'Fundamental weaknesses' in a system to deprive criminals of the proceeds of their crimes remain, according to the public spending watchdog, which says offenders now owe £1.6bn to the state.

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2 comments… add one
  • chris boughton-fox 24/03/2016, 08:26

    The facts speak for themselves – those responsible constantly misapply the law and whilst these figures make sensational headlines for prosecutors, they are intentionally misleading and unrealistic, essentially they are dishonest and misrepresent the facts.

    Confiscation legislation is there to deprive criminals of their ill-gotten gains, however, is regularly used as a further sentence/punishment.

    The problem is:
    • The burden of proof shifts – how can anyone prove they haven’t got something – it should be up to the prosecutor to prove the asset exists and its location.
    • The prosecutor has an entirely free hand to ‘throw whatever he wants into the pot’, however realistic or not it may be.
    • The Court is unwilling to listen to reason or facts.

    Prosecutors and the judiciary are responsible for clogging up prisons with white collar criminals….where money is involved it’s seen as a far worse crime that acts of violence.

    Surely it would be better (even sensible) that non-violent criminals, are fined and or given punishments that help the community, rather than given lengthy prison sentences that serve no purpose and cost the state.

    As with all miscarriages of justice, until such time those responsible are held to account and made to pay for their wrongs, bad practice within the judiciary will continue. If confiscation orders are made that do materialise, punish those responsible for making them.

    Prosecutors are routinely granted Restraint Orders, so have no excuse for not seizing assets to meet Confiscation Orders, where they invent ‘hidden assets’ or ‘tainted gifts’ that are intangible, it’s no wonder they do not materialise.

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  • chris boughton-fox 08/04/2016, 09:17

    Regina v Boyle Transport (Northern Ireland) Ltd and Others
    “The Crown Court had not considered sufficiently what benefit accrued to the defendants personally: The Defendants’ benefit was their enhanced salary, dividends or other pecuniary advantage that had accrued as a result of the Old Company being operated in an illegal way. The benefit was not the turnover. Likewise the assets of the old company did not belong to PB and MB.”

    The vast majority of prosecutors and Crown Court Judges fantasise, adopting an ignorant/arrogant approach, or simply deliberately fail to comprehend the facts, when it comes to confiscation, in order to make attention grabbing, sensational headlines, I guess for self-justification of the costs to the public purse in pursuing such cases, and this is why we have the situation where so much remains uncollected in cases where fictitious confiscation orders are made.
    In these cases those responsible within the judiciary should be held accountable for their misdeeds.

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