LASPO s144 guidelines

Thomas Bowden made this Freedom of Information request to Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

This request has been closed to new correspondence. Contact us if you think it should be reopened.

The request was partially successful.

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Please send me any information held on guidance issued at the various levels from force-wide down to individual station or division level, on enforcement of and strategy relating to enforcement of the offence in Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, section 144 (squatting in residential premises).
Include the guidance itself if possible, include dates of issue and intendended recipients.

If the 18-hour threshold is crossed, begin collating the information and send me what you've got once you reach 18 hours.

Yours faithfully,

Thomas Bowden

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Bowden

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2012080003526
I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 29/08/2012.  I note you seek
access to the following information:

*     "Please send me any information held on guidance issued at the    
various levels from force-wide down to individual station or    
division level, on enforcement of and strategy relating to    
enforcement of the offence in Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment    
of Offenders Act 2012, section 144 (squatting in residential    
premises).     Include the guidance itself if possible, include dates
of issue and     intendended recipients.         If the 18-hour
threshold is crossed, begin collating the     information and send me
what you've got once you reach 18 hours."

Your request will now be considered in accordance with the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act).  You will receive a response within
the statutory timescale of 20 working days as defined by the Act,
subject to the information not being exempt or containing a reference
to a third party.  In some circumstances the MPS may be unable to
achieve this deadline.  If this is likely you will be informed and
given a revised time-scale at the earliest opportunity.

Some requests may also require either full or partial transference to
another public authority in order to answer your query in the fullest
possible way. Again, you will be informed if this is the case.

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet, which details your
right of complaint.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please
write quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely

James Prescott
Policy & Support Officer
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think
the decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome and encouraged to
discuss the decision with the case officer that dealt with your
request.  

Ask to have the decision looked at again –

The quickest and easiest way to have the decision looked at again is
to telephone the case officer that is nominated at the end of your
decision letter.

That person will be able to discuss the decision, explain any issues
and assist with any problems.

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision
of the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act)
regarding access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS
to have the decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days
from the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied
with the decision you may make application to the Information
Commissioner for a decision on whether the request for information has
been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information
Commissioner please visit their website at
www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.  Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

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Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

I notice that you have not replied to my FOI request (I do not consider an automated acknowledgement a reply).
You stated that you would respond within 20 days (which elasped 26th Sept 2012), which is the statutory timescale, for all that legal requirements mean anything to you.

I am well aware that your organisation does not like the fact that it is bound by the FOI, and also that it prefers wearing down members of the public by forcing them to take any complaints to a higher level.

Nonetheless, I would appreciate a response in your own words as to why (ie specific reasons which relate to this request, not requests in general) your response to the original request has taken so long.

I will seek an internal review only if this response is unsatisfactory.

Yours faithfully,

Thomas Bowden

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

I will be out of the office on annual leave from 29/09/2012 and will
return on 03/10/2012.

If you need to contact me urgently regarding any matter please instead
contact my collegaues on 0207 161 3500 or alternatively via e-mail on
[email address] or [the Met request email]

Kind regards,

James Prescott
Policy and Support Officer, DOI (2), Public Access Office
20th Floor ESB

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: Facebook.com/metpoliceuk
Twitter: @metpoliceuk

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

Dear Mr Bowden,

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2012080003526
I write in connection with your request for information that was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 29 August 2012. I apologise
for the delay in responding to your request and any inconvenience caused.
I would also like to apologise for not contacting you sooner.

The delay in responding to your request is as a result of my co-ordinating
a search for local guidance on the implementation, strategy and
enforcement of the new squatting in residential premises law. There are 32
boroughs across the MPS. To answer your request, I have had to identify
and contact 32 members of staff with responsibility for Freedom of
Information Act questions across the 32 boroughs. Each of these members of
staff has then, in turn, had to co-ordinate local searches on their
borough for guidance related to the new squatting in residential premises
law. To date, 30 boroughs have responded. 2 boroughs are currently
concluding their searches. In addition, I have located and prepared the
MPS 'corporate' level guidance for release to you. As soon as I receive
answers from the two outstanding boroughs, I will respond to you.

I apologise for the delay and would like to thank you for your patience in
awaiting my response.

Yours sincerely

Damion Baird

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: Facebook.com/metpoliceuk

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

Dear Damion Baird,

Well, even if you haven't fulfilled the request, thanks for apologising for it. I see that you have been busy on it. This is just to chase up - is there any progress yet?
Perhaps you could release those data that you have and complete the data when the other two boroughs reply.
If you let me know who deals with FOI in those two boroughs, I could send requests to them separately.

Yours faithfully,

Thomas Bowden

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

3 Attachments

Dear Mr Bowden,

Freedom of Information Request Reference No:  2012080003526

I write in response to your request for information that was received by
the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 29 August 2012. I apologise for
the delay in responding to your request. I note that you seek access to
the following information:

"Please send me any information held on guidance issued at the various
levels from force-wide down to individual station or division level, on
enforcement of and strategy relating to enforcement of the offence in
Legal Aid Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012, section 144
(squatting in residential premises). Include the guidance itself if
possible, include dates of issue and intended recipients."

Following receipt of your request, I have conducted searches with
Territorial Policing Headquarters and each MPS borough to locate
information relevant to your request. I can confirm that information of
the description specified is held by the MPS.

