Is "running away" a crime in any country/jurisdiction?

Inspired by this thread about the “runaway bride” and charges she may face in regards to a false police report:

Disappearing without explanation can result in a lot of wasted police time. If done willingly and without the intent of causing a police search (or even with the intent), is there anywhere that this would be considered criminal activity (assuming no real other criminal activity occured, such as abandonment of childen, and assuming the person did not stage it to look like an abduction)?

I don’t have an answer to your question, but I will say that ISTR reading somewhere that some 75% of “missing” adults in the US don’t know they’re “missing.”

I would think that it isn’t illegal as long as you don’t lie about it the way Bridezilla did.

Since I’m not aware of every statute in every jurisdiction, I can’t give you a complete answer. Here are some thoughts though:

You could be charged with false reports, if the prosecutor stretchs the meaning of “cause to be reported”. I think it would be a tough standard of proof, but, in theory, “but for” your disappearance, there never would have been a report. The prosecution would have to show that your action (disappearing) had a forseeable consequence (the reporting) and if you intended the report to be made, you could be convicted. But, like I said, it’s a bit of a stretch.

If you were in certain situations, I think you could also be charged. For example, if you “disappeared” with the intent to fraudulently allow someone to collect on your life insurance, I would imagine you could be charged criminally. Or if you were on bond, you could be charged for disappearing also.

Just a couple of thoughts.

I suspect that it may have been a crime in some communist countries that kept a close eye on citizenry, and may still be so in Cuba or N. Korea. I could see how it could be made into a law along the same rationale as creating false police reports (causes the cops extra work), but I don’t know what countries (if any) have actually taken the step to criminalize.

Here’s how I look at it: If I pay my bills, don’t try to defraud anyone, and file my taxes (provided I even have income), it’s nobody’s freeking business where I am. There is no law that says everyone needs to divulge their whereabouts to anyone! If there is, I’d like to see it.

IANAL, yadda yadda yadda, but I think running away is illegal if you’re underage. Also, if you’re attempting to defraud someone thru you disappearance (for example, faking your death in an attempt to collect your own insurance money) then you’re in a world of trouble. Other than that, there’s nothing illegal about choosing to disappear.

BTW, Bridezilla is in trouble because she told the police that she had been kidnapped, before eventually admitting that she had disappeared voluntarily.

Er, yeah, me too. Which is why I started this thread.

Seriously, I’d be surprised if that existed anywhere in the US. Even if on the books, it would seem almost unenforcable.

I would also be surprised if such a law existed in western Europe. I’d be a little less surprised other various areas around the globe.

“Wasting police time” is an offence on the books in many places. However, that usually is confined to wilfully approaching the police to an investigation; I think there is a slim chance that law might prevail in this case if a certain narrow range of circumstances were just so, but even then the police would have a hard time trying to make that charge stick, and they’d not normally bother. Ask any cop about the common case of the battered woman who comes into the police station and lays violence charges against her drunken husband, yet the next day after the cops have done all the paperwork, now sober and contrite hubby apologises and the woman drops the charges. The police usually just sigh and mutter “not again” under their breath and get on with business.
So my money is on “no”.