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Football Related Offences and Football Banning Orders

Principle

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and policing are committed to taking a robust stance towards tackling football related disorder and hooliganism.

The CPS and ACPO Prosecution Policy for football related offences can be found at Annex A.

Well planned and co-ordinated working with the police to tackle football related violence and hooliganism has produced high profile improvements in case outcomes. It has strengthened the reputation of the police and CPS for taking rigorous action at home and overseas, in tackling football-related offending.

Each police force will have one or more Football Intelligence Officers (FIO) and Areas should nominate a lead prosecutor to liaise with the police in relation to football related offending. Where an Area contains a number of clubs, it may be wise to have a point of contact for each club. The United Kingdom Football Policing Unit (UKFPU) will maintain and can provide a list of Football Intelligence Officers (FIO).

Detailed provisions on the football specific offences can be found in Stone's Justices Manual and Blackstone's Criminal Practice. The legislation relating to Football Banning Orders is also set out in Archbold's Criminal Practice. Further Guidance is available on the Police National Legal Database.

Although of course each case will depend on its own facts, once the evidential test has been passed, the Director of Public Prosecutions has decided that for offences which are prima facie football related, there will be a strong presumption in favour of prosecution.

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Offences: Charging Considerations

General

Most offences that are football related will be covered by legislation that prosecutors are already familiar with, particularly offences of assault under the Offences against the Person Act 1861 and offences under the Public Order Act 1986.

Prosecutors are reminded that where there is evidence that these offences are racially or religiously aggravated offences, they should be charged as such, and where they demonstrate hostility or are motivated by a person's sexual orientation, disability or transgender, this should be outlined to the court.

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Specific Offences

Football (Offences) Act 1991

  • Throwing of missiles onto the playing area or into the crowd - s.2
  • Racialist or indecent chanting at a football match - s.3
  • Going onto the playing area - s.4

Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994

  • Unauthorised persons ('ticket touts') selling or otherwise disposing of a ticket to a designated football match - s.166

Sporting Events (Control of Alcohol etc.) Act 1985

  • Carrying alcohol in vehicles on route to designated sporting events - ss.1 and 1A
  • Possession of alcohol at or upon entering a designated sporting event - s.2(1)
  • Being drunk at a designated sporting event - s.2(2)
  • Having a flare or firework etc. whilst entering, trying to enter or being at a designated sports ground during the period of a designated sporting event - s.2A.

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Charges

In selecting charges that adequately reflect the nature and seriousness of the offending and give the court adequate sentencing powers, prosecutors should note that:

  • Where there is sufficient evidence, it would normally be preferable to charge one of the offences under more general legislation as the football-specific offences referred to above are summary only and non-imprisonable, thereby limiting the court's sentencing powers.
  • Most of the offences that are likely to be charged are relevant offences for the purposes of obtaining a football banning order, but it is advisable to check the list at Annex B: Schedule of Relevant Offences before proceeding to ensure that the court is not deprived of the ability to impose such an order on conviction.

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Offences: Public Interest Considerations

Football-related offending causes direct harm to law abiding supporters, those who work in football grounds and in the communities surrounding football grounds. It has an indirect, but no less serious impact on the reputation of English and Welsh football at home and overseas. It is for this reason that the "ACPO & CPS Policy on Football Related Offences" states:

"There will be a presumption of prosecution whenever there is sufficient evidence to bring offenders before a court on appropriate criminal charges and where a Football Banning Order (FBO) is considered necessary."

In the highly unlikely event that a prosecution does not proceed on public interest grounds, prosecutors will need to ensure that this decision is discussed with the police at the appropriate level (including the Football Liaison Officer, where appropriate) and that the file contains a detailed review showing that there are clear and appropriate grounds recorded for not proceeding with the football-related matter(s).

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Out-of-Court Disposals - Conditional Cautions

Simple Cautions or Penalty Notices for Disorder will hardly ever be appropriate for football-related offences.

