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Police (Property) Act 1897

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2 Regulations with respect to unclaimed property in possession of police.E+W

(1)A Secretary of State may make regulations for the disposal of property which has come into the possession of the police under the circumstances mentioned in this Act in cases where the owner of the property has not been ascertained and no order of a competent court has been made with respect thereto.

(2)The regulations may authorise the sale of any such property, and the application of the proceeds of any such sale, and the application of any money of which the owner cannot be ascertained, to all or any of the following purposes:

(a)the expenses of executing the regulations;

(b)the payment of reasonable compensation to any person by whom the property has been delivered into the possession of the police;

(c)the making of payments for the benefit of discharged prisoners or of persons dependent on prisoners or discharged prisoners; or

(d)such other purposes as the Secretary of State may consider expedient.

[F1(2A)The regulations may also provide that where, in the case of property other than money—

(a)the property has remained in the possession of the police for a year,

(b)the police would under the regulations have power to sell the property,

(c)in the opinion of the [F2relevant body], the property can be used for police purposes, and

(d)the [F2relevant body] determine, in such manner as may be prescribed by the regulations, that the property is to be retained by [F3the relevant body],

the [F2relevant body] is to become the owner of the property on the making of the determination or at such later time as the regulations may specify.

[F4(2B)The [F5relevant body] for the purposes of subsection (2A) is the [F6local policing body].]]

(3)Where the property is a perishable article or its custody involves unreasonable expense or inconvenience it may be sold at any time, but the proceeds of sale shall not be disposed of until they have remained in the possession of the police for a year. In any other case the property shall not be sold until it has remained in the possession of the police for a year.

(4)The regulations may also provide for the investment of money and for the audit of accounts.

[F7(4A)The regulations may also provide for the publication of determinations falling within subsection (2A)(d) above.]

(5)The regulations shall apply whether the property to which they relate has come into the possession of the police before or after . . . F8 the making of the regulations.

[F9(6)In relation to England and Wales, the power to make regulations under this section is exercisable by statutory instrument; and a statutory instrument made in the exercise of that power is subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(7)In relation to Northern Ireland, the power to make regulations under this section is exercisable by statutory rule for the purposes of the M1Statutory Rules (Northern Ireland) Order 1979; and regulations made in the exercise of that power are subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament in like manner as a statutory instrument and section 5 of the M2Statutory Instruments Act 1946 shall have effect accordingly.]

Textual Amendments

F1S. 2(2A)(2B) inserted (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 1(2), 7(2)

F4S. 2(2B) substituted (1.10.2002) by 2002 c. 30, s. 77(2); S.I. 2002/2306, art. 2(d)(viii)

F7S. 2(4A) inserted (19.5 1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 1(3), 7(2)

F9S. 2(6)(7) substituted for s. 2(6) (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 1(4), 7(2)

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1S. 2 extended (25.8.2000) by 2000 c. 6, ss. 144(2)-(4), 168(1)

C4S. 2(2A)(a) excluded (E.W.) (19.5.1997) by 1973 c. 62, s. 43(7) (as inserted (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 2(3), 7(2))

S. 2(2A)(a) excluded (N.I.) (19.5.1997) by S.I. 1994/2795, art. 11(8B) (as inserted (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 3(3), 7(2))

C5S. 2(3) excluded (E.W.) (19.5.1997) by 1973 c. 62, s. 43(7) (as inserted (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 2(3), 7(2))

S. 2(3) excluded (N.I.) (19.5.1997) by S.I. 1994/2795, art. 11(8B) (as inserted (19.5.1997) by 1997 c. 30, ss. 3(3), 7(2))

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