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Contents (2002 - 115)
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Terrorism (Police Powers) Act 2002 No 115
Current version for 28 November 2018 to date (accessed 5 April 2020 at 07:15)
Part 3 Division 3
Division 3 Application for, and issue of, covert search warrant
27G   Power to apply for covert search warrant
An eligible police officer who is given an authorisation under Division 2 may apply to an eligible Judge for a covert search warrant in respect of any premises if the officer suspects or believes on reasonable grounds:
(a)  that a terrorist act has been, is being, or is likely to be, committed, and
(b)  that the entry to and search of the premises will substantially assist in responding to or preventing the terrorist act, and
(c)  that it is necessary for the entry and search of those premises to be conducted without the knowledge of any occupier of the premises.
27H   Application for warrant in person
(1)  An application for a covert search warrant must be in writing and must be made by the applicant in person.
(2)  An eligible Judge must not issue a covert search warrant unless the information given by the applicant in or in connection with the application is verified before the Judge on oath or affirmation or by affidavit.
(3)  An eligible Judge may administer an oath or affirmation or take an affidavit for the purposes of an application for a covert search warrant.
(4)  This section does not apply to a telephone warrant.
27I   Telephone warrant
(1)  An eligible police officer who is given an authorisation under Division 2 may apply by telephone for a covert search warrant.
(2)  An eligible Judge must not issue a covert search warrant on an application made by telephone unless the Judge is satisfied that the warrant is required urgently and that it is not practicable for the application to be made in person.
(3)  An application must be made by facsimile if the facilities to do so are readily available for that purpose.
(4)  If it is not practicable for an application for a covert search warrant to be made by telephone directly to an eligible Judge, the application may be transmitted to the Judge by another person on behalf of the applicant.
(5)  An eligible Judge who issues a covert search warrant on an application made by telephone must:
(a)  complete and sign the warrant, and
(b)  provide the warrant to the person who made the application or inform that person of the terms of the warrant and of the date when it was signed.
(6)  If a covert search warrant is issued on an application made by telephone and the applicant was not provided with the warrant, the applicant must:
(a)  complete a form of warrant in the terms indicated by the eligible Judge under subsection (5), and
(b)  write on it the name of that Judge and the date when the warrant was signed, and
(c)  provide the warrant to that Judge within 2 business days of the issue of the warrant.
(7)  A form of covert search warrant so completed is taken to be a warrant issued in accordance with this Division.
(8)  A covert search warrant is to be provided by an eligible Judge by transmitting it by facsimile if the facilities to do so are readily available, and the copy produced by that transmission is taken to be the original warrant.
(9)  In this section:
facsimile means facsimile transmission, the internet or any other means of electronic transmission of information in a form from which written material is capable of being reproduced with or without the aid of any other device or article.
telephone includes any communication device.
27J   Information in application for warrant
(1)  An eligible Judge must not issue a covert search warrant unless the application for the warrant includes the following information:
(a)  the name of the applicant and details of the authorisation given to the applicant under Division 2,
(b)  the address or other description of the subject premises,
(c)  particulars of the grounds on which the application is based,
(d)  the name of the following persons:
(i)  any person believed to be knowingly concerned in the commission of the terrorist act in respect of which the application is made,
(ii)  if no such person is an occupier of the subject premises—any occupier (if known) of those premises,
(e)  if it is proposed that premises adjoining or providing access to the subject premises be entered for the purposes of entering the subject premises—the address or other description of the premises that adjoin or provide such access and particulars of the grounds on which entry to those premises is required,
(f)  the powers that are proposed to be exercised on entry to the subject premises,
(g)  a description of the kinds of things that are proposed to be searched for, seized, placed in substitution for a seized thing, copied, photographed, recorded, operated, printed or tested,
(h)  if a previous application for the same warrant was refused—details of the refusal and any additional information provided as required by section 27M,
(i)  details of any covert search warrant that has previously been issued in respect of the subject premises,
(j)  any other information required by the regulations.
(2)  The applicant must provide (either orally or in writing) such further information as the eligible Judge requires concerning the grounds on which the warrant is being sought.
27K   Determining application for covert search warrant
(1)  An eligible Judge to whom an application for a covert search warrant is made may, if satisfied that there are reasonable grounds for doing so, issue a covert search warrant.
(2)  An eligible Judge, when determining whether there are reasonable grounds to issue a covert search warrant, is to consider (but is not limited to considering) the following matters:
(a)  the reliability of the information on which the application is based, including the nature of the source of the information,
(b)  whether there is a connection between the terrorist act in respect of which the application has been made and the kinds of things that are proposed to be searched for, seized, placed in substitution for a seized thing, copied, photographed, recorded, operated, printed or tested,
(c)  the nature and gravity of the terrorist act,
(d)  the extent to which the exercise of powers under the warrant would assist in the prevention of, or response to, the terrorist act,
(e)  alternative means of obtaining the information sought to be obtained,
(f)  the extent to which the privacy of a person who is not believed to be knowingly concerned in the commission of the terrorist act is likely to be affected if the warrant is issued,
(g)  if it is proposed that premises adjoining or providing access to the subject premises be entered for the purposes of entering the subject premises:
(i)  whether this is reasonably necessary in order to enable access to the subject premises, or
(ii)  whether this is reasonably necessary in order to avoid compromising the investigation of the terrorist act,
(h)  whether any conditions should be imposed by the Judge in relation to the execution of the warrant.
27L   Record of determination by eligible Judge
(1)  An eligible Judge who determines an application for a covert search warrant must cause a record to be made of all relevant particulars of the grounds the eligible Judge has relied on to justify the issue of the warrant or the refusal to issue the warrant (as the case may be).
(2)  The regulations may make provision for or with respect to:
(a)  the keeping of records in connection with the issue and execution of covert search warrants, and
(b)  the inspection of any such records, and
(c)  any other matter in connection with any such records.
(3)  Any matter that might disclose the name or residential address of a person must not be recorded pursuant to this section if the eligible Judge is satisfied that to do so might jeopardise the safety of any person.
27M   Further application for warrant after refusal
If an application by a person for a covert search warrant is refused by an eligible Judge, that person (or any other person who is aware of the application) may not make a further application for the same warrant to that or any other eligible Judge unless the further application provides additional information that justifies the making of the further application.
27N   Contents of covert search warrant
A covert search warrant is to specify the following matters:
(a)  the name of the person who applied for the warrant,
(b)  the address or other description of the subject premises,
(c)  the name of the following persons:
(i)  any person believed to be knowingly concerned in the commission of the terrorist act in respect of which the warrant is issued,
(ii)  if no such person is an occupier of the subject premises—any occupier (if known) of those premises,
(d)  a description of the kinds of things that may be searched for, seized, placed in substitution for a seized thing, copied, photographed, recorded, operated, printed or tested,
(e)  the date on which the warrant is issued,
(f)  the date on which the warrant expires (being a date that is not more than 30 days from the date on which the warrant is issued),
(g)  any conditions imposed in relation to the execution of the warrant,
(h)  any other matter required by the regulations.