Search Legislation

Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

Section 72: Serious default

129.Section 72 provides for compensation to be paid to a person whose property has been affected by the enforcement of the confiscation legislation. Compensation is only payable where an investigation is started but proceedings are never brought, or the defendant is not convicted of an offence, or his conviction is quashed, or he is pardoned. In all cases, there must have been a serious default on the part of one or more of the enforcement authorities specified in subsection (9). The restriction to serious default cases is based on the principle that the restraint and realisation of property is ancillary to a criminal trial in the same way as the detention of a person pending trial. In neither case is compensation paid on acquittal as a matter of course.

130.Section 72 is largely based on earlier legislation except that the provisions have been extended to cover the situation where an investigation is started but proceedings are never brought. Under the Act, it will be possible for a restraint order to be made as soon as a criminal investigation has been started (at present, this is only possible where proceedings have been started or are about to be). Therefore, compensation will in future be payable, subject to criteria including the serious default test, from the beginning of an investigation, not only where proceedings have been started.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources