This table summarizes the laws most relevant to illegal activity that groups or individuals may experience when targeted because of their spiritual or religious beliefs and/or practices. The laws are current as of February 10, 2013. They are presented by crime for the United Kingdom.
Theft Act 1968
Unwarranted demands with menaces with view to gain or intent to cause loss
Criminal Damages Act 1971
Destroys or damages any property belonging to another intending to destroy or damage any such property or being reckless as to whether it would be
Racial and Religious Hatred Act of 2006
Publish or distribute written material which is threatening, if he intends thereby to stir up religious hatred; Use threatening words or behaviour, or display any written material which is threatening if he intends thereby to stir up religious hatred
Public Order Act 1986 (by the amendment of the Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006 and the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994)
Crime and Disorder Act 1998
Use threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour, or displays any written material which is threatening, abusive or insulting on the basis of religious orientation; or to do this in a way to cause alarm or distress on the basis of religious orientation.
Stalking and Harassment
Protections of Freedoms Act 2012
Engage in behaviour that is harassing (e.g., monitoring someone’s activity on the Internet)
Malicious Communications Act – Section 1
Send a letter, electronic communication or article, conveying information that is false or indecent or grossly offensive, causing distress or anxiety to others
Protection from harassment Act 1997
Engage in conduct that results in the harassment of another person on 2 occasions, including: alarming the person or causing the person distress.
Telecommunications Act of 1984; Communications Act 2003
Send a message that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character; or to cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety to another, a message known to be false or persistently making use for that purpose of a public telecommunication system
Malicious Communications Act
Send a letter, electronic communication or article, which conveys—a message which is a threat, if it causes distress or anxiety to the recipient or others
Criminal Justice and Public Order of 1994 – Section 154
Use threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviours or disorderly behaviour; or display any writing, sign or other visible representation which is threatening, abusive or insulting with intent to cause a person harassment, alarm or distress.
Threats to kill
Offenses Against the Person Act of 1861 – Section 16
To make a threat to kill a person or to make a threat to a person that another person would be killed