Conditional cautions may be available as long as the suspected offence is not a Hate crime or an offence of domestic violence. It should be reserved for minor offences committed by persons who have no previous record of football related, public order, assault or criminal damage offences. "Previous record" is not confined to previous convictions, but can include penalty notices for disorder, stop checks and intelligence that indicates that action is needed to prevent football related violence and disorder.

Football Banning Orders on Conviction cannot be obtained on the back of any out-of-court disposals though an offender who fails to comply with a conditional caution in relation to a football related offence will be liable for an application for a banning order to be made should the original offence be prosecuted. Further, the fact that such a disposal was made could be used as evidence to support a civil application for an order.

It follows that where a person is convicted of a relevant offence (see below) and there are reasonable grounds for believing that a football banning order would help to prevent violence or disorder at regulated football matches, a condition caution would not be appropriate.

Prosecutors should have regard to The Director's Guidance on Adult Conditional Cautioning in deciding whether such a disposal is appropriate.

Conditions may include:

  • Not to attend any regulated football match or a particular football ground, with the additional condition to report to a particular police station at kick off times. The period should never exceed 3 months and should be for as short a period as is necessary and proportionate in relation to the offence and the offender; for example for a minor infraction, a period of a month would still be a considerable hardship.
  • Not to approach an individual or go to a particular location; for example, a public house close to a football club.

Conditional cautions may also be appropriate for anti-social behaviour in and around football matches that could not be properly classified as football related.

Whenever a conditional caution is under consideration for a football related offence, the prosecutor must ensure that the FIO is consulted before a final decision is made. This consultation should be recorded on the MG3 to the effect that the offender is not considered a "risk supporter".

Football-related offences are not subject to any pilot initiatives around the use of a range of "Out of Court Disposals".

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Football Banning Orders

On Conviction - s.14A Football Spectators Act 1989

It is vital that prosecutors apply for a football banning order whenever a person is convicted of a relevant football-related offence, unless there are exceptional reasons for not doing so. For most risk supporters it is the thought of receiving a football banning order that they fear most and, as such, its deterrent effect cannot be under - estimated. Most football related disorder takes place away from football grounds, often affecting local public houses. Organised disorder can involve rival groups of supporters meeting some distance from the ground. Railway and bus stations have also been the scenes of disorder. The mere fact that offending takes place away from the ground should not be a reason why an order should not be sought.

Where a person is convicted of a "relevant offence", the court must make a Football Banning Order in addition to any sentence for the offence, if it is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that it would help to prevent violence or disorder (for further information, see below) at or in connection with any regulated football matches (s.14A(1)). If the court is not so satisfied, it must state its reasons in open court (s.14A(2)).

Schedule 1 of the Football (Disorder) Act 2000 sets out the relevant offences and is attached to this Guidance at Annex B. Having the list to hand when advising the police, or making a charging decision will assist in the process of obtaining the Football Banning Order. Where the offences have been charged by the police under the Director's Guidance on Charging, it will be important for a reviewing lawyer or associate prosecutor to check that the opportunity has been taken to charge a football related offence where possible and that the evidence exists to enable the court to make a "declaration of relevance" (see below).

Where good grounds exist and the court have refused to make a Football Banning Order, it will be important for a full note to be kept of the reasons given for not making an order and for urgent consideration (to be given to lodging an appeal to the Crown Court or Court of Appeal under s.14A(5A). An appeal to the Court of Appeal can only be lodged if the judge grants a certificate that his decision is fit for an appeal (s.14(5B). it is advisable that the prosecutor seeks advice from the Area Football Lead Prosecutor before lodging an appeal.

Prosecutors should be aware that, by virtue of s.14(4BA), a court is now permitted to remand an offender if proceedings are adjourned. s.14(4BB) allows the court to impose bail conditions of not permitting the offender to leave England and Wales prior to his appearance and requiring the offender to surrender his passport.

