Thursday, 4 March 2010

Drinking Banning Orders on Conviction

Did you know that (from 1st April 2010) the courts can impose a Drinking Banning Order on a person who has been convicted of a criminal offence committed whilst under the influence of drink?  The law is in the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006.  I have no problem with that and could think of many who ought never to darken the doors of a public house again (even if they will still get "tanked up" at home)!  I do have a problem with this law applying to offences committed in (say) Salford but not across the River Irwell in Manchester.  It applies in Doncaster but not in (say) Leeds.  This local application of criminal law runs counter to the idea that criminal law provisions should apply equally to everyone no matter where they are in the country.  It comes about because Commencement Order No.8 only applies this law to certain "local justice areas."  This, to paraphrase Churchill, is the sort of law-making up with which we should not put!  The citizen (or should it still be "subject") surely has a right to know the possible consequences of his actions or am I missing something?

Note: From 1st November, a DBO can be imposed in the City of Manchester.


  1. I have no problems with the law being different from place to place, but I do not think that "drinking banning orders" are a good idea.

    A drinking ban penalises harmless behaviour along with harmful behaviour.

    If they are truly more prone to violence while drunk, the purpose would be better served by prosecuting them for violence, and imposing progressively harsher sentences for subsequent offences. They then have the opportunity to work out the consequences of their drunkenness for themselves.

    The benefit of the approach is that it works equally well or badly whether drunkeness is the cause or not.

  2. Bonkers. What is "Lincoln District". Does this mean the County? Does this mean Lincoln City? Who decides?