I speak on behalf of the Shankly family when I say that we are wholeheartedly behind The Spirit Of Shankly. - Karen Gill, March 2008
The Spirit Of Shankly will offer any paid up members as much support as possible in relation to problems that occur supporting Liverpool FC. In the past we have reimbursed legal fees, arranged representation at court and taken up individual claims.
To obtain assistance please contact firstname.lastname@example.org..
Clubs advocate that Match Day Stewards are in grounds to contribute to fans’ enjoyment of the day. Their role covers safety of fans and making certain that each fan gets an unobstructed view of the game, amongst other things.
Stewards are employed by the Club and should receive training to nationally accredited standards through a training pack, the “Training Package for Stewarding at Football Grounds”. The Premier League, FA and Football League plus the Football Safety Officers Association and Football Licensing Authority helped produce the pack.
The "Conditions of Entry" (or ground regulations as they are also known) for all grounds bind you when you buy a ticket – that is, you are agreeing to be bound by them. Legally this is the “tiny writing on the ticket that says you are bound by what we say but you can’t find the actual rules anywhere handy”. In LFC’s case an email request for the conditions of entry to Anfield remains unanswered (from December 2009) and these conditions cannot be found on their website.
What Stewards Are Supposed To Do
What Stewards Are Allowed To Do
Under English law (which will include Wales for these purposes) Stewards have no special powers but are able like anyone to have a power of arrest where:
A breach of the peace occurs whenever harm is actually done or is likely to be done to a person or, in their presence, to their property, or where a person is in fear of being harmed through an assault, affray, riot, unlawful assembly or other disturbance.
Stewards have no legal power over and above anyone else to do more than is detailed above.
What the Police Are Supposed To Do At Matches
The Police’s role is to prevent and detect crime among fans. This will include travel to and from matches and inside the ground itself. They should have no role in causing crime.
They have a duty to minimise disruption to local residents which will include bus and railway stations, car parks, city and town centres and the areas around grounds. This is generally “interpreted” liberally.
What The Police Are Allowed To Do
What You Are Entitled To If Stopped and Searched
If you are stopped and searched the Police must:
If you are stopped by the Police in a public place:
The Police cannot require you to give them your name. In order to be within their rights they have to have justification for the request.
After being stopped if they decide to arrest you then they should take you to a Police station or let you leave and tell you that they will post any summons to you. If they have decided to arrest you then they will request your name and address, and if you don’t cooperate then invariably they will arrest you and take you to a Police station.
Where you are asked for your details, you can ask why you are being asked in which case you only have to comply if the officer states that he has cause to arrest you. If he is not going to arrest you then you do not have to answer.
The Police have to take reasonable steps to make you aware of your rights where they are arresting you – this is the case even if you do not speak English.
The Police cannot insist that they are allowed to take your photograph. If they take a photograph then they can retain for seven years. You are entitled to cover your face or turn away.
However, if you cover your face they can ask you to remove anything which is obscuring your identity. Masks or balaclavas, hats or bandanas are all covered if obscuring your identity. They still do not have the right to take your photograph without your permission.
The Police have no legal power to search wallets, purses, inside small pockets etc. As their search can only be for weapons (which cannot be secreted generally in the smaller places mentioned) and so you can refuse outright.
What The Police Have To Do Before A Search
What The Police Have To Do If They Arrest You
Firstly, if the Police hold a valid warrant then they can arrest you. A warrant is issued by a court indicating that you should be arrested. This is usually unlikely but could cover instances where you are recognised at a game and have a warrant outstanding for an alleged previous offence.
Where there is no warrant then they can arrest you in the following circumstances:
The major point here is that the Police can only arrest where they believe an arrest is necessary. When exercising this judgement an arrest is deemed necessary where:
The definition of a breach of the peace is that it occurs whenever harm is actually done or is likely to be done to a person or, in their presence, to their property, or where a person is in fear of being harmed through an assault, affray, riot, unlawful assembly or other disturbance.
Your Rights If Arrested
As soon as practical after you have been arrested you must be told, in simple, non-technical language that you understand, the legal and factual grounds for his arrest. You can ask for this to be better explained to you if you do not understand.
