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Armed Forces Act 2001

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

9Entry for purpose of arrest etc

This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

(1)Subject to the following provisions of this section, a service policeman may enter and search any relevant residential premises for the purpose—

(a)of arresting a person under any of the services Acts, or

(b)of saving life or limb or preventing serious damage to property.

(2)In subsection (1) “relevant residential premises” means—

(a)service living accommodation, or

(b)other premises occupied as a residence (alone or with other persons) by a person who is subject to service law.

(3)Subject to the following provisions of this section and without prejudice to any other enactment, a service policeman may enter and search any premises which are occupied as a residence (alone or with other persons) by a person to whom this subsection applies, for the purpose of arresting that person under any of the services Acts.

(4)Subsection (3) applies to a person in relation to whom the power of arrest under any of the services Acts is exercisable only by virtue of section 131 of each of the 1955 Acts or section 51 of the 1957 Act.

(5)Except for the purpose specified in paragraph (b) of subsection (1), the powers of entry and search conferred by this section—

(a)are only exercisable if the service policeman has reasonable grounds for believing that the person whom he is seeking is on the premises, and

(b)are limited, in relation to premises consisting of two or more separate dwellings, to powers to enter and search—

(i)any parts of the premises which the occupiers of any dwelling comprised in the premises use in common with the occupiers of any other such dwelling, and

(ii)any such dwelling in which the service policeman has reasonable grounds for believing that the person whom he is seeking may be.

(6)The power of search conferred by this section is only a power to search to the extent that is reasonably required for the purpose for which the power of entry is exercised.

(7)Subject to subsections (8) and (9), an officer may authorise a member of Her Majesty’s forces who is not a service policeman to exercise, in relation to premises consisting of—

(a)service living accommodation of a person as respects whom the officer is commanding officer, or

(b)other premises occupied as a residence (alone or with other persons) by a person who is subject to service law and as respects whom the officer is commanding officer,

the powers conferred by subsection (1) on a service policeman.

(8)An officer may not authorise a person other than a service policeman to exercise the power conferred by subsection (1)(a) unless—

(a)the offence in respect of which the arrest is to be made is an offence to which section 5 applies, and

(b)the officer has reasonable grounds for believing that, if the arrest could not be made before the earliest time by which it would be practicable to obtain—

(i)the assistance of a service policeman, or

(ii)in a case where the powers conferred by section 17(1)(b) or (c) of the 1984 Act (entry for purposes of arrest) are exercisable by a member of a United Kingdom police force, the assistance of a member of such a force capable of exercising them,

the person to be arrested might evade arrest, conceal, damage, alter or destroy evidence or be a danger to himself or to others, or discipline or morale among members of any of Her Majesty’s forces might be undermined.

(9)An officer may not authorise a person other than a service policeman to exercise the power conferred by subsection (1)(b) in relation to premises falling within subsection (2)(b) unless it is not practicable to obtain the assistance of a service policeman in time to take the necessary action to save life or limb or prevent serious damage to property.

(10)The Defence Council may by regulations provide for the delegation by a commanding officer of his functions under this section.

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