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UK Hackers Face Antisocial Behaviour Orders 444

Posted by Zonk
from the we-have-everything-but-the-orders-here dept.
ukhackster writes "The UK government has proposed that suspected cybercriminals could be banned from the Internet or have their PCs seized, even if they've not been convicted. These so-called Asbos have typically been used against teenage hoodlums or small-time crooks, but now they're gunning for organised criminals." From the article: "Asbos give the courts almost unlimited powers when imposing conditions on the person receiving the order. Under the Home Office proposals, the courts would have almost unlimited discretion to impose the order if they believe it probable that a suspect had 'acted in a way which facilitated or was likely to facilitate the commissioning of serious crime.' In a civil court, hearsay is admissible evidence, and the burden of proof is lighter than criminal courts."
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UK Hackers Face Antisocial Behaviour Orders

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  • Unbelieveable (Score:5, Insightful)

    by voice_of_all_reason (926702) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:32AM (#15736840)
    even if they've not been convicted.
    • by andrewman327 (635952) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:36AM (#15736874) Homepage Journal
      This seems like one of those policies with unlimited potential for abuse. Sometimes such policies work and sometimes they become draconian measures. It all depends on the restraint of those who apply the law. TFA suggests that this law is bound to be abused on a large scale basis to perform an end-run around the established legal system. It will be interesting to see how this is applied and to whom.
      • by voice_of_all_reason (926702) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:44AM (#15736945)
        This seems like one of those policies with unlimited potential for abuse.

        Potential? This law would criminalize the act of being suspected in a crime. There is no grey line being responsible use an abuse.
        • by Elektroschock (659467) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:30PM (#15737440)
          Let's don't forget the upcoming European IPRED2 [europa.eu]:

          Article 3 Offences

          Member States shall ensure that all intentional infringements of an intellectual property right on a commercial scale, and attempting, aiding or abetting and inciting such infringements, are treated as criminal offences.
          ...

          Article 7 Joint investigation teams

          The Member States must ensure that the holders of intellectual property rights concerned, or their representatives, and experts, are allowed to assist the investigations carried out by joint investigation teams into the offences referred to in Article 3.


          Article 8: Initiation of criminal proceedings

          Member States shall ensure that the possibility of initiating investigations into, or prosecution of, offences covered by Article 3 are not dependent on a report or accusation made by a person subjected to the offence, at least if the acts were committed in the territory of the Member State.


          Here you find the list of responsible rapporteurs in parliament [europa.eu]. If you think the formula infringement==crime is wrong it would be appropriate to take action now.

          The source of IPRED2 is Jacqueline Minor from DG Internal Market, who also started the software patents directive project. Here she want to mess up criminal law of the member states.
        • by loraksus (171574) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:41PM (#15737541) Homepage
          The USA has the exact same thing - even being arrested for a crime (not convicted, and even if your record is expunged) can/will prevent you from sitting as a juror.
          Being arrested will get you your very own FBI file.
          Being arrested for a felony will cause tons of problems if you decide to try and get secret or top secret clearance down the line.
          Seizures of "drug money" (cars, houses, etc) without trial are an everyday occurence.
          • by just_another_sean (919159) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @01:14PM (#15737835) Homepage Journal
            even being arrested for a crime (not convicted, and even if your record is expunged) can/will prevent you from sitting as a juror.

            Ah, so there's an upside!
          • Never being able to be a juror? where is the downside...
            I have never ever known anyone to say "hey, I would like to be on a jury"

            The FBI file isnt a big deal, hell my grandmother has an FBI file. Those archives have become so large and lacking any sort of detail they are pretty much useless. "hmm your file says you were born here, you got into trouble here, the rest of the post it note we have on you is a doodle of a house..not sure about the relevance there."

            being arrested for a felony should cause a sec
            • being arrested for a felony should cause a second look when getting top clearance, Why the hell were you arrested in the first place, what was going on that you were a suspect. Those are valid questions when attempting to get a high level of clearance.

              Call me an idealist, but if you're found innocent of a crime, that should be about it. Now yeah, the person may have covered it up well, but you're being subject to double jeopardy. I certainly understand concerns, but being arrested because my NAME is the

              • by Seraphim1982 (813899) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:24PM (#15739336)
                Call me an idealist, but if you're found innocent of a crime, that should be about it.

