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Cash Seizure & Forfeiture

Cash seizure and forfeiture proceedings often occur when a person is suspected of committing an offence contrary to the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.

Legitimate explanations for having large amounts of cash in a suspect's possession are sometimes disbelieved by the authorities, who often assume "drug dealer" or "tax evader" when somebody is stopped with a large amount of cash despite being able to account for the source of funds.

If this has happened to you, we are in a position to help.

Whatever stage your case is in cash seizure or forfeiture proceedings, it is never too late to obtain legal advice from us. We leave no stone unturned to have legitimate cash which has been seized restored to its owners.

Contact us for further assistance.

The Law

The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 gives the Police and Customs Officers the power to seize cash in your possession.


If the police or customs officers find in your possession an amount of cash over £1000, and if they have reasonable grounds for suspecting it is either the proceeds of crime or to be used in unlawful activity, they may seize it and require you to provide evidence of where the cash has come from.

An application will need to be made for further detention of the cash; this will need to be made to the Magistrates Court within 48 hours.

The Magistrates Court then has the power to allow ongoing detention of the cash for 3 months. Further applications can be made periodically for the money to remain seized whilst investigations are ongoing.

At the end of the investigation, the authorities will need to decide whether to return the money or make an application for forfeiture.
Should the authorities decide to proceed with a forfeiture application, the matters will be determined by a Magistrates Court in a contested hearing.

If the Magistrates Court orders forfeiture, this decision can be appealed in the Crown Court.

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