If a Football Banning Order is granted, or refused prosecutors should notify the Football Banning Orders Authority (FBOA) by e-mail at: FBOAEnquiries@fpu.pnn.police.uk, or request that this is done when the Hearing Record Sheet is returned to the office.

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On Complaint - s.14B Football Spectators Act 1989

Prosecutors are able to apply for a "civil" football banning order on complaint. The court must make an order if satisfied that the respondent has at any time caused or contributed to any violence or disorder in the UK or elsewhere and that there are reasonable grounds to believe that it would help to prevent violence or disorder at or in connection with any regulated football matches.

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Violence and Disorder

For s.14A and s.14B orders, "violence" means violence against persons or property and includes threatening violence and doing anything which endangers the life of any person.

Also, disorder includes:

  1. stirring up hatred against a group of persons defined by reference to colour, race, nationality (including citizenship) or ethnic or national origins, or against an individual as a member of such a group,
  2. using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour,
  3. displaying any writing or other thing which is threatening, abusive or insulting.

 

Most importantly, the terms "violence" and "disorder" are not limited to violence or disorder in connection with football.

The courts are given a wide discretion of what to take into account in making an order under s.14B. It can include decisions of foreign courts, evidence of deportation from another country and removal from football matches wherever this occurred and visually recorded evidence such as CCTV.

The court can look at the conduct of the respondent at any time in the ten years leading up to the making of an order.

If there is insufficient evidence to prosecute a football-related offence or the defendant is acquitted, it may still be possible to apply for an order under s.14B. Prosecutors should discuss this with police officers in order to establish whether there is enough evidence to support the complaint.

An appeal against a refusal to make a football banning order on complaint should be made to the Crown Court.

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Football Banning Orders - Evidence

Whether the application is made under s.14A or s.14B, it is important to call evidence to show the court why the Football Banning Order is needed. In s.14A applications the facts of the offence before the court may be sufficient evidence of itself to prove the necessity of an order, but prosecutors should always consider calling additional evidence to establish the defendant/respondent's history of violence or disorder associated with football.

In all cases the prosecutor should ensure that the Court is made aware of the impact of violence and disorder at and around football matches. What might appear to be an isolated incident by a person of good character (e.g. running on the pitch) could actually be the trigger for more widespread disorder. The FIO preparing the evidence in support of the application should provide a statement setting out the necessity for the order to include the level of football related disorder to which the defendant/respondent is contributing and its impact in the area concerned.

In R v Hughes [2005] EWCA Crim 2537, it was held that the mere fact that the defendant was convicted of a relevant offence at a regulated football match would usually be sufficient to satisfy a court that an order might prevent such violence or disorder in the future. This was followed in R (White) v Blackfriars Crown Court [2008] EWHC Admin 510, where it was held that the importance of the need to deter others was a factor that the court ought to give weight to deciding this issue. R v Curtis [2009] EWCA Crim 1225 is a case where the making of an order against a first time offender involved in large scale disturbances.

However, prosecutors should not overlook the case of R v Doyle (Ciaran) and Others [2012] EWCA Crim. 995 where it was held that, whilst it is possible for an isolated offence to meet the requirements for the making of an order, the requirement for reasonable grounds for believing that an order might prevent further violence or disorder contemplated a risk of repetition of the violence or disorder. It must be borne in mind that deterrence is only a factor to be borne in mind in determining the application; it is not the decisive factor, so that an order will not inevitably follow from a conviction for a football related offence (R v Boggild and Others [2011] EWCA Crim 1928).

Where the offence is alleged to have occurred on a rail or underground network and/or some distance from the ground it is necessary to ensure there is sufficient evidence to prove the disorder or violence is football related. Evidence in support may include a match ticket, programme, fanzine, season ticket, train tickets, football related paraphernalia (i.e. pin badges, 'calling cards', tattoos showing team / group allegiances) and ideally a photograph of the person wearing team colours.

