of an offence under section 2 [F2or 2A] as a magistrates’ court would have on convicting him of the offence.

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