Confiscation Proceedings under Proceeds of Crime Act

What are confiscation proceedings and how do they affect you?

Proceedings can be instigated by the Prosecution or by the Court for confiscation and the standard of proof is the balance of probabilities. The ordinary rules of criminal evidence do not apply in these cases.

There are four stages to the confiscation process:

  1. Determining criminal lifestyle
  2. Determining benefit from criminal conduct
  3. Determining the recoverable amount
  4. Determining the available amount

To determine a “criminal lifestyle” certain factors are considered:

  • The nature of the offence is considered, eg drug trafficking, money laundering, counterfeiting or blackmail;
  • Whether an offence has formed part of a course of criminal activity, for example being convicted of similar offences in a specified period of time;
  • An offence committed from which there had been financial benefit of over £5,000.

IBB can assist if:

  • A Confiscation Order has been made against you and  you wish to appeal it;
  • A Confiscation Order has been made against you and you cannot meet it;
  • Your assets have been placed under restraint by a Court Order because you are directly subject to proceedings yourself;
  • Your assets are believed to be either wholly or partly owned by someone who is directly subject to proceedings.

The Procedures you need to be aware of

Forfeiture Investigation: The authorities have seized cash from you and have invited you to an interview to offer an explanation.

Forfeiture Proceedings: The authorities have seized cash from you and have applied to the Court to retain it.

We can also advise you if you are a third party affected by a Restraint or Confiscation Order. Once imposed a Confiscation Order lasts until it is paid in full. You can receive a custodial sentence should you fail to pay the order in the time set by the Court. Expert advice at the outset of proceedings can make a significant difference in the value of the Confiscation Order set. So don’t delay – contact us today.  


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