                Good for you. Now you just need to move to a place where people are found innocent of crimes and you'll be all set. I don't know about the rest of the world, but the US justice system does not decide innocence, it decides guilt. Being found "not guilty" just means is that there was insufficient evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that someone is guilty.
            • Never being able to be a juror? where is the downside... I have never ever known anyone to say "hey, I would like to be on a jury"

              Maybe, but if you are on the other side of things, you might care. If you are from some segment of society that is disproportionately likely to be arrested unfairly -- say because of your race [aclu.org] or political activity [washingtonpost.com] -- that means that a jury is less likely to include people like you.

      • by 91degrees (207121) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:44AM (#15736949) Journal
        And there's the problem. ASBOs, while a total infringement of any sort of due pocess seem to have worked reasonably well They're only imposed on people where it's quite obvious that they are behaving anti-socially - This is usually things like vandalism, and harrasment - and at the moment, the people targetted are clearly acting anti-socially. As a result, they're really quite popular.

        There is the potential for abuse, but the general public seems fairly oblivious to this.
      • It all depends on the restraint of those who apply the law.

        You expect RESTRAINT from judges?

        I for one welcome our new totalitarian legal dictator overlords...

        Oh wait, they aren't new... *%^^*%$&^%$!!!
      • I saw an interesting sig yesterday here on /. -- "You have the right not be harassed by police, I have the right not to get blown up." Fair enough. These sort of laws scare the hell out of me, but then again, we need assurance against criminals of all sorts. Most of these laws aren't abused. I'm not defending Bush's policies, but so far as we know, he hasn't abused his executive spying 'privileges' yet (although it appears our gitmo-style prisons *have* been abused). Congress, when enacting such measures, n
        • "You have the right not be harassed by police,
          True.
          I have the right not to get blown up."
          I'm sorry, but you are wrong. We all have the right of freedom, but no right for security. I'm not for terrorism or against the police, but freedom has to come first.
          • Eh, what? Your freedom includes the right to blow me up? Your freedoms stop where my rights start.
            • Eh, what? Your freedom includes the right to blow me up? Your freedoms stop where my rights start.

              Rights are things which are granted as inherent to your existance as a human being. Laws are put in to place to determine those things which one cannot do, or to dictate the process of a particular action from beginning to completion.

              Laws exist that say that he cannot blow you up - murder is a crime. The law states that he cannot blow you up. However, there exists no law on record that grants you any ri

          • I'm sorry, but you are wrong. We all have the right of freedom, but no right for security.

            "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

            Sure sounds like we have the right to not be blown up to me.

    • Re:Unbelieveable (Score:3, Insightful)

      by MosesJones (55544)
      Not to defend ASBOs, which are being used like candy rather than as a last ditch effort to restrain individuals (the worst bit is that if you violate the ASBO you can go to jail, which is very harsh). But are we really that suprised that a goverment has introduced legislation that enables "soft evidence" to be introduced and be used to curtail what someone is doing? The purpose of an ASBO is for the majority to be able to stop a minority doing something it doesn't like, not nice, not pretty.

      But hell over
      • Washington people are being sent to a "camp" which is beyond the juristriction of all law

        Not anymore [hutchnews.com]...

      • But hell over with Mr Blair's favourite friend in Washington people are being sent to a "camp" which is beyond the juristriction of all law and can come from much less evidential grounds than the ASBOs and people are trying to avoid basic decency provisions such as the Geneva convention.

        To be perfectly blunt, people care differently about "those people" being opressed than when it begins happening to their own.
      • Don't try to blame ASBOs on Mr. Bush. He may be a facist, but the left are just as in love with these kinds of social engineering bullshit.
      • Re:Unbelieveable (Score:3, Insightful)

        by loraksus (171574)
        But hell over with Mr Blair's favourite friend in Washington people are being sent to a "camp" which is beyond the juristriction of all law and can come from much less evidential grounds than the ASBOs and people are trying to avoid basic decency provisions such as the Geneva convention.

        Please, your government had internment without trial [wikipedia.org] for a number of years and they suspend the use of jury trials when they feel like it. [wikipedia.org]
    • Re:Unbelieveable (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Bogtha (906264)

      Perhaps if you are comparing this to crimes where people get sent to jail, yes. But nobody is going to jail here, the comparison isn't appropriate. For instance, you don't have to get somebody convicted to get a restraining order against them either, but nobody complains about their civil rights being infringed there, do they? Think of ASBOs as restraining orders on behalf of the community. They aren't great, but they aren't the catastrophe you immediately assume.

