Priti Patel Announces Knife Crime Curfews For 12-Year-Olds

19 August 2019, 16:54

Home Secretary Priti Patel has announced her plans to reduce knife crime.
Home Secretary Priti Patel has announced her plans to reduce knife crime. Picture: PA

Children as young as 12 could face curfews as part of the Home Office's Offensive Weapons Act.

Home Secretary Priti Patel has announced plans to give courts the power to place children as young as 12 under curfews in order to tackle knife crime.

These knife crime prevention orders (KCPOs) can be imposed by magistrate and youth courts on anyone who police believe is carrying a knife.

The new laws would form part of the Offensive Weapons Act, the draft guidance of which is expected on Thursday, and would place anyone aged 12 or over who is suspected of be carrying a blade under a series of restrictions.

These restrictions would include curfews, preventing them from interacting with certain people banning them from certain areas.

Priti Patel stated, “we are cracking down on violent crime, which has a devastating impact on victims, their families, and our communities.”

“Our Offensive Weapons Act will help to stop acids and knives making their way onto our streets and being used to carry out horrifying attacks.”

The Home Office said the courts "must be satisfied, on the balance of probabilities that the suspect has carried a knife on at least two occasions"

They also commented that it is "necessary to make the order to protect the public generally, or particular persons from risk of physical or psychological harm".

The announcement comes days after the Home Office knife prevention campaign that placed knife free slogans on chicken shop boxes came under attack.

The scheme was called "out of touch" and "racist".