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Regulated Football Matches

Football matches that are the subject of controls under this legislation must be "regulated football matches" (s.14(2)). The Football Spectators (Prescription) Order 2000 sets out which matches are regulated matches in England and Wales and elsewhere.

Regulated matches in England and Wales mainly consist of any association football match in which, either team is a member of the Premier League, the Football League or the Football Conference (including its subdivisions, namely its Premiership Division and its North and South "feeder" Division). Regulated matches outside of England and Wales is any match involving either of the national teams, one of the teams from any of the divisions mentioned above, or which are part of a FIFA organised competition which any of the teams mentioned in this paragraph would be entitled to participate in.

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Football Banning Orders - Procedure

When the application is made under s.14A the Criminal Procedure Rules (Rule 50) require that notice should be given to the defendant of the intention to apply for a Football Banning Order. Although Rule 50.3 states that the application must be on the requisite form, no form has been specified in the rules. The CPS and UKFPU are jointly designing a form, based on the forms used for ASBO applications and this will be issued as soon as possible. However, it is vital that the prosecutor signs the application at the earliest opportunity.

A notice of appeal by either party in relation to the granting or refusal of a football banning order must be made no later than 21 days after the decision was made (Rule 63 Criminal Procedure Rules).

Annex C and Annex D contain checklists of matters which a prosecutor or crown advocate will wish to consider in making an application for a Football Banning Order.

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Youths

Where appropriate, consideration should be given to diversion, by way of a Youth Caution. If the offending cannot be satisfactorily addressed by a Youth Caution, then consideration should be given to a Youth Conditional Caution. Prosecutors will need to consider the separate legal guidance on Youth Offenders and the Director's Guidance on Youth Conditional Cautions for more detail in this regard. The ACPO Youth Offender Case Disposal Gravity Matrix (available on the Police National Legal Database) has a separate section on Football Offences including breach of Football Banning Order.

There is a potential conflict between the duty to remit young offenders to the youth court for sentence (under s.8(2)(b) Powers of Criminal Courts (Sentencing) Act 2000 and the requirement for the court that convicts an offender to deal with an application for a post-conviction Football Banning Order (Football Spectators Act 1989 s.14A(6)).This conflict has resulted in youths convicted of football related violence and disorder being remitted to their home courts and subsequently applications for FBOs have been rejected.

To avoid this conflict it is recommended that youths should normally be charged and bailed to their "home" court, even when the offence charged is committed away from their home town/city. However, if it is clear that the case is likely to be contested and there are potentially a number of civilian witnesses then it may be necessary to charge and bail the youth to the "away" court. After conviction, it will be necessary for the prosecutor to make representations, citing the exception in section 8(2) of the 2000 Act, stating that it would be undesirable to remit the case to the "home" court, as it would deprive the prosecution of the ability to apply for a banning order.

Careful consideration should be given before a youth is jointly charged with an adult, to avoid the potential problems dealt with above. In cases of large scale disorder it is perfectly good practice to charge each defendant separately and for youths to be charged to the "home" court and for the adults to be charged to the "away" court.

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Length of Football Banning Orders (s.14 (F))

When made following conviction under s.14A, a Football Banning Order may be for up to 10 years if immediate imprisonment is imposed and must be for at least 6 years. If no immediate imprisonment is ordered, the maximum is 5 years and the minimum 3 years.

If made under the section 14B, the maximum period of the order is 5 years and the minimum is 3 years.

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Declarations of Relevance

By virtue of s.23 of the Football Spectators Act 1989, the court cannot make a Football Banning Order unless it is satisfied that the offence is football related. This section provides that the court has firstly to make a declaration of relevance and can only do so once it is satisfied that the prosecutor has served a notice on the defendant (at least five days before the first day of the trial or the hearing of the application) indicating that the prosecution propose to show that the offence related to football matches.

