Troublemakers targeted by dispersal order in Leigh

Leigh Journal: Police hope the dispersal order will prevent anti-social behaviour Police hope the dispersal order will prevent anti-social behaviour

TROUBLEMAKERS will be moved on or face imprisonment if they continue to cause problems on Wigan Road in Leigh.

Greater Manchester Police and Wigan Council are working together and have been granted a Section 30 Dispersal Order following a significant rise in complaints by Wigan Road residents of Anti-Social Behaviour (ASB).

A total of 729 ASB complaints were lodged between May 1 and October 31 - an increase of 50 per cent compared to the previous year.

Superintendent Andrea Jones from GMP, said: "When Dispersal Orders have been used on previous occasions in Wigan they have proved to be very effective in reducing anti-social behaviour.

“The order will only be used against youths and groups of people who are involved in, or are likely to be involved in, antisocial behaviour. It is just one of a number of measures being taken to address this issue.”

The six-month order came into force on December 20 and will end on June 20.

It gives officers new powers including instructing people to immediately leave the area if two or more individuals gather in it and act in a way that is likely to intimidate or cause harassment, alarm or distress.

If troublemakers remain or return to the area after having been told to leave they could face up to three months imprisonment and a fine up to £2,500.

GMP and the council are providing a number of activities for people to take part in, including midnight soccer leagues, to prevent perpetrators of ASB blaming their behaviour on boredom.

Clr Kevin Anderson, Wigan Council cabinet member for safer communities, said: “The council will not tolerate behaviour which intimidates borough residents. These new powers will protect people who feel vulnerable and create a safer and happier community.”

To report anti-social behaviour in your area contact GMP on 101.

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