Has anyone ever been arrested by the police for paddling ?

Inland paddling
rich gunton
Posts: 377
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:17 pm

Has anyone ever been arrested by the police for paddling ?

Post by rich gunton » Wed Nov 16, 2005 9:04 pm

I reckon the police and courts have better things to do than nick paddlers for running rivers without access and even if court action where to be taken against an individual, it would only end in a small fine. There is one exception though damage to spawning grounds, but how can they prove this ?

andy i
Posts: 219
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2005 11:29 am

Post by andy i » Wed Nov 16, 2005 9:14 pm

I have heard of a few tails form the states of people getting nicked.

Corran got arrested at the 93 worlds and I think EJ has had the same thing happen once or twice.

Here in the UK I think Muppet might be able to tell you a tail from when the Exe flooded one year.

snooky.
Posts: 236
Joined: Tue Jul 20, 2004 8:05 am
Been thanked: 1 time

You're nicked!

Post by snooky. » Wed Nov 16, 2005 9:59 pm

Not been arrested, but I have been formally warned that I was trespassing by a P.C. Not too far from you either Rich, that is if you are RG from Brissle?!

User avatar
caveman_si
Posts: 684
Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2004 5:22 pm
Location: In Reading

Post by caveman_si » Thu Nov 17, 2005 8:59 am

God knows what you'd have to be doing to damage a spawning as the Enviroment Agencys own reports says canoeing doesnt affect spawning grounds. Dragging yourself over gravel beds but if theres that little water whos going to be there??

Back to the original topic, never been arrested for paddling but have been stopped by the police on the way to a number of paddling trips in mine and friends cars. The Tunnel police in liverpool went through a phase of stoping us all the time. I was drving a rust bucket of fiesta at the time and since ive got a newer 405 estate no hassels.
But at the end of there day there doing there job trying to keep us public safe so really harm except prehaps missing an hr of paddlign at stanley.

Karl P
Posts: 32
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2005 8:49 am
Location: York

Post by Karl P » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:22 am

Arrested? I'm not an expert, and I'm sure there are some out there lurking around...trespass is a civil offence not criminal. Police do not get involved in civil offences.

Therefore, be polite to the landowner, supply your details if requested, and wait to see if you end up in court!!!
Court cases cost money & take time (lots of).
To claim damages from you the landowner would have to show damage caused by your action (how would they do this?).

Jules
Posts: 1254
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2004 5:37 pm

Post by Jules » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:23 am

If you are trespassing on a river (or anywhere for that matter) you are committing a civil offence and not a criminal one and as such it is not a Police matter. Therefore, unless you comit a criminal offence (eg conspiricy to trespass, agrivated trespass, criminal damage, breach of the peace, gbh, murder etc) you should never be arrest for paddling.

Jules

User avatar
SANDY0728
Posts: 108
Joined: Tue Jun 10, 2003 10:00 am
Location: Ooop North. (Sheffield)

Post by SANDY0728 » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:11 am

I got pulled (Whilst paddling) by the Spanish police when paddling in the Pyrenees.

Very polite and efficient in issuing us with a ticket. Unfortunately they stopped us above one of the best rapids.

Something to do with paddling in a national park.

We left the country shortly afterwards to catch the ferry.

Not very relevant really.

Sandy

User avatar
Simon Westgarth
Posts: 6565
Joined: Fri Sep 03, 2004 5:05 pm
Location: Øyer in Norway
Has thanked: 2 times
Been thanked: 8 times
Contact:

Post by Simon Westgarth » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:19 am

The land owner has a few possible approaches to get you off their land and make you pay. If your on someone else's land and they wish you to leave and you refuse, they could pursue one of the following:

Civil Offense for Trespass, they will need to prove damage to property, not easy if your paddling down the river.
Criminal Offence Agrivated Trespass, if your on land of a highly senitive nature, like a high security government base or science lab, you have clearly broken in and not wondered by accident on to this land.
Criminal Offence for criminal damage to someone's property, this has happened with swarming beds, although the persons who were seen as criminal were digging up a gravey bed for construction material, the gravel in question was a game fishing swarning bed, and the NRA successfully won criminal damages. there has been no case of recreational users damaging swarning beds, although this is a potential approach that could be taken, alas proving damage over the river's nature flooding action may be very difficult.

Still the most effective apprach is for the land owner to place an injunction on yourself not to go near their land, this will stop you paddling at a specific location, if the injunction is broken your'll get a court fine and may be gaol time!!

It would be great to have all law matter's clearly available on the BCU website, with a full account of what actions have failed or suceeded in the past.

