Page 1 of 6 12345 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 87
  1. #1
    Account Closed
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Nottingham
    Age
    48
    Posts
    57,376
    Rep Power
    0

    Exclamation Offensive Weapons

    Hi folks

    I've been meaning to post this up for months but keep forgetting!



    We are all familiar, perhaps overfamiliar, with the law relating to the carrying of knives. The interest in the Spyderco UK Penknife has sparked a lot of thought about 'legal carry' so I thought it best to clarify the position.

    A non locking folder under three inches is not banned by law, but that does not mean that you can politely tell a Police officer to mind his own business if you are found with a sub 3" slipjoint on you.

    The relevent law is contained in the Prevention of Crime Act 1953 and provides in Section (1) that:

    "Any person who without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, the proof whereof shall lie on him, has with him in any public place any offensive weapon shall be guilty of an offence."

    Now, contrary to widespread belief, the law does not contain a list of offensive weapons. In the UK literally anything can be found to be a weapon, if it is carried as a weapon. Have a look at Section (4) of the Act:

    "In this section 'offensive weapon' means any article made or adapted for use for causing injury, or intended by the person having it with him for such use by him or some other person."

    The Law Reports contain hundreds of cases where everything from fruit to shoes to newspapers has been found to have been used, or intended for use as a weapon.

    Which brings us back to knives. The sometimes overlooked Prevention of Crime Act 1953 means that, although a sub 3" slipjoint is technically legal under the Criminal Justice Act 1988, you can be arrested and charged if the arresting officer believes you carried the knife as a weapon. This would then have to be decided in court.

    Be careful out there.

    Danzo
    Last edited by Danzo; 16-02-05 at 01:15 PM.

  2. #2
    VIP Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Scotland
    Age
    37
    Posts
    6,848
    Rep Power
    18

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Well said Danzo, this summarizes quite a few threads here. One to take note of folks.
    Ross

    "The paranoid are merely those in full possession of the facts"

    "Could it be because we choose not to identify with people who can only express themselves through rage and violence?"

  3. #3
    Account Closed
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Nottingham
    Age
    48
    Posts
    57,376
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    And I'm fairly certain this applies to Scotland as well. Ross?

    Danzo

  4. #4
    VIP Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Scotland
    Age
    37
    Posts
    6,848
    Rep Power
    18

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Oh yes.
    Ross

    "The paranoid are merely those in full possession of the facts"

    "Could it be because we choose not to identify with people who can only express themselves through rage and violence?"

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Scotland
    Age
    38
    Posts
    572
    Rep Power
    10

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Ross, anything in the new Scottish law that is going to change these rules?

  6. #6
    VIP Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Scotland
    Age
    37
    Posts
    6,848
    Rep Power
    18

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Nope, these laws will apply for a *long* time yet.
    Ross

    "The paranoid are merely those in full possession of the facts"

    "Could it be because we choose not to identify with people who can only express themselves through rage and violence?"

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Birmingham
    Age
    47
    Posts
    2,123
    Rep Power
    14

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Quote Originally Posted by Danzo
    Hi folks
    ....
    "Any person who without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, the proof whereof shall lie on him, ...
    I find this bit interesting.

    It seems to imply that the [accused] person has to prove his excuse and thus prove his innocence - which seems to contradict the necessity for the prosecution to prove his guilt.

  8. #8
    VIP Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Sussex
    Posts
    4,500
    Rep Power
    15

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Good point. Whatever happened to the assumption of innocence.

    Having said that, with some of the people you see walking the street, the police need all the help they can get!

  9. #9
    VIP Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Scotland
    Age
    37
    Posts
    6,848
    Rep Power
    18

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    There are a few pieces of legislation which place the burden of proof onto the accused, rather than the prosecution. Offensive weapon legislation is one of these.
    Ross

    "The paranoid are merely those in full possession of the facts"

    "Could it be because we choose not to identify with people who can only express themselves through rage and violence?"

  10. #10
    Account Closed
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Nottingham
    Age
    48
    Posts
    57,376
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Quote Originally Posted by _dg
    I find this bit interesting.

    It seems to imply that the [accused] person has to prove his excuse and thus prove his innocence - which seems to contradict the necessity for the prosecution to prove his guilt.
    In this case the accused has to prove their lawful authority to carry an otherwise prohibited article so it isn't quite as bad as you think.

    However the right to silence effectively ended several years ago when the rules changed such that Judges may now advise a jury that they may draw a conclusion from a defendants refusal to speak. That conclusion is inevitably that the defendant is guilty.

    Prior to this change a judge was obliged to direct a jury that they may not draw any adverse conclusions from a defendants silence.

    Ah, what rights we once possessed.........



    Danzo

  11. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Ashford
    Age
    46
    Posts
    2,683
    Rep Power
    13

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    So, this reasonable excuse. Does it have to be specific or generic. The "I carry in case I need it, just as with my health insurance", may not be good enough?
    "We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give."- Sir Winston Churchill.

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Birmingham
    Age
    35
    Posts
    6,996
    Rep Power
    17

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    it has to be a specific reason

  13. #13
    Account Closed
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Nottingham
    Age
    48
    Posts
    57,376
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon G
    So, this reasonable excuse. Does it have to be specific or generic. The "I carry in case I need it, just as with my health insurance", may not be good enough?
    As far as I know it needs to be more specific Simon, but Ross is really your man for how the law is actually applied on the street.

    Danzo

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Birmingham
    Age
    47
    Posts
    2,123
    Rep Power
    14

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    Another two points on this...

    How does this sit with the rules regarding hearsay - if your only proof of reasonable exuse is a 'friend of a friends' comments which may not carry much weight as evidence to your defence of reasonable excuse.

    Also, the concept of not saying anything which may incriminate you to another crime, as opposed to silence - e.g ' My friend asked me to bring him a knife as he was going to stab someone'
    (perhaps not the best example but you get the gist!)

  15. #15
    Account Closed
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Nottingham
    Age
    48
    Posts
    57,376
    Rep Power
    0

    Re: Offensive Weapons

    1. Dunno.



    2. You no longer have an absolute right to silence in the English courts under English law. The judge can direct the jury to draw a conclusion as to to your guilt from your silence. Your only recourse is to use the European Convention on Human Rights which does have a provision that you should not be forced to incriminate yourself.

    Danzo

 

 

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Hong Kong: Weapons Ordinance (Cap 217)
    By ZDP-189 in forum The Law Library
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 15-04-08, 01:00 PM
  2. It May Be Just An Urban Myth
    By cammoman in forum Blades, Britain & the Law...
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 24-12-04, 08:32 PM
  3. Sale & Marketing of knives thread
    By Ross in forum The Law Library
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 11-09-04, 10:57 AM
  4. Anyone with experience of Irish customs / mailing no-nos ?
    By Ouroboros in forum Blades, Britain & the Law...
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 13-06-04, 01:20 PM
  5. Full text of 1996 discussion in parliament Offensive weapons act
    By MushiSushi in forum Blades, Britain & the Law...
    Replies: 18
    Last Post: 10-10-03, 11:28 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •