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23.—(1) Proceedings for an offence under these Regulations may be instituted by order of the Commissioners.
(2) Such proceedings may be instituted only against an operator or high value dealer or, where such a person is a body corporate, a partnership or an unincorporated association, against any person who is liable to be proceeded against under regulation 27 (offences by bodies corporate etc.).
(3) Any such proceedings which are so instituted must be commenced in the name of an officer.
(4) In the case of the death, removal, discharge or absence of the officer in whose name any such proceedings were commenced, those proceedings may be continued by another officer.
(5) Where the Commissioners investigate, or propose to investigate, any matter with a view to determining—
(a)whether there are grounds for believing that an offence under these Regulations has been committed by any person mentioned in paragraph (2); or
(b)whether such a person should be prosecuted for such an offence;
that matter is to be treated as an assigned matter within the meaning of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979.
(6) In exercising their power to institute proceedings for an offence under these Regulations, the Commissioners must comply with any conditions or restrictions imposed in writing by the Treasury.
(7) Conditions or restrictions may be imposed under paragraph (6) in relation to—
(a)proceedings generally; or
(b)such proceedings, or categories of proceedings, as the Treasury may direct.
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