POLICE bosses in North Yorkshire are to “consider the implications” of a legal ruling which has been branded “bizarre” by chief constables across the UK.

The ruling ends the practice of releasing people on bail and calling them back for further questioning later, as is common practice in major inquiries, while police forces can no longer put anybody out on bail for more than 96 hours without either being in a position to charge or release them.

After that period, officers will be unable to question suspects and can only re-arrest them if they have new evidence.

Chief constables across the UK say they have been left baffled by the “bizarre” ruling.

The Association of Chief Police Officers and the Crown Prosecution Service are now looking into the potential ramifications.

North Yorkshire Police’s temporary deputy chief constable, Tim Madgwick, said: “We are currently considering its implications on policing in North Yorkshire and are working closely with our criminal justice partners as well as our regional and national colleagues on the matter.”

Home Secretary Theresa May said the ruling was “of great concern” and there may be an opportunity to appeal the decision.

West Yorkshire Police’s chief constable, Sir Norman Bettison, said it had left forces “on the verge of a disaster.”