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Squatting in Residential Buildings

Question

We would like some information, under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, regarding the enforcement of the new offence of squatting in a residential building as set out in s144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (s144 LASPO).  Section 144 LASPO came into effect on 1 September 2012, details of the legislation can be found via the following link: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2012/10/section/144. This offence is often recorded under Home Office offence code 125/86 “Knowingly as a trespasser live/intend to live in a residential building” (sometimes shortened to: ‘Trespasser Live / Intend to Live in Reside’).

We would like to know, for the period 1st January 2015 to 31st December 2015, answers to the following questions (Please provide a breakdown by calendar month where possible, and any personal data collected, such as age, ethnicity, sex, etc.): 

1] How many people have been arrested under s144 LASPO (or offence code 125/86)?

2] How many people have received cautions for a s144 LASPO (or offence code 125/86) arrest (including, if possible, the number of simple cautions and conditional cautions)?

3] How many people were charged for a s144 LASPO (or offence code 125/86), and of these how many held on remand for court, and bailed to court?

4] How many people were released without charge/ no further action taken for a s144 LASPO (or offence code 125/86) arrest?

5] If known, how many convictions for s144 LASPO offences (or offence code 125/86) have been secured, and if so, what were their sentences?

6] How many Crime Related Incidents (CRI) involving “squatters”/”squatting” have been recorded? Please note: CRI relates to incidents such as police assisting bailiffs to remove squatters, “illegal raves”, ‘Burglary – Dwelling’, ‘SOCAP Arrest Powers – Non Crime Reportable’. Please provide dates and details where possible.

7] In how many cases of arrest, or caution, was there a Displaced Residential Occupier (or a person displaced from their primary residence) involved? Please give dates and details where possible.

Answer

1. 1 person was arrested in April 2015. The person was male, 27 years old and the ethnicity was recorded as White – any other white background. 

2. No people were cautioned. 

3. The same individual arrested in question 1 was also charged. 

4. No people were released without charge. 

5. No people were convicted for this offence. 

6. We have 6 crimes recorded in 2015. Please find the information to question 6 in the table below: 

 

Date

Details

1

30/01/2015

Unknown offender(s) have damaged the communal metal garden gate to the   building.

2

02/04/2015

Three caravans turned up at the site.

The occupants were spoken to by police and the occupants informed   police they were intending to stay for a couple of days.

Bailiffs will be attending tomorrow at 0900 to serve eviction notices   on them.

3

05/06/2015

A number of members of the travelling community have unlawfully set up   camp on private property (car park). 

They have instigated eviction proceedings via bailiffs the eviction   was served at approximately 1930 hrs today.

4

21/06/2015

Illegal rave causing noise and associated ASB.

5

27/11/2015

Suspect has been evicted from a room, but keeps going back into the   building and has been sleeping in the basement.

6

20/12/2015

Group of squatters removed yesterday by police, new locks were put on.   The door has now been forced open and barricaded.

 7. In the case described above, there was no displaced person.

 

 

FOI Reference: 069/16