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The following sections shall be inserted after section 30 of the Northern Ireland (Emergency Provisions) Act 1996—“30A Evidence and inferences
(1) This section applies where a person is charged with an offence under section 30(1)(a); and references here to a specified organisation must be construed in accordance with section 30B.
(2) Subsection (3) applies if a police officer of or above the rank of superintendent states in oral evidence that in his opinion the accused—
(a) belongs to an organisation which is specified, or
(b) belonged at a particular time to an organisation which was then specified.
(3) If this subsection applies—
(a) the statement shall be admissible as evidence of the matter stated, but
(b) the accused shall not be committed for trial or be found to have a case to answer or be convicted solely on the basis of the statement.
(4) Subsection (6) applies if evidence is given that—
(a) at any time before being charged with the offence the accused, on being questioned under caution by a constable, failed to mention a fact which is material to the offence and which he could reasonably be expected to mention, and
(b) before being questioned he was permitted to consult a solicitor.
(5) Subsection (6) also applies if evidence is given that—
(a) on being charged with the offence or informed by a constable that he might be prosecuted for it the accused failed to mention a fact which is material to the offence and which he could reasonably be expected to mention, and
(b) before being charged or informed he was permitted to consult a solicitor.
(6) If this subsection applies—
(a) the court, in considering any question whether the accused belongs or belonged at a particular time to a specified organisation, may draw from the failure inferences relating to that question, but
(b) the accused shall not be committed for trial or be found to have a case to answer or be convicted solely on the basis of the inferences.
(7) Subject to any directions by the court, evidence tending to establish the failure may be given before or after evidence tending to establish the fact which the accused is alleged to have failed to mention.
(8) This section does not—
(a) prejudice the admissibility of evidence admissible apart from this section;
(b) preclude the drawing of inferences which could be drawn apart from this section;
(c) prejudice an enactment providing (in whatever words) that an answer or evidence given by a person in specified circumstances is not admissible in evidence against him or some other person in any proceedings or class of proceedings (however described, and whether civil or criminal).
(9) In subsection (8)(c) the reference to giving evidence is a reference to giving it in any manner (whether by giving information, making discovery, producing documents or otherwise).
(10) In this section “police officer” means a member of—
(a) a police force within the meaning of the Police Act 1996 or the Police (Scotland) Act 1967, or
(b) the Royal Ulster Constabulary.
(11) This section does not apply to a statement made or failure occurring before the day on which the Criminal Justice (Terrorism and Conspiracy) Act 1998 was passed.30B Specified organisations
(1) For the purposes of section 30A an organisation is specified at a particular time if at that time—
(a) it is specified under section 3(8) of the Northern Ireland (Sentences) Act 1998 or under subsection (2) below, and
(b) it is, or forms part of, an organisation which is proscribed for the purposes of this Act.
(2) If the condition in subsection (3) is satisfied the Secretary of State may by order specify an organisation which is not specified under section 3(8) of the Northern Ireland (Sentences) Act 1998.
(3) The condition is that the Secretary of State believes that the organisation—
(a) is concerned in terrorism connected with the affairs of Northern Ireland, or in promoting or encouraging it, and
(b) has not established or is not maintaining a complete and unequivocal ceasefire.
(4) An order under this section shall be made by statutory instrument; and no order shall be made unless a draft has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, each House of Parliament.”
Royal Assent: 4 September 1998: (no specific commencement provision).