Alcohol seized in three-strike rule

ALCOHOL has been seized from more than 100 groups of under-age drinkers as part of new three-strikes-andyou’re out police powers.

Earlier this year, Ashington neighbourhood policing team started enforcing new legislation enabling officers to stop young people caught drinking in the town and seize their alcohol.

The 2003 Anti-Social Behaviour Act’s section 30 dispersal powers make it illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to be in possession of alcohol on three or more occasions in a12-month period.

If an under-age drinker is caught by officers in possession of booze three times within a year then they face being summoned to court and further action.

More than 100 alcohol seizures have taken place in the Ashington area since officers started using the new powers and two youths have been summonsed to court.

Sergeant Mick Kelliher said: “Since we started using the section 30 powers, we’ve seen a drop in the amount of youth anti-social behaviour being reported in the area.

“It’s great news and it’s really making a difference out on the streets in Ashington.

“We want to publicise the fact we are using the powers and let those young people who choose to drink and cause problems that officers are out on the beat and will continue to seize drink and take action.”

Officers have been going into schools, holding meetings and visiting groups in the area to talk to youngsters about the dangers of drinking, the problems it causes in the community and warning them about the three-strike rule.