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Cars seized – Proceeds of Crime Act (17/05/2016) (R013003)

Cars seized – Proceeds of Crime Act (R013003)

Thank you for your request dated 4 May 2016 under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA) for the undernoted information:


“How many cars have been seized by the Crown Office under the Proceeds of Crime Act (both live and closed cases) for the years 

2013-2014

2014-2015

2015-2016

I'd appreciate if you could provide me with a breakdown of the make and model of each car?”


I may be useful if I begin by setting out some background in respect of the civil recovery regime under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (2002 Act).  The Civil Recovery Unit (CRU) acts on behalf of the Scottish Ministers in exercise of their functions under Part 5 of the 2002 Act.  The civil recovery functions of the CRU are exercised independently of the prosecutorial functions of the rest of COPFS.  Whilst criminal confiscation targets persons, civil recovery targets assets which are or which represent the proceeds of crime, and recovers them. 

The CRU handles all actions for non-conviction based asset forfeiture in Scotland.  CRU functions under the 2002 Act can be divided into two areas; asset recovery and cash forfeiture.  Cash forfeiture cases are heard in the Sheriff Court.  Other assets are dealt with by proceedings raised in the Court of Session.

On the application of the CRU on behalf of the Scottish Ministers, money seized by law enforcement officers under the cash recovery provisions of the 2002 Act can be detained and then forfeited by the Sheriff Court.  Forfeited cash is remitted to the Scottish Consolidated Fund.

Where proceedings are to be brought on behalf of the Scottish Ministers for the recovery of non-cash assets, the assets may be secured pending recovery by one of two types of Court order.  The first is an interim administration order (IAO); the second is a prohibitory property order (PPO).  Both of these orders are granted by the Court of Session following applications by the CRU.

The CRU does not exercise seizure powers, other than in relation to search warrants granted under Section 387 of the 2002 Act.  Alternatively, an interim administrator appointed under Section 256 of the 2002 Act may exercise seizure powers under Schedule 6 of the 2002 Act.

Where the Scottish Ministers are able to satisfy the Court of Session that property has been obtained unlawfully, the Court pronounces a recovery order under Section 266 of the 2002 Act in respect of that property.  The effect of such recovery order is that the property is immediately vested in the Trustee for Civil Recovery (the Scottish Ministers’ nominee).  The function of the Trustee is to realise the value of the property.  Realised funds are then transferred to the Scottish Consolidated Fund and provided to Cashback for Communities for use in projects across Scotland.

Turning now to your request, I can confirm that no cars were seized by COPFS under the Proceeds of Crime Act for the period requested.  Accordingly, there is no data to consider for the second part of your request.