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Public Safety Act, 1927

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Number 31 of 1927.


PUBLIC SAFETY ACT, 1927.


ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART I .

General.

Section

1.

Short title and duration.

2.

Definitions and interpretation.

3.

Amendment of the Constitution.

PART II .

Unlawful Associations and other matters.

4.

Unlawful associations.

5.

Penalty for membership of unlawful association.

6.

Possession of documents relating to unlawful association.

7.

Proof of membership of unlawful association.

8.

Punishment of youthful members of unlawful associations.

9.

Prohibition of printing, etc., of certain classes of documents.

10.

Power to suppress certain periodicals.

11.

Prohibition of importation of certain newspapers, etc.

12.

Printer's name to be printed on documents.

13.

Expulsion orders.

14.

Search orders.

15.

Powers of Gárda Síochána.

16.

Detention of suspected persons.

17.

Refusal to recognise the Court.

18.

Liability of parents or guardians of certain young offenders.

19.

Forfeitures and disqualifications on certain convictions.

PART III .

Proclamation Authorising Special Courts.

20.

Proclamation bringing Part IV. of this Act into force.

21.

Effect of proclamation.

PART IV .

Establishment of Special Courts.

22.

Establishment of special Courts.

23.

Persons triable by special Courts.

24.

Confirmation of convictions and sentences of special Courts.

25.

Sentences by special Courts.

26.

Powers of special Courts in relation to witnesses, etc.

27.

Regulations.

28.

Death penalty for unlawful possession of firearms.

SCHEDULE .

Part I.

Part II.


Acts Referred to

Treasonable Offences Act, 1925

No. 18 of 1925

Firearms Act, 1925

No. 17 of 1925

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Number 31 of 1927.


PUBLIC SAFETY ACT, 1927.


AN ACT TO MAKE FURTHER AND BETTER PROVISION FOR THE MAINTENANCE AND PRESERVATION OF THE STATE AND THE PUBLIC SAFETY. [11th August, 1927.]

BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS OF SAORSTÁT EIREANN AS FOLLOWS:—

PART I.

General.

Short title and duration.

1.(1) This Act may be cited as the Public Safety Act, 1927.

(2) This Act shall continue in force for five years from the passing thereof and shall then expire.

Definitions and interpretation.

2.(1) In this Act—

the word “association” includes any combination of persons whether the same is or is not known by any distinctive name;

the expression “unlawful association” means an association which has been declared to be an unlawful association by an order made by the Executive Council under this Act and for the time being in force;

the expression “treasonable or seditious documents” includes any document relating to or concerned with or issued or emanating from or appearing to issue or emanate from an unlawful association;

the word “periodical” means any newspaper, magazine, journal, or other publication which is issued at regular or substantially regular intervals.

(2) For the purposes of this Act an unlawful association shall be deemed to have become by virtue of this Act an unlawful association on the making of the Order of the Executive Council declaring it to be an unlawful association.

Amendment of the Constitution.

3.Every provision of this Act which is in contravention of any provision of the Constitution shall to the extent of such contravention operate and have effect as an amendment for so long only as this Act continues in force of such provision of the Constitution.

PART II.

Unlawful Associations and other matters.

Unlawful associations.

4.(1) The Executive Council may by order declare any association which in the opinion of the Executive Council—

(a) has amongst its professed objects, or advocates or encourages, or professes to encourage the overthrow by force of the Government of Saorstát Eireann or the alteration by force of the Constitution or the law, or

(b) without lawful authority organizes or maintains or endeavours or purports to organize or maintain an armed force, or

(c) promotes or encourages the unlawful possession of firearms by its members, or

(d) engages in, promotes, encourages, or advocates any act, enterprise, or course of action of a treasonable or seditious character, or promotes, encourages or advocates the attainment of any object of a treasonable or seditious character, or

(e) promotes, encourages or advocates the commission of crimes or offences or the obstruction or interference with the administration of justice or the enforcement of the law, or

(f) promotes, encourages, or advocates the non-payment of moneys payable to the Central Fund or any other public fund whether by way of taxation or otherwise or the non-payment of local taxation,

to be an unlawful association.

