Monday, September 26, 2022 - 13:00 to 14:00
Hybrid (in-person and via Teams)
‘Usual Suspects and Dangerous Others’: Critiquing the UK Knife Crime Prevention Order

This hybrid seminar hosted by the UNSW Centre for Crime, Law and Justice (CCLJ) will take place in-person at the UNSW Law & Justice Building (level 2 boardroom) and online via Microsoft Teams. Please indicate your attendance preference on checkout. Please register here.

In the recent UK legislative proliferation of civil orders with criminal consequences, the stated aim has been the anticipation of wrongdoing and thus prevention of harm. Despite limited evidence of the success of this regulatory form, preventive hybrid procedures have featured in all manner of recently passed and proposed legislation. For example, the Serious Disruption Prevention Order: rejected by the House of Lords in January 2022 and cut from the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act, it now features in the current Public Order Bill. This follows the 2021 Domestic Abuse Protection Order, the 2019 Knife Crime Prevention Order, and the 2014 Public Space Protection Order, to name but a few.

This increased prevalence, alongside the kind of activity regulated, has generated concern that preventive hybrids deliberately target ‘difficult’ populations, presuming their deviance and fast-tracking their criminalisation. If the policy trends of preventive criminalisation are indicative, then its targets are irregular citizens and risk communities: immigrants, activists, anti-social youth, and the homeless – society’s ‘usual suspects’ and dangerous others. Focusing on the Knife Crime Prevention Order (KCPO), this presentation queries the legislative intentions behind the use of preventative regulation as a means of controlling the behaviour of already-stigmatised populations.


Jennifer (Jen) Hendry is Professor of Law and Social Justice at the University of Leeds, an Academic Affiliate at the Max Planck Institute for Legal History and Legal Theory, Frankfurt, and a Leadership Fellow of the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Her current project concerns civil/criminal procedural hybrids and is undertaken with project partner Liberty. Jen’s research is in social and legal theory, comparative legal studies, and criminal justice, specifically procedural hybridity, Indigenous justice, and legal pluralism.

She has published in the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, the British Journal of Criminology, and Criminal Law and Philosophy, and her co-authored monograph (with Colin King) Civil Recovery of Criminal Assets is forthcoming with Oxford University Press. Jen is Editor-in-Chief of the German Law Journal (Cambridge University Press), member of the JUSTICE Working Party on Hybrid Orders, and former Vice-Chair of the UK Socio-Legal Studies Association (2017-2019).