    • voice_of_all_reason wrote: even if they've not been convicted

      ASBOs are essentially the same as a restraining order. Restraining orders can be placed on people who haven't been convicted, either. Almost identical burden of proof, too.

      Only if the terms of the restraining order (or ASBO) have been breached, does anyone go to jail.

      Tomayto, tomato. It's just British English for "restraining order" with a few bits of neighbourhood stuff thrown in.
      • That may be true of ASBOs, but these proposals go a long way beyond that. From TFA, they want to have the power to confiscate property (including people's homes and businesses), wide-ranging powers to acquire and analyse data from both private and public databases, and even limit the amount of cash one is allowed to carry while preventing one from using anything other than "approved" credit cards or bank accounts - and all of this is "where the police do not have enough evidence to bring a criminal prosecu

        • by evilandi (2800) <andrew@aoakley.com> on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:29PM (#15737427) Homepage
          I think you're misunderstanding how ASBOs and restraining orders work.

          With a restraining order, the prosecution asks the Judge to command the defendant not to do a bunch of unplesant things. If the defendant ignores this, and does those things, and that is proven in court, then and only then does he go to jail

          With an ASBO, the prosecution asks the Judge to command the defendant not to do a bunch of unplesant things, and sets some penalties, such as having his PC confiscated or whatever if he ignores the order. If the defendant ignores the order, and does those things, and that is proven in court, then and only then does he have his PC confiscated or whatever.

          The judge absolutely cannot order the guy's PC to be taken away or whatever, without proving breach of the order in court.

          So it goes to court not once but twice. Firstly the Judge has to ascertain that there is sufficient grounds for granting the order, and secondly a jury has to be convinced that the order was breached.

          Your remaining reservations are equally as valid against restraining orders, which have worked well for decades without anyone having a valid problem.
          • That is how ASBOs work, but TFA isn't about them: it's about the proposals in a Home Office green paper to introduce legislation allowing a new kind of order called a "Serious Crime Prevention Order". I reckon HMG is spinning these as being "similar to ASBOs" because that way people think it's no worse than banning some 14 year old shoplifter from a town centre, but if you read the article, or even better [PDF warning] the green paper, [homeoffice.gov.uk] you'll find this is very different in scope and implementation. The men

    • "You have not been convicted of murder, but we are going to place you in jail for the next 50 years, w/o option for parole."
  • not in the USA :-) (Score:4, Insightful)

    by networkBoy (774728) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:33AM (#15736850) Homepage Journal
    For the first time ever a new cyber law make me happy I'm in the US and not the UK!
    FTFA: This law would not be consitutional in the US.

    Still think all the geeks of the world need to unite and form a new country with fat pipes and takeout resteraunts every half mile.
    -nB
    • Did you mean fat tubes? We can take our internets with us.
    • by MrSquirrel (976630) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:41AM (#15736923)
      Let's move to Antarctica -- if everyone's against that (I know it's cold, but think of the overclocking you could do on stock air cooling!) we could always build a giant barge from old PC's (it would also be a functional beowulf cluser).
      • Everyone knows polar bears live on the poles. Obvious, else they wouldn't be called POLAR bears. Yet there are no polar bears on the south pole. There are penguins on the south pole. Coincedence? I think not. In fact if you check everywhere where penguins live there are no polar bears. The only place were polar bears live is where there are no penguins. Consclusion? Penguins eat polar bears. Even that fluffy tux toy, I got one in my house and no polar bears.

        If the meanest biggest land predator can't survive against a penguin change do you stand?