(2) Every order made by the Executive Council under the foregoing sub-section shall continue in force until revoked by an order of the Executive Council.

(3) Every order made by the Executive Council under this section declaring an association to be an unlawful association and every order of the Executive Council revoking any such order shall be published in the Iris Oifigiúil as soon as conveniently may be.

(4) Every order made by the Executive Council under this section declaring an association to be an unlawful association shall take effect as on and from the expiration of the day following the day on which such order is published in the Iris Oifigiúil.

Penalty for membership of unlawful association.

5.Every person who is a member of an unlawful association at any time after it has become by virtue of this Act an unlawful association shall be guilty of a misdemeanour and shall be liable on conviction thereof to suffer penal servitude for any term not less than three years and not exceeding five years or imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding two years.

Possession of documents relating to unlawful association.

6.If any document (of whatsoever date or bearing no date) issued by or emanating from an unlawful association or appearing to be so issued or so to emanate or purporting to aid or abet an unlawful association or otherwise relating to or connected with an unlawful association is found on or in the possession of or on or in premises belonging to, occupied by, or under the control of any person, such person unless he satisfies the Court that he did not know such document was in his possession or on or in such premises or that he did not know the nature or contents of such document, shall be guilty of an offence under this section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding fifty pounds or at the discretion of the Court to imprisonment for any term not exceeding three months or to both such fine and such imprisonment.

Proof of membership of unlawful association.

7.(1) Whenever a person is charged with the offence of being a member of an unlawful association and it is proved to the satisfaction of the Court that a document (of whatsoever date or bearing no date) issued by or emanating from or appearing to be issued by or to emanate from an unlawful association or purporting to aid or abet an unlawful association or otherwise relating to or connected with an unlawful association was found on or in the possession of such person or on or in premises belonging to or occupied by him or under his control such person shall be deemed to be a member of the unlawful association to or with which such document relates or is connected unless he proves that he is not then a member of such association and was not a member of such association at any time after it became by virtue of this Act an unlawful association.

(2) A person who is deemed by virtue of this section to be a member of an unlawful association shall not be deemed to have proved that he is not then a member of such association and was not a member thereof since it became by virtue of this Act an unlawful association unless (in addition to such other evidence as satisfies the Court of such non-membership) he—

(a) declares on oath (which declaration the Court shall give him an opportunity of making) that he is not then a member of such unlawful association and was not a member thereof at any time since it became by virtue of this Act an unlawful association, and

(b) produces two reputable witnesses who depose on oath that they are well acquainted with him and that to the best of their knowledge, information, and belief he is not then a member of such unlawful association and was not a member thereof at any time since it became by virtue of this Act an unlawful association.

Punishment of youthful members of unlawful associations.

8.(1) Where any person under the age of 16 years is convicted of the offence of being a member of an unlawful association the Court shall, in lieu of dealing with such person under the Children Act, 1908, sentence such person to be detained during the pleasure of the Minister for Justice, and if so sentenced such person shall be liable, notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in the Children Act, 1908, to be detained in such place and under such conditions as the Minister for Justice may direct, and whilst so detained shall be deemed to be in legal custody.

(2) The Minister for Justice shall from time to time publish in the Iris Oifigiúil a notice stating the place in which persons sentenced under this section are detained and the conditions of such detention.

(3) When a person is sentenced to be detained during the pleasure of the Minister for Justice under this section, such person shall not be so detained for a longer period than one year.

Prohibition of printing, etc., of certain classes of documents.