User avatar
steddyjames
Posts: 1391
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2003 2:23 pm
Location: West Cork...boi

Post by steddyjames » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:24 am

As I recall some paddlers got arrested before trying to attempt high force on the Tees. It wasn't anything to do with tresspassing but to do with trying to stop them from killing themselves.

I think the police arrested them based on causing a public disturbance or something. Later released with no charge but it stopped them from running the falls (current survival rate is about 30% for people going over them).

SJ

User avatar
JMT
Posts: 244
Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2005 11:29 am
Location: Penrith, Cumbria

Post by JMT » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:38 am

About a dozen paddlers, men, women and children from the West Cumbria Canoe Club in Portinscale were carted off to the Keswick Police Station for paddling the middle Derwent near Isel Hall in the days before the current agreement. No charges were ever brought to the best of my knowledge.
Keep pushing for fair access to all rivers (or better still, just go and paddle them!).

Mike Tinnion

User avatar
mharrall
Posts: 2966
Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2002 8:28 am
Location: Trowbridge Wilts. UK

Post by mharrall » Thu Nov 17, 2005 12:29 pm

Simon wrote:
Still the most effective apprach is for the land owner to place an injunction on yourself not to go near their land, this will stop you paddling at a specific location, if the injunction is broken your'll get a court fine and may be gaol time!!
Any idea how long an injunction lasts?

The reason I ask is because some time ago I found some documents relating to an injunction raised in 1907 against "The general public" by a wealthy land owner with riparean rights to an area known as "Winkton Water" which turns out to be part of the river Avon south of Salisbury. I found these in my local records office whilst researching the other river Avon which runs through Wiltshire. I did photograph the documents but my sub-standard camera made a particularly poor job of the shots ( a bad workman and all that ;-) ). The only shot that came out OK was one of a big poster calling the local residents to a meeting to discuss it. http://gallery147884.fotopic.net/p12572336.html I've been meaning to go back with a better camera for some weeks but time hasn't allowed.

The documents seem to indicate that the residents were building a case to challenge the injunction but I'm pretty sure it never went to court, I believe it all died out when the main supporter passed away. The really interesting thing about it is that much of the research that the legal team carried out, bears a striking resemblance to the work of the Rev Doug Caffyn. They were attempting to prove that a right to use the river with boats had always existed.

So back to my question, does an injunction have a time limit? Does it perhaps expire when the people in question expire?

If people are interested in this, I'll do my best to find time to get better pictures in the near future and them post them up.
Martin

User avatar
Pete the kayaker
Posts: 848
Joined: Fri Mar 19, 2004 5:04 pm

Injunctions

Post by Pete the kayaker » Thu Nov 17, 2005 5:54 pm

If my memory serves me right, in English Law, injunctions must be taken out against named individuals or named groups of individuals. Getting an injunction against 'the general public' is highly dubious and against the maxims (principles) of equity (i.e. equity does not deal with abstracts), so I doubt if the injunction would stand if challenged.

Injunctions are usually time specific (It may be permanent for a specific party i.e. 'a lifetime'), but unless you have had a specific injunction made on you, it is unlikely that you would be held to be in contempt.

Steve B
Posts: 5699
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 2:36 pm
Location: Taunton, Somerset
Been thanked: 1 time

Post by Steve B » Thu Nov 17, 2005 6:12 pm

You can't be expected to observe an injunction if you haven't been informed of it, the law may be stupid at times but it's not that stupid.
Steve Balcombe

User avatar
neilfarmer
Posts: 2076
Joined: Sun May 25, 2003 1:11 am
Location: Glasgow
Contact:

Post by neilfarmer » Thu Nov 17, 2005 6:46 pm

This all sums up the basic principle of he law in Scotland.
I think, that the term was 'interdict'.
Very difficult to enforce, expensive.
So, get out there, paddle, what is there to stop you?
Neil Farmer.

RobMoffatt
Posts: 1082
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2005 2:37 pm
Location: Oswestry

Post by RobMoffatt » Thu Nov 17, 2005 8:20 pm

steddyjames wrote:As I recall some paddlers got arrested before trying to attempt high force on the Tees. It wasn't anything to do with tresspassing but to do with trying to stop them from killing themselves.

I think the police arrested them based on causing a public disturbance or something. Later released with no charge but it stopped them from running the falls (current survival rate is about 30% for people going over them).

SJ
Yes two students were prevented from running High Force by the police. They then ran the 50ft Sgwd-yr-Eira on the Afon Hepste. The article is on teh reports section top of the welsh column

planet
Posts: 147
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 9:39 pm
Location: The World of Objective Contents of Thoughts.

Post by planet » Thu Nov 17, 2005 8:21 pm

PLANET'S LAW GUIDE - PART ONE

The police will not arrest you unless they 'suspect' that you are committing 'aggravated tresspass', which is aimed at folk intent on intimidating persons, obstructing or disrupting a lawful activity (hunting, fishing, vivisectection etc.).