Again, as soon as practicable, you must also be cautioned upon arrest or as soon as is practicable afterwards unless it is impracticable to do so because of your “condition” (usually alcohol) or “behaviour” (or lack of it) at the time, or you have already been cautioned immediately before arrest.
“You do not have to say anything. But it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence.”
Different Rules For "Designated Matches"
The definition of a designated match is an Association Football match in which one or both of the participating teams represents a club which is for the time being a member (whether a full or associate member) of the Football League, the Football Association Premier League, the Football Conference or the League of Wales, or represents a country or territory.
In the case of designated matches the Police have powers of arrest for any offences or display of certain behaviour at a designated match.
There is a time limit in relation to these games - it begins two hours before a match or two hours before the advertised start time (if earlier) and runs until one hour after the game. If the game is cancelled or postponed it ends one hour after the advertised start time.
What Happens At The Station?
Once you have been taken to the station the custody officer should identify themselves to you as the custody officer.
The custody officer is obliged to catalogue everything you have with you when you arrive at the station after having been arrested. In order to do this, you may be searched if the custody officer considers it necessary in order to ascertain what property you have, but only to the extent that he considers it necessary for that purpose.
The custody officer may seize and retain anything you have in your possession, except for clothes and personal effects. These may be seized only if the custody officer believes you may use them to cause physical injury to yourself or another, or to damage property, or to interfere with evidence, or to escape, or if the custody officer has reasonable grounds for believing that they may be evidence relating to an offence.
If something is taken from you then you should be told the reason for the seizure unless you are either violent or likely to become so, or you are incapable of understanding what is being said to you, or you are in urgent need of medical attention.
Usually if you are going to be detained for any length of time they will take everything from you
If the Police consider a full strip search is necessary then it can only be conducted for the reasons above, or where the custody officer thinks it necessary in order to remove an article which you would not be allowed to keep and the custody officer reasonably considers that you may have “concealed” such an article.
Strip searches can only be carried out only by an officer of the same sex as you.
Snapping Rubber Gloves...
The Police can only conduct an intimate search if an officer of the rank of inspector or above authorises such a search.
That officer must have reasonable grounds for believing that you have concealed on you an article which you could use to cause physical injury to yourself or others, and which you might use while you are in custody.
The officer must have reasonable grounds for believing that the article in question cannot be found unless you are intimately searched. The reasons why an intimate search is considered necessary must be explained to you before the gloves come out.
Generally the intimate search should be carried out by a suitably qualified person. They can only be carried out at a Police station, a hospital, surgery or other medical premises.
Your Rights While in Police Custody Where’s my Phonecall?
A person who has been arrested (whether or not for an offence) and who is being held in custody at a Police station or other premises has a right, at his request, to have one friend, or relative or other person who is known to him or who is likely to take an interest in his welfare, told of his arrest and the place where he is being detained.
The custody officer must inform the suspect of this right and ask him whether he wishes to exercise it.
If that person cannot be contacted, the detainee may choose up to two alternatives. If they too cannot be contacted, the custody officer or the person in charge of the investigation has discretion to allow further attempts until the information has been conveyed.
It is not a right that you are allowed to make the contact yourself - the “one phone call” from American films does not apply.
If you are arrested (whether or not for an offence) and held in custody at a Police station or other premises you have a right to consult a solicitor privately at any time.
You should be told about this right to free independent legal advice:
Minors and Those Under A Disability
A minor or someone with a disability must not be interviewed by the Police or asked to provide a written statement in the absence of what is called an “appropriate adult”, unless delay would be likely to lead to interference with or harm to evidence connected with an offence, interference with our physical harm to other people or serious loss of or damage to property, to alerting other suspects not yet arrested, or to hindering the recovery of property obtained in consequence of commission of the offence.
If an interview at a Police station is necessary for one or more of these reasons, it must be authorised by an officer of the rank of superintendent or above.
Generally the normal period you can be detained without charge is 24 hours from the time you are first brought to a Police station or 24 hours after being arrested, whichever is the earlier. Unless the period of detention is extended (see below), if at the end of that time you have not been charged, you must be released, either with or without bail.
You can be detained longer without charge if you are under arrest for an indictable offence (“indictable” generally means more serious), for up to a total of 36 hours from the relevant time by an officer of the rank of superintendent or above making the decision to do so, or for up to a total of 96 hours from the relevant time by a magistrates’ court making an order usually after the Police have applied for an extension.
