Constitution of Malta

Body: 

Article 34(1) No person shall be deprived of his personal liberty save as may be authorised by law in the following cases, that is to say - (a) in consequence of his unfitness to plead to a criminal charge; (b) in execution of the sentence or order of a court, whether in Malta or elsewhere, in respect of a criminal offence of which he has been convicted; (c) in execution of the order of a court punishing him for contempt of that court or of another court or tribunal or in execution of the order of the House of Representatives punishing him for contempt of itself or of its members or for breach of privilege; (d) in execution of the order of a court made to secure the fulfilment of any obligation imposed on him by law; (e) for the purpose of bringing him before a court in execution of the order of a court or before the House of Representatives in execution of the order of that House; (f) upon reasonable suspicion of his having committed, or being about to commit, a criminal offence; (g) in the case of a person who has not attained the age of eighteen years, for the purpose of his education or welfare; (h) for the purpose of preventing the spread of an infectious or contagious disease; (i) in the case of a person who is, or is reasonably suspected to be, of unsound mind, addicted to drugs or alcohol, or a vagrant, for the purpose of his care or treatment or the protection of the community; or (j) for the purpose of preventing the unlawful entry of that person into Malta, or for the purpose of effecting the expulsion, extradition or other lawful removal of that person from Malta or the taking of proceedings relating thereto or for the purpose of restraining that person while he is being conveyed through Malta in the course of his extradition or removal as a convicted prisoner from one country to another. (2) Any person who is arrested or detained shall be informed at the time of his arrest or detention, in a language that he understands, of the reasons for his arrest or detention: Provided that if an interpreter is necessary and is not readily available or if it is otherwise impracticable to comply with the provisions of this sub-article at the time of the person’s arrest or detention, such provisions shall be complied with as soon as practicable. (3) Any person who is arrested or detained - (a) for the purpose of bringing him before a court in execution of the order of a court; or (b) upon reasonable suspicion of his having committed, or being about to commit, a criminal offence, and who is not released, shall be brought not later than forty-eight hours before a court; and if any person arrested or detained in such a case as is mentioned in paragraph (b) of this sub-article is not tried within a reasonable time, then, without prejudice to any further proceedings which may be brought against him, he shall be released either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions, including in particular such conditions as are reasonably necessary to ensure that he appears at a later date for trial or for proceedings preliminary to trial. (4) Any person who is unlawfully arrested or detained by any other person shall be entitled to compensation therefore from that person. (5) Nothing contained in or done under the authority of any law shall be held to be inconsistent with or in contravention of this article to the extent that the law in question authorises the taking during such a period of public emergency as is referred to in paragraph (a) or (c) of sub-article (2) of article 47 of this Constitution of measures that are reasonably justifiable for the purpose of dealing with the situation that exists during that period of public emergency. (6) If any person who is lawfully detained by virtue only of such a law as is referred to in the last foregoing sub-article so requests at any time during the period of that detention not earlier than six months after he last made such a request during that period, his case shall be reviewed by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law and composed of a person or persons each of whom holds or has held judicial office or is qualified to be appointed to such office in Malta. (7) On any review by a tribunal in pursuance of the last foregoing sub-article of the case of any detained person, the tribunal may make recommendations concerning the necessity or expediency of continuing his detention to the authority by whom it was ordered, but, unless it is otherwise provided by law, that authority shall not be obliged to act in accordance with any such recommendations.

Type of law: 
National constitutional law
Charter article: 
Country: 
Malta