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The Areas of Natural Constraint Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2017

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16.—(1) It is an offence for a person to—

(a)intentionally obstruct any person acting in the execution of these Regulations;

(b)without reasonable cause, proof of which lies with that person, fail to give any person acting in the execution of these Regulations any assistance or information that that person may reasonably require under these Regulations; or

(c)knowingly or recklessly furnish to any person acting in the execution of these Regulations any information that is false or misleading in any material particular.

(2) Nothing in paragraph 1(b) shall be construed as requiring a person to answer any question if to do so might incriminate the person.

(3) A person guilty of an offence under paragraph (1)(a) or (b) is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 3 on the standard scale.

(4) A person guilty of an offence under paragraph (1)(c) is liable—

(a)on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum; or

(b)on conviction on indictment, to a fine.

(5) Notwithstanding anything in Article 19(1)(a) of the Magistrates’ Courts (Northern Ireland) Order 1981, proceedings for an offence under paragraph (1) which is triable only summarily may be brought at any time within six months from the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the prosecutor to justify the proceedings comes to the prosecutor’s knowledge; but no such proceedings shall be brought by virtue of this paragraph more than two years after the date of the commission of the offence.

(6) For the purposes of paragraph (5), a certificate signed by or on behalf of the prosecutor and stating the date on which evidence sufficient in the opinion of the prosecutor to justify the proceedings came to their knowledge is conclusive of that fact.

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