DECISION
I have disclosed the located information to you in redacted/edited format.
I have removed the name and contact details of a police officer involved
in developing the requested MPS guidance and the contact details of
Commander Simon Bray. A full explanation of why the requested information
has been removed including the relevant sections of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 (the Act), is given in the Legal Annex below.

INFORMATION RELEASED

1. Section 144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders
Act 2012: Powerpoint Presentation

2. Section 144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders
Act 2012: Police Notice

3. Section 144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders
Act 2012: Email of 11 August 2012

Please note that, having conducted searches with each MPS borough, I can
confirm that no local/borough guidance has been created about Section 144
of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.

This notice concludes your request for information. I would like to thank
you for your interest in the MPS.

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet which details your right of
complaint.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please write
or contact Damion Baird on telephone number 0207 161 6510 quoting the
reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Damion Baird

                                                                       
LEGAL ANNEX

EXPLANATION OF DECISION

I have redacted the following information form the requested documents:

* Section 144 of Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act
2012: Police Notice

Redaction 1: Name of police officer involved in developing the requested
MPS guidance.
Redaction 2: Email address of police officer involved in developing the
requested MPS guidance.
Redaction 3: Telephone number of police officer involved in developing the
requested MPS guidance.

* Section 144 of Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act
2012: Email of 11 August 2012

Redaction 1 - 5: Name of police officer involved in developing the
requested MPS guidance.
Redaction 6: Commander Simon Bray's contact details (redacted as not
relevant to request).  
Redaction 7 - 8: Name of police officer involved in developing the
requested MPS guidance.
Redaction 9: Name and contact details of police officer involved in
developing the requested MPS guidance (the contact details have been
redacted as they are not relevant to the request).

REASON FOR REDACTIONS

In accordance with Section 17(1) of the Act, I have claimed the exemption
set out by Section 40(2)(a)(b) - (3)(a)(i) of the Act.

Section 40(2)(a)(b) - (3)(a)(i) - Personal Information
Section 40(2)(a)(b) of the Act provides that any information to which a
request for information relates, is exempt information if the first
condition of Section 40(3)(a)(i) is satisfied. The first condition of
Section 40(3)(a)(i) states that information is exempt if its disclosure
would contravene any of the data protection principles.

The eight principles of the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) govern the way
in which data controllers must manage personal information. Principle one
of the DPA provides that personal data must be processed fairly and
lawfully. Having considered your request, I have redacted the name of a
police officer that was involved in developing the requested guidance. I
have removed this information as its release would allow this member of
staff to be identified and/or contacted. I consider that this would
constitute unfair processing of personal data under principle one of the
DPA.    

In reaching my decision I have given due regard to Condition 1 and 6 of
Schedule 2 of the DPA. Condition 1 of the DPA requires that consideration
is given to whether consent for disclosure has been given whilst Condition
6 requires that consideration is given to whether disclosure would
constitute legitimate processing of that data. Having considered release,
I have found that no consent has been given to release this information
and in the case of legitimate processing, the release of this personal
data would be unexpected and subsequently unfair, given that the officer's
personal data is only present within this document for internal MPS use. I
also consider that the redaction of the name of this officer does not
detract from the information that has been released.

This exemption is both absolute and class based. When this exemption is
claimed, it is accepted that harm would result from disclosure.
Accordingly, there is no requirement to consider whether release of
information is in the public interest or demonstrate what harm would
result from disclosure.
LEGAL EXEMPTIONS CLAIMED

Section 1(1)(a) of the Act provides:

(1) Any person making a request for information to a public authority is
entitled -
(a) to be informed in writing by the public authority whether it holds
information of the description specified in the request

Section 17(1) of the Act provides:

(1) A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision of Part II relating
to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim
that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying
with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which -

(a) states that fact,
(b) specifies the exemption in question, and
(c) states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption
applies.

Section 40 (2)(a)(b) & (3)(a)(i) of the Act provides:

(1) Any information to which a request for information relates is exempt
information if it constitutes personal data of which the applicant is the
data subject.
(2) Any information to which a request for information relates is also
exempt information if -
(a) it constitutes personal data which do not fall within subsection (1),
and
(b) either the first or the second condition below is satisfied.
(3) The first condition is -
(a)in a case where the information falls within any of paragraphs (a) to
(d) of the definition of "data" in section 1(1) of the Data Protection Act
1998, that the disclosure of the information to a member of the public
otherwise than under this Act would contravene -
(i) any of the data protection principles

In complying with their statutory duty under sections 1 and 11 of the
Freedom of Information Act 2000 to release the enclosed information, the
Metropolitan Police Service will not breach the Copyright, Designs and
Patents Act 1988. However, the rights of the copyright owner of the
enclosed information will continue to be protected by law.  Applications
for the copyright owner's written permission to reproduce any part of the
attached information should be addressed to MPS Directorate of Legal
Services, 1st Floor (Victoria Block), New Scotland Yard, Victoria, London,
SW1H 0BG.
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome and encouraged to
discuss the decision with the case officer that dealt with your request.  

Ask to have the decision looked at again –

The quickest and easiest way to have the decision looked at again is to
telephone the case officer that is nominated at the end of your decision
letter.

That person will be able to discuss the decision, explain any issues and
assist with any problems.

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.
 Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: Facebook.com/metpoliceuk
Twitter: @metpoliceuk