9.(1) It shall not be lawful to print, publish, distribute, sell or offer or expose for sale without the previous permission of the Minister for Justice any book, newspaper, magazine, periodical, pamphlet, leaflet, circular or other document containing any statement by or on behalf of or emanating from or purporting to be made by or on behalf of or to emanate from an unlawful association or any statement aiding or abetting or calculated to aid or abet an unlawful association.

(2) Every person who shall print, publish, distribute, sell, or offer or expose for sale any book, newspaper, magazine, periodical, pamphlet, leaflet, circular, or other document in contravention of this section shall be guilty of an offence under this section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds or, at the discretion of the Court, to imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding six months or to both such fine and such imprisonment and also in any case to forfeiture of every copy of such document in his possession and also, in the case of a person found guilty of the offence of printing any such document, to forfeiture of all printing machinery in his possession.

(3) Permission given by the Minister for Justice to any person to print or to publish or to print and publish in a document any such statement as is mentioned in sub-section (1) of this section shall operate and have effect as a permission to all persons to distribute and sell such document and to offer and expose the same for sale and, where the permission is limited to printing or to publishing a document, shall operate to authorise for the purposes of this section the publishing or the printing (as the case may require) of such document.

(4) In this section references to printing include any mode of representing or reproducing words in a visible form and the words “print” and “printing” shall be construed accordingly.

Power to suppress certain periodicals.

10.(1) A Judge of the High Court, on the application in a summary manner of the Minister for Justice and on being satisfied that a periodical published or printed in Saorstát Eireann has published in an issue published after the passing of this Act and not more than one month before the date of the application, any seditious libel or any statement inciting or calculated to incite, encourage, or lead to the commission of any of the offences mentioned in Part I. of the Schedule to this Act or any offence of a seditious or treasonable nature or any statement by or on behalf of or emanating from or purporting to be made by or on behalf of or to emanate from an unlawful association or any statement aiding or abetting or calculated to aid or abet an unlawful association, may make an order declaring the said Minister to be at liberty to suppress such periodical under this section.

(2) Whenever a Judge of the High Court so declares the Minister for Justice to be at liberty to suppress a periodical the said Minister may within one month after the date of the order of such Judge by order suppress such periodical.

(3) Whenever the Minister for Justice by an order under this section suppresses a periodical he may at any time thereafter by order suppress any other periodical published or printed in Saorstát Eireann which was first published after the date of the application to a Judge of the High Court for liberty to suppress such first-mentioned periodical and which though differing in name or otherwise is in the opinion of the said Minister substantially the same as such first-mentioned periodical.

(4) Whenever the Minister for Justice, by an order under this section, suppresses a periodical, it shall not be lawful after the date of such order to print or publish the said periodical or any issue or copy thereof, or to distribute, sell, or offer or expose for sale the said periodical, or any issue or copy thereof, whether such issue or copy was printed before or after the date of such order, and every person who shall print, publish, distribute, sell or offer or expose for sale such periodical or any issue or copy thereof in contravention of this sub-section shall be guilty of an offence under this section, and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds, or, at the discretion of the Court, to imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding six months, or to both such fine and such imprisonment, and also in any case to forfeiture of every copy of such periodical in his possession, and also, in the case of a person found guilty of the offence of printing such periodical, to forfeiture of all printing machinery in his possession.

(5) Every application under this section by the Minister for Justice to a Judge of the High Court for liberty to suppress a periodical shall be made on notice (which may be served on a person outside Saorstát Eireann without special leave) to the printer, the proprietor, and the publisher of the periodical, unless a Judge of the High Court shall otherwise direct.

(6) No appeal shall lie from an order of a Judge of the High Court on an application under this section by the Minister for Justice for liberty to suppress a periodical.

Prohibition of importation of certain newspapers, etc.

