Blog

Jul 20, 2017 Expansion to cash seizure provisions The Criminal Finances Act 2017 (CFA 2017) received Royal Assent on 27th April 2017 and makes a number of changes to the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA 2002), including an expansion to the cash seizure provisions available to investigating authorities.  The CFA 2017 introduces section 303B to POCA 2002 which now allows the following assets to be seized where the item is over the statutory minimum value of £1,000: Precious metals; Precious stones; Watches; Artistic works; Face-value vouchers; and Postage stamps. These items can be seized and an application made for ... Read More
Jul 6, 2017 Extension of the SAR moratorium period Extension of the SAR moratorium period Section 10 of the Criminal Finances Act 2017 provides a scheme for the extension of the moratorium period beyond 31 days. The Government justifies this in the explanatory notes to the bill, stating that at present it “often does not allow sufficient time to develop the evidence, particularly where it must be sought from overseas through mutual legal assistance.” The application for an extension must be made to the Crown Court / Sheriff Court. The Court can grant an extension if it is satisfied that: An investigation is being carried out ... Read More
May 31, 2017 Jurisdiction and Conspiracy to Injure by Unlawful Means Introduction In the recent decision in Khrapunov v JSC BTA Bank [2017] EWCA Civ 40, the Court of Appeal (CA) made a number of interesting rulings relating to unlawful means conspiracy and jurisdiction. In particular, the CA held that (1) a contempt of court could constitute unlawful means as part of an unlawful means conspiracy and (2) the place of the event giving rise to damages in a claim for conspiracy to injure will be the place in which the conspiracy was made.  The context of the CA’s findings and their potential implications are discussed below. Proceedings against Mr ... Read More
May 2, 2017 Third Party Rights: What’s in a name? On 22 March this year, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in the case of Macris v FCA [2017] UKSC 19 (on appeal from [2015] EWCA Civ 490)   This followed extensive litigation between the parties from the Upper Tribunal to the Court of Appeal to the Supreme Court with Mr Macris successful until the final hurdle. The FCA emerged victorious (albeit probably somewhat surprised) but will this have the effect of derailing the many identification cases that have followed Mr Macris’ trailblazing footsteps? The nuance of the four separate judgements make this a complicated ... Read More
Apr 12, 2017 Notification Injunctions: a lower evidential threshold for risk of dissipation? A notification injunction is an order which prohibits the respondent from dealing with or disposing of assets without first providing advance notice to the applicant. It thus gives the applicant an opportunity to examine the proposed transaction and decide whether to apply for an injunction prohibiting it. The courts have recently considered the evidential threshold for notification injunctions – and in particular the question whether it is different from the threshold for freezing injunctions – in the dispute between Mark Holyoake and the Candy brothers. In April last year Mr ... Read More
Apr 10, 2017 Reduction in Sentence for a Guilty plea – The Definitive guideline In my previous blog on this subject I entreated people to take part in the consultation regarding the proposed changes to the reductions in sentence that should be applied for a guilty plea. Those proposed changes have now come to pass. Consequently, for all offenders aged 18 or over and organisations that have their first hearing in respect of their proceedings on or after 1 June 2017 the following will apply: Where a plea is indicated at the first stage of the proceedings a reduction of one third (maximum) applies. The “first stage of the proceedings” for summary offences ... Read More
Mar 21, 2017 Police and Crime Act 2017 – does this really mean the end of lengthy pre-charge bail conditions? The Policing and Crime Act 2017 (“PCA”) received Royal Assent on the 31st of January 2017 and is due to come into force on the 3rd of April 2017. It has been portrayed as a positive reform which will reduce the time individuals spend on bail before being charged. But does the legislation actually achieve this aim? The PCA creates a presumption of release without bail and places time limits on the length of pre-charge police bail. In most cases the initial period will be capped at 28 days with a superintendent being able to extend this for a further 3 months. Thereafter any ... Read More
Mar 13, 2017 Trial Without Jury In February 2017 during a trial at Leeds Crown Court, HHJ Goss discharged a jury and continued the trial in their absence in response to attempts made to tamper with the jury’s verdict. Partway through his summing up the Court was required to be evacuated and during this time 5 jurors were approached and offered bribes in return for certain verdicts. The jurors informed HHJ Goss who then made the exceptional decision to discharge the jury and deliberate on the verdict himself. He convicted all 3 defendants of conspiracy to commit fraud and he also found 2 of them guilty of manslaughter. ... Read More
Feb 21, 2017 Small cases, big results Michael Potts' interview with Commercial Dispute Resolution News by Dimitar Ganev  Click here to read the full article                                                                     Michael.Potts@byrneandpartners.com 020 7842 ... Read More
Feb 14, 2017 Are you ready for the new Anti-Money Laundering Directive? The new Directive as of the European Commission proposal On 26th June 2015, the Fourth European Anti-Money Laundering Directive (EU 2015/849) (the Directive) came into force. Member States will have until 26th June 2017 to implement the Directive into national law. The Directive replaces the Third Anti-Money Laundering Directive (2005/60/EC), which was implemented in the UK by way of the Money Laundering Regulations 2007 (SI 2007/2157). The Directive aims to prevent the European Union’s financial system from being used for tax evasion, terrorist financing and money ... Read More