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(1)Except as otherwise provided in this section, no proceedings shall be commenced against any person for the recovery of any penalty under the Taxes Acts except by order of the Board.
(2)Any such proceedings which are not instituted (in England, Wales or Northern Ireland) under the Crown Proceedings Act 1947 by and in the name of the Board as an authorised department for the purposes of that Act shall be instituted in the name of an officer, or—
(a)in England and Wales, in the name of the Attorney General,
(b)in Scotland, in the name of the Lord Advocate, and
(c)in Northern Ireland, in the name of the Attorney General for Northern Ireland.
(3)Any such proceedings may, except as otherwise provided in the Taxes Acts, be commenced either before the General or Special Commissioners, or
(a)in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, in the High Court,
(b)in Scotland, in the Court of Session as the Court of Exchequer in Scotland,
and any proceedings commenced as mentioned in paragraph (a) of this subsection shall be deemed to be civil proceedings by the Crown within the meaning of Part II of the Crown Proceedings Act 1947 or, as the case may be, 'that Part as for the time being in force in Northern Ireland.
(4)The inspector may, without an order of the Board, commence before the General Commissioners (or, in Northern Ireland, the Special Commissioners) proceedings for a penalty incurred by any person under section 93(1) or section 98(1) of this Act for a failure to deliver, furnish or produce anything to the inspector; but in any proceedings so commenced the Commissioners shall not in any case award, in respect of the penalty under paragraph (a) of the said section 93(1), a sum exceeding £50.
(5)Where the person who has incurred any penalty has died, any proceedings under this section which have been or could have been commenced against him may be continued or commenced against his personal representatives, and any penalty awarded in proceedings so continued or commenced shall be a debt due from and payable out of his estate; but nothing in this subsection shall extend the time for commencing proceedings against personal representatives.
(6)Where any proceedings under this section are brought before any Commissioners, an appeal shall lie to the High Court or, in Scotland, the Court of Session as the Court of Exchequer in Scotland, from their decision—
(a)by any party, on a question of law, and
(b)by the defendant (or, in Scotland, the defender) against the amount of any penalty awarded,
and on any appeal under paragraph (b) above the court may either confirm the decision or reduce or increase the sum awarded.
(7)Proceedings under this section before any Commissioners shall be by way of information in writing, made to them, and upon summons issued by them to the defendant (or defender) to appear before them at a time and place stated in the summons, and they shall hear and determine each case in a summary way; and any penalty awarded by them in such proceedings shall for all purposes be treated as if it were tax charged in an assessment and due and payable.
(8)The Commissioners or the court before whom any proceedings for a penalty of a fixed amount are brought under this section may, if they think fit, give judgment for a less amount.
(9)The Governor of Northern Ireland may, if he thinks fit, appoint some other person to act instead of the Attorney General for Northern Ireland in relation to any matters to which this section relates, and in that case the reference in this section to the Attorney General for Northern Ireland shall be construed as a reference to the person so appointed.
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