11.(1) If in the opinion of the Executive Council any issue of a periodical printed or published outside Saorstát Eireann contains any seditious libel or any statement inciting or calculated to incite, encourage, or lead to the commission of any of the offences mentioned in Part I of the Schedule to this Act or any offence of a seditious or treasonable nature or any statement by or on behalf of or to emanating from or purporting to be made by or on behalf of or to emanate from an unlawful association or any statement aiding or abetting or calculated to aid or abet an unlawful association, the Executive Council may by order (in this section referred to as a prohibition order) prohibit the importation of that issue and all future issues of such periodical so long as such order remains in force.

(2) Every prohibition order shall remain in force until revoked by order of the Executive Council.

(3) Every prohibition order and every order revoking a prohibition order shall be published in the Iris Oifigiúil as soon as conveniently may be after it is made.

(4) It shall be lawful for officers of customs and excise to arrest without warrant any person found importing any issue or copy of a periodical the importation of which is prohibited by a prohibition order and all such officers shall have the like powers in relation to a periodical in respect of which a prohibition order has been made and is in force and in relation to every issue and copy of such periodical as such officers have by law in relation to other articles the import of which is prohibited or restricted by law.

(5) Section 16 of the Post Office Act, 1908 and regulations made thereunder shall apply to a periodical in respect of which a prohibition order has been made and is in force and to every issue and copy of such periodical as fully as they apply to the documents mentioned in the said section.

(6) Every person who imports any issue or copy of a periodical printed or published outside Saorstát Eireann in contravention of a prohibition order then in force or distributes, sells, or offers or exposes for sale any issue or copy of any such periodical imported in contravention of such order shall be guilty of an offence under this section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds, or, at the discretion of the Court, to imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding six months, or to both such fine and such imprisonment, and also in any case to forfeiture of every copy of such periodical in his possession.

(7) Any officer or member of the Gárda Síochána may arrest without warrant any person found importing any issue or copy of a periodical the importation of which is prohibited by a prohibition order.

Printer's name to be printed on documents.

12.(1) It shall not be lawful for any person to print any book, newspaper, magazine, periodical, pamphlet, leaflet, circular, or other document which is intended to be published or distributed to the public unless such person shall print his name and usual place of abode or business on such document either at the beginning or the end thereof.

(2) Every person who shall print any document in contravention of this section shall be guilty of an offence under this sub-section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding one hundred pounds.

(3) Every person who shall publish, distribute, sell or offer or expose for sale to the public any document printed in contravention of this section shall be guilty of an offence under this sub-section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to a fine not exceeding twenty-five pounds.

Expulsion orders.

13.(1) The Minister for Justice may by order (in this section called an expulsion order) require any person who in the opinion of the said Minister has been associated with any of the activities of an unlawful association whether as a member thereof or otherwise or has been associated with or concerned in any of the offences mentioned in Part I of the Schedule to this Act or any offence of a treasonable or seditious nature or any murder or other crime of violence and whose continued presence in Saorstát Eireann is in the opinion of the said Minister prejudicial to the public safety or the maintenance of law and order to depart from Saorstát Eireann within a specified time after the date of such order and not to return to Saorstát Eireann so long as such order remains in force.

(2) The said Minister may at any time by order revoke an expulsion order made under this section and every such expulsion order shall remain in force until so revoked.

(3) Every expulsion order and every order revoking an expulsion order shall be published in the Iris Oifigiúil as soon as conveniently may be after it is made.

(4) Every expulsion order shall be served on the person to whom the same relates not less than forty-eight hours before the expiration of the time within which he is required by such order to depart from Saorstát Eireann and such service shall be effected either by personal service on such person or by leaving a copy of such order for him at his last known place of abode or address.

(5) Every person in respect of whom an expulsion order is made who is found in Saorstát Eireann after the expiration of the time limited in such order for his departure from Saorstát Eireann and while such order remains in force shall on every occasion on which he is so found be guilty of an offence under this section and on conviction thereof by a court of summary jurisdiction shall be sentenced to six months imprisonment with hard labour.

Search orders.

