Confiscation proceedings under POCA 2002 following conviction for handling stolen vehicles.
We were appointed on behalf of the Defendant who had been convicted of handling two stolen vehicles, the value of these being around £40,000. The Prosecution applied the ‘criminal lifestyle’ assumptions and he faced a confiscation order for around £250,000. Unusually, his realisable assets were far in excess of the benefit figure, being well over £1 million.
We produced a detailed forensic accounting report considering unidentified bank receipts, vehicle sales and both UK and overseas property transactions.
Following a five day confiscation hearing, which resulted in Peter Smith giving evidence; the Defendant’s benefit was found to be in the region of £70,000, the majority of which was the value of the stolen vehicles that he handled. This being almost 75% less than the original benefit figure. The presiding Judge stated that: ‘Mr Smith’s evidence was very clear and most helpful.’