Freedom of Information: Proceeds of Crime Act (R008501)
Thank you for your e-mail of 30 August 2014 in which you requested the undernoted information:
"Please can you tell me since the Proceeds of Crime Act was introduced, how many nominal confiscation orders of £1 have been made?
Can you outline who these were taken out against, when and what court they happened and the crimes they were convicted of?
For each case can you also please outline what their Proceeds of Crime was calculated to be?
Out of this total can you also please outline how many have had further action taken under Proceeds of Crime Act to by the Crown to subsequently seize assets after the nominal award?
Out of the further action please outline what was subsequently seized and when?"
I have considered your request under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA).
As requested, I attach for your information a table showing the number of nominal confiscation orders of £1.00 which have been recorded by the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS) since April 2003. This table also provides information in relation to the name of the accused, the Court the order was made in and the date of the order. It also indicates the offence the accused was convicted of and the figure calculated to be the "Proceeds of Crime".
Despite making significant amounts of money from crime some individuals have no available assets at the time the case against them is proved in court. In such cases, a nominal order is made against them for £1. This ensures that the Crown can confiscate any assets they obtain in the future up to the amount they made from their criminal activity by making an application to the court to vary the confiscation order allowing these assests to be confiscated. It can in effect be a financial life sentence, ensuring those who benefited from crime in the past cannot accrue any assets until the money they made is repaid.
I can advise that to date there have been no instances in which the nominal confiscation order of £1.00 has been varied, however, in such cases COPFS work closely with reporting agencies – the Department for Work and Pensions, Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs and the Police Service of Scotland. If and when COPFS become aware of new or previously unknown assets we could and would seek to vary the amount of the confiscation order up to reflect this, in terms of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, Section 108.