Power of entry to arrest for breach of bail conditions

14 June 2017

Not reviewed after the date of publication

Question:

The police are informed that a person has breached their bail conditions in relation to a curfew. The police attend the person's address but he refuses to open the door. The police know the suspect to be present at the address. Is there a power of entry in these circumstances?

Answer:

Previously, breaching bail conditions (for example, a curfew) did not carry a power of entry to effect an arrest. However, recent changes made by the Crime and Policing Act 2017 have created a new power of entry under section 17 of PACE in relation to arresting a person under section 7(3) of the Bail Act 1976 (document D292 on PNLD):

"17(1) Subject to the following provisions of this section, and without prejudice to any other enactment, a constable may enter and search any premises for the purpose

(cab) of arresting a person under any of the following provisions –

(iv) section 7(3) of the Bail Act 1976;"

"7(3) A person who has been released on bail in criminal proceedings and is under a duty to surrender into the custody of a court may be arrested without warrant by a constable -

(b) if the constable has reasonable grounds for believing that that person is likely to break any of the conditions of his bail or has reasonable grounds for suspecting that that person has broken any of those conditions;"

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