14.(1) If any superintendent of the Gárda Síochána is of opinion that there is reasonable ground for suspecting that there are treasonable or seditious documents in any place or premises, he may issue an order in writing (in this Act called a search order) to any one or more members of the Gárda Síochána under his command and named therein to search any place or premises named in such order.

(2) A search order issued under this section shall authorize the member or members of the Gárda Síochána named therein to enter the place or premises to which such order relates at any time within twenty-four hours after the issuing of such search order, and if need be by force, and to search such place or premises for treasonable or seditious documents and to seize and remove all documents found on such search which appear to such member or members to be treasonable or seditious.

(3) Any member of the Gárda Síochána making a search under a search order may do all or any one or more of the following things—

(a) search any person found in the place or premises to which the order relates,

(b) demand the name and address of any person found in such place or premises and (without prejudice to any other power of arrest vested in him by law or by virtue of any lawful warrant) arrest without warrant any such person who refuses to give his name or his address to such member or gives a name or address which such member knows or suspects to be false or misleading, or

(c) arrest without warrant any person found on such place or premises whom such member suspects of having had in his possession any treasonable or seditious document in such place or premises.

Powers of Gárda Síochána.

15.Any member of the Gárda Síochána may stop and search and may also arrest without warrant any person whom he believes to be carrying any treasonable or seditious documents, and may search any such person, and whether arresting him or not, may seize and detain all documents carried by him which appear to such member to be treasonable or seditious.

Detention of suspected persons.

16.(1) It shall be lawful for a superintendent of the Gárda Síochána to arrest or cause to be arrested any person whom he suspects of being or having been engaged or concerned in the commission of any of the offences mentioned in Part I. of the Schedule to this Act, and whose detention is in the opinion of such superintendent necessary or desirable for the proper investigation of such offence or any other like offence.

(2) Whenever any person is arrested under this section the superintendent of the Gárda Síochána responsible for such arrest shall, as soon as conveniently may be, bring such person before a Justice of the District Court, and, upon such superintendent stating to such Justice that in his opinion there is ground for suspecting such person of being or having been engaged or concerned in the commission of any of the offences mentioned in Part I. of the Schedule to this Act, and that his detention is necessary or desirable for the proper investigation of such offence, or any other like offence, such Justice shall order such person to be detained in custody for seven days.

(3) Whenever a person is detained in custody by an order of a Justice of the District Court under this section, an Executive Minister, if satisfied that there is ground for suspecting such person of being or having been engaged or concerned in the commission of any of the offences mentioned in Part I. of the Schedule to this Act, and that the detention of such person is necessary for the proper investigation of such offence or any like offence, may, before the expiration of the period of detention of such person in pursuance of such order as aforesaid, make an order directing the detention of such person for such period not being more than two months from the date of such order as such Minister shall therein specify in that behalf.

(4) Every person detained by virtue of an order made by an Executive Minister under this section shall not later than three months from the day of his arrest be either released from custody or charged with an offence and dealt with according to law.

(5) Whenever a person is detained in custody under this section such person may at any time be released by order of an Executive Minister.

(6) A person detained in custody under this section may be so detained in any prison, and while so detained shall be treated as a prisoner awaiting trial.

(7) An order made by a Justice of the District Court or by an Executive Minister directing the detention of any person under this section shall be a sufficient authority to the governor of any prison in Saorstát Eireann to receive and detain in such prison in accordance with such order the person named in such order and an order by an Executive Minister for the release of such person shall be a sufficient authority to such governor for the release of such person.

Refusal to recognise the Court.

