|PDF Title :||Q&A Series Constitutional and Administrative Law, Fourth Edition|
|Total Page :||434 Pages|
|Author:||Helen Fenwick & Gavin Phillipson|
|PDF Size :||2.5 MB|
|PDF Link :||Available|
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Q&A Series Constitutional and Administrative Law, Fourth Edition
Before the inception of PACE, the police had no general and clear powers of arrest, stop and search or entry to premises. They wanted such powers put on a clear statutory basis so that they could exercise them where they felt it was their duty to do so, without laying themselves open to the possibility of a civil action.
In s 1, a general power to stop and search persons is conferred on the police if reasonable suspicion arises that stolen goods or prohibited articles may be found. This general power is balanced in two ways.
First, the concept of reasonable suspicion, which is defined in paras 1.6 and 1.7 of Code A, allows it to be exercised only when quite a high level of suspicion exists.
Secondly, the police must give the person to be searched certain information, including the object of the search and the name of the police station to which the officer in question is attached.
However, these safeguards can be evaded if the search is made on an apparently voluntary basis, although certain restrictions on voluntary searches under Code A go some way towards addressing this problem.
It should be pointed out that s 1 of PACE may be undermined in any event by s 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994, which in certain circumstances allow stop and search without reasonable suspicion if authorisation has been given by a superintendent.