§ Mr. Madden
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what instructions are issued to MOD police concerning their powers towards trespassers on MOD establishments; and if he will place copies of such instructions in the Library.
§ Mr. Hanley
[holding answer 29 June 1993]: Ministry of Defence police deal with trespassers on Ministry of Defence property on behalf of the Secretary of State on the direction of the commanding officer or head of establishment. The police officer will first ask the trespasser to leave MOD property. If the person refuses to do so he or she will be ejected using the minimum force necessary to effect the removal.
If an incursion on MOD property is in contravention of byelaws, offenders may be arrested by MDP officers, who have constabulary powers, and prosecuted for breach of byelaws.
As is the case in respect of other civil matters and criminal offences, all MDP officers, during their initial and refresher courses are trained in the use of their powers to deal with all aspects of trespass. The use of any of these powers is a matter on which the individual police officer must exercise his judgment at the time and according to the circumstances. His actions are subject to scrutiny by his supervising officers and the courts.
The chief constable MDP believes that it would be impractical to issue force-wide written instructions to cover the police response to all aspects of the operation of the law of trespass. From time to time written guidance is included in local operation orders to provide an appropriate response arising from special events or in special circumstances.