It has been announced that over the next two years the Courts in Lincolnshire will be able to impose an Alcohol Abstinence “sobriety tag” which will be able to measure the amount of alcohol in an offender’s sweat to determine if they are breaching their sentence or bail.

The tag will be fitted onto the offender’s ankle and it constantly measures the alcohol level in their perspiration, it is effectively a breathalyser for the ankle. It will send data back to the base station to monitor compliance with the Order.

Whilst this practice is already in use in some Family proceedings and Criminal proceedings across the country, this is the beginning of an opportunity for offenders to control their alcohol intake alongside any sentence that has been imposed across Boston, Louth, Skegness and Spalding. The Requirement can be imposed on its own or as part of a Community Order or Suspended Sentence Order. The wording on the Order will be as follows:-

“Alcohol Abstinence Monitoring Requirement: Abstain from consuming any alcohol throughout a period of xxx days. During this time, you must submit to such arrangements for monitoring as directed by or on behalf of the responsible officer.”

This Requirement can only be imposed for a maximum of 120 days. There is no minimum amount of days for which this Requirement can be imposed and it can be imposed for breaching a Community Order or a Suspended Sentence Order if the offender is eligible for the Requirement.

There are certain factors which the Courts in Lincolnshire will need to address when considering imposing an Alcohol Abstinence Monitoring Requirement. For example: –

  • It is not recommended that this Order be imposed on an offender who is alcohol dependent.
  • Alcohol needs to be a factor or feature of the offence committed.
  • The offender should be aged 18 or over.
  • The offender must reside in either Grimsby, Boston, Louth, Spalding or York and offenders of no fixed abode can be eligible.
  • The sentence can only be imposed in Lincoln, Boston, Grimsby and York Magistrates Court or Lincoln, York and Grimsby Crown Court.

If you are made Subject to a Court Order with AAMR, this means that you must not drink alcohol until the AAMR comes to an end.

There are certain things you should not do while wearing the sobriety tag: –

  • You must not drink any alcohol
  • Do not spill any substances on the tag, such as Alcohol, fragrances or household cleaning products.
  • Submerge the alcohol tag into water (take showers rather than baths)
  • Tamper with the tag in any way, or allow anyone else to tamper with the tag
  • Place anything between the tag and your skin

You also must ensure that you are within 10 metres of the base unit within the fixed times once a day so that the information can be downloaded.

The Alcohol Abstinence Monitoring Requirement can be imposed in the above mentioned Courts with immediate effect which means offenders should be aware that it is a possibility should they be waiting to appear before the Court.


We at Ringrose Law understand how worrying it can be if you are arrested or charged with an offence and we have Solicitors available 24/7 to advise. If you are arrested, feel free to contact us to attend upon you at the Police Station as any advice given at the Police Station is free of charge covered by the Legal Aid Agency’s Advice and Assistance Scheme.

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