Criminal Law Act, 1976

Power of Garda Síochána to search vehicles and persons in vehicles.

8.—(1) This section applies to:

(a) an offence under the Act of 1939 or an offence that is for the time being a scheduled offence for the purposes of Part V of that Act;

(b) an offence under section 2 or 3 of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Act, 1976 ;

(c) murder, manslaughter or an offence under section 18 of the Offences against the Person Act, 1861;

(d) an offence under section 23 , 23A or 23B of the Larceny Act, 1916 ;

(e) an offence of malicious damage to property involving the use of fire or of any explosive substance (within the meaning of section 7 (1) (e) of this Act);

(f) an offence under the Firearms Acts, 1925 to 1971;

(g) escape from lawful custody;

(h) an offence under section 11 of the Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1973 , or under section 10 of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Act, 1976 ;

(i) an offence under this Act.

(2) Where a member of the Garda Síochána who with reasonable cause suspects that an offence to which this section applies has been, is being or is about to be committed requires a person to stop a vehicle with a view to ascertaining whether—

(a) any person in or accompanying the vehicle has committed, is committing or is about to commit the offence, or

(b) evidence relating to the commission or intended commission of the offence by any person is in or on the vehicle or on any person in or accompanying it,

he may search the vehicle, and if (whether before or after the commencement of the search) he suspects with reasonable cause that any of the facts mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b) above exists, he may search any person in or accompanying the vehicle.

(3) A member of the Garda Síochána may use reasonable force in order to compel a person to comply with a requirement to stop a vehicle, and such force may include the placing of a barrier or other device in the path of vehicles.

(4) Any reference in subsection (1) of this section to an offence includes a reference to attempting or conspiring to commit the offence.