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;
- Artistic works;
- Face-value vouchers; and
- Postage stamps.
These items can be seized and an application made for forfeiture where there is a reasonable suspicion that the property constitutes the proceeds of crime or that it will be used in unlawful conduct. It is likely that this will lead to an increase of cases where the police use these provisions as a simple way to take property believed to have derived from criminal conduct.
Further, it is worth noting that the act now extends the use of civil recovery powers to the FCA and HMRC, in addition to the NCA, SFO and CPS, who may now bring proceedings in the High Court to recover criminal property, without the need for the owner of the property to be convicted of a criminal offence (Part V POCA 2002).
Amy is a criminal litigator with experience in serious and complex general crime and white collar crime. She has worked on a range of cases prosecuted by the Crown Prosecution Service , SFO, Revenue and Customs, and Trading Standards. She has defended investigations and prosecutions for large scale drug offences, money laundering, sexual offences, serious violence and murder. She is also experienced in confiscation proceedings.
Amy is a solicitor advocate (Higher Courts Criminal) and represents clients at the police station, Magistrates and Crown Court.