We’ve all heard and read about the horrifying recent rise of acid attacks in the UK but other corrosive substances are being used too in violent attacks and the CPS guidance to prosecutors regarding the approach to tackling this type of attack is thankfully to be reviewed.
The 1972 Poisons Act is also to be reviewed and punishment is to be assessed to ensure sentencing reflects the seriousness of the crime and acid and other corrosive substances will also be classed as a dangerous weapon.
The impact of this is that the Home Office may issue licences to shoppers in order for them to be able to buy many strong cleaning products and shops will need a similar licence in order to be able to sell them. It is also advised that an age restriction on being able to buy these chemicals apply as presently any person of any age can purchase bleach, ammonia and acid etc.
Data is being collected from police forces across the UK to understand the extent of these attacks and the police are working closely with the Home Office and retailers to determine how we can keep these products away from people that intend to use them to cause harm.
At this stage it is now known when the results of the review will be made public but with over 400 attacks being carried out in a 6 month period, five separate attacks in just one night in London in July alone, the results can’t come soon enough and the cleaning industry wholly supports any changes.