17.Any person charged with any crime or offence (including a crime or offence under this Act) who when brought before a court for trial on such charge refuses to recognise the court or refuses to recognise the authority or jurisdiction of the court or does any act (other than standing mute or lawfully objecting in due form of law to the jurisdiction of the court to try him on such charge) which in the opinion of the court is equivalent to a refusal to recognise the court or the authority or jurisdiction thereof shall be guilty of contempt of court and thereupon the following consequences shall ensue, that is to say:—

(a) the court shall direct a plea of not guilty to be entered for such person and the trial of such person on such charge shall then proceed according to law save that such person shall not be entitled or permitted to be represented by solicitor or counsel at such trial,

(b) if on such trial such person is found guilty of the crime or offence with which he is so charged or of any other crime or offence the court when measuring the sentence to be imposed upon him shall take into consideration his said contempt of court and may increase such sentence on account of such contempt of court,

(c) in the District Court, if the maximum punishment which may be imposed for the crime or offence of which such person is found guilty is a fine only or is imprisonment (with or without a fine) for a term of less than two years, such person shall be liable and may be sentenced to suffer imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding two years, in addition to the fine (if any) which may lawfully be imposed on him,

(d) in any court other than the District Court, if the maximum punishment which may be imposed for the crime or offence of which such person is found guilty is a fine only or is imprisonment (with or without a fine) or is penal servitude (with or without a fine) for a term of less than five years, such person shall be liable and may be sentenced to suffer penal servitude for any term not less than three years and not exceeding five years or imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding two years, in addition to the fine (if any) which may lawfully be imposed on him,

(e) if on such trial such person is not found guilty of any crime or offence he shall be liable and may be sentenced to suffer in respect of his said contempt of court imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding two years,

(f) if on such trial the jury fails to find a verdict any sentence imposed on such person in respect of his said contempt of court shall not prevent his being tried before another jury on the charge on which such first-mentioned jury failed to find a verdict.

Liability of parents or guardians of certain young offenders.

18.(1) Where any person (in this section referred to as the offender) under the age of 16 years is convicted of the offence under this Act of being a member of an unlawful association the parent or guardian of the offender shall, unless he satisfies the Court that he has not conduced to the commission of the offence by neglecting to exercise due care of the offender be guilty of an offence under this section and shall be liable on summary conviction thereof to imprisonment for any term not exceeding six months.

(2) In this section the word “guardian” includes any person who in the opinion of the Court has for the time being the charge of or control over the offender.

Forfeitures and disqualifications on certain convictions.

19.(1) Whenever a person convicted after the passing of this Act of an offence to which this section applies holds at the time of such conviction an office or employment remunerated out of the Central Fund or moneys provided by the Oireachtas or moneys raised by local taxation or a place, office, employment, or emolument in any university or college or in or under any corporation created by charter, such person shall immediately on such conviction forfeit such office, employment, place, or emolument and the same shall forthwith become and be vacant.

(2) Whenever a person convicted after the passing of this Act of an offence to which this section applies is at the time of such conviction in receipt of a pension or superannuation allowance payable out of the Central Fund or moneys provided by the Oireachtas or moneys raised by local taxation or the funds of any university or college or of any corporation created by charter, such person shall immediately upon such conviction forfeit such pension or superannuation allowance and such pension or superannuation allowance shall forthwith cease to be payable.

(3) Every person convicted after the passing of this Act of an offence to which this section applies shall from and after such conviction be for seven years from the date of such conviction disqualified for holding any office or employment remunerated out of the Central Fund or moneys provided by the Oireachtas or moneys raised by local taxation or any place, office, employment or emolument in any university or college or in or under any corporation created by charter.

(4) Whenever a conviction which occasions by virtue of this section any forfeiture or disqualification is quashed or annulled or the convicted person is granted a free pardon such forfeiture or disqualification shall be annulled, in the case of a quashing or annulment, as from the date of the conviction and, in the case of a free pardon, as from the date of such pardon.

(5) This section applies to every offence which is declared by the Treasonable Offences Act, 1925 (No. 18 of 1925) to be treason or a felony or a misdemeanour and to every offence which is declared by this Act to be a misdemeanour.

PART III.

Proclamation Authorising Special Courts.

Proclamation bringing Part IV . of this Act into force.

