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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 May, 2005, 20:42 GMT 21:42 UK
Asbos 'could combat public sex'
Men who meet for sex in public places in Norfolk could be given anti-social behaviour orders (Asbos), police say.

Norfolk police are considering using Asbos and dispersal orders to stop men meeting for sex at Roudham Heath toilets, off the A11 at Thetford.

Asbos are usually used against teenage yobs, and, if granted, officers believe it would be the first time the sanctions have been used in such a way.

The measures follows complaints from local residents.

Cruising problem

One resident, who asked not to be identified, said: "All sorts goes on up there. You name it, it goes on. It is quite a merry-go-round.

"It makes you feel quite uncomfortable. People have stopped walking along there because they don't like it."

The toilets were closed last year, and Breckland Council has been carrying out a 70,000 revamp to improve the facility.

Sgt Keith Fuller, of Norfolk police, said: "We have a problem with cottaging, cruising and people having sex in public places in that particular area.

Avoid victimisation

"We are looking at ways to try and make life better for everyone and want to strike a balance between letting people live their lives as they wish and looking after the residents' concerns.

"If people repeatedly turn up at the toilets for sex we will look at the whole raft of anti-social behaviour legislation, including Asbos and acceptable behaviour contracts,"

Sgt Fuller said the police could not appear to be victimising gay men.

"If we police people cottaging then we have to target dogging (watching people have sex in a public place), which goes on all over Thetford Forest."

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