More draconian legislation from the Blair Government

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Iolis, Sep 25, 2006.

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  1. Beware of getting into debt!

    The Lord Chancellor's Office have wholly revised the law relating to debt recovery (among other things) in the Draft of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Bill which is to be laid before Parliament.

    544 pages long with seven parts (which include the explanatory notes)

    It is proposed that enforcement officers may use 'reasonable force' in relation to effecting entry onto premises since at the moment Bailiff's may only effect entry onto premises with the invitation of the occupant or affect peaceable entry through an open door or window!

    The most draconian provisions are contained within schedule 11 which the explanatory notes 'gloss' over very considerably!

    Moreover, they may elicit the assistance of a constable and are absolved from any criminal or civil liability providing they take 'reasonable care' - See draft clause 13(2) of Schedule 11!

    See also what will happen to you if you believe an enforcement officer is not taking reasonable care and you obstruct him as you are 'filled in' with 'reasonable care' when your motor car is 'secured'

    If you believe that this is a 'Thug's Charter' for Bailiffs now is the time to contact your MP before a vote is taken on it in Parliament!

    Legal Action Group have expressed serious concerns:

    If you want to see what Baillifs already get up to in the real world then watch 'Whistleblowers' on Tue 26 September 2006 2100 hrs BBC1

    Regards and best wishes
  2. No doubt this is aimed at recovering money from those who have failed to pay their council tax, parking fines or television licence.

    I think this is a seriously retrograde step. Debt collection agencies and bailiffs need to be much more tightly controlled, not given a 'thug's charter'.

    Still, if New Labour don't pay back all those 'loans', perhaps it'll bounce back on them.
  3. .

    It is not so restricted VB, it will apply to any judgement debt!

    Regards and best wishes as always
  4. I particularly dislike the way that this Bill was 'sneaked out' with very little publicity in the media with a closing date for representations against it being 22 September!

    Moreover, it does not appear on the list of public bills before Parliament on the Parliamentary website!

    All that stands between it and the vulnerable is a 'whipped vote'!
  5. It seems as if the authoritarian state is now in full swing. If this Act goes through Parliament I shall watch with horror how these powers are and will be abused by state sanction, to holding Grannys cat to ransom for default payment notices. Whatever happened to democracy?????
  6. Notice the cunning plan from 'Fixit' Falconer on this one - it has no application to the recovery of debts owed by the Crown!

    The explanatory note on this was rather tongue in cheek since it claims that sufficient enforcement in this area already exists!

    That absolves No 10 and the Cabinet - Including 'Fixit'

    It does not however absolve the wife of a serving officer or soldier since while in the UK they are within the jurisdicton of the courts!
  7. So you could come home from work and find that your furniture had been taken ? Yet the police are advising Muslim leaders prior to terror raids. A real step back from the rule of law.
  8. I hope it applies to the Liarbour Party and the thugs pursue them for the £27million debts they have!!!! I`m sure they have a "get out clause". This Government is really starting to p*ss me off!!!!
  9. If I ever get myself into that sort of financial situation I'll spend my last few quid on a double barrell and a hacksaw.

    Shot in the left, slug in the right.

    Somebody's going to come out of it without a head.
  10. The draft of the Tribunal, Courts and Enforcement Bill does indeed state that the crown is immune.

    It is stated in Part 3 Chapter 3 Paragraph 71:

    Application to the crown

    But the procedure in Schedule 11 may not be used-

    (a) to recover debts due from the crown,

    (b) to take control of or sell goods of the crown (including goods owned by the crown jointly or in common with another person, or

    (c) to enter the premises occupied by the crown.

    I note that the definition of the crown includes Parliament, government ministers and its servants. Generally core central government department’s fall within the definition of the Crown.

    Perhaps someone could obtain/supply the legal definition of the crown.

    I have mentioned before in previous posts my concerns over the new powers of arrest and that there seems to be an evolving two tiered criminal justice system which is AGAIN highlighted within this pending legislation.

    Is this yet another “get out” clause introduced by the Lord Chancellor to avoid high ranking accountability?

    What is the legal definition of crown???

    Responses appreciated.
  11. What is the legal definition of crown:

    I would presume it would be the State??
  12. Just watched the programme on BBC1.

    The mentality of these 'officers of the court' beggars belief!

    "its not lying it's blagging' says one who considers all debtors as scum"

    Another 'officer of the court' giving his reasons why no bailiff is ever disciplined gives an explanation: "whose going to believe a debtor" who makes a complaint, they've broken the law anyway so who'se going to believe them - they cannot provide evidence, the court needs evidence!".

    The legal ignorance of the Metropolitan Police called by a person not even subject to a debt in the face of blatant lying about the existing powers was absolutely mind-blowing'.

    It may arise out of a civil matter but it becomes very much a criminal matter in the face of attempted theft from an innocent person - bend your shoulder officer so I can read your collar-bade number!

    Can anyone imagine giving characters such as 'Steve'. Yow', 'Ronnie' - employees of 'Drakes' and CCS Enforcement Services' the enforcement powers under the proposed legislation!

    Threatening children that their mother would be sent to prison, illegal clamping, recovering money from people who are not even debtors, breaking and entering, criminal damage, theft, uncertified bailiffs getting by on 50 or so forged signed receipts from existing Bailiffs, blatant misrepresentation of existing powers!

    I like the fact that on at least two occasions they were faced down by those who sought to challenge them by one pretty robust man and one woman the latter of whom had the presence of mind to ring a solicitor and was refunded the money illegally taken from her but what about the single mum on benefits who cannot afford a TV licence or a 60-year old impoverished pensioner who, on her fixed income has fallen behind on her Council Tax - people regarded as 'scum' by those who run the industry?

    'Wont' payers with the means and ability to pay I have little sympathy for, but those who 'cannot' are surely going to be subjected to some pretty horrific state sponsored violence by 'officers of the Court!

    With gun crime prevalent in Britain, I do not give much for the chances for any bailiff trying to use 'reasonable force' around some of the rougher areas of Manchester such as Mosside, or in Liverpool such as Toxteth - not unless they are 'tooled up' first!

    Or even worse around the married quarter of some hairy-arrsed Para or Tom!
  13. When you consider these new powers in the light of increasing identity theft they seem pretty scary. If the first thing you know about it, is a knuckle rubbing Neanderthal barging into your house to rob your possessions, then I think that I would follow Bisuits solution and worry later.
  14. I also note in the draft legislative document this:

    Part 3 Para 45

    Enforcement Agents

    1. This section and section 46 apply for the purposes of Schedule 11.

    2. An individual may act as an enforcement agent only if one of these applies:

    a. He acts under a certificate under Section 46;
    b. He is exempt;
    c. He acts in the presence and under the direction of a person to whom paragraphs (a) or (b) apply.

    This presumably would mean that the legal enforcement officer can be escorted by two criminally minded heavies ready to inflict "reasonable" violence to extract the debt plus a bit of extra on the side as highlighted in "whistleblower".

    Call me old fashioned, but is this not extortion and theft through intimidatory means. State endorsed legalised thuggery is about to become part of the norm in this "thin vieled democracy".

    I for one, have already written to my MP about this issue.