Criminal Law Act, 1976

Power to retain articles seized.

9.—(1) Where in the course of exercising any powers under this Act or in the course of a search carried out under any other power, a member of the Garda Síochána, a prison officer or a member of the Defence Forces finds or comes into possession of anything which he believes to be evidence of any offence or suspected offence, it may be seized and retained for use as evidence in any criminal proceedings, or in any proceedings in relation to a breach of prison discipline, for such period from the date of seizure as is reasonable or, if proceedings are commenced in which the thing so seized is required for use in evidence, until the conclusion of the proceedings, and thereafter the Police (Property) Act, 1897 , shall apply to the thing so seized in the same manner as that Act applies to property which has come into the possession of the Garda Síochána in the circumstances mentioned in that Act.

(2) If it is represented or appears to a person proposing to seize or retain a document under this section that the document was, or may have been, made for the purpose of obtaining, giving or communicating legal advice from or by a barrister or solicitor, that person shall not seize or retain the document unless he suspects with reasonable cause that the document was not made, or is not intended, solely for any of the purposes aforesaid.