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Proceeds of Crime Act 1995

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12 Authority for search.E+W

The following section shall be inserted in the 1988 Act after the section 93H inserted by section 11 above—

93I Authority for search.

(1)A constable may, for the purposes of an investigation into whether any person has benefited from any criminal conduct or into the extent or whereabouts of the proceeds of any criminal conduct apply to a Circuit judge for a warrant under this section in relation to specified premises.

(2)On such application the judge may issue a warrant authorising a constable to enter and search the premises if the judge is satisfied—

(a)that an order made under section 93H above in relation to material on the premises has not been complied with;

(b)that the conditions in subsection (3) below are fulfilled; or

(c)that the conditions in subsection (4) below are fulfilled.

(3)The conditions referred to in subsection (2)(b) above are—

(a)that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that a specified person has benefited from criminal conduct;

(b)that the conditions in subsection (4)(b) and (c) of section 93H above are fulfilled in relation to any material on the premises; and

(c)that it would not be appropriate to make an order under that section in relation to the material because—

(i)it is not practicable to communicate with any person entitled to produce the material;

(ii)it is not practicable to communicate with any person entitled to grant access to the material or entitled to grant entry to the premises on which the material is situated; or

(iii)the investigation for the purposes of which the application is made might be seriously prejudiced unless a constable could secure immediate access to the material.

(4)The conditions referred to in subsection (2)(c) above are—

(a)that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that a specified person has benefited from any criminal conduct;

(b)that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that there is on the premises any such material relating—

(i)to the specified person, or

(ii)to the question whether that person has benefited from any criminal conduct or to any question as to the extent or whereabouts of the proceeds of any criminal conduct,

as is likely to be of substantial value (whether by itself or together with other material) to the investigation for the purposes of which the application is made, but that the material cannot at the time of the application be particularised; and

(c)that—

(i)it is not practicable to communicate with any person entitled to grant entry to the premises;

(ii)entry to the premises will not be granted unless a warrant is produced; or

(iii)the investigation for the purposes of which the application is made might be seriously prejudiced unless a constable arriving at the premises could secure immediate entry to them.

(5)Where a constable has entered premises in the execution of a warrant issued under this section, he may seize and retain any material, other than items subject to legal privilege and excluded material, which is likely to be of substantial value (whether by itself or together with other material) to the investigation for the purposes of which the warrant was issued.

(6)Subsection (12) of section 93H above shall apply for the purposes of this section as it applies for the purposes of that section.

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