Section 8: Manner of citation
61.This section amends section 141 of the 1995 Act which relates to the citation of accused persons and witnesses in summary proceedings. The section will, in future, provide for citation in person to be carried out by persons other than an officer of law; for citation by ordinary post and for citation by electronic means.
62.Paragraph (a) substitutes a new section 141(1) of the 1995 Act, which provides that personal service may be effected on an accused or a witness by an officer of law or other person.
63.Paragraph (b) provides for citation of the accused by ordinary post.
64.Paragraph (c) inserts a new subsection (3A) into section 141, and provides that citation of witnesses and accused shall be effective if sent by the prosecutor by electronic means to either the home or business email address of the witness or the accused.
65.Paragraph (d) amends subsection (5) of section 141 to allow production of an electronic communication which purports to be made by or on behalf of the accused to be admissible as proof of citation for the purposes of section 141(4). This applies where it can be inferred from the contents of the communication that the accused has read the citation.
66.Paragraph (e) inserts a new subsection (5ZA) into section 141. It provides that where an electronic communication bears to come from the accused’s email address and it can be inferred that the electronic citation referred to in subsection (3A) has come to the accused’s knowledge, that shall be admissible as evidence that s/he received the citation.
67.Paragraph (f) provides for electronic citation of witnesses by the solicitor acting for the accused.
68.Paragraph (g) inserts a new subsection (5B) and provides that where a witness who has been cited by electronic means fails to attend, a warrant for the apprehension of the witness will not be granted unless the court is satisfied that the witness received the citation or that the contents were brought to the witness’s attention. This is in line with the provisions for accused persons in terms of section 141(4) of the 1995 Act as amended by section 14(1) of this Act.
69.Paragraph (h) provides that any period of notice of any citation effected by electronic means shall be calculated from the end of the day on which the citation was sent.
70.Paragraph (i) inserts new subsections (7A) & (7B) into section 141 of the 1995 Act. Those subsections provide for proof of service by electronic means and set out a definition of electronic citation.