Political interference in the judiciary is never welcome, and whilst the House of Commons must always be the "maker" of laws it must always fall to the Courts to determine the innocence or guilt of those in breach of the law.
That is what makes Tory Justice Secretary Chris Grayling's announcement today on the rights of homeowners to defend their own property with aggressive force so unpallatable.
In a pretty transparent attempt to cheer up the right wing of their party and in an orchestrated move to draw attention away from their own failings on the economy and on transport and on health, the right wing of the Government coalition are once again throwing raw steak at the rabid dogs within their fold.
And of course it will all end in tears, political legislation is always poor legislation, rushed through without proper scrutiny it is meant to grab the headlines rather than improve the law. At least the last time a Tory Government tried this on with their 1991 Dangerous Dogs Act only family pets lost their lives, but this time the fatalities will all be human and not all of them Burglars.
To re cap on the existing law, we all have the right to use "reasonable" force to protect our property from intruders, and "reasonable force" is of course determined in a court of law by a judge and jury. So well does the existing law work that between 1990 and 2005 there were just 11 prosecutions for people
tackling intruders in any premises, including only seven involving homes, seven cases in 25 years is hardly a national crisis
So in England and Wales, as stated above anyone can already use "reasonable" force to
protect themselves or others, or to carry out an arrest or to prevent
crime. Householders are also already protected from prosecution as long as they act
"honestly and instinctively" in the heat of the moment.
But under the new Tory Plans the wording will be changed to protect the home owner further from prosecution, in all circumstances unless the violence used against the intruder is deemed to have been "Grossly Disproportionate" it will mean that someone who is confronted by a burglar and has reason to
fear for their safety, or the safety of their family, and in the heat of
the moment uses force that is reasonable in the circumstances but in
the cold light of day seems disproportionate, they will not be guilty of
So how is that phrase "Grossly Disproportionate" to be determined? Well on Radio 4 this morning when asked this exact question Chris Grayling gave an example that say for instance you had beaten the intruder until they were unconscious, then it would be grossly disproportionate to then stab him to death!The Prime Minister when asked the same question by Sky News, tripped out the identical answer.
Now don't get me wrong, we all have the right to protect our own property but the government's intervention to re word and alter an already established and understood legal threshhold has just got a whole lot murkier and a hell of lot more dangerous.
Critics have already labelled the move as a licence to kill and criminal analysts have expressed concern that in response to the move Burglars are now far more likely to arm themselves when "on the Job" as a means of protecting themselves from over zealous attacks fro vigilantes. Other critics have also pointed out that not every intruder in your house is necessarily a Burglar, a whole range of public officials already have a right to enter your property including of course the police themselves.
Senior lawyers have also warned that the proposals are simply a political gimmick which risks confusing the law for all the wrong reasons.
Turner QC, chairman of the Criminal Bar Association, said:
concept in British law of allowing someone to use disproportionate force
for good reasons. There is absolutely no need to change the law on
self-defence as it stands. “This is about making a political
headline. It would be an unnecessary piece of legislation which has real
potential to be dangerous.”
But it is the potential for criminal intent that concerns me most about how this new law is to be interpreted. Imagine for instance discovering your loved one was having an affair, now under a Tory Government it would be favourable not to catch them in bed, in flagrante (on the job) instead you can just wait until your partners bit of fluff is in the Kitchen, then come in the back door and bludgeon him/her to your hearts content (to his end if you wish as long as you don't stab him afterwards) break a window from the outsdie to stage a break in and then just inform the Police that "Sorry Guv, I honestly thought he was a burglar"
Likewise the new law could lead to a whole new series of "Home Delivery" attacks and killings, just arrange for the person involved to be at your house, again stage a break i, beat them to a pulp and say once again, "Sorry Guv, I just came home and he was in the house"
The Tories at Conference this week have avoided thus far in using the word "Growth" but let us be clear, with crazy mad cap schemes like this we will undoubtedly see lots of growth. a growth in vigilantism, a growth in weapons being used in burglaries, a growth in the number of defence pleas against attacks at home cases, and of course an inevitable growth in the numbers injured and killed on both sides, home owners and burglars.
Lets just hope it doesn't lead to a growth in votes for a discredited party of the backs of a Daily Mail reading non thinking public. And what will happen next year, heaven forbid if this government are still in power and they need to knee jerk even further to the right? Well how about a bit of Israeli law? legislation there allows home owners to shoot at will at anyone who they reasonably believed to have any criminal intent!
I know I shouldn't put ideas into the heads of the politically insane, but a desperate government can be grossly disproportionate in it's actions
- ► 2015 (22)
- ► 2014 (9)
- ► 2013 (24)
- ▼ 10/07 - 10/14 (2)
- ► 2011 (56)
- ► 2010 (59)
- ► 2009 (66)
- ► 2015 (22)
- ► 2014 (9)
- ► 2013 (24)
- ▼ 10/07 - 10/14 (2)
- ► 2011 (56)
- ► 2010 (59)
- ► 2009 (66)
Thank you for visiting "tonyclarkegreenparty" The views expressed here are mine and mine alone. They are made by me personally in my own capacity as free citizen and not as representative of any outside body or council that I may serve on or be employed by. However if anyone is offended by any of these comments or feels that they should be corrected then please contact me in the first instance at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will do my best to consider your comments and correct any errors.
