Gypsies plan court fight to beat Asbos

Council may face test case over illegal camps

Martin Wainwright
Thursday June 2, 2005
The Guardian

A council's unprecedented attempt to use anti-social behaviour orders to close illegal Travellers' sites is likely to face a court challenge if any orders are served, the Gypsy Council warned yesterday.
Travellers will be encouraged to bring test cases against the Labour-run authority in West Yorkshire, which could halt the gradual spread of the orders, which are temptingly rapid, convenient and do not require criminal court standards of proof.
Wakefield is the first council in the country to announce a trial use of Asbos on five sites - school playing fields, a recreation ground and a cricket club ground - which have been plagued by illegal encampments. From today the council plans to serve orders on anyone moving on to the designated open spaces to set up camp. More...