Section 9-17-8

Oil and Gas Board - Powers as to witnesses; enforcement of subpoenas issued by board.

(a) The board or any member thereof is hereby empowered to issue subpoenas for witnesses, to require their attendance and the giving of testimony before it and to require the production of such books, papers and records in any proceeding before the board as may be material upon questions lawfully before the board. Such subpoenas shall be served by the sheriff or any other officer authorized by law to serve process in this state. No person shall be excused from attending and testifying or from producing books, papers and records before the board or a court or from obedience to the subpoena of the board or a court on the ground or for the reason that the testimony or evidence, documentary or otherwise, required of him may tend to incriminate him or subject him to a penalty or forfeiture; provided, that nothing contained in this section shall be construed as requiring any person to produce any books, papers or records or to testify in response to any inquiry not pertinent to some question lawfully before such board or court for determination. No natural person shall be subjected to criminal prosecution or to any penalty or forfeiture for or on account of any transaction, matter or thing concerning which he may be required to testify or produce evidence, documentary or otherwise, before the board or court or in obedience to its subpoena; provided, that no person testifying shall be exempt from prosecution and punishment for perjury committed in so testifying.

(b) In case of failure or refusal on the part of any person to comply with any subpoena issued by the board or any member thereof or in case of the refusal of any witness to testify or answer to any matter regarding which he may be lawfully interrogated, any circuit court in this state, on application of the board, may, in term time or vacation, issue an attachment for such person and compel him to comply with such subpoena and to attend before the board and produce such documents and give his testimony upon such matters as may be lawfully required, and such court have the power to punish for contempt as in case of disobedience of like subpoenas issued by or from such court or for a refusal to testify therein.

(Acts 1945, No. 1, p. 1, §11.)