    • Not that our (UK) laws aren't just as crazy (some less so; some more so) than yours, but when was the last time your government took any notice of that antiquated document which I think they've made clear they don't think applies to this 21st century cyber world, which, if you believe Bush, is full of "un-American" "hackers" [sic] and "terrorists" [sic] out to do unspecified really Bad Stuff? In fact, I think many recent presidents have made breaking the constitution their top challenge in office (as, I wou

  • by Rob T Firefly (844560) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:34AM (#15736855) Homepage Journal
    Wikipedia's article on ASBOs [wikipedia.org] provides interesting reading on the subject. The article is a bit of a mess, but there is decent info in it, and the links list at the end is well worth perusing. These things are used against everything from vandals and thieves to hat-wearers.
  • by Mikachu (972457) <jjburke&hunter,cuny,edu> on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:34AM (#15736856) Homepage
    In other news, the UK government is proposing that acquitted bank robbers be banned from banks.
  • Tough call... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gasmonso (929871) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:35AM (#15736865) Homepage

    The part about banning thmem from computers even if not convicted is just nuts. However, as with gun crimes, convicted felons can't legally buy/use guns. That makes sense because there is no real need to use one in the first place. However, computers are a different challenge... they are somewhat necessary in todays society, especially if that's your career field. How do you tell and convicted hacker, also a programmer, that he can't use a computer? This will only get more interesting as time passes.

    http://religiousfreaks.com/ [religiousfreaks.com]
    • Re:Tough call... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by andrewman327 (635952)
      "How do you tell and convicted hacker, also a programmer, that he can't use a computer?"


      Ask Kevin Mitnick.

      • In Mitnick's case, the crime had very little to do with computers and far more to do with lying about his identity over the phone.
        • ...but obviously that is a computer crime as phone lines are digital now (and routed through computers). By lying he was misusing the phone company's computers and unlawfully trespassing on those computers with lies!

          Hopefully those computers were made in somewhere were they don't have the rule of law so he can be extradited to that country (that the victim computers were nationals of) and punished severely...oh wait...he was already in the US anyway...never mind.

          He also endangered national security, cr

    • That makes sense because there is no real need to use one in the first place.

      In that case we'd better let the military know. Think of how much they could save in the budget if they didn't have to buy all those guns. Also, all police departments should destroy their weapons, as there is no real need to have them in the first place.
    • Re:Tough call... (Score:2, Insightful)

      by DaveV1.0 (203135)

      However, computers are a different challenge... they are somewhat necessary in todays society

      For general purpose purpose computers, they are not necessary for a person private life.. They are only need for work, and many jobs don't require computers.

      How do you tell and convicted hacker, also a programmer, that he can't use a computer?

      The same way you tell a cab driver or truck driver that their license is being revoked. "Looks like you need a new career."

      It does not matter if one is a doctor, lawyer, banker

  • WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by darcling (987237) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:36AM (#15736878) Homepage
    Three words - W.T.F.?

    Here are the key phrases that tell you this is a HORRIBLE IDEA:

    1) "give the police and the courts sweeping new powers"
    2) "impose the orders on individuals, even if they had not been convicted"
    3) "proposals, if enforced, would give the police and courts "extensive powers" against --*suspected*-- hackers and spammers" (em by me)
    4) "give the courts almost unlimited powers"
    5) "the courts would have almost unlimited discretion to impose the order"
    6) "Those suspected ... could also have computer equipment taken away by the police"

    See all the uses of "sweeping" and "extensive" combined with power? Never a good thing.

    However, there is a glimmer of hope:
    "In the US, this legislation would not be constitutional," said Starnes.

    "If the Home Office can show it can use these powers in a reasonable and prudent manner, then I'm in favour," Starnes added.

    ---Yeah, that will obviously happen, when are they not reasonable and prudent??
    • Re:WTF? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by tgd (2822) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:03PM (#15737143)
      I'm not sure "constitutional" really matters much here anymore.
    • Re:WTF? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Turn-X Alphonse (789240) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:15PM (#15737263) Journal
      Everyone here is missing the point. Asbos work and they work well, they're not abused yet and have mostly been used on complete assholes.

      I'll give you an example, the village I grew up in got a new set of slides and swings in the park. Within a week the place was full of graffiti ("LOL COCK" type of things) and most the new equipment was trashed. No kids went there because you'd always find 15-20 year olds drunk and doing drugs. These would be the sort of people who get an Asbo, they're told to stay the hell out of the park and if they go into them they will have commited a crime.