You can be banned when you are found guilty of:
You need to be aware of the scale of this, however – it is arguable you could be caught by this by being in another city the night before (or day after) attending a game – and an offence will still be considered as related to a football match:
Football banning orders can be made on conviction for an offence or as a result of an application based on past conduct; the past conduct does not have to have resulted in a criminal conviction.
In order for a banning order to be granted the judge has to be satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that making a banning order would help to prevent violence or disorder at, or in connection with, any regulated football matches. If the judge considers that violence or disorder is likely then they must make a banning order.
If you are found guilty of an offence and get a term of imprisonment then the maximum length a banning order can be made for is 10 years and the minimum is 6 years. In other circumstances the maximum length is 5 years and the minimum is 3 years.
If you have served at least two thirds of your banning order then you can apply to the court where it was made to terminate it.
This section is only really useful if you are arrested and are told that one of these Acts is the relevant Act under which you have been arrested and charged.
Public Order Act 1986 - This Act deals with offences like disorderly conduct and unlawful violence.
Sporting Events (Control of Alcohol) Act 1985 - This is the "No Ale On Coaches and Rugby Fans Are Brilliant" Act. It prohibits alcohol on certain vehicles and gives Police powers to deal with persons who are drunk or in possession of alcohol, flares, smoke bombs and articles which can be used as missiles at matches. Police have the power to stop supporters in coaches or minibuses, where they have reasonable grounds to suspect that alcohol is being carried or that the persons on the vehicle are drunk. Police also have the power to stop and search a person under the Act if they have reasonable suspicion that they are committing or have committed an offence under the Act. The general powers given to the Police under this Act state that they may enter any part of the sports ground for the purpose of enforcing the Act. They are not limited to Public parts, and may search any person whom they have reasonable suspicion is or has committed an offence under the Act. However, if the Proprietor of the stadium has a condition of search on entry then this should be carried out by the stewards of the ground and not the Police.
Football Spectators Act 1989 and Football (Disorder) Act 2000 - This Act applies to England fans generally..... This Act allows the Police to arrest and prevent persons identified as potential troublemakers from travelling abroad to attend regulated football matches. They can apply for football banning orders to prevent attendance at regulated football matches, whether played at home or abroad. If you are made the subject of a football banning order you have to comply with directions given by the Football Banning Orders Authority – usually that is to attend a Police station and/or surrender your passport at specified times
Football (Offences) Act 1991 - This created new offences that relate specifically to football grounds. These include throwing a missile, racist or indecent chanting and running onto the pitch.
Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003 The Police also have the power to disperse groups where persistent anti-social behaviour is being displayed under the Act, in the anticipation of violence, or other offences being committed.
Police Reform Act 2002 If an Officer believes that a person is acting in an anti-social manner he may require that person to give his name and address to him. If that person fails to give his name and address when required to do so or gives a false or inaccurate name or address in response he is guilty of an offence which is punishable by a fine not exceeding £1,000.
If you want to complain or moan about Stewards then the first port of call will be the Club. To do this follow this process:
If you want to complain or moan about the Police then the starting point is the Independent Police Complaints Commission at www.ipcc.gov.uk/index/contact-us or you can do the following:
You can complain to the relevant Leagues covering the Club involved.
The Premier League
30 Gloucester Place
Tel: 0044 20 7864 9000
Fax: 0044 20 7864 9001
The Football League
Edward VII Quay
Tel: 0844 463 1888
Fax: 0844 826 5188
League One and Two
The Football League
Edward VII Quay
Tel: 0844 463 1888
Fax: 0844 826 5188
The Football Conference
The Football Conference
31-34 Waterloo Street
Tel: 0041 121 214 1950
Fax: 0121 212 9022
PO Box 8044
Tel: 0041 43 222 7777
Fax: 0041 43 222 7878
Route de Genève 46
CH-1260 Nyon 2
Tel: 0041 848 00 2727
Fax: 0041 848 01 2727
Media Desk: 0041 848 04 2727
The information below gives a background of the relevant law as at February 2011. The law can change and if in doubt please check with your own legal advisor or the Union.
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