100 key seats 1980's 1997 2013 50th Birthday 96 Abington Park absent parents abuse Academy Status Adam Simmonds Adam Simmonds. Police and Crime Commisioner Northamptonshire. Class A drugs Adam Simmonds. Police commisioner. Northamptonshire County Council Afghanistan Afro Caribbean Agent airbrushed for change airlines Al Quida Aldi allowances AlQuida Anarchist ANC Andrew Mitchell animated fairy story Anjona Roy Ann Frank Ann Timson Apathy Arab League Council Archway cottages Arms raid arrears. Northamptonshire race Equality Council Ashes to Ashes Ask a Socialist astragate Asylum seekers Audit Baathe Party bamboo joint Banana Banker barbecue tax Bashar Assad bbc BBC radio 4 Bedroom Tax Benefits benito mussolini Benjamin Netanyahu Big Freeze Big Society Billy Bragg Binners Birds black and white cats Black Swans Blair blogger blogs Blood Blowing smoke up your skirt Blue Light Services BNI BNP boardroom buffoons Bone marrow Boris Johnson borough council boot and shoe borough council elections Borough Solicitor BP Bradlaugh Brian Binley Brian Hoare brighton Britain in Bloom British Government broken britain Brown Pelican Bryn Estyn Children's Home budget cuts Bulgarian Bullingdon Club Burglars Bus Interchange Bus Station Bush businesmen Cabinet Call in campaigning Cannes canvassers capitalism Captain Ska Car Park Revenue car parks career wreckers carillion carlisle Carrillion CASPAR Castle Ward Castle Ward 2 Catherine Tate CDC censorship Census 2011 change Charity Commision cheating cheats chicago Chicago Fruit Police Chickens Child Abuse China Chloe Smith Chris Grayling Christmas Christopher Myers chronicle and echo Clement Attlee Cllr Andrew Simpson Cllr Andy Mercer cllr Bill Parker Cllr Brian Hoare Cllr Brian Markham Cllr David Mackintosh Cllr David Palethorpe Cllr David Perkins Cllr Dennis Meredith Cllr Elizabeth Gowen Cllr Gareth Eales Cllr Jean Hawkins Cllr Jim Harker Cllr Jim Harker Road Safety Cllr John Caswell cllr John Yates Cllr Malcolm Mildren Cllr PD Varnsverry Cllr portia wilson Cllr Richard Church Cllr Robin Brown Cllr Sally Beardsworth cllr Scott Collins Cllr Tony Buckley cllr Tony Clarke Cllr Tony Woods Cllr Trini Crake Clr David Perkins Clyde Loakes Coalition government cobblers combustion committee places Community Basher conference 2013 Conservative Conservative Party Conservatives consumption Contracts Corby corporate fools corporate spin corrupt Council Council tenants councy council County Council Election county council elections CPS credit crunch crime Crimea cuts CWU Daily Mail daniel hannan mep. NHS Daventry District Council David Cameron David Harvey David Perkins. Brenden Glynane David Ross day fotlu DDC debt decent homes Defend Council Housing Delapre Abbey democracy wreckers destruction disaster DIT Britain Dostiyo Dot Cotton Duckenfield Duckinfield Ealing Council Earworm Community East Midlands in Bloom East Midlands Labour Party easy read economy Ed Balls Ed Millaband Ed Milliband education election Elections 2013 Electoral iregularity Ellis Island email Emilie Oldknow Emily Oldknow Empowerment fund Enterprise Enterprise Managed Services Environment Agency Eric Pickles ester ranzen EU euro European parliament expelled F W De Clerk F*ck you facebook FAir is worth fighting for Fairground ducks Fairytale of New York Far Right fire Fish MArket Fitzy fixed penalty notice Flashman Floods Florence and the Machine flytipping Fountain free Friends of Delapre Abbey Full Council Gaddafi Gang Culture Gaza GDP general election Geoff Howes George Bush George Bush Jr George Osborne George Osbourne Germany Glasgow mosque GMB Golden Handshake google gordon brown government Government Cuts Grant Shapps greed Greedy Bankers Greek economy Green Green Party Greyfriars growth 1980's Guantanaomo Bay. Shaker Aamer Guernsey Harry Enfield Havelock Havildar Gaje Ghale haymarket Hazel Blears health Helicoptors Help the aged highways Hillsborough hoodies hope not hate House of Commons House of Lords Housing Housing numbers Housing. eviction human rights Ian Gibson IDF il duce Immigration imprint Independent Independent Green Independent Network independents India Injunction inquiry international internet Iran Iraq Iraq war ISIS Islamaphobia Israel Italy IVA jedward Jeremy Clarkson jerk chicken Jihadists Jimmy Carr Jimmy Saville jingles Joe Joyce John Dickie john gardner John Lennon Johnston Press Journalists justice justice for the 96 KBC Ken Livingstone Kevin Quigley Khudadad Khan KPMG Kraken Kurdistan La Madala Labour Labour Group Labour Party Lady Wantage Lampedusa Land Tax Lansbury last of the summer wine Leadership election league