Section 116-135 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Section 116 to 135 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 is under PART 15 (ISSUE, FORM AND SERVICE OF SUMMONS) of the Act.
Section 116 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Issue and service
A summons may be issued or served on any day, including a Sunday or public holiday.
Section 117 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Issue of summons and contents
Where a complaint is made before a Magistrate as provided in section 115 of this Act and the Magistrate decides to issue a summons, the summons shall be directed to the suspect, stating concisely the substance of the complaint and requiring him to appear at a certain time and place not less than forty-eight hours after the service of the summons before the court to answer to the complaint and to be further dealt with according to law.
Section 118 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Hearing by consent before return date of summons
The court may, if it thinks fit and with the consent of the parties, hear and determine a complaint notwithstanding that the time within which the defendant was required to appear may not have elapsed.
Section 119 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Summons with immediate return date in special circumstances
Where, on a complaint being made before a Magistrate as provided in section 115 of this Act, the Magistrate decides to issue a summons, the defendant may be directed to appear immediately in cases where an affidavit is made by the complainant either at the time of making the complaint or subsequently that the defendant is likely to leave the district within 48 hours.
Section 120 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Discretion in ex parte application
Nothing contained in sections 117, 118, or 119 of this Act shall oblige a Magistrate to issue a summons in any case where the application for an order may by law be made ex parte.
Section 121 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Summons to be in duplicate
A summons issued by a court under this Act shall be in writing, made in duplicate, signed by the presiding officer of the court or by such other officer as the Chief Judge may specify, from time to time.
Section 122 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Service of summons
A summons shall be served by a police officer or by an officer of the court issuing it or other public officer, or through a courier service company duly registered with the Chief Judge as a process service agent of the court under this Act.
Section 123 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Normal methods of effecting service
The person effecting service of a summons shall effect it by delivering it on:
(a) an individual, to him personally; or
(b) a firm or corporation; (i) to one of the partners; (ii) to a director; (iii) to the secretary; (iv) to the chief agent within the jurisdiction; (v) by leaving it at the principal place of business in Nigeria of the firm or corporation; or (vi) to anyone having at the time of service control of the business of the firm;
(c) a Local Government Council, then in accordance with the Local Government Act, or Law;
(d) the Nigeria Police Force, or the office of the Inspector-General of Police, to the Commissioner of Police of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja or of the State;
(e) any Federal Government Ministry, Department or Agency, to the Attorney-General of the Federation;
(f) any state Government Ministry, Department or Agency, to the Attorney-General of the State; or
(g) any arm of the armed forces, to the Director of Legal Services of the Service or Command concerned.
Section 124 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Service where person summoned cannot be found
Where service in the manner provided by section 123(a) of this Act cannot by the exercise of due diligence be effected, the serving officer may, with leave of the court, affix one of the duplicates of the summons to some conspicuous part of the premises or place in which the individual to be served ordinarily resides or works, and on doing so the summons shall be deemed to have been duly served.
Section 125 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Service on public officers
(1) Where a public officer is to be served with a summons, the court issuing the summons may send it in duplicate to the officer in charge of the department in which the person is employed for the purpose of being served on the person, if it appears to the court that it may be most conveniently so served.
(2) The officer in charge of the department shall on receiving the summons cause it to be served in the manner provided by section 123 (a) of this Act and shall return the duplicate to the court under his signature, with the endorsement required by section 115 of this Act, which signature shall be evidence of the service.
Section 126 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Service outside jurisdiction of court
Where a court issues a summons to a person outside its jurisdiction, the summons shall be sent in duplicate to a court in whose jurisdiction the person resides or works.
Section 127 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Proof of service when serving officer not present
Where the officer who served a summons is not present at the hearing of the case, proof of service, may be done by endorsement on a duplicate of the summons and by an affidavit showing when and how the service was affected.
Section 128 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Receipt of service of summons
(1) Where a summons has been served on the person to whom it is addressed or is delivered to any other person, the person to whom it is addressed or the person to whom it is delivered, as the case may be, shall acknowledge receipt at the back of the duplicate.
(2) Where service is not effected by delivering the summons to an individual but by some other method approved by this Act, the person effecting service shall endorse on the duplicate particulars of the method by which he effected service.
Section 129 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Person refusing to sign receipt may be arrested
A person who is required to sign a receipt on the back of a duplicate summons to the effect that he has received the summons and fails to sign the receipt may be:
(a) arrested by the person serving the summons or any other person with powers of arrest under this Act and taken before the court which issued the summons; and
(b) detained in custody or committed to prison for such time not exceeding 14 days as the court may deem fit.
Section 130 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Proof of service
An affidavit or declaration made before a court by the serving officer or by a witness to the service or return slip of a registered courier service company that a summons has been served and a duplicate of the summons endorsed, by the person to whom it was delivered or tendered or with whom it was left is admissible in evidence and the statements made in it is deemed to be correct unless and until the contrary is proved.
Section 131 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Summons disobeyed, warrant may be issue
Where the court is satisfied that the suspect has been served with a summons and the suspect does not appear at the time and place appointed in and by the summons and his personal attendance has not been dispensed with under section 135 of this Act, the court may issue a warrant for his arrest and production before the court.
Section 132 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Issue of warrant for suspect in the first instance
Where a complaint is before a Magistrate as provided in this Act, and the Magistrate decides to issue a warrant, he shall issue a warrant to arrest the suspect and bring him before the court to answer the complaint and be dealt with according to law.
Section 133 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Application of sections 35 to 47 to such warrant
Where a warrant of arrest is issued in consequence of a complaint on oath as provided under section 132 of this Act, the provisions of sections 35 to 47 of this Act shall apply to such warrant.
Section 134 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Warrant may be issued before or after return date of summons
Notwithstanding the issue of a summons as in section 177 of this Act, a warrant may be issued at any time before or after the time appointed for the appearance of the suspect.
Section 135 Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015
Power to dispense with personal attendance of defendant in certain cases
(1) Where a Magistrate issues a summons in respect of any offence for which the penalty is a fine not exceeding Ten thousand Naira or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months or both, the Magistrate on application of the defendant:
(a) may dispense with the personal attendance of the defendant where the offence is punishable by fine or imprisonment or both; and
(b) shall dispense with personal attendance of the defendant where the offence is punishable by fine only if the defendant pleads guilty in writing or appears and so pleads by his legal practitioner.
(2) The Magistrate trying a case in which the presence of the defendant has been dispensed with may, in his discretion, at any subsequent stage of the proceedings, direct the personal attendance of the defendant and, if necessary, enforce the attendance by means of the issue of a warrant to arrest the defendant and bring him before the court.
(3) Where a Magistrate imposes a fine on a defendant whose personal attendance has been dispensed with under this section, the Magistrate may at the same time direct that if the fine is not paid within a stated time, the amount shall be recovered by distress or that the defendant shall be imprisoned for a period calculated in accordance with the provisions contained in this Act for the non-payment of a fine.
(4) Where the attendance of a defendant is dispensed with and previous convictions are alleged against him not admitted in writing or through his legal practitioner, the court may adjourn the proceedings and direct the personal attendance in the same manner as provided in sub-section (2) of this Section.
(5) Where the attendance of a defendant has been dispensed with, and his attendance is subsequently required, the cost of any adjournment for that purpose shall be borne by the defendant.