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BRITARCH  June 2006

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Subject:

Re: The police and the curse of illegal detecting

From:

Rob <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

British archaeology discussion list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 2 Jun 2006 16:45:30 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (159 lines)

Trespass is not a  criminal offence it is a civil offence and until the 
rightful owner asks for your removal the police have no powers to do that. 
They only have a power to act when that trespass becomes criminal trespass. 
Now entering private land wity the intent to commit any form of criminal act 
changes the trespass to criminal trespass which if that criminal intent is 
to take items which dont belong to you  with the intent ot permanently 
deprive the rightful owner of them then it is burglary and it doesnt have to 
be in a dwelling or commercial building neither it could well be a shed.

Items " Found " on a public footpath say have to be handed into the police 
or the police informed of such item.  This item doesn't become your property 
for a period of 6 weeks whilst the rightful owner as a right to claim such 
lost property, to not do this one is also committing an act of theft.

Therefore for example if we were to have a SAM in the middle of a park such 
as the roman site in the middle of Grenwich Park and detectorists started to 
detect on that land they would in all fairness be only breaking a by law and 
not a national law.  Now if they were to stick a spade into that soil they 
could then be arrested for criminal damage, and if they were to remove an 
item from that land they could then be charged with theft because anything 
under the soil belongs to the owner of the park.

With regards the original post it is the SAM law that should be enforced and 
there in lies the difficulty.  Is it a criminal offence to excavate a SAM 
without firsdt seeking the relevant permissions from the Government or its 
advisor which in this case is EH or is it only a civil law.  If the former 
then the police should be made aware of their rights to detect and arrest 
such criminals, if it is civil then the owner and EH should be made to 
approach the court and ask for an injunction against such activities and 
thus give the police the power to arrest in future cases.

PACE ties the hands of the police greatly and in some cases makes the laws 
they are supposed to uphold very difficult to do so.  Criminal damage does 
carry a term of imprisonment of more than 5 years and therefore you and I 
can arrest for such crime anyway so maybe we should act.  Citizens arrests 
are as legal as a police officers arrest so long as we do not breach PACE. 
Thankfully as a citizen you would not be held accountable if you were to 
breach pace because we as citizens are not expected to know it.

Rob
http://acorngenealogy.co.uk
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "peter" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Friday, June 02, 2006 3:52 PM
Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] The police and the curse of illegal detecting


> Yes and no
> Trespass is entering land and property without consent reguardless of
> weather it is open to the public or not. (consent can be implied or
> stated)
> Theft is only Burglary if (s 9 Theft Act 1968 etc) the person enters a
> building or part thereof with the intention of stealing etc or forms
> that intention once inside.
> Removeing items from land. If the item is on say a path then it is
> finding, but if it attached to the land and some form of force is needed
> to remove it then trespass and theft. It therefor follows thet
> excavating in a sheduled site is by definition trespass open to the
> public or not.
> CPS also known as the Criminal Protection service, Bless them every one,
> only on a 80% and better chance of winning and if it is in the public
> intrest so to do unless the law needs clarifing
>
>
> Peter Alexander-Fitzgerald BA LLB LLM
> 01570 481 263
> http://www.heritagelaw.net
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: British archaeology discussion list
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Rob
> Sent: 02 June 2006 15:05
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] The police and the curse of illegal detecting
>
> Whilst you are correct about trespass ( only when on private land and
> land
> not open to the public such as parks).  First and foremost they
> committed an
> act of criminal damage.  Then if they removed any item from the land it
> then
> becomes theft.  Here it gets a little complicated because theft from a
> private location is actually burglary.  Then there is the crime itself
> of
> excavating within the confines of a scheduled ancient monument and here
> in
> lies another problem.  If this is not a criminal act the police actually
>
> have no powers of arrest and can only move the ofenders on until such
> time
> as the site owner/custodian makes a complaint of criminal damage/theft.
> It
> isn't as straightforward as it first seems.
>
> At the end of the day it comes down to the CPS who may or may not
> prosecute
> depending if they believe it will be in the public interest or not
>
> Rob
> http://acorngenealogy.co.uk
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Lyle E. Browning" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Friday, June 02, 2006 2:57 PM
> Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] The police and the curse of illegal detecting
>
>
>> Having read all this back and forth it stands out that there is a
> problem
>> with the archaeologists. First, the police should have been  called as
> was
>> correctly done. What the MD people were doing was  trespass, then
> theft,
>> possibly felony theft. All chargeable actions.  Where the
> archaeologists
>> fail is in the expectation of "appeal to  higher authority" will work
> with
>> a group largely ignorant of the  relevant laws. When no police came
> within
>> a suitable interval of 20  minutes, a second, third or fourth call
> should
>> have been made at 10  minute intervals.
>>
>> Where it broke down was the application of existing law to the
> situation.
>> You simply must explain to officialdom loathe to move on a  problem
> what
>> the laws are and what their responsibilities are. If  there is no
>> movement, then you ask for their supervisory officer AND  mention the
>> local MP AND mention the media.  Nothing gets attention  faster than
>> officialdom coming down on their respective heads. THEN,  you must
>> follow-up with seeing that charges are brought.
>>
>> Sitting around passively waiting for the local constabulary to make a
>> move after they've show no inclination to do anything is not to be
>> accepted.
>>
>> Lyle Browning
>>
>>
>>
>> -- 
>> No virus found in this incoming message.
>> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
>> Version: 7.1.394 / Virus Database: 268.8.1/354 - Release Date:
> 01/06/2006
>>
>>
>
>
>
> -- 
> No virus found in this incoming message.
> Checked by AVG Free Edition.
> Version: 7.1.394 / Virus Database: 268.8.1/354 - Release Date: 01/06/2006
>
> 

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