The court can waive the requirement for full notice to be given if satisfied it is in the interests of justice. The defendant may also waive away his rights for full notice. A finding by the court that the offence was football related can be appealed as part of an appeal against sentence. It is important to ask the court to waive the requirements if an offender appears in custody and is dealt with at first hearing.

Prosecutors should agree with the police that a notice will be served on the defendant at the time of charge, and provision made for proving service so as to satisfy the court. The court is likely to require a copy notice.

Prosecutors should ensure that there is sufficient evidence to prove relevance to a football match and should not feel limited to incidents arising at or near the ground. The courts have stated that it is a matter of judgment whether of offences is "related to football matches" (see R v Doyle (Ciaran) and Others [2012] EWCA Crim 995) and it is perfectly possible for the alleged behaviour to include incidents some considerable distance away from the ground, where the offender is not even a supporter of either team playing. It will usually be obvious from the circumstances, but if not, additional evidence may be available on enquiry of the police. Football Banning Orders have successfully been sought for offences over two miles from the ground and five hours after the end of the game, as well as for offences on the national rail network some distance from the game.

The court may conduct a hearing analogous to a Newton Hearing to determine the question of relevance. You will need to discuss this with the court so that prosecutors are and appear to be properly prepared.

The use of CCTV evidence may be very persuasive and lawyers should not hesitate to view such material which may save substantial numbers of police officers from having to attend court to give evidence.

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Passports and Reporting

Under s.14(E), a person who has been given a Football Banning Order must report to a specified police station within five days and they will have to surrender their passport when required by the Enforcing Authority (the Football Banning Orders Authority - which is part of the UKFPU) under the Act and report to a police station during the "control periods" associated with "regulated football matches" outside of the UK (see s.14 Football Spectators Act 1989 for the relevant definitions of control period and regulated football matches). The Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 removed the discretion of the court not to order the surrender of a passport.

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Additional Requirement of Football Banning Orders

Football Banning Orders can be made more effective by the use of schedules containing additional restrictions, such as a restricted zone around a ground for a period of two hours before to two hours after a match, and a prohibition on using the national rail network without the prior approval of the British Transport Police. Other restrictions may be imposed and the police, especially the FIO, may have views on what may be effective restrictions on particular individuals.

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Use of Bail and Liaison with the Court

The police may impose conditions from the moment they deem there is sufficient to charge and would have charged but for the Director's Guidance on Charging. The whole range of post charge/pre-court conditions are available and can include keeping the defendant away from certain areas and reporting at specific times. The police may now also impose conditions on bail following a release under section 37(2) PACE even if there is insufficient to charge but this should only be imposed where, in the event of a breach, the police investigation is likely to produce a charging decision.

Where there is a major operation, this may cause considerable pressure on short term court listing and Areas will need to liaise with the court for an agreed strategy to deal with what may be large numbers both in custody and on bail. Additional security may be required to safeguard the court and officials.

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Photographs

Section 35 of the Public Order Act 1986 entitles the court, on application by the prosecutor, to order a person on whom a Football Banning Order has been made to attend a specified police station within seven days at a specified time to have a photograph taken. A power of arrest exists for non-compliance.

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Liaison with the Police

All Areas should have at least one nominated "lead football prosecutor". Best practice is for there to be one nominated prosecutor attached to each Premiership and Football League Club, with one "lead" as overall coordinator for the Area, although it is accepted that this may not always be practicable in some areas, where it may only be possible to have a "lead football prosecutor". Each "lead" or nominated prosecutor should develop a close working liaison with the Football Intelligence Officers for the Force or Club for which he or she is responsible. A list of "lead" prosecutors will be maintained by the "Lead CCP for football matters" and will be shared with the UKFPU.

The success of the improved outcomes will depend on closer working with the police at a senior level. It has been proved to be highly beneficial for the CCP or senior lawyer to liaise with the relevant Police Commander in charge.

For specific events, where trouble is anticipated or agreed enforcement action is to take occur, it is best practice to have a charging lawyer on duty who will deal with the early advice and charging and through case ownership, will deal with any subsequent advocacy.