      Plus lets me honest here, the UK police force right now has bigger issues. They shot a guy in the head 8 times for "being a terrorist", when he was totally innocent and now they're getting done on Healthy and safety instead of murder charges they deserve. I'd say forget Asbos and start to worry about the big shit they are throwing around right now. I think I'd rather lose my PC in this country than get 8 holes in the head..
      • Re:WTF? (Score:5, Funny)

        by dr_dank (472072) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:20PM (#15737315) Homepage Journal
        Everyone here is missing the point. Asbos work and they work well, they're not abused yet and have mostly been used on complete assholes.

        First, they came for the complete assholes. I did not speak out, for I wasn't a complete asshole.
        then, they came for the dickheads. I did not speak out, for I wasn't a dickhead.
        then, they came for the dingbats. I did not speak out, for I wasn't a dingbat.
        then, they came for the schmucks. Who will speak out for me?

      • Re:WTF? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by RexRhino (769423) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @01:26PM (#15737914)
        The example you give is a perfect example of ASBOS abuse.

        There is lots of graffiti in the park... do they put a camera in the park and get real evidence of vandalism? Increase partrols and catch someone in the act?

        No! Instead, without a trial or any evidence, they deny law abiding citizens the right to use the public services that they pay for.

        "But, you don't understand... these were DRUNKS!!! Well we didn't give them blood tests and charge them with public intoxication... we don't have too, we know they were scum! SCUM! They were wearing old clothes like they were poor or something, they were laughing and smiling, AND SOME WERE NOT EVEN WHITE!!! We sure showed those dirty scummy people not to come around our neighborhood!"

        This is old fashion "run the gypsies out of town" style vigilante justice, wrapped in politically correct government-technocratic rhetoric.
    • I'm not a UK citizen - never been there (and thanks to this new law I'll never visit!), but in the US the government has clearly proven that they can't use their existing power in a reasonable and prudent manner. In fact, they can't do much of anything right. It is pretty sad when the only difference between the two parties is that one will tax you to get lots of money so that they can waste it, while the other will borrow the same amount of money so they can waste it on slightly different things. Freedom h
  • by KingSkippus (799657) * on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:37AM (#15736885) Homepage Journal

    I have a fundamental problem with this:

    The UK government has proposed that suspected cybercriminals could be banned from the Internet or have their PCs seized, even if they've not been convicted.

    So what they're saying is that even without being convicted of a crime, the state will exercise police powers to enforce punishments on its citizens?

    I don't care what country you're in, that's just wrong. Hopefully our mates across the sea will rise up and ensure that this proposal doesn't see the light of day. I'm sorry, but if someone's not convicted, they're sure as hell not a cybercriminal.

  • WTF!!! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Oh dear that's just horrid. I can't believe that people are that afraid of things they don't understand. I'm so happy I don't live in the UK.

    Does this say something about humans as a whole? Are we that afraid of someone hurting us that we want to impact the basic freedoms of people who have been proven guilty of no crime!? /cry
  • Feeling guilty? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheOrangeMan (884380) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:39AM (#15736908) Journal
    Guilty untily proven guilty.
  • by ettlz (639203) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:40AM (#15736915) Journal

    There, I've said it. I am ashamed of my own government. I am disgusted at their blantant disregard for freedom, and the human "rights" they claim to champion. I abhor their reactionary, quasi-populist approach to law enforcement that will ultimately criminalise non-conformists. I denounce their fear-mongering, alarmist, despicable manipulation of the public (90 days' detention without trial? All your private keys are belng to us?).

    UK Slashdotters: let's make sure we punish these lunatics at the next general election.


  • we hardly knew ye.

  • by Pancake Bandit (987571) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @11:53AM (#15737043)
    Sidenote for anyone who thinks it's funny to call it "antisocial behavior":

    This refers to an antisocial personality disorder. This doesn't mean introversion, but someone who has no morals, remorse for wrongdoing or any capability of foresight. People with an APD are the stereotypical criminal masterminds or street-smart con-men. They are often charming at first, but their only motivation is their own desires. They can be fantastic at acting, pretending to be sorry, but see society as nothing more than a game to win, at any cost.

    Diagnostic Criteria in the US [mentalhealth.com]

    But yeah, this legislation is a bunch of crap.

    • They can be fantastic at acting, pretending to be sorry, but see society as nothing more than a game to win, at any cost.

      Hell - this could be used to describe just about any corporation. It could easily be applied to describe the United States government. Quite a few politicians would also fit this definition.

