A Closure Order will allow the Police or the Council to close premises which are being used, or are likely to be used, to commit nuisance or disorder. It is a flexible power that can be used to protect victims and communities by closing premises quickly.
The power comes in two stages; a Closure Notice followed by a Closure Order.
Before issuing a Closure Notice of up to 48 hours without going to Court, the Council or the Police must be able to demonstrate that there is, or there will be:
- nuisance to the public
- disorder near the premises
Once a Closure Notice has been issued, an application must be made to a Magistrates Court within 48 hours for a Closure Order; such Order can be for up to six months. For a Closure Order to be granted, the Court must be satisfied that:
- a person has engaged or is likely to engage in disorderly, offensive or criminal behaviour on the premises; or
- the use of the premises has resulted or is likely to result in serious nuisance to members of the public; or
- that there has been or is likely to be disorder near those premises associated with the use of the premises and that the Order is necessary to prevent the behaviour, nuisance or disorder from continuing, recurring or occurring
Breaching a Closure Notice or a Closure Order is a criminal offence with the following penalties;
- Closure Notice, up to three months in prison;
- Closure Order, up to six months in prison;
- both, an unlimited fine for residential and non-residential premises