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This blog is to highlight the unjust persecution of legitimate non-TV users at the hands of TV Licensing. These people do not require a licence and are entitled to live without the unnecessary stress and inconvenience caused by TV Licensing's correspondence and employees.

If you use equipment to receive live broadcast TV programmes, or to watch or download on-demand programmes via the BBC iPlayer, then the law requires you to have a licence and we encourage you to buy one.

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Friday, 13 December 2013

Aborted TV Licensing Search Warrant Execution

A new video has appeared on YouTube, which purportedly shows TV Licensing goons unsuccessfully trying to execute a search warrant in the East Sussex area.

Given the disappointing outcome of Danny Allen's recent court case, it is unbelievable that there are still people attempting to repel TV Licensing search warrants with flawed FMOTL logic.

TV Licensing search warrants are exceptionally rare. In theory a warrant should only be granted when it is necessary and proportionate step to secure evidence of TV licence evasion. It is only necessary if there is plausible evidence to suggest unlicensed TV reception within a property; it is only proportionate when TV Licensing has been unable to obtain voluntary access to the property. When TV Licensing apply for a warrant they make a sworn statement, known as a Deposition, before a Justice of the Peace (or Sheriff in Scotland). The Justice (or Sheriff) should refuse to authorise the search if the evidence fails to meet the "necessary and proportionate test" mentioned earlier, but most are of the mindset that anything TV Licensing tells them is sacrosanct.

This encounter takes place on the public footpath outside the boundary of the property. The camera starts rolling shortly after TV Licensing's arrival, so we can't be sure exactly what happened beforehand. It appears that the occupier has opened his front door, which remains wide open throughout, and has walked to the boundary of his property to discuss matters with the goons and police officer. In accordance with TV Licensing policy two goons are present, of which one (shown in the photo above) will almost certainly be the local Area Manager.

The occupier begins by saying that he does not consent to the search. The police officer explains that no consent is required as they have a search warrant granted by a Justice of the Peace at Hastings Magistrates' Court. The occupier, showing his FMOTL colours, argues the validity of the warrant because it's not in an envelope or bearing an official court seal/stamp (misguided points that sound good to FMOTL sympathisers, but have no legal basis whatsoever).

After some toing and froing the lead goon comes out with the killer question: "So you're saying that we don't have any access, is that correct?" The occupier gives the reply they want to hear: "Yes". That same response has led to the conviction of three previous FMOTL-minded TV Licensing search warrant refusniks, so it's very likely this case will now go the same way.

The lead goon then indicates his willingness to withdraw from the property, but not before the occupier has managed to glean some rather interesting information from him. The lead goon volunteers the following: "You need a TV licence because you were seen to be operating a TV live when last we called. You were watching a sports programme at the time when we last called to visit you."

The occupier replies "On YouTube", which seems to take the lead goon by surprise as he repeats "Oh, was it YouTube?" The lead goon also confirms that this evidence, which is tenuous and unsubstantiated to say the least, is all they have to suspect unlicensed TV reception at the property. The lead goon goes on to add that his colleague, who he calls an experienced officer, claims to have seen live TV reception through the window of the property, which makes his already flimsy evidence even less satisfactory.

The lead goon reads an extract from his colleague's Deposition, which mentions that the occupier said he didn't want to enter into a contract with TV Licensing and that the Communications Act 2003 wasn't proper law.

He'll no doubt be arguing that fact at Hastings Magistrates' very shortly!

In closing we reiterate the message we have given from the outset: If TV Licensing appear at a property with a search warrant, highly unlikely as that is, then the occupier should allow them unhindered access immediately.


Anonymous said...

Did you see the state of the tattoo'd goon! Typical Capita garbage.

admin said...

Looks like he should be on Grindr!

aybadog said...

Would you want that GORILLA wandering around your home!!! i think its all going to end in tears again because they were refused entry but Crapita sending mongs like that to peoples homes is nothing short of intimidation, imagine a young mum with kids facing that scum.

Anonymous said...

Tiresome and disgusting violation of a man's private home.

Looks as though they'd have ended up with their tails between their legs were it not for this freeman of the land business. As it is he may well have handed them a totally needless victory.

Morally, I believe the Freeman argument +is+ valid (why should anyone be able to make up law out of thin air?). But given the current legal system it will +NOT+ work here any more than it would have worked in the USSR circa 1938 or in Germany's People's Court circa 1944.

So by all means resist BBC intimidation - but with techniques that actually WORK.

Ray Turner said...

That's a really good point about Gorilla's entering your home.

Ordinarily I'd keep people like that out, so they can't case the joint...

Not that there's anything worth nicking, but when unsavoury characters turn up on your doorstep in the name of TV Licensing, it doesn't do anything to encourage us to let them in.

Does it..?

Chris said...

This is a more comprehensive link for the fail that is FMOTL.

Anonymous said...

The beardy guy Im sure its ROLF HARRIS

Anonymous said...

Never let them in your home.

Under any circumstances!

Joe Ogden said...

I was told that the warrant needs the name of the magistrates signed and printed under the signature clearly.. that the embossed stamp of the court need to be seen and the warrant or else it is illegal.. ?what happens if on photocopied paper..?

Admin said...

You were told wrong Joe.

brixee said...

Please sign this petition to Abolish the tv licence " h**ps://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/170931"