Air Navigation and Transport Act, 1988



Detention of aircraft.

41.—(1) The Minister may direct the detention of any aircraft (other than a State aircraft) subject to such conditions, and for such time, as he may specify for the purpose of securing compliance with—

(a) any provision of the Principal Act, or any instrument made thereunder;

(b) the Chicago Convention, or any order made under Part II of the Act of 1946 (as amended by this Act), or any regulation made or direction given under any such order;

(c) the provisions of the Convention relating to Co-operation for the Safety of Air Navigation signed at Brussels on the 13th day of December, 1960, or with any instrument made under the Act of 1963; or

(d) any provision of the Act of 1965, or any instrument made or direction given under that Act.

(2) (a) Where the Minister has, pursuant to subsection (1), directed the detention of an aircraft, an authorised officer may detain such aircraft and, in any such case, shall, as soon as may be practicable, notify the appropriate air traffic services authority and, where the authorised officer is not an officer of customs and excise, he shall, as soon as may be practicable, notify the appropriate officer of customs and excise.

(b) For the purpose of exercising his functions under this subsection, an authorised officer shall have power to enter any aerodrome, and to enter and inspect any aircraft he finds thereon.

(3) If an aircraft, after service on the pilot in command of any notice or order for the detention of the aircraft, or whilst it is detained pursuant to a direction of the Minister under subsection (1), take-off, or attempts to take-off, without the prior permission of an authorised officer, the following provisions shall have effect, that is to say:—

(a) the pilot in command and also the owner or operator (where such person is not the owner) of the aircraft, and any person who causes the aircraft to take-off, or to attempt to take-off, shall each be guilty of an offence;

(b) if such aircraft, when so taking-off, has on board in the execution of his duty an authorised officer, the pilot in command, and also the owner or operator (if such person is not the owner), of such aircraft shall each be guilty of an offence, and shall also be liable to pay to the Minister all expenses of and incidental to such officer being so taken on such aircraft.

(4) Where a person charged with an offence under this section is not the pilot in command of the aircraft in respect of which such offence is alleged to have been committed, it shall be a good defence for such person to prove that, on the occasion on which such offence is alleged to have been committed, he was not a party or privy to the taking-off or attempted taking-off of such aircraft.

(5) Any expenses payable to the Minister under subsection (3) (b) may be recovered by him as a simple contract debt in a court of competent jurisdiction.

(6) Each of the following shall be an authorised officer for the purposes of this section, that is to say:—

(a) a commissioned officer of the Defence Forces of the State;

(b) an officer of the Minister;

(c) an officer of customs and excise;

(d) any person authorised by the Minister in that behalf.

(7) Where, pursuant to subsection (1), an aircraft is to be detained, an officer of customs and excise shall, and where, pursuant to that subsection, an aircraft may be detained, may, refuse to clear that aircraft outwards or to grant a transire to such aircraft.

(8) Air traffic services shall not be provided for any aircraft for the purpose of contravening a direction for the detention of that aircraft pursuant to subsection (1).

(9) In this section, “air traffic services” includes the following services, that is to say, flight information service, alerting service, air traffic advisory service, air traffic control service, area control service, approach control service and aerodrome control service.

(10) Subsections (2) (a) and (3) to (9) shall also apply to any aircraft detained under section 16 , 18 or 32 .