20.(1) Whenever the Executive Council is of opinion that it is necessary in order to secure the due administration of justice and the sure punishment of crime that persons charged with any of the offences mentioned in the Schedule to this Act should be brought before and tried by special Courts established under this Act in lieu of the ordinary Courts, the Executive Council may by proclamation declare that Part IV of this Act shall come into operation.

(2) A proclamation made under this section shall (unless continued under this section) remain in force for three months only and shall then expire, but any such proclamation may from time to time be continued in force for three months by proclamation made by the Executive Council before the expiration of the original proclamation or the last continuance thereof.

(3) If at any time when a proclamation (whether original or continuing) is made under this section, the Oireachtas or either House thereof stands adjourned to a day and hour more than five days after the making of the proclamation, the proclamation shall be expressed and shall operate to summon the Oireachtas or such House thereof (as the case may be) to reassemble at a convenient hour to be specified in the proclamation on a convenient day to be similarly specified not less than three nor more than five days after the making of the proclamation, and in every such case the Oireachtas or such House thereof, as the case may be, shall reassemble on the day and at the hour so specified as if it had stood adjourned to that day and hour.

(4) Every proclamation made under this section shall be forthwith published in the Iris Oifigiúil and shall also be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made and if either such House shall, within the next subsequent twenty-one days on which that House has sat, pass a resolution revoking such proclamation such proclamation shall forthwith expire but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under such proclamation.

Effect of proclamation.

21.(1) Whenever and so often as a proclamation is made by the Executive Council under this Part of this Act, Part IV of this Act shall forthwith come into force and shall continue in force for so long as such proclamation remains or is continued in force and when such proclamation finally expires Part IV of this Act shall forthwith cease to be in force but without prejudice to the validity of anything done thereunder or the continuing operation and effect of any conviction, sentence, order, or judgment made thereunder.

(2) Part IV of this Act shall not have any force or effect save as and when provided by this section.

PART IV.

Establishment of Special Courts.

Establishment of special Courts.

22.(1) As soon as may be after every occasion on which this Part of this Act comes into force there shall be established by the Executive Council one or more tribunals (in this Part of this Act referred to as special courts) consisting of three or more members of whom one (who may be or not be an officer in the Defence Forces of Saorstát Eireann) shall be a person certified by the Attorney-General to have legal knowledge and experienceand the others shall be officers of the Defence Forces of Saorstát Eireann not below the rank of commandant.

(2) Whenever a special court is established under this section an Executive Minister may appoint such registrar, clerks, and servants for the purposes of such court as he thinks proper.

(3) There may be paid, out of moneys to be provided by the Oireachtas, to any member, registrar, clerk or servant of a special court who is not in receipt of remuneration out of public funds, such fees or remuneration as the Minister for Finance may determine.

Persons triable by special Courts.

23.(1) Whenever and so long as this Part of this Act is in force, every person charged with any of the offences mentioned in the Schedule to this Act shall, if he has before the commencement of this Part of this Act been sent forward for trial by any Court, and is at such commencement awaiting trial by such Court, be deemed to have been sent forward for trial by a special court, and, if he is sent forward for trial while this Part of this Act is in force, be sent forward notwithstanding anything contained in any other Act for trial by a special court.

(2) Every person sent or deemed to have been sent forward for trial by a special court shall, save as is hereinafter otherwise provided, be brought for trial to and be tried by a special court under and in accordance with this Part of this Act.

(3) Every person sent forward for trial by a special court who is when this Part of this Act ceases to be in force awaiting trial by a special court shall on such cesser be deemed to have been sent forward for trial by the Central Criminal Court, and shall be brought for trial to and be tried by that Court accordingly.

Confirmation of convictions and sentences of special Courts.

24.(1) No conviction or sentence by a special court shall be valid save if and in so far as the same is confirmed by the confirming authority under this section.

