Wasting police time
In England and Wales, one can be charged with the offence under Section 5(2) of the Criminal Law Act 1967 when one "causes any wasteful employment of the police" by "knowingly making to any person a false report" which:
- Shows that a criminal offence has been committed,
- Creates apprehension for the safety of any persons or property, or
- Indicates that they have information material to any police inquiry.
The offence carries a maximum penalty of six months' imprisonment and/or a fine. Amendment) Order this offence is a fixed penalty offence and the penalty is £80 for persons aged 16 or over and £40 for under 16 years old persons.
- Making, or causing to be made, to a police employee any allegation of an offence "contrary to the fact and without a belief in the truth of the statement".
- Creating serious apprehension for the safety of any person or property (whether by statement or behaviour), either with the intention of causing wasteful employment or diversion of police resources, or being reckless as to that result.
- 140. (1) Every one commits public mischief who, with intent to mislead, causes a peace officer to enter on or continue an investigation by
- (a) making a false statement that accuses some other person of having committed an offence;
- (b) doing anything intended to cause some other person to be suspected of having committed an offence that the other person has not committed, or to divert suspicion from himself;
- (c) reporting that an offence has been committed when it has not been committed; or
- (d) reporting or in any other way making it known or causing it to be made known that he or some other person has died when he or that other person has not died.
- (2) Every one who commits public mischief
- (a) is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years; or
- (b) is guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.