Possession of a bladed article
Possession of a bladed article

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Possession of a bladed article
  • The offence of possession of a bladed article
  • Elements of the offence
  • Bladed and sharply pointed articles
  • Folding pocket knives
  • Having the item with them
  • Public places
  • Statutory defences
  • Good reason/lawful authority
  • Self-harm
  • More...

STOP PRESS: All offenders convicted on or after 1 December 2020 must be sentenced under the provisions of the Sentencing Code, regardless of the date when the offence was committed. The Sentencing Code is the name given to Parts 2–13 of the Sentencing Act 2020 (SA 2020) which together comprise the consolidated rules of procedure for the sentencing of criminal offences by the criminal courts in England and Wales. This Practice Note contains links to sentencing legislation which have been moved into the Sentencing Code and is in the process of being updated. See Practice Note: Sentencing Code for further information on the Sentencing Code and for assistance in locating relevant provisions within the Code.

The offence of possession of a bladed article

The offence of having a bladed article in a public place can be tried in either the magistrates' court or the Crown Court. The magistrates' court will decline jurisdiction in those cases where it appears that its powers of sentencing are insufficient.

See Sentence below.

Elements of the offence

Under section 139 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (CJA 1988) the prosecution must prove the accused:

  1. had with them

  2. in a public place

  3. a bladed article, or

  4. a sharply pointed article (other than a folding pocket knife whose blade is less than three inches)

Bladed and sharply pointed articles

The provisions of CJA 1988 apply to articles

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