(2) The confirming authority shall be an officer of the Defence Forces of Saorstát Eireann nominated for the purpose by the Executive Council and not below the rank of colonel.

(3) The confirming authority may, in respect of any conviction or sentence by a special court, confirm with or without modification or refuse to confirm the same or order a new trial of the convicted person.

Sentences by special Courts.

25.(1) A special court shall whenever it finds a person to be guilty of treason or murder sentence such person to suffer death.

(2) Save as is otherwise provided by this Act, a special court may inflict on any person found guilty by it of any offence other than treason or murder like punishment as but no greater punishment than the Central Criminal Court could lawfully inflict on a person found guilty before it of such offence.

(3) Every sentence and every order and judgment of a special court shall be carried out by the civil authorities and officers by whom and in the like manner as a like sentence, order, or judgment of the Central Criminal Court is required by law to be carried out.

(4) Every conviction, sentence, order, and judgment of a special court shall, save as is hereinafter provided, have the like consequences in law as a like conviction, sentence, order, or judgment of the Central Criminal Court would have and in particular shall confer on the civil authorities and officers carrying out the same the like protections and immunities as would be possessed by them when carrying out a like conviction, sentence, order, or judgment of the Central Criminal Court.

(5) No appeal shall lie from any conviction, sentence, order, or judgment of a special court and no special court shall be liable to be restrained in the execution of its powers under this Part of this Act by any other court nor shall any proceedings before a special court be removed by certiorari to any other court.

Powers of special Courts in relation to witnesses, etc.

26.Every special court with respect to the following matters, that is to say:—

(a) the administering of oaths to witnesses,

(b) the examination of witnesses orally,

(c) enforcing the attendance of witnesses,

(d) the production of deeds, books, papers, and documents,

(e) the punishment of persons refusing to give evidence or to produce documents, or guilty of contempt of the court,

shall have all such powers, rights, and privileges as are possessed by the Central Criminal Court for such or the like purposes.

Regulations.

27.(1) An Executive Minister shall by order make regulations—

(a) prescribing the procedure and practice of special courts and the forms to be used in relation to trials before such courts;

(b) securing to every person tried by a special court the right to be represented at such trial by solicitor and counsel;

(c) the times and places of sittings of special courts;

(d) whenever more than one special court is established, the particular special court by which any particular person is to be tried;

(e) any other matter or thing expedient or necessary for the purpose of carrying this Part of this Act into execution so far as relates to the trial or punishment of persons triable by a special court.

(2) Every regulation made under this section shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made, and if a resolution is passed by either such House within the next subsequent twenty-one days on which that House has sat after such regulation is laid before it annulling such regulation, such regulation shall be annulled accordingly but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under such regulation.

Death penalty for unlawful possession of firearms.

28.Any person found guilty by a special court of the offence under the Firearms Act, 1925 (No. 17 of 1925) of having possession of or using or carrying a firearm without holding a firearm certificate therefor, shall if the offence was committed while this Part of this Act is in force be liable to suffer death or penal servitude for life, or any term of years not less than three years, or to imprisonment with or without hard labour for any term not exceeding two years, and shall be sentenced by such court accordingly.

SCHEDULE.

Part I.

1. Any offence which is declared by the Treasonable Offences Act, 1925 (No. 18 of 1925) to be treason or a felony or a misdemeanour.

2. Any offence which is declared by this Act to be a misdemeanour.

3. Murder or attempted murder of or conspiracy to murder the Governor-General or any member of the Oireachtas or any Judge of the Supreme Court, the High Court, or the Circuit Court or any Justice of the District Court.

Part II.

1. The offence under the Firearms Act, 1925 (No. 17 of 1925) of having possession of or using or carrying a firearm without holding a firearm certificate therefor.

2. Any murder or attempted murder or conspiracy to murder in respect of which the Attorney-General, while Part IV of this Act is in force, directs that the person charged therewith shall be sent forward for trial by a special court under the said Part IV.