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Publicity

This type of enforcement action will generate a large amount of interest locally which will benefit the police and CPS if properly handled. A good media strategy will do much to boost public confidence in local criminal justice agencies. Advice on this can be obtained from the Press Office. You will be able to refer to the National Media Handling Plan which will assist in planning your local publicity which has been circulated to the Area Communication Managers.

Experience has shown that one or two really good joint operations can substantially reduce potential trouble locally.

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Annexes

Annex A: NPCC and CPS Prosecution Policy

NPCC and CPS Policy for Prosecuting Football Related Offences

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Annex B: Schedule of Relevant Offences for Obtaining Banning Orders

  1. Relevant Offences for obtaining Banning Orders
    1. Any offence under section 2(1) (unauthorised attendance at a regulated football match); 5(7) (making or using false document to obtain membership of national football scheme); 14 J (1) (failing to comply with Banning Order or requirement); or 21C (2) (failing to comply with a notice given under 21 (B) {police summary powers} of this Act).
    2. Any offence under section 2 or 2A of the Sporting Events (Control of Alcohol etc.) Act 1985 (alcohol, containers and fireworks) committed by the accused at any football match to which this Schedule applies or while entering or trying to enter the ground
    3. Any offence under section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 (harassment, alarm or distress) or any provision of Part III of that Act (racial hatred) committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies at any premises while the accused was at, or was entering or leaving or trying to enter or leave, the premises
    4. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence by the accused towards another person committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies at any premises while the accused was at, or was entering or leaving or trying to enter or leave the premises
    5. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence towards property committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies at any premises while the accused was at, or was entering or leaving or trying to enter or leave the premises
    6. Any offence involving the use, carrying or possession of an offensive weapon or a firearm committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies at any premises while the accused was at, or was entering or leaving or trying to enter or leave, the premises
    7. Any offence under section 12 of the Licensing Act 1872 (persons found drunk in public places, etc.) of being found drunk in a highway or other public place committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    8. Any offence under section 91(1) of the Criminal Justice Act 1967 (disorderly behaviour while drunk in a public place) committed in a highway or other public place while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    1. Any offence under section 1 of the Sporting Events (Control of Alcohol etc.) Act 1985 (alcohol on coaches or trains to or from sporting events) committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    2. Any offence under section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 (harassment, alarm or distress) or any provision of Part III of that Act (racial hatred) committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    3. Any offence under section 4 or 5 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 (driving etc. when under the influence of drink or drugs or with an alcohol concentration above the prescribed limit) committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    4. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence by the accused towards another person committed while one or each of them was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    5. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence towards property committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    6. Any offence involving the use, carrying or possession of an offensive weapon or a firearm committed while the accused was on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies being an offence as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to football matches
    7. Any offence under the Football (Offences) Act 1991
    8. Any offence under section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 (harassment, alarm or distress) or any provision of Part III of that Act (racial hatred)
      • which does not fall within paragraph (c) or (k) above
      • which was committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies, and
      • as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to that match or to that match and any other football match which took place during that period
    9. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence (includes section 4 POA) by the accused towards another person
      • which does not fall within paragraph (d) or (m) above
      • which was committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies, and
      • as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to that match or to that match and any other football match which took place during that period
    10. Any offence involving the use or threat of violence by the accused towards property
      • which does not fall within paragraph (e) or (n) above,
      • which was committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies, and
      • as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to that match or to that match and any other football match which took place during that period,
    11. Any offence involving the use, carrying or possession of an offensive weapon or a firearm
      • which does not fall within paragraph (f) or (o) above,
      • which was committed during a period relevant to a football match to which this Schedule applies, and
      • as respects which the court makes a declaration that the offence related to that match or to that match and any other football match which took place during that period
    12. Any offence under section 166 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (sale of tickets by unauthorised persons) which relates to tickets for a football match.
  2. Any reference to an offence above includes
    1. A reference to any attempt, conspiracy or incitement to commit that offence, and
    2. A reference to aiding and abetting, counselling or procuring the commission of that offence.
  3. For the purposes of paragraphs (g) to (o) above
    1. A person may be regarded as having been on a journey to or from a football match to which this Schedule applies whether or not he attended or intended to attend the match, and
    2. A person's journey includes breaks (including overnight breaks).
  4. In this Schedule, "football match" means a match which is a regulated football match for the purposes of Part II of the Act.

