RIPA used to check school placement applications

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by spunkymonkey, Apr 11, 2008.

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    Surely this isn't what (we were led to believe) such legislation was intended for? In fact, the Home Office website gives a reassuring impression that it's for "the detection of crime, including terrorism". Who could reasonably object to that? If they'd put "The detection of crime, including terrorism and trying to get your kids into a better school" a few eyebrows might have been raised.

    Personally, I'm not very surprised. The UK gubmint has been equiping itself with powers for a long time now (well before the current bunch) and they've been accepted by most on the basis of "need" and "if you've done nothing wrong...".

    Voices warning that, once in place, the powers might be subverted for other uses have generally been ridiculed. That would never happen here ....
  2. For once if find myself agreeing with the people from Liberty this was a totally disproportionate use of the powers that coucils have, and for them to say that is was justified because attempting to get your child a decent education is a CRIMINAL is ridiculous.
  3. Just another sign of the times really.
    Joe public realistically has very little privacy, and its only getting worse.
    Now the gubmint are using 'laws' with flexible interpretations to invade peoples lives further so whatever they want to know or investigate, they can.
    Joe public is being forced to conform with the state for fear of investigation or prosecution.
    Oh how very communist.
  4. Hmm, wonder what the Surveillance Commissioner will have to say about this when they next have an inspection? A complete misuse of the powers granted under RIPA, you could never claim this to be in pursuit of Prevention & Detection of crime, or even Economic wellbeing of the UK. I'm amazed they got the authority to do it, but I would suggest that they will lose the powers soon.
  5. Are there any cops out there who can enlighten us with regard to how the parents may have been acting illegally? Education is a right, not a conditional entitlement.
  6. Are there any cops out there who can enlighten us with regard to how the parents may have been acting illegally? Education is a right, not a conditional entitlement.
  7. Just been reading a response on another site that even fraud would be difficult to prove in this case as there is no intent to gain, or deprive anyone else, financially.
  8. RIPA is a vile act, one that Stalin would have been proud of. Criminality is not required:

    "the authorising officer must in each particular case believe it to be proportionate to what is sought to be achieved by carrying it out and necessary to prevent crime or disorder, protect public health, collect or assess any tax, or for other specified purposes."
  9. At an absolute strecth the council may claim that the application for school placement was fraudulent if the residence was outside the catchment area, but lets be honest it's hardly the crime of the century to want a good education for your kids, certainly not so bad to warrant such proactive 'policing'.

    Taking the law to the nth degree, any application for official purposes which contains an untruth is committing fraud, but bloody hell, this is extreme.
  10. If they were claiming the entitlement to entry into a particular school when they are not in fact entitled, it is fraud.
  11. Agreed they were making a fraudulent claim Sven, but come on, even you have to agree, this is a bit bloody much really
  12. Not sure about this one. Property is taken to mean all property, including money and other 'intangible' property, i.e. shares. Could one really claim that a school place is a gain to you or indeed a loss to another?
  13. That's exactly the grounds they're claiming, whosthedaddy. Claiming a wrong address is fraudulent and fraud is a crime. Of course, on that basis, other criminal offences they could tail you to check for include:

    [quote="The Town Police Clauses Act 1847.”]

    ....keeps any pigstye to the front of any street, not being shut out from such street by a sufficient wall or fence, or who keeps any swine in or near any street, so as to be a common nuisance.

    ... orders or permits any person in his service to stand on the sill of any window, in order to clean, paint, or perform any other operation upon the outside of such window, ... , unless such window be in the sunk or basement storey.

    ... person who beats or shakes any carpet, rug, or mat (except door mats beaten or shaken before the hour of eight in the morning)

    ... person who flies any kite, or who makes or uses any slide upon ice or snow.[/quote]

    So, yes, your local council can legally authorise covert surveillance of you in order to detect whether you're committing the criminal offence of keeping a pigstye to the front of any street, not being shut out from such street by a sufficient wall or fence. They don't need evidence that you are, they just need to be "investigating" the possibility.
  14. I wonder how much this cost, how long it went on for and what could have been gained from it? What made them think that an offence was being caused in the first place?

    Nice to know whats most important in that part of the world.
  15. From the metro I get the distinct impression that they weren't actually making a fraudulent claim , they actually went to the council to seek advise about moving houses and thier catchment area, and were spied upon later. So much for having nothing to hide , when you can come forward and still be "checked on" in such a manner.

    I can't find the story on the website , but its in the paper , I'll have a look later.

    Is this the "thin end of the wedge" everyone speaks of bearing fruit? It may just be the actions of one space cadet councillor , but unless this is clamped firmly then I fear it could easily set a precident for more of the same. 8O *ahem* Anyone got some more tinfoil?