The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA) has been described as draconian due to the powers it gives the authorities regarding restraint and freezing orders, confiscation and cash forfeiture. In all three areas, legal expertise is required to make sure you do not lose what is rightfully yours.
Rahman Ravelli is acknowledged as an award-winning, elite firm in all aspects of this challenging field of law. Our experts can ensure the authorities do not keep what they are not entitled to.
Restraint and freezing orders can come as a shock as they are made before any arrest and usually without the subject being aware of anything happening. But this does not mean they cannot be contested.
The requirement that the authorities show “reasonable cause’’ that someone has benefitted from criminal conduct can lead to a legal challenge. An order can also be varied or discharged if it can be shown that procedural rules were not followed properly, the prosecution did not disclose everything to the Judge when applying for an Order or that there is no risk of the assets being squandered away. Jointly-held property and living expenses also offer scope to vary an Order.
Confiscation, which usually happens after conviction, can involve anything from immense sums through to very modest amounts. It is a complicated legal area which requires expertise regarding POCA in order to challenge the nature and scale of a confiscation claim. It can involve issues such as disproving prosecution claims regarding hidden assets or the amount of profit a person received. We are recognised as being among the very best in the UK when it comes to such matters.
Cash forfeiture is usually done during an investigation. Even if an investigation does not conclude with a prosecution, you can still face a fight to retrieve your cash. Expertise in POCA is necessary in order to fight to recover your money and challenge the assumptions that led to the forfeiture in the first place.