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Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

Section 357: Disclosure orders

516.Under subsection (1), only the Director may apply to a judge for a disclosure order. It is available in respect of a confiscation and a civil recovery investigation but not a money laundering investigation. Owing to the necessarily invasive nature of the disclosure order, it is thought appropriate to limit the order’s use to the Director. Since the Director will not have a role in the investigation of money laundering offences, it is a consequence that the disclosure order will not be available for use in money laundering investigations. Furthermore, the Director can only apply for a disclosure order in respect of his own investigations (subsection 3). He cannot use this power on behalf of law enforcement authorities in respect of investigations they are carrying out and in which the Director is not otherwise involved. However, law enforcement authorities can transfer entire confiscation investigations to the Director if this is thought necessary.

517.Once a disclosure order has been made, the Director may use the extensive powers set out in subsection (4) throughout the investigation. Thus, unlike the other orders covered by this Part which have to be applied for separately on each occasion, a disclosure order gives the Director continuing powers for the purposes of the investigation. A person may require that evidence of the authority to exercise disclosure powers be provided. Where this happens, it is envisaged that a copy of the disclosure order will be given to the person.

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