This legislation was implemented to deal with protestors, hunt sabatuers etc. -
to get arrested for this (section 68. Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994), the police need to catch you in the act of intimidating persons, obstructing or disrupting a lawful activity.

To get convicted, the prosectutor will have to prove that:
you were tresspassing
there was a lawful activity occurring
you intended to intimidate etc
you made an 'overt' act to have the effect of intimidation, obstruction or disruption.

If you're not in the process of the above, but the police suspect that you are on the land with the intention of causing aggravated tresspass, they will give you a 'direction to leave' the land (under section 69 of this act). If you do not leave the land in a reasonable time limit you can be arrested for 'failing to leave when directed'.

As mentionned above the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 was implemented to deal with confrontational protestors, and it's highly unlikely this legislation would be used against paddlers.

Simple tresspass is NOT a criminal offence, and if the police do turn up (unlikely) they can only act as witnesses, and should remain impartial. This can be helpful if you are confronted by an angry, irrate and aggressive landowner, angler etc.

Criminal damage IS an arrestable offence - and can be committed 'intentionnally' or 'recklessly' - and includes land - so DON'T BREAK ANYTHING!

You can be arrested for affray if you get caught (by police) fighting or threatening violence. so - BE NICE - even if you are incrediby pi%£ed off.

If you are confronted when tresspassing, the land owner or their agent can only ask you to leave the land by the shortest (reasonable) route (this will more than likely be continuing downstream), which you must do. You DO NOT have to give them you personal details (SO DON'T). If things become fractious - just leave. If you are prevented from leaving, get the police, the person preventing you from leaving can be arrested for 'false imprisonment'.

Unless you are very bad, or incredibly unlucky it is not likely that your paddling will result in you being on the wrong side of criminal law.

Tread softly, be nice, be discrete.

If you've read this far - very well done!

rich gunton
Posts: 377
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2005 9:17 pm

Well

Post by rich gunton » Thu Nov 17, 2005 9:45 pm

From the above I reckon it is pretty difficult to get into trouble for boating any particular stretch of water. So Is getting legal access really inmportant ? Personally I dont think so. Look at the hunt people its band they are still hunting.

User avatar
neilfarmer
Posts: 2076
Joined: Sun May 25, 2003 1:11 am
Location: Glasgow
Contact:

Re: Well

Post by neilfarmer » Thu Nov 17, 2005 9:57 pm

rich gunton wrote:From the above I reckon it is pretty difficult to get into trouble for boating any particular stretch of water. So Is getting legal access really inmportant ?
Yes. So that groups (university, coaching, etc) groups can use a section of river without fear of action against them.
Neil Farmer.

ChrisMac
Posts: 233
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2005 4:05 pm

Post by ChrisMac » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:28 pm

As has been said because trespass is a civil offence you cant be arrested. What could work out even better is if the Police did arrest you as you would then be entitled to compensation for wrongfull arrest / false imprisonment by the police :-)

Vixen
Posts: 112
Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2005 9:11 pm
Location: London

Post by Vixen » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:48 pm

SANDY0728 wrote:I got pulled (Whilst paddling) by the Spanish police when paddling in the Pyrenees.
That happened to my mates, but they were driving the the van with all our boats in, police thought boats had drugs in them, as the 3 people in question in the van were, 1 mountain leader smoking a roll up, with nothing but combat boots and hot pants, a ''small'' guy to say the least who they didnt think was old enough to drive and another mate who is rather over the top. Not a good situation to be in!

User avatar
*Guy*
Posts: 268
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2004 11:04 am

Post by *Guy* » Thu Nov 17, 2005 10:53 pm

I think Neils point about uni's / groups could be particularly important - if, thats IF, an injunction is served against a few mates, thats a downer, but more likely than not it'll just be those few people who miss out on one river. However, if an injunction is served against a a group/club/uni the surely many more people, who were never involved, will suffer?

Jules
Posts: 1254
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2004 5:37 pm

Post by Jules » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:38 pm

The BCU's info on trespass includes the folowing :-
Avoid anything that could be interpreted as a breach of the peace or conspiracy to trespass (ie criminal offences).
Could someone explain to me exactly what a "conspiracy to trespass" is?

Thanks

Jules

User avatar
Mark R
Posts: 24133
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2002 6:17 pm
Location: Dorset
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 13 times
Contact:

Post by Mark R » Thu Nov 17, 2005 11:41 pm

Jules wrote:Could someone explain to me exactly what a "conspiracy to trespass" is?
I guess maybe, a website dedicated to encouraging people to get out and enjoy their nation's rivers. 3000+ registered users, if that isn't a conspiracy, what is?