two Learning difficulty Learning Disability Lebanon Lee Barron leeds Legal and General Liar Liar Lib Dem Liberal Democrat Liberal Democrats Liberals Libya libya. david cameron Likely lads Lily allen Liverpool lloyd grossman local candidates local governance local government Local Government Association local press localism bill Loft insullation London Labour London Olympics london riots Loo of the year Lord Mandelson Lord Michael Ashcroft Lord Stuart-Smith Lord Taylor Lord Waterhouse LSE Mackenzie mad as a box of frogs Madiba Mahmoud Abbass Malcolm Mildren Margaret Thatcher Market Square Market Square Fountain Market Trader Martyn Gilleard martyrs May 2ns Medhi Hussein media Michael Ellis Michael Foot Michael Turner QC Micheal Ellis MP micheal martin Middle Classes Middle East migrants Mike Ferrigan Milk Snatcher millions Miserable old sod mk dons mortgages MP's Expenses mps expenses Multi Agency Group Muslim community mydavidcameron.com Narrowboats Nasseem Nicholas Taleb Nathan Worrell National Debt national front Nato Nazis. EU NBC NCC Neil Lewington Neil Magregor NEL. MIPIM Nelson Mandela Neo Nazis NEP New Statesman New Year NHS Nick Clegg nick clegg.norman clegg Nick Griffin Niel Kinnock NNDC NNJPU Noor Inyat Khan North Wales Police Northampton Northampton Borough Council Northampton Chronicle and Echo Northampton Conservatives Northampton Independent group northampton independent voice Northampton Labour Party Northampton Labour Party. Northampton Borough Council Northampton Liberal Democrats Northampton Saints Northampton South Northampton South Conservatives Northampton Town Football Club Northamptonshire County Council Northamptonshire County Council Elections Northamptonshire Enterprise Limited Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership Northamptonshire Music Service Northamptonshire Police Norwich North not all party's are the same ntfc Number 10 Observer Oil Old Labour Oliver Tambos Paddy Tipping MP pakistan Palais de Festival Palestine Parish Poll. Police Commissioner Elections parking parking services parliament parsons Party Political Broadcast Paul Blantern Paul Varnsverry PCC Pegasus Penalty Charge Notices pensioners pest control pest express Peter Mandelson Peter Righton pfi phillip mears photos for all occasions Pinky and Perky Plain English planning police Police and crime Commissioner Police Commisioners Police Commissioner elections political Polycythemia Pope Francis poplar porkie pies President Obama privatisation Professor Pongoo proportionality public consultation public deficit Public Service cuts purdah que sara sara Racism Radio 4 rats Rebekah Brooks reccession Recycling referendum refuse collection regional labour party relegation Rememberence Sunday residents parking retail Richard Hannon right wing riots Robert Cottage Romanian roofing RPA act RSA Rushden Sainsburys Sally Keeble Sam King Scrutiny Seb Coe Second Life Shame on you shameless Shami Chakrabarti Sheltered Housing Shire shirkers Shona Deans Messinger silver medal Simon Cox Simon Williams Skateboarders skivers. scroungers Slipping back in time SNC Snow Spad speaker spies spring boroughs Spring Boroughs Residents squandering St Andrews st andrews road St James Stagecoach stagnation standard and poors standards board stealth tax Stephen Pound MP. Jeffrey Archer Steptoe and Son Steve Messham Stock Market street lights supergran suspended Syria Taliban Tax Evasion tax the rich tea team GB Terry Waite Tescos Tess Scott Thatcher The Cobblers The Conservative Party The Green 'Un The Green PArty The Press The Queen The Report The Ridings The Saints the story of broke the story of change the story of stuff The Sun through the keyhole ticckle Till Death do us part" Tom Watson MP Tony Blair Tony Clarke Tony Clarke MP Tony Woods Tory Tory Government Tory Party Tory's town centre trade unions Trees Trevor Kavanagh TTIP TUC Trident Tuck Inn TVC E-coli and coliforms tweets twitter UAF UK debt UK floods UK Government UK riots UKIP UKIP. Green Party UKIP. Labour Party Ukraine Ulric Cross ULT UN unemployment union flag unitary authorities unitary government Unite against Facism United Learning Trust united nations Unity College Upper class USA usual channels Vara Varnsverry. Guildhall vat Virtual vlog vote Walter Tull Waltham Forest Wardens watchdog WDC Welfare welfare cuts west northamptonshire joint planning unit Westbridge Westminster Weston Favell School what's the point of Nick Clegg wicked William Hague window dressing winter wonderland witch hunt WNDC WNJPU workers Working Class working mens clubs workshy written questions WWII youth services