§ 72. Mr. Scott-Hopkins
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people engaged in unlawful picketing have been charged in the courts during January and February, 1972; what the maximum sentence is for this offence, including intimidation whilst picketing; and what have been the sentences imposed on those found guilty.
§ Mr. Sharples
During January and up to 17th February, 1972, my right hon. Friend received reports from chief officers of police in England and Wales of 263 arrests for various offences against the general law arising out of picketing during the miners' strike. My right hon. Friend knows of no case where a person has been charged during this period with the offence of unlawful picketing. The maximum penalty for offences against Section 7 of the Conspiracy and Protection of Property Act, 1875, is a fine not exceeding £20 or a term of imprisonment not exceeding three months.