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News Archives: Index

October 7, 2010: Probation Set For Industrial Action

October 5, 2010: Turning Prisoners Into Taxpayers

October 4, 2010: Murder Changes Now In Force

September 20, 2010: Probation Programmes Face Cuts

August 24, 2010: Victorian Poor Law Records Online

August 10, 2010: Justice Job Cuts

July 28, 2010: Prison Violence Growing

July 22, 2010: Police Numbers: Latest Figures

July 22, 2010: New Jurisdiction Rules

July 16, 2010: CCJS On Prison And Probation Spending Under Labour

July 15, 2010: Latest Statistics On Violent And Sexual Crime

July 15, 2010: Latest National Crime Figures

July 15, 2010: New Chief Prisons Inspector

July 14, 2010: Hard Times Ahead For Prisons: Anne Owers

July 14, 2010: Prison Does Not Work: Ken Clarke

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform: Sentencing and Rehabilitation

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform Priorities

July 12, 2010: What Price Public Protection, Asks Probation Chief Inspector

July 12, 2010: NOMS has failed, says Napo

July 10, 2010: IPCC To Investigate Death of Raoul Moat

July 9, 2010: Women In Prison: New Report

July 9, 2009: Unjust Deserts: Imprisonment for Public Protection

July 8, 2010: Police Search Powers Change

July 7, 2010: Make 'Legal High' Illegal, Says ACMD

July 2, 2010: Failing Children In Prison

July 2, 2010: Police Buried Under a Blizzard of Guidance: HMIC

July 1, 2010: Freedom To Change The Law?

June 30, 2010: A New Outlook On Penal Reform?

June 30, 2010: Revolving Door Of Offending Must Stop, Says Clarke

June 30, 2010: Ken Clarke: Speech on Criminal Justice Reform

June 29, 2010: No More Police Targets

June 26, 2010: Family Intervention Projects Questioned

June 25, 2010: Cutting Criminal Justice

June 24, 2010: Napo on Sex Offenders Report

June 23, 2010: Closing Courts: The Cuts Begin

June 23, 2010: Strategy To Tackle Gangs

June 15, 2010: Courts and Mentally Disordered Offenders

June 8, 2010: Working With Muslims in Prison

June 1, 2010: Your Chance To Nominate a QC

June 8, 2005: New Violent Crime Reduction Bill

Home Office Minister Hazel Blears, who has has overall responsibility for reducing crime and the fear of crime, has announced the Violent Crime Reduction Bill, which contains new powers to ban the manufacture and sale of imitation firearms and tougher sentences for carrying them. It will also increase the age limit for purchasing to a knife to 18 years. It will further ban individuals responsible for alcohol-related violence from specific areas for up to two years.

The Bill would:

  • Make it illegal to manufacture or sell imitation firearms that could be mistaken for real firearms;
  • Bring in higher sentences for carrying imitation firearms;
  • Create tougher manufacturing standards to ensure that imitation firearms can’t be converted to fire real ammunition;
  • Increase the age limit for buying or firing an air weapon without supervision from 17 to 18;
  • Make it an offence to use other people to hide or carry guns or knives;
  • Increase the age limit for purchasing a knife from 16 to 18;
  • Introduce powers for head-teachers and other members of staff to search pupils for knives;
  • Introduce Alcohol Disorder Zones (ADZs) which will require licensed premises to contribute to the cost of alcohol-related disorder in specific areas where it has been identified as a problem.
  • Exclude individuals responsible for alcohol-related disorder from certain areas and licensed premises by imposing ‘Drinking Banning Orders’ which could run for up to 2 years;
  • Create powers for police to ban the sale of alcohol at licensed premises for up to 48-hours for selling alcohol to under 18s;
  • Provide police with the power to exclude individuals at risk of carrying out alcohol-related disorder from a specific area for up to 48 hours.

According to Hazel Blears:

“There is increasing public concern around relatively low level crime and anti-social behaviour escalating to more serious offences because people are under the influence of alcohol or carrying weapons. Outlawing the manufacture and sale of imitation firearms, clamping down on binge and underage drinking and ensuring knives are less accessible will help to tackle this."

Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell also supported the Bill:

"The measures in the Violent Crime Reduction Bill are a key part in the fight against alcohol-fuelled crime and disorder. They complement the new licensing laws, which will help eradicate trouble flashpoints through ending fixed closing, give the police tougher powers to deal with trouble venues and provide greater protection for children and local communities."