City wins appeal against gang member injunction

By on 17/05/2013 in Cllr McKay

In the first landmark case of its kind, Birmingham Community Safety Partnership has won an appeal brought forward by gang member Gavin James, following an injunction that was granted against him.

The injunction dating back to 19 October 2012 to curb Gavin James's activity was awarded following an application by Birmingham Community Safety Partnership, supported by the city council and the police.

It was granted against the 26-year-old at Birmingham County Court and prohibited him from entering the Newtown, Handsworth and city centre areas of Birmingham.

An interim injunction was granted in January but was contested and heard at the Court of Appeal last month - it is believed to be the first time a gang injunction has ever been challenged.

Cllr James McKay, Cabinet Member for a Green, Safe & Smart City said: “We are really pleased with the court's decision that sends a strong message that gang violence will not be tolerated in Birmingham. Injunctions such as this complement the valuable work and support in local communities to reduce gang activity and strengthens the position of the Youth Offending Service and the Probation Service in tackling gang violence. It also shows that there are opportunities available to help those who want to turn their lives around. ”

The order prohibited Gavin James from associating with 19 other known Birmingham-based gang members and required him to engage in support for training and employment to help him to exit the gang lifestyle.
If James breaches the two year injunction, he will be arrested and could face a custodial sentence of up to two years.

The new gang injunction powers came into force in January 2011 in England and Wales to restrict the movements of those involved in gang-related violence and crime.

ACC Gary Forsyth, Chair of Birmingham Community Safety Partnership added: “We welcome this appeal decision which complements the wide range of enforcement, diversionary and preventative measures we already employ in the city. Our priority is to protect the community but at the same time we want to support gang members to exit a lifestyle, which causes harm in their neighbourhoods. This injunction is an excellent example of partners listening to community concerns and working together to tackle gang activity”

Ends

For more media information contact Natasha Bhandal on 0121 303 8727 or Trudi Maybury on 0121 464 6210.

Notes to Editors – Birmingham Community Safety Partnership is a joint partnership between Birmingham City Council, West Midlands Police, West Midlands Fire Service and other agencies that work together to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour that affects our communities.

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