This article was in part prompted by a case that appeared before the East Lancashire Courts when, following a guilty plea to an offence of begging, the court were advised that it was the intention of the police to obtain a Crasbo as against the poor unfortunate defendant. It transpired that the intention of the order was not only to stop him begging, but also to exclude him from the affluent Ribble Valley area, consigning him no doubt to one of the less well off areas adjacent to it.
The suggestion that the area in question might be perceived as being too posh for tramps prompted an outcry in the local paper and innumerable letters and postings on the paper’s website.
Purely out of a prurient interest into the use of Asbos in certain situations, a trawl of the internet was undertaken to ascertain what behaviour had offended the local police and populace and thereby found the perpetrator the subject of an order restricting their behaviour.
Lincoln had a ‘Big Tissue’ man. Someone who, by way of parody on Big Issue sellers, offered a tissue from a box to passers by. Clearly not amused, the court made him subject of an anti-social behaviour order to restrict his activities, the local populace no longer benefiting from the Kleenex that were on offer.
The attendance and persistent thefts from a motorway service station found a Midlands man the subject of a Crasbo. He is now banned under threat of potentially five years custody from going back to that service station. There was no explanation as to what were the reasons given in court for his targeting the service station in question. Perhaps the exorbitant prices that are associated with these convenience stops led the defendant to believe that the only way of feeding himself was to steal from them rather than attempt to pay their prices.
Again in the Midlands, a serving prisoner was made the subject of a Crasbo. Whilst not wishing to make light of the effects which involved the harassment of an ex-partner, it did strike when the report suggested that 500 telephone calls of a threatening nature had been recorded to the same woman that perhaps restricting access to the phone might have been fundamentally the better way of dealing with it.
And it goes on. Crasbos on neighbours, Crasbos on pigeon feeders and a Crasbo stopping a man attending political meetings organised by the EDL. All had made their way via the news media onto the web. It does lead one to question as to how appropriately Crasbos are used on occasion and whether their over-use may lead them to be held in disrepute.
So, in this season of goodwill, excessive ho-ho-ho-ing and parking reindeer-drawn vehicles other than in designated areas may just result in a Crasbo for Christmas rather than the usual sherry and mince pies.
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