Investigations with Criminal Proceeds
At EBR Attridge we understand that best advice early on can not only be advantageous but manage the effect of any investigation, into your personally or your business, where believed to be involved in criminal proceeds.
The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) included a consolidation of existing powers and new powers of investigation into the extent and whereabouts of the proceeds of crime. The provisions for those investigations are set out in Part 8 of POCA.
These powers are limited to confiscation investigations, civil recovery investigations, detained cash investigations, money laundering investigations and exploitation proceeds investigations. They are strictly limited to these five types of investigation and are therefore not available for investigations into other proceedings under the Act or criminal investigations more generally. Evidence obtained under these powers may be used for other purposes provided that there is no legal or other restriction on its use and that the evidence was obtained for the purposes of a POCA investigation and its use in other matters is purely collateral.
Part 8 of POCA provides five investigation powers: production orders, search and seizure warrants, customer information orders, account monitoring orders and disclosure orders. All the investigation orders are subject to judicial approval. In England and Wales their use must be approved by a judge entitled to exercise the jurisdiction of the Crown Court, or in both jurisdiction in the case of civil recovery and exploitation proceeds investigations by a High Court judge. Only the production order and search and seizure warrant are available in a detained cash investigation and a disclosure order is not available in a money laundering investigation. The ability to apply for a disclosure order is effectively limited to certain specified prosecutors.
It is therefore vital to take expert legal advice from a specialist firm of fraud solicitors skilled in dealing with these investigation as well as any thereafter allegations, charges and any subsequent prosecutions. We at EBR Attridge can confidently say we are familiar and versed with the investigatory practices of organisations such as the Crown Prosecution Service, HM Revenue and Customs, National Crime Agency, Serious Fraud Office, City of London Economic Unit, Financial Conduct Authority, Trading Standards and many more. In addition we appear regularly before the High Court on third party applications and ancillary matters.
If you are being investigated or prosecuted, please make an appointment to see a specialist fraud Solicitor who can attend upon you by telephone, face-to-face or online.