General Prisons (Ireland) Act, 1877

Special rules as to treatment of unconvicted prisoners and certain other prisoners.

13. Whereas it is expedient that a clear difference shall be made between the treatment of persons unconvicted of crime and in law presumably innocent during the period of their detention in prison for safe custody only, and the treatment of prisoners who have been convicted of crime during the period of their detention in prison for the purpose of punishment, and that, in order to secure the observance of such difference, there shall be in force, in every place in which prisoners are confined for safe custody only, special rules regulating their confinement in such manner as to make it as little as possible oppressive, due regard only being had to their safe custody, to the necessity of a conformity to regular rules for the purpose of preserving order and good government in the place in which they are confined, and to the physical and moral well-being of the prisoners themselves; therefore be it enacted, that the General Prisons Board shall, subject to the approval of the Lord Lieutenant and Privy Council, make, and when made may from time to time repeal, alter, or add to, special rules:

(1.) With respect to the retention by a prisoner of the possession of any books, papers, or documents in his possession at the time of his arrest, and which may not be required for evidence against him, and are not reasonably suspected of forming part of property improperly acquired by him, or are not for some special reason required to be taken from him for the purposes of justice;

(2.) With respect to communications between a prisoner, his solicitor, and friends, so as to secure to such prisoner as unrestricted and private communication between him, his solicitor, and his friends as may be possible, having regard only to the necessity of preventing any tampering with evidence, and any plans for escape, or other like considerations; and

(3.) With respect to arrangements whereby prisoners may provide themselves with articles of diet, or may be furnished with a sufficient quantity of wholesome food, and may be protected from being called upon to perform any unaccustomed tasks or offices; also any matter which the General Prisons Board may think conducive to the amelioration of the condition of a prisoner who has not been convicted of crime, regard being had to such matters as are in this section directed to be regarded.