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The Scottish Parliament (Elections etc.) Order 2015

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Details to appear on election publications

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72.—(1) This article applies to any material which can reasonably be regarded as intended to promote or procure the election of a candidate at an election (whether or not it can be so regarded as intended to achieve any other purpose as well) other than material to which section 143 of the 2000 Political Parties Act(1) (details to appear on election material) applies.

(2) No material to which this article applies shall be published unless—

(a)in the case of material which is, or is contained in, such a document as is mentioned in paragraph (4), (5) or (6), the requirements of that paragraph are complied with; or

(b)in the case of any other material, any requirements falling to be complied with in relation to the material by virtue of regulations under paragraph (7) are complied with.

(3) For the purposes of paragraphs (4) to (6), the following details are “the relevant details” in the case of any material falling within paragraph (2)(a), namely—

(a)the name and address of the printer of the document;

(b)the name and address of the promoter of the material; and

(c)the name and address of any person on behalf of whom the material is being published (and who is not the promoter).

(4) Where the material is a document consisting (or consisting principally) of a single side of printed matter, the relevant details must appear on the face of the document.

(5) Where the material is a printed document other than one to which paragraph (4) applies, the relevant details must appear either on the first or the last page of the document.

(6) Where the material is an advertisement contained in a newspaper or periodical—

(a)the name and address of the printer of the newspaper or periodical must appear either on its first or last page; and

(b)the relevant details specified in paragraph (3)(b) and (c) must be included in the advertisement.

(7) The Scottish Ministers may, after consulting the Electoral Commission, by regulations make provision for and in connection with the imposition of requirements as to the inclusion in material falling within paragraph (2)(b) of the following details, namely—

(a)the name and address of the promoter of the material; and

(b)the name and address of any person on behalf of whom the material is being published (and who is not the promoter).

(8) Regulations under paragraph (7) may in particular specify—

(a)the manner and form in which such details must be included in any such material for the purpose of complying with any such requirement;

(b)circumstances in which—

(i)any such requirement does not have to be complied with by a person of any description specified in the regulations, or

(ii)a breach of any such requirement by a person of any description so specified is not to result in the commission of an offence under this article by that person or by a person of any other such description;

(c)circumstances in which material is, or is not, to be taken for the purposes of the regulations to be published or (as the case may be) published by a person of any description so specified.

(9) Where any material falling within paragraph (2)(a) is published in contravention of paragraph (2), then (subject to paragraphs (11) and (12))—

(a)the promoter of the material,

(b)any other person by whom the material is so published, and

(c)the printer of the document,

shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale.

(10) Where any material falling within paragraph (2)(b) is published in contravention of paragraph (2), then (subject to regulations made by virtue of paragraph (8)(b) and to paragraph (11) and (12))—

(a)the promoter of the material, and

(b)any other person by whom the material is so published,

shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale.

(11) It shall be a defence for a person charged with an offence under this article to prove—

(a)that the contravention of paragraph (2) arose from circumstances beyond that person’s control; and

(b)that that person took all reasonable steps, and exercised all due diligence, to ensure that that contravention would not arise.

(12) Any candidate or election agent who would (apart from this paragraph) be guilty of an offence under paragraph (9) or (10), shall instead be guilty of an illegal practice.

(13) In this article—

“print” means print by whatever means, and “printer” shall be construed accordingly;

“the promoter”, in relation to any material to which this article applies, means the person causing the material to be published;

“publish” means make available to the public at large, or any section of the public, in whatever form and by whatever means (including by electronic means).

(14) For the purpose of determining whether any material is material such as is mentioned in paragraph (1), it is immaterial that it does not expressly mention the name of any candidate.

(15) Regulations under paragraph (7) shall be subject to the negative procedure.

(1)

Section 143 was amended by the 2000 Act, section 66(2).

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