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The St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Constitution Order 2009

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Protection of right to personal liberty
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126.—(1) No person shall be deprived of his or her personal liberty save as may be authorised by law in any of the following cases—

(a)as a result of his or her unfitness to plead to a criminal charge;

(b)in execution of the sentence or order of a court, whether established for Ascension or some other country, in respect of a criminal offence of which he or she has been convicted;

(c)in execution of an order of a court punishing him or her for contempt of that court or of another court or of a tribunal;

(d)in execution of the order of a court made in order to secure the fulfilment of any obligation imposed on him or her by law; but no person shall be deprived of his or her liberty merely on the ground of inability to fulfil a contractual obligation;

(e)in order to bring him or her before a court in execution of the order of a court;

(f)on reasonable suspicion of his or her having committed or of being about to commit a criminal offence under any law;

(g)in the case of a minor—

(i)under the order of a court or in order to bring him or her before a court; or

(ii)with the consent of the minor’s parent or guardian, for his or her education or welfare during any period ending not later than the date when the minor attains the age of majority or such lower age as may be provided by law;

(h)in order to prevent the spread of an infectious or contagious disease;

(i)in the case of a person who is, or is reasonably suspected to be, of unsound mind, addicted to drugs or alcohol, or a vagrant, in order to care for or treat him or her or for the protection of the community; or

(j)in order to prevent the unlawful entry of that person into Ascension, or to effect the expulsion, extradition or other lawful removal of that person from Ascension, or to restrict that person while he or she is being conveyed through Ascension in the course of his or her extradition or removal from one country to another as a wrongfully removed or retained child or as a convicted prisoner.

(2) Any person who is arrested or detained shall be informed promptly, orally and in writing, in a language that he or she understands, of the reason for his or her arrest or detention.

(3) Any person who is arrested or detained has the right, at any stage and at his or her own expense, to retain and instruct without delay a legal representative of his or her own choice, and to communicate privately with him or her, and in the case of a minor he or she shall also be given a reasonable opportunity to communicate with his or her parent or guardian; but when the person who is arrested or detained is unable to retain a legal representative at his or her own expense and the interests of justice so require, he or she shall be permitted to be represented by, and communicate privately with, a legal representative at the public expense.

(4) Every person who is arrested shall be informed, as soon as he or she is brought to a police station or other place of custody, of his or her rights under subsection (3); and he or she shall also have the right, and shall be informed at the same time that he or she has the right, to remain silent and to have one person informed by the quickest practicable means of his or her arrest and whereabouts.

(5) The exercise of the rights of communication conferred by subsections (3) and (4) may be delayed for such reasonable time as is provided by law, to the extent that the law in question is necessary in a democratic society for the prevention and detection of criminal offences.

(6) Any person who is arrested or detained—

(a)in order to bring him or her before a court in execution of the order of a court; or

(b)on reasonable suspicion of his or her having committed or being about to commit a criminal offence under any law,

and who is not released, shall be brought without undue delay before a court.

(7) When a person is brought before a court in accordance with subsection (6)(b), the court, without prejudice to any further proceedings which may be brought against him or her, shall, unless there is good reason for the person’s continued detention, release the person either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions, including in particular such conditions as are reasonably necessary to ensure that the person appears at a later date for trial or for proceedings preliminary to trial.

(8) Every person who is arrested or detained shall be entitled to take proceedings by which the lawfulness of his or her detention shall be decided speedily by a court and his or her release ordered if the detention is not lawful.

(9) Any person who is unlawfully arrested or detained by any other person shall be entitled to compensation for such unlawful arrest or detention from that other person, from any person or authority on whose behalf that other person was acting or from them both; but a judge or a judicial officer, or an officer of a court or a police officer acting in pursuance of the order of a judge or a judicial officer, shall not be personally liable to pay compensation under this subsection in respect of anything done by him or her in good faith in the discharge of the functions of his or her office, and any liability to pay any such compensation shall be a liability of the Crown.

(10) For the purposes of subsection (1)(b), a person charged with a criminal offence in respect of whom a special verdict has been returned that he or she committed the act or made the omission constituting the offence but was insane at the time shall be regarded as a person who has been convicted of a criminal offence, and the detention of that person in consequence of such a finding shall be regarded as detention in execution of the order of a court.

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