Council Snoop report...
1 x authorisation resulted in persons being prosecuted;
For selling fakes fags. I wonder if the council were aware of the possibility that they may have jeopardised a much larger police investigation. No problem fining a street seller, if the organised criminals go free.
1 x authorisation resulted in persons being reported for prosecution or simple caution;
The is no 'or' possible. If the result was a caution it means that the offence was not worth prosecuting as it's gravity did not warrant it.
1 x authorisation resulted in fixed penalty notices being issued;
The cost of the RIPA paperwork would be more than the value of the fixed penalty notice.
1 x authorisation resulted in the seizure of evidence re false claims about payment protection insurance refunds and the investigation is ongoing;
Why use council taxpayers funds to substitute a cost which the loss assessors of the insurance companies should be doing?
1 x authorisation resulted in a successful review of a premise’s licence to sell alcohol with additional licensing conditions being imposed;
1 x authorisation resulted in the seizure of a delivery of alcohol that was being supplied without adequate tractability records;
HMRC are better qualified to pursue such an investigation, and more able to obtain a successful prosecution. This would not have resulted in 'additional licensing conditions being imposed' by supposition but the jailing of a suspect for criminal activity.
1 x authorisation in relation to the alleged supply of illegal goods confirmed that such activity was not, in fact, taking place;
The council should stop wasting taxpayers money, especially hounding persons involved in legal and legitimate business in RCT.
1 x authorisation in relation to alleged youth anti-social behaviour ascertained that because the principal perpetrator was now in paid employment the alleged anti-social behaviour was no longer continuing;
Surely, this would have happened anyway. Perhaps the council should divert it's resources into helping people get back into paid employment, rather than snooping on those who have temporarily fallen on hard times?
"The outcomes of some of the cases demonstrate how surveillance is able to produce results that are clearly beneficial from an enforcement point of view. In some of the other cases the value of using directed surveillance was in establishing that the allegations received by officers were false, unjustified or was being exaggerated by the providers of the information. Without the use of surveillance officers would not have had any way of finding out whether the allegations were correct. Thus the surveillance has, in effect, prevented unnecessary enforcement action being taken against persons about whom complaints have been received."
This sentence actually exposes how wrong and ineffective the RIPA policy is. When the police investigate an allegation they have to ascertain whether the content of a complaint will pass the test of evidencing a criminal prosecution. Gathering evidence towards such a prosecution would involve a 'which you later rely on in court' threshold. It shows that in this case the council may have been an accomplice in the soliciting of a crime, that of "wasting police time". Had the investigation been conducted by warranted officers, it would have been correctly established that the complainant was either mistaken or vexatious. In this case the intervention of the council not only may have solicited a crime, but also may have 'led' the complainant into a crime which would not otherwise have occurred. This wasting resources both of council taxpayer, also creating the need for consuming resources of the CPS and the courts, or a crime that may not otherwise have occurred.
RIPA powers was to stop terrorism. RCT have not used it for this purpose, and therefore should stop. It's wasting resources that could be deployed elsewhere, for example, during the period RIPA powers were deployed, counld it have been used to stop Labour councillors sexually abusing children?