I SUPPOSE we should thank Frank Field for attempting to get action from the police on petty crime and antisocial behaviour.

However, as usual, Frank cannot resist pushing populist remedies which have been tried and have failed.

Frank's memory has failed again!

Naming and shaming and posting photo "wanted notices" were a big feature of the New Labour ASBO crusade when youngsters were fingered publicly before any court appearance or right of reply.

Wirral Council proudly launched the catch phrase "Abuse your rights. Loose your rights."

Whether those targeted were guilty or not there is no evidence that the scheme achieved anything positive.

Some senior policemen concluded that what the scheme did do was encourage local vigilante actions and worsen neighbour disputes.

As I have noted before, the courts quickly realised that 60% of ASBO defendants had diagnosed mental health and disability issues with many others undiagnosed.

Frank was also a leading campaigner for lowering the age of criminal responsibility to ten.

I would welcome evidence that any of these ASBO actions achieved anything.

Why did the courts and police abandon them?

The answer is obvious.

Professor D P Gregg (retired).