Dispersal zone announced in Stratford

Police have joined forces with Newham Council to ban groups of troublemakers in Stratford town centre.

It follows complaints from local businesses about anti-social behaviour in the area.

A dispersal zone has been set up to prevent and disrupt such behaviour and identify known trouble makers. It will also help gather sufficient intelligence to support long term objectives.

A dispersal notice has been introduced to all roads around the one way system in Stratford, including the bus and train stations.

The order runs from April 18 2011 for a six month period. Officers, Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) and council enforcement officers can disperse groups of more than two people and tell those who do not live in the area to leave and not return for up to 24 hours.

Anyone who refuses or breaches the notice can be arrested. It is punishable on conviction of a custodial sentence of up to three months and/or a fine of up to �2,500.

Inspector Declan Traynor from Stratford Safer Neighbourhoods Team said: “It will help us to combat anti-social behaviour at the same time as implementing long term solutions.

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“We are introducing this zone on behalf of the local businesses and hope this demonstrates the pro-active approaches police and council take to tackle local issues.”

Cllr Unmesh Desai, cabinet member for crime and anti-social behaviour said: “We take the issue of crime and anti-social behaviour seriously and this is one of the ways that we are working to tackle it.”

“It is important that residents and businesses tell us how this scheme is working and report any incidents to us on the ASB free phone hotline 0800 731 3300 or to their local police safer neighbourhood team.”