Jurisdiction of Force & Memorandum of Understanding with Kent Police

D Lewellyn made this Freedom of Information request to Port of Dover Police

The request was successful.

From: D Lewellyn

12 September 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

Please could you give me the full legal jurisdiction of Port of
Dover police officers in practical terms. Your website states that
as the Dover Harbour Board owns buildings throughout Dover your
officers have police powers throughout the Dover area. Could
provide any relevant information in this regard (or a map, if
possible) defining the limits of Port of Dover police powers.

Secondly your website mentions that you investigate all offences
within the Dock. Can you clarify if this includes the most serious
offences or would Kent Police take primacy. Could you supply me
with the memorandum of understanding with Kent Police which
outlines how the Home Office force and port police work together.
To clarify, it is my understanding that Kent Police have statutory
responsibility for law and order throughout the county of Kent
including the Port and I am interested in any information that
clarifies how the forces work together.

Yours faithfully,

D Lewellyn

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From: D Lewellyn

19 September 2009

Dear Sir or Madam,

I refer to my request for information under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 sent on the 12th September 2009. I am
resending this as I believe my previous correspondence may have
gone adrift.

Please could you give me the full legal jurisdiction of Port of
Dover police officers in practical terms. Your website states that
as the Dover Harbour Board owns buildings throughout Dover your
officers have police powers throughout the Dover area. Could
provide any relevant information in this regard (or a map, if
possible) defining the limits of Port of Dover police powers.

Secondly your website mentions that you investigate all offences
within the Dock. Can you clarify if this includes the most serious
offences or would Kent Police take primacy. Could you supply me
with the memorandum of understanding with Kent Police which
outlines how the Home Office force and port police work together.
To clarify, it is my understanding that Kent Police have statutory
responsibility for law and order throughout the county of Kent
including the Port and I am interested in any information that
clarifies how the forces work together.

If you could acknowledge receipt of this FOIA request I would be
obliged.

Yours faithfully,

D Lewellyn

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From: Neil Care
Port of Dover Police

21 September 2009

Dear Mr Lewellyn,

I confirm receipt of your Freedom of Information Act request below, and
will be formally replying in the next few day's. In respect of a map
defining the extent of Port of Dover Police jurisdiction I do have an
electronic copy, however the document is far too big to attach to an
email. I am looking at reducing the size of the file but suspect that by
doing so the document will be impossible to read. Do you have an address
in order that I could forward a hard copy to you, or would you be happy
for the relevant information to be included in my reply?

Kind regards,

N.D. CARE
Inspector
Port of Dover Police

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From: D Lewellyn

21 September 2009

Dear Inspector Care,

Thank you for the acknowledgement of receipt of my request.

I am happy for the relevant information to be included in your
reply.

Yours sincerely,

D Lewellyn

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From: Neil Care
Port of Dover Police

23 September 2009


Attachment Kent Police MoU.pdf
196K Download View as HTML


Dear Mr Lewellyn,

I refer to your two part Freedom of Information Act request.

Part one requests the full legal jurisdiction of Port of Dover Police
Officers. The powers of a constable, applicable to the Port of Dover
Police, are provided by Section 79 Harbours, Docks and Piers Clauses Act
1847, as incorporated into the Dover Harbour Consolidation Act 1954:

"Any two justices may appoint such persons as shall be nominated for that
purpose by the undertakers to be special constables within the limits of
the harbour, dock, pier and premises of the undertakers, and within one
mile of the same; and every person so appointed shall be sworn in by any
such justice duly to execute the office of a constable within the limits
aforesaid, and when so sworn in shall have the same powers, protections,
and privileges within the limits aforesaid, and shall be subject to the
same liabilities, as constables have or are subject to by the laws of the
realm".

In practical terms, Port of Dover Police Officers have full constabulary
powers on and within any land or property, or area of water, owned by the
Port Authority (the undertakers) - Dover Harbour Board (DHB), and within a
one-mile radius of same. At Dover, the DHB own significant areas of land
at both the Eastern Docks Ferry Terminal and Western Docks Cruise
Terminal; they also own the public promenade between the two terminals and
associated premises on and around the seafront vicinity. By measuring a
radius of one-mile from each extremity of DHB land it follows that Port of
Dover Police Officers retain full constabulary powers throughout most of
the Dover area. In addition, DHB own land in an area known as 'Port Zone'
at Whitfield, a village situated just outside of Dover. Again, by
measuring a one-mile radius from this area the Port of Dover Police retain
jurisdiction in areas to the north of Dover that do not fall within the
one-mile radius of land owned by the DHB that borders the sea.

Notwithstanding the above, the cost of maintaining the Port of Dover
Police is wholly met by the DHB and no public funding is received. To that
end, policing activities are directed at the Eastern and Western Dock
Terminals and the public promenade. The Port of Dover Police do not police
the 'Port Zone' as mentioned above and do not, as a matter of routine,
exercise their powers outside of DHB owned land (with the exception of
traffic management and assistance to Kent Police - see below).

Part two of your request concerns the investigation of offences that occur
within "the Dock".

As requested I attach for your information a copy of the Memorandum of
Understanding between Kent Police and the Port of Dover Police with regard
to the policing of the Port of Dover.

<<Kent Police MoU.pdf>>
You are quite right in your understanding that primary responsibility for
the maintenance and enforcement of the criminal law in the County of Kent,
including the Port of Dover, rests with the Chief Constable of Kent
Police. However, the MoU between Kent and the Port of Dover Police
clarifies that the Port of Dover Police will, where appropriate, undertake
to investigate all criminal offences within the port area and includes
offences committed on board vessels which, at the time the offence was
committed, were on the High Seas (cross-channel ferries). The key word
here is 'appropriate' which in the context of the MoU means offences that
are not considered serious or offences that do not require resources or
expertise outside the capability or capacity of the Port of Dover Police.
In such circumstances primacy will be handed to Kent Police and Port of
Dover Police will thereafter supply assistance and support. Offences that
would be regarded as inappropriate for Port of Dover Police to deal with
would include (for example): acts of terrorism, murder, manslaughter,
rape, facilitation of illegal immigration or any incident involving the
death (suspicious or non-suspicious) of any person or persons.

During peak periods, and/or bad weather conditions, it is not uncommon for
the volume of traffic arriving at the port to exceed the ability to ship
and the port soon becomes full. Under such circumstances traffic queues
often form that extend beyond the port and into Dover. Whilst the
responsibility for the control of traffic rests with the Chief Constable
of Kent, the MoU provides approval and consent for Port of Dover Police
Officers to take appropriate action to mitigate the effect of traffic
congestion within the District of Dover. This is not an uncommon practice.
In addition, the MoU clarifies that the Port of Dover Police will, when
resources and jurisdiction permit, respond to calls for assistance from
Kent Police.

May I respectfully ask that you acknowledge receipt of this reply, and
confirm that your Freedom of Information Act request has been complied
with. If you require any further information please do not hesitate to
contact me.

Yours sincerely,

N.D. CARE
Inspector
Port of Dover Police.

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From: D Lewellyn

23 September 2009

Dear Inspector Care,

Thank you for the information which answers all my requests fully.

Yours sincerely,

D Lewellyn

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