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Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003

Section 30: Dispersal of groups and removal of person under 16 to their place of residence

88.This section contains new police powers to disperse groups of 2 or more and return young people under 16 who are unsupervised in public places after 9pm to their homes.

89.These new powers will only be available where an authorisation has been made by an officer of at least the rank of superintendent regarding a designated area. Subsection (1) sets out the conditions which need to exist before this authorisation can be made. Before giving an authorisation, the officer must be satisfied that significant and persistent anti-social behaviour has occurred in the locality and that intimidation, harassment, alarm or distress has been caused to members of the public by the presence or behaviour of groups in that locality. Subsection (2) provides for an authorisation to be given for a period which does not exceed 6 months.

90.When an authorisation has been made regarding a specific areasubsection (3) sets out the circumstances where a constable in uniform can give the directions set out in subsection (4). Subsection (5) provides exemptions for lawful industrial disputes and public processions. Subsection (6) allows the police to return young people under 16 who are unsupervised in public places in areas covered by an authorisation after 9pm to their homes.

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