The Daily Telegraph

‘Non molestatio­n’ orders will now be issued via Whatsapp

- By Charles Hymas

DOMESTIC abusers will have bans on contacting victims issued via Whatsapp or email under government rule changes to prevent them hiding from court orders.

The Ministry of Justice is to amend court rules so that officials no longer have to issue a “non molestatio­n” order in person but can instead do it by phone, email or on Whatsapp.

Ministers believe the move, first piloted during the pandemic, will mean the 36,000 domestic abusers issued with the bans each year will not be able to escape the orders by changing address or staying away from their homes. Any breach of an order once issued is a criminal offence with courts able to impose a sentence of up to five years’ in jail.

Chris Philp, a justice minister, told The Daily Telegraph: “We always put victims first and never more so than during the pandemic. Using technology like this we can deliver swifter justice and ensure perpetrato­rs cannot evade punishment by hiding from court orders.”

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