Jules, you're in 'Paddles' this month.
Mark Rainsley
FACEBOOK

Bunty Hargreaves
Posts: 66
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2005 11:25 pm

Post by Bunty Hargreaves » Fri Nov 18, 2005 12:48 am

Could someone explain to me exactly what a "conspiracy to trespass" is?
Under sections 1-5 of the Criminal Law Act, 1977 the offence of conspiracy at common law was abolished and the new statutory offence of conspiracy is restricted to agreements to commit criminal offences.

It would appear that, since trespass is not a criminal offence, two or more people agreeing to trespass on land would not constitute a conspiracy. Whatever my good friends in the BCU say.

planet
Posts: 147
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 9:39 pm
Location: The World of Objective Contents of Thoughts.

Post by planet » Fri Nov 18, 2005 1:32 am

Jules wrote:The BCU's info on trespass includes the folowing :-
Avoid anything that could be interpreted as a breach of the peace or conspiracy to trespass (ie criminal offences).
Could someone explain to me exactly what a "conspiracy to trespass" is?

Thanks

Jules
"A breach of the peace occurs when an act is done, or threatened to be done:

which harms a person or, in his presence, his property; or

which is likely to cause such harm; or

which puts someone in fear of such harm."


Q. Why would the BCU think it necessary to advise boaters not to do that??!


As for 'conspiracy' - Bunty is right - you can only 'conspire' to commit a criminal offence.


Do the BCU actually know what they're talking about?


Tresspass is a CIVIL matter. Tresspass is not legal - but you wont get arrested for it unless it's aggravated.

All we want is to be able to LEGALLY access and use the river.

The law needs to clear up all the ambiguity surrounding access v tresspass.

You can protect youself by knowing your RIGHTS and little bit about the relevant laws.

Steve B
Posts: 5699
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 2:36 pm
Location: Taunton, Somerset
Been thanked: 1 time

Post by Steve B » Fri Nov 18, 2005 10:37 am

The BCU's wording ought to be changed to read "Avoid anything that could be interpreted as a breach of the peace or aggravated trespass (ie criminal offences)." That would be more accurate.
Steve Balcombe

User avatar
Adrian Cooper
Posts: 9714
Joined: Thu Apr 25, 2002 2:26 pm
Location: Buckinghamshire
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 12 times

Post by Adrian Cooper » Fri Nov 18, 2005 10:52 am

Two friends and I were accosted getting off the Upper Wye at Llanwrthwl. We had got off under the bridge and carried our boats a short distance acroos a field. We were accosted by a chap who we think was an agent or manager for the land owner. He said we had trampled across spawning beds under the bridge although we were able to float our boats to the bank. he wanted to take our names but we told him we would only be prepared to offer these to a policeman. Police were duly called, we gave our details and were told to go on our way. We heard nothing further. The policeman did say he would put the information to their 'environmental' department.

User avatar
Mark R
Posts: 24133
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2002 6:17 pm
Location: Dorset
Has thanked: 13 times
Been thanked: 13 times
Contact:

Post by Mark R » Fri Nov 18, 2005 11:07 am

adrian cooper wrote:he wanted to take our names but we told him we would only be prepared to offer these to a policeman.
Excellent approach.

If they claim the law is being broken, insist on them calling the police every time.
Mark Rainsley
FACEBOOK

User avatar
Paul78
Posts: 46
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2005 9:45 pm
Location: Leeds
Contact:

Clubs

Post by Paul78 » Fri Nov 18, 2005 12:39 pm

*Guy* wrote: However, if an injunction is served against a a group/club/uni the surely many more people, who were never involved, will suffer?
About clubs and other organizations in general - it looks to me like they are more prone to obey the agreements as it would be easier, the need be, to accuse (and to prove it) that somebody organized an act of tresspass, i.e., had an intention to tresspass in case of a club. Besides, the clubs may be a more favorable prey for those sueing them because they have some funds, however minimal, or other tangible assests. It would be possibly different in case of, say a just-over-18 student - what's the point in filing a lawsuit if the lad doesn't have anything? ROI would be nil. [/i]

User avatar
El Bandito'
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2005 8:01 am
Location: In a secret cave

Post by El Bandito' » Sat Nov 19, 2005 9:09 am

I have a friend who is a cop and he recons as long as no damage is done then you can only be asked to leave by the quickest and safest method which would meen finising the river. The police have better things to do anyway and he said they would probably not even respond to a call regarding paddlers on a river without permission. RUN EVERYTHING AND STUFF ACCESS LAWS.
Who is that masked man?

Post Reply

Return to “Whitewater and Touring”