      In short, when major elements of society act in a way to "get ahead", then punish others for doing the same, it is nothing more than hypocrisy (stemming from a need for self-preservation and greed, mos

  • So what they're saying is that even without being convicted of a crime, the state will exercise police powers to enforce punishments on its citizens?

    Remember the article yesterday about not needing anything other than an internet connection to have everything delivered and work at home? But anyone with that kind of life style is being targetted by this. You don't have to be guilty; you just have to be accused and it would ruin your life if you actually followed their rules. That's like saying the government
  • Even if they do pass this, remember who they are "banning" from computer... hackers. I'm pretty sure that these hackers will be able to use computers/internet anyways even if they are banned. If they are already committing cybercrimes, I doubt some legislation banning them from the internet (and any other blocks from an ISP) is going to keep them off.
  • ...downloading porn is considered anti-social behavior? Or complaining about the President or Prime Minister? Hate to use the overworn "slippery slope" phraseology, but once you open Pandora's box, it's awfully hard to close. Sure, some of these people, convicted or not, should probably have Internet/computer access rights revoked. But how enforceable is it really? If someone's convicted and goes to jail, fine, but what about someone who is only suspected? Are they going to then follow them around and make

  • It's stunning (Score:2, Insightful)

    by MojoBox (985651)
    Quite amazing how readily European nations give up there freedoms for a little creature comforts. Come on EU'ers, grow a pair! Take some chances in life.
  • no, i'm serious.

    when they realize that "hackers" are what make all their doodads work, they'll come crying back to us for help.

    then we can secede from the rest of society and parcel out our own bit of land where we get all the fat pipes we want!
  • I try not to do anything wrong, not because it's illegal or socially unacceptable but because it's wrong. It seems to me that this is just the next step in the increasing criminalisation of the public in western society. Sometimes I port scan someone when we are trying to get something working through our firewalls, I know my ISP frowns on this and could technically disconnect me for it, I wouldn't be surprised if it's actually illegal, but it's not wrong. More and more things that are not (IMO) wrong are b
  • IP (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Tenebrarum (887979)
    Am I the only person who thinks this will be used against "piracy"?
  • by ajrs (186276) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:26PM (#15737387) Homepage
    'acted in a way which facilitated or was likely to facilitate the commissioning of serious crime'

    if a ddos attack is a serious crime, is using a computer with known remote security exploits 'acting in a way'?
  • by rs232 (849320) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:53PM (#15737661)
    "As financial transactions are completed ever more quickly .. this problem should be largely addressed by the ID cards [homeoffice.gov.uk] programme."

    "a person .. can be liable if he .. is capable of encouraging or assisting another person .. in relation to [an] offence he believes will be committed"

    "would be liable where his conduct has the capacity to provide ..encouragement .. and .. believes .. offences .. will be committed .. but he is unclear which offence it will be [and] he is indifferent as to whether it is committed"

    "we also need to ensure that those .. could not escape prosecution by arguing that they were not absolutely certain that the offence would take place."

    "The decision as to what level of belief should be required for this offence will need to be carefully thought through."

    "the powers provided by the .. Act, should .. lead to a greater number of convictions .. as .. those on the periphery should be persuaded to testify against their bosses in return for discounted sentences"
  • by DeanFox (729620) * <spam.mynameNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @12:54PM (#15737671)

    We have the same thing here in the USA but it goes by different names. The most obvious is a Restraining Order.

    Not identical but very similar to an ASBO, Judges impose the same restrictions as ASBOs all the time in Juvenile Courts with what they call delayed charges. It's akin to blackmail. The way they work here is if the DA figures he has evidence to charge someone with a crime, he can delay making those charges if X, Y or Z conditions are met.

    I've seen a Juvenile Court Judge delay a theft charge so long as the Juvenile didn't associate with several of his friends, didn't go to a certain home, was home by 10pm, etc. The charges would be delayed and dropped if the Juvenile obeyed the conditions. If not, the charges would be made and the Juvenile would have to answer for them.

    The difference is in order to get to the point of having ASBO type of conditions placed upon you, there needs to be enough evidence of a crime that would allow a DA to hold the charges over your head. Some say that's a big difference, and others call it a fine line.

    That's our protection, I suppose, that the State has to jump through a few more hoops to get the equivalent of an ASBO here in the USA but they do happen. And, at least in Juvenile Court they happen all the time.

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