 

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Annex C: File Content

  1. Declaration of Relevance - ON CONVICTION APPLICATIONS ONLY
    This should be served on the Defendant at the point of charge and a copy placed with the file along with the following documentation
  2. Form of Application
  3. Draft Order
  4. Further copy of case summary in relation to relevant offence - ON CONVICTION APPLICATIONS ONLY
  5. Statement(s) from police officer (OIC/FIO)
    • Details of relevant previous convictions
    • Details of relevant other conduct
    • Video evidence and other exhibits referred to and attached
    • Why the officer feels there will be further violence and disorder at matches, if not banned
    • Reasons why the prohibitions in the draft order are being sought
  6. (Optional) Statement in support from football club
    Why it feels that an order is necessary

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Annex D: Checklist for Advocates

  1. Check file content
    See File Checklist (see Annex C)

IMPORTANT NOTE: Points 2-5 below relate ONLY to applications for Football Banning Orders on Conviction

  1. Has the accused been convicted?
    If no, then no further action
  2. Outline facts, previous convictions, costs etc.
    The order can be imposed ancillary to any disposal EXCEPT an absolute discharge
  3. Is it a football related offence?
    See Annex A (above)
    If no, then no further action
    If yes:
  4. Is a declaration of relevance required?
    If no, proceed to point 7
    If yes:
  5. Has notice been served?
    If Yes: proceed to point 7
    If No: The accused can either consent to notice being waived or the court can waive notice, if it is in the interests of justice to do so. This might apply if it was obvious that such an order was going to be applied for, or if the file shows that the accused or his advocate was informed of the application earlier in the proceedings. Alternatively, if the accused appears in custody and is dealt with at the first hearing, then notice should be waived.
    If there is a dispute as to whether the offence is football related, then the court will need to hold a hearing analogous to a Newton hearing.
  6. Submit the application, draft order and supporting statement(s) and make application
    You will need to persuade the court that the evidence being submitted shows that:
    1. On Conviction: It is proved that the suspect has been convicted of a football related offence
    2. Civil application: It is proved that the suspect has at any time caused or contributed to any violence or disorder in the UK or elsewhere - not just at football grounds.
      and
    3. Civil or on Conviction: The court can be satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for believing that the making of an order would help to prevent violence and disorder at or in connection with any regulated football match.
    You can do this by reference to the nature of this offence and previous conduct, whether that forms a pattern of behaviour, the risk to others from such conduct and evidence of the defendant's future intentions (if available).
    These are civil applications that require proof to the criminal standard.
  7. Court makes or refuses order
    Court must state its reasons in detail whatever its decision and if the order is made, the court must explain its terms in ordinary language.
    The order will usually contain terms excluding the accused from grounds where a team is due to play on match days. It can also include a requirement that he attend a police station for his photograph to be taken. However the legislation requires two mandatory requirements (in addition to any other requirement):
    1. The accused must report to a police station within five days of the order being made
    2. He must surrender his passport in prior to foreign football matches, unless exceptional circumstances apply.
    This will require the accused to produce evidence as to any foreign trip at or around the time of any matches.
    The order is for a maximum term of five years and a minimum of three years, unless an immediate term of imprisonment is imposed in which case, the maximum period is ten years and the minimum is six years.
  8. Miscellaneous
    A person subject to an order can only apply for it to be lifted after it has been in force for two thirds of the specified period.

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