CONFISCATION ORDERS

[2020] EWCA Crim 552
[2020] EWCA Crim 552
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, Fraser J, Sir Nicholas Blake)
23 April 2020

A “patteggiamento”, consisting of a negotiated agreement for a penalty in criminal cases, equated to a criminal conviction under Italian law. It could also be regarded as a “conviction” for the purposes of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (External Requests and Orders) Order 2005 art.21, enabling the registration and enforcement of an Italian confiscation order pursuant to art.21(2).

[2020] EWHC 496 (Admin)
[2020] EWHC 496 (Admin)
QBD (Admin) (Freedman J)
6 March 2020

In a case concerning a confiscation order made under the Drug Trafficking Act 1994, an individual’s judicial review challenge to a finding that a French property in which he had an interest amounted to the proceeds of crime was bound to fail. The Criminal Justice and Data Protection (Protocol No. 36) Regulations 2014, which applied to confiscation orders made under the 1994 Act, made clear that there was no requirement for the Crown to prove that the assets against which enforcement was made had come from the particular drugs offence.

[2020] EWCA Crim 413
[2020] EWCA Crim 413
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, Lewis J, May J)
18 February 2020

The expansive definition of “proceeds of an offence” in the Criminal Justice and Data Protection (Protocol No. 36) Regulations 2014 reg.3(2)(c)(ii) strongly pointed to a wide application of the phrase “in relation to property” in another Member State used in reg.11(2)(a).

QBD (Admin) (Lewis J)
21 January 2020

The court made a certificate under the Drug Trafficking Act 1994 s.16(2) in relation to property inherited after a confiscation order had been made in circumstances where the original offences had been committed before March 2003 and the Supreme Court had held that s.16(2) did apply to property acquired after a confiscation order had been made.

[2019] EWCA Crim 2204
[2019] EWCA Crim 2204
CA (Crim Div) (Irwin LJ, Warby J, Martin Spencer J)
22 November 2019

The Crown Court had been entitled to vary upwards a confiscation order after the High Court, in a claim by the defendant against his solicitors alleging that their conveyancing error had led to his conviction for breaching an enforcement notice and the confiscation order, had made an order indemnifying him against any increase in the order. The indemnity represented an “available amount” for the purposes of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 s.22.

[2019] EWCA Crim 1897
[2019] EWCA Crim 1897
CA (Crim Div) (Leggatt LJ, Carr J, Judge Thomas QC)
25 October 2019

Where a confiscation order had been made against a defendant who had been convicted of offences involving the improper retention of pension contributions, it was not disproportionate to require her to pay the full amount of the benefit obtained. Although she might have received the benefit of the pension contributions in any event, it was not open to her to argue that she would or might have acquired valuable rights had she acted honestly.

CA (Crim Div) (Leggatt LJ, Popplewell J, Judge Marson QC)
18 July 2019

The court refused to vary a confiscation order imposed following an individual’s guilty plea to breach of an enforcement notice by illegally renting out three bedsits. The rental income had been a benefit received as a result of criminal conduct for the purposes of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 s.76. It was not open to the applicant to argue that as he could have lawfully received a benefit from the property, that amount should be deducted from the confiscation order.

[2019] EWHC 1227 (QB)
[2019] EWHC 1227 (QB)
QBD (Jefford J)
15 May 2019

A private prosecutor was not entitled to payment out of central funds of his costs relating to confiscation order enforcement proceedings, as the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 s.17 was not intended to apply to civil proceedings in the High Court, even if the proceedings were consequential on criminal proceedings.

[2019] EWCA Civ 588
[2019] EWCA Civ 588
CA (Civ Div) (Patten LJ, Hamblen LJ, Holroyde LJ)
9 April 2019

Where a company had a proprietary claim over proceeds of fraud because they had been obtained through the unlawful use of its property by its directors, it was entitled to assert its claim in priority to a confiscation order obtained by the CPS.

[2019] EWCA Crim 501
[2019] EWCA Crim 501
CA (Crim Div) (Davis LJ, William Davis J, Judge Potter)
26 March 2019

The Criminal Justice and Data Protection (Protocol No. 36) Regulations 2014 were to be read purposively so as to give effect to Framework Decision 2006/783 on the application of the principle of mutual recognition to confiscation orders. The Regulations could be applied to confiscation orders made before their coming into effect unless it would cause real unfairness to do so. Confiscation orders could extend to property which did not directly represent the proceeds of crime where the defendant had benefited from general criminal conduct.

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