Defence Act 1954

177

F151 [ Charges against officers and other specified persons.

177. (1) A charge against a person subject to military law

( a ) as an officer, or

( b ) as a non-commissioned officer in the rank of sergeant major or battalion quarter-master sergeant or their equivalent naval ranks,

shall, subject to the giving of a notice under section 177A, in accordance with regulations made under section 184, be investigated by the person s commanding officer or, if the Deputy Chief of Staff (Support) so directs, by such officer as the Deputy Chief of Staff (Support) may appoint for the purpose.

(2) ( a ) Where a person is charged with a scheduled offence, the officer investigating the charge under subsection (1) of this section shall

(i) where the person charged holds the rank of lieutenant colonel or commander or any higher commissioned rank

(I) subject to paragraph ( b ) of this subsection, dismiss the charge if, in his discretion, he considers that it should not be proceeded with, or

(II) remand the person charged for trial by court-martial if he considers that the charge should be proceeded with,

(ii) in any other case

(I) subject to paragraph ( b ) of this subsection, dismiss the charge if, in his discretion, he considers that it should not be proceeded with, or

(II) remand the person charged for trial by court-martial if he considers that the charge should be proceeded with, or

(III) subject to this section and to regulations made under section 184, refer the charge for summary investigation by an authorised officer.

( b ) In the case of a charge against a person for a scheduled offence specified in Part II of the Eleventh Schedule to this Act, dismissal of the charge under subparagraph (i)(I) or (ii)(I) of paragraph ( a ) of this subsection or referral of the charge for summary investigation by an authorised officer under subparagraph (ii)(III) of the said paragraph ( a ) shall be subject to the prior consent of the Director and where the Director refuses consent in any such case the person charged shall be remanded for trial by court-martial.

(3) ( a ) Where a person is charged with an offence other than a scheduled offence, the officer investigating the charge under subsection (1) of this section shall

(i) subject to the prior consent of the Director, dismiss the charge if the officer considers that it should not be proceeded with, or

(ii) remand the person for trial by court-martial.

( b ) Where the Director refuses consent to the dismissal of the charge concerned, the person charged shall be remanded for trial by court-martial.

(4) Where a person is remanded under this section for trial by court-martial, the matter shall be referred to the Director for his directions.

(5) Where a person is charged with an offence for which the person would be required on conviction to be sentenced to imprisonment for life and the charge is investigated under this section, the person may, if he so wishes, be represented by counsel (within the meaning of section 196) or by an officer subject to military law. ]

Annotations:

Amendments:

F151

Substituted (1.09.2008) by Defence (Amendment) Act 2007 (24/2007), s. 22, S.I. No. 254 of 2008, subject to transitional provisions in s. 3 and sch. 1, para. 3 .

Editorial Notes:

E33

Previous affecting provision: section amended (24.06.1987) by Defence (Amendment) Act 1987 (8/1987), s. 3(1), commenced on enactment, subject to transitional provision in s. 16; substituted as per F-note above.