Criminal Justice Act, 1994

Taking of evidence in State for use outside State.

51.—(1) This section shall have effect where the Minister receives—

(a) from a court or tribunal exercising criminal jurisdiction in a country or territory outside the State or a prosecuting authority in such a country or territory, or

(b) from any other authority in such a country or territory which appears to him to have the function of making requests of the kind to which this section applies,

a request for assistance in obtaining evidence in the State in connection with criminal proceedings that have been instituted, or a criminal investigation that is being carried on, in that country or territory.

(2) If the Minister is satisfied—

(a) that an offence under the law of the country or territory in question has been committed or that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that such an offence has been committed, and

(b) that proceedings in respect of that offence have been instituted in that country or territory or that an investigation into that offence is being carried on there,

he may, if he thinks fit, by a notice in writing nominate a judge of the District Court to receive such of the evidence to which the request relates as may appear to the judge to be appropriate for the purpose of giving effect to the request.

(3) For the purpose of satisfying himself as to the matters mentioned in subsection (2) (a) and (b) of this section the Minister may regard as conclusive a certificate issued by such authority in the country or territory in question as appears to him to be appropriate.

(4) In this section “evidence” includes documents and other articles.

(5) The Minister shall not exercise the power conferred on him by subsection (2) of this section unless provision is made by the law of the country or territory or by arrangement with the appropriate authority therof that any evidence that may be furnished in response to the request will not, without his consent, be used for any purpose other than that specified in the request.

(6) The Second Schedule to this Act shall have effect with respect to the proceedings before the nominated judge in pursuance of a notice under subsection (2) of this section.

(7) The following enactments are hereby repealed, that is to say—

(a) section 24 of the Extradition Act, 1870,

(b) section 5 of the Extradition Act, 1873,

(c) sections 3 (1) (b) and (2) (c) and 4 (1) (b) of the Extradition (European Convention on the Suppression of Terrorism) Act, 1987 , and

(d) section 1 (3) (c) of the Extradition (Amendment) Act, 1994 .

(8) Section 3 of the Genocide Act, 1973 , is hereby amended by the substitution therefor of the following section:

“Extradition and evidence for foreign courts.

3.—(1) No offence which, if committed in the State, would be punishable as genocide or as an attempt, conspiracy or incitement to commit genocide shall be regarded as a political offence or an offence connected with a political offence for the purposes of the Extradition Act, 1965 .

(2) A person shall not be exempt from extradition under the Extradition Act, 1965 , for an offence referred to in subsection (1) of this section on the ground that, under the law in force at the time when, and in the place where, he is alleged to have committed the act of which he is accused or of which he was convicted, he could not have been punished therefor.”.

(9) Notwithstanding subsections (7) and (8) of this section, if before the coming into operation of this section any steps have been taken with a view to the taking of evidence under any of the enactments mentioned in those subsections or the taking of such evidence has begun, the taking of the evidence may be begun or continued as if those subsections had not been enacted.