Search Legislation

Northern Ireland (Emergency Provisions) Act 1991

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

22Examination of documents

(1)Where a member of Her Majesty’s forces or a constable is empowered by virtue of any provision of this Act to search any premises or other place or any person he may examine any document or record found in the course of the search so far as reasonably required for ascertaining whether it contains any such information as is mentioned in section 31(1)(a) or (b) below.

(2)A document or record which cannot be conveniently or thoroughly examined at the place where it is found may be removed for examination to another place and retained there until the examination has been completed.

(3)This section shall not be taken to authorise the examination, removal or retention of a document or record by a person at a time when he has reasonable cause for believing it to be an item subject to legal privilege (within the meaning of the [S.I. 1989/1341 (N.I. 12).] Police and Criminal Evidence (Northern Ireland) Order 1989).

(4)Where a document or record is examined under this section it shall not be photographed or copied.

(5)Where a document or record is examined under this section the person who examines it shall make a written record of the examination at once or, where it is not practicable to make one at once, as soon as is practicable.

(6)A record of an examination of a document or record which is made under this section shall specify—

(a)a description of the document or record;

(b)the object of the examination;

(c)the address of the premises, or a description of the place, where the document or record was found;

(d)where the document or record was found in the course of a search of a person, the name of that person;

(e)where the document or record was found in the course of a search of any premises or other place, the name of any person appearing to the person making the record to be the occupier of the premises or other place or to have had custody or control of the document or record when it was found;

(f)where the document or record was removed for examination from the place where it was found, the date and time when it was removed from that place; and

(g)where the document or record was examined at the place where it was found, the date and time when it was examined.

(7)Such a record shall identify the person by whom the examination was carried out—

(a)in the case of a constable, by reference to his police number; and

(b)in the case of a member of Her Majesty’s forces, by reference to his service number, rank and regiment.

(8)Where a record of an examination of a document or record is made under this section a copy of the record shall be supplied at once or, if that is not practicable, as soon as is practicable—

(a)in a case where the document or record was found in the course of a search of a person, to that person; and

(b)in a case where the document or record was found in the course of a search of any premises or other place, to any person appearing to the person making the record to be the occupier of the premises or other place or to have had custody or control of the document or record when it was found.

(9)Subject to subsection (10) below, a document or record may not be retained by virtue of subsection (2) above for more than forty-eight hours.

(10)An officer of the Royal Ulster Constabulary not below the rank of chief inspector may authorise the retention of a document or record by a constable for a further period or periods; but no such authorisation shall permit the retention of a document or record beyond the end of the period of ninety-six hours from the time when it was removed for examination from the place where it was found.

(11)Any person who wilfully obstructs a member of Her Majesty’s forces or a constable in the exercise of the powers conferred by this section is guilty of an offence and liable—

(a)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years or a fine or both;

(b)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both.

Back to top

Options/Help

Print Options

Close

Legislation is available in different versions:

Latest Available (revised):The latest available updated version of the legislation incorporating changes made by subsequent legislation and applied by our editorial team. Changes we have not yet applied to the text, can be found in the ‘Changes to Legislation’ area.

Original (As Enacted or Made):The original version of the legislation as it stood when it was enacted or made. No changes have been applied to the text.

Close

Opening Options

Different options to open legislation in order to view more content on screen at once

Close

More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources
Close

More Resources

Use this menu to access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • correction slips

Click 'View More' or select 'More Resources' tab for additional information including:

  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • links to related legislation and further information resources