Law No. 121/99 of 20 August

Use of metal detectors

 The Assembly of the Republic decrees, under the terms of paragraph c) of article 161 of the Constitution, to apply as general law of the Republic the following:

Article 1 - Use of metal detectors

1. The use of metal detectors in the search for objects and artefacts relevant to history, art, numismatics or archeology is prohibited.

2 - The use and transportation of unlicensed metal detectors for the purpose of searching monuments and archaeological sites classified or under classification is also prohibited, pursuant to Law No. 13/85 of 6 July.

Article 2 - Licensing

1 - It is incumbent upon the member of the Government for the area of ​​culture, through the body responsible for the protection of cultural heritage, to authorize, by granting a license, the use of metal detectors, in accordance with the objectives to be attained, of the places prospecting and the scientific suitability of the person concerned.

2-the license referred to in the preceding paragraph is valid for one year, upon request containing the following elements:

(a) the identity of the applicant;

(b) purpose of prospecting;

c) Places to prospect;

(d) Characteristics of the metal detection apparatus.

Article 3 - Advertising and marketing

1 - In all advertising relating to metal detectors, the transcription of article 1 and the penalties provided for in this law are mandatory, a transcription that must also be included in a document to be delivered to the buyer by the merchant at the time of sale.

2 - A warning should be applied to the product packaging, in Portuguese, which ensures easy visibility.

Article 4 - Supervision

Supervision of compliance with the provisions of this law is the responsibility of the body responsible for protecting the cultural heritage, from which complaints or participation may be lodged for violation of the provisions of this law.

Article 5 - Offenses

1 - Violation of the provisions of articles 1 and 3 of this law shall constitute an offense punishable by a fine of $ 500,000 to $ 1,000,000 and of $ 1,500,000 to $ 900,000,000, as practiced by a natural or legal person, respectively.

2 - In the case provided for in the preceding paragraph, negligence is punishable, being the minimum and maximum amount of the fine to be applied equal to half of the minimum and maximum amounts provided for therein.

3 - The attempt is punishable.

Article 6 - Additional sanctions

1 - In infringement proceedings provided for in the preceding article, additional sanctions may also be applied under the terms of the general law:

(a) loss of the metal detector used in the offending practice;

(b) loss of any archaeological, historical, artistic or numismatic property which may be found.

2 - If the final judgment condemning the loss of equipment or property in favor of the State, it is up to the member of Government responsible for the area of ​​culture to determine the respective allocation.

Article 7 - Jurisdiction

1 - The authority for the prosecution of administrative offenses is the body responsible for the protection of cultural heritage or the inspection of cultural activities, depending on the entity that raises the record.

2 - The body responsible for the protection of cultural heritage shall be responsible for imposing fines and ancillary sanctions.

Article 8 - Subsidiary law

Anything not specifically regulated in the preceding articles applies the general regime of breaches.

Article 9 - Revenue

The revenue from the fines is divided into 60% for the state and 40% for the body responsible for protecting cultural heritage.

Article 10 - Entry into force

This law comes into force 90 days after its publication.

Approved on 1 July 1999.

The President of the Assembly of the Republic, António de Almeida Santos.

Promulgated on July 30, 1999.

Publish yourself.

The President of the Republic, JORGE SAMPAIO.

Countersigned on 12 August 1999.

The acting Prime Minister Jaime José Matos da Gama.