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arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 9:38 pm
by rebelwithoutaclue
Hello all

My father and his friend got arrested and charged with theift. They were driving about in a van collecting scrap that people had fly-tipped. They came across an old factory that has been abandond for almost 30 year, and they took some scrap from the side of the building.

Their van has been seized and the police have took pictures of the scrap in the van as evidence, even though only a small amount of the scrap came from the factory. The police claim the scrap was stolen from the factory even though its been abandond.

Any ideas how they could get their van back and the charges dropped?

They have also been charged £120 for the unwanted theift of their van

Any help would be greatly appreciated

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 10:57 pm
by Freeman Stephen
you believed the property to be ownerless which is reasonable to surmise given the 30 year dereliction. there was no dishonesty in your act even if there was an owner. no mens rea. a defence might lie in the definition of theft in the theft act. this is my wild guess and not legal advice.

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 11:46 pm
by hurn
firstly they have to establish the scrap was stolen then they have to get in touch with the owner of the building to ask them if they want to prosecute for theft(ask for the written complaint)
or maybe get in touch with the owner yourself and ask them if they mind if you can clean up there site and take the scrap as payment ..you may get a surprise and fuck the police over

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:02 am
by jonboy
Surprised they didn't try the old "Theft by finding" chestnut.

The Police clearly have nothing better to do. You were basically cleaning up litter, recycling, and making the world a better place.

Any thoughts hoops? :police:

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 2:52 pm
by rebelwithoutaclue
What is no mens rea?

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 3:03 pm
by knightron
Mens rea ..means intent to break the law..i.e you knew it was someone elses or you had the INTENT to steal or deprive someone of their property.. :shake: :hug:

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 6:41 pm
by rebelwithoutaclue
knightron wrote:Mens rea ..means intent to break the law..i.e you knew it was someone elses or you had the INTENT to steal or deprive someone of their property.. :shake: :hug:


So if I thought it had been abandond and there was no intent then it was lawful? Would the police have to contact the owner of the building ask if they wanted to press charges? That's to say if it was even the owner of the buildings scrap.

Re: arrested for doing councils work

PostPosted: Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:55 pm
by knightron
There is a maxim in law..who ever makes the allegation must prove guilt. A Policeman, as much as he would like to, cannot prosecute and render penalties without due course in law...The very best thing to do is say nothing at interview apart from this.." With out wishing to obstruct or demean your investigation, I will tell my story in court." write a statement for yourself (when you get home..Never give a statement to Police officer, it MAY be used against you in a court of law) and read it into the record at court yourself. Gather as much information about the place where the alleged offence took place, like how long its been abandoned,(take pictures of the place and write about what happened and where) who the owner is (if thats possible) roughly the amount in cash the property is worth at today's prices and wait for your turn to argue it out in court. Because this is an allegation of theft you should have the right to a jury trial (common law).

This is not meant as advice, as I am not qualified to give advice. :) ..I am mearly telling you what I might do in your situation or a similar situation.. :shake: :hug: