Individuals under investigation for fraud offences may find themselves subject to restraint orders restricting access to their bank accounts and other property. These measures are often the first step in a criminal investigation and can be obtained without notice and at the request of domestic or overseas prosecuting authorities.
We assist individuals and companies in responding to disclosure orders and limiting or challenging the legality of restraint orders and applying for their early discharge.
Companies or individuals targeted by the police or government agencies can find themselves subject to;
- Freezing or “Restraint” Orders prohibit any dealings with specified assets. A restraint order may typically prevent an individual from withdrawing money from specified accounts or selling property until the conclusion of their case. The aim of the order is to preserve a defendant’s property so that any confiscation order made by the court can be satisfied. We can assist individuals or third parties affected by a restraint order can apply for it’s removal, variation or discharge or ask for their living expenses to be paid while the police investigate or prosecute a case.
- Disclosure Orders compel an individual or company to disclose all it’s assets. Disclosure Orders must be used in accordance with a Code of Practice. Failure to comply is a contempt of court.
- Receivership Orders where the court appoints a receiver to administer the estate of a person under investigation during POCA proceedings with substantial cost implications for the person under investigation.
- Production Orders are normally used to compel access to bank accounts.
- Customer Information Orders requiring a financial institution to provide information requested by a court.
- Account Monitoring orders enabling law enforcement agencies to monitor the activity in an account for a set period.
The police and government agencies also have wide-ranging investigatory powers to apply for search warrants to enter and seize property likely to be of substantial value to an investigation or to obtain material specified in a production order.