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PART 2General duties in relation to seized property

General duty in relation to seized property

4.  Where any property is seized on behalf of a seizure authority under section 5 of the 1989 Act or section 34B of the 1990 Act, the seizure authority must deal with the seized property in accordance with these Regulations.

Duty of safe custody

5.  A seizure authority must keep the seized property in safe custody until—

(a)any duty to return under regulation 14, 15(2)(b), 16(2)(b) or 17(2)(c) ceases in accordance with regulation 19(1); or

(b)where applicable, the ability to sell, destroy or otherwise dispose of the seized property arises in accordance with regulation 21 or 22.

Ascertainment of entitled person

6.—(1) Where the seized property is a vehicle, a seizure authority must, on the date of seizure or the first working day after that date—

(a)request information as to the registered keeper of the vehicle—

(i)where there is a Great Britain or Northern Ireland registration mark, from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency;

(ii)where there is a foreign registration mark, from the relevant authority in the country of registration; and

(b)take reasonable steps to identify whether the vehicle is subject to a hire-purchase agreement and, if so, to identify the person entitled to possession of the vehicle under that agreement.

(2) In this regulation, “hire-purchase agreement” has the meaning given in section 189(1) of the Consumer Credit Act 1974(1) (definitions).

Notice of seizure

7.—(1) A seizure authority must give notice of the seizure of property under section 5 of the 1989 Act or under section 34B of the 1990 Act by—

(a)displaying a notice at the office of the seizure authority on whose behalf the seizure was made, for the period—

(i)beginning with the first working day after the date of seizure; and

(ii)ending 15 working days after that date; and

(b)publishing such notice in a newspaper or on the seizure authority’s website in accordance with regulation 8.

(2) A seizure notice must contain the following information—

(a)a brief description of the seized property, including any registration mark;

(b)the time and place where the property was seized;

(c)the power under which the property was seized;

(d)the name and contact details, including the address, of the seizure authority;

(e)the address and contact details of where to claim entitlement to the property (if different from that given under sub-paragraph (d));

(f)the claim period;

(g)an explanation of the evidence that a claimant will need to provide to the seizure authority to establish entitlement to the seized property in accordance with regulation 11; and

(h)an explanation that the seized property can be sold, destroyed or otherwise disposed of in accordance with regulation 21 if it is not claimed within the claim period or if a claimant who brought a claim within such period is not determined as entitled.

Publication of seizure notice

8.  The requirements in relation to publication in regulation 7(1)(b) are—

(a)where publication is in a newspaper—

(i)the newspaper must be a local newspaper, or, if there is none, a local newsletter, circular or similar document, circulating within the area of the office of the seizure authority on whose behalf the seizure was made; and

(ii)the seizure notice must be published on at least one occasion within the period beginning with the date of the seizure notice and ending 15 working days after that date;

(b)where publication is on the seizure authority’s website—

(i)the website must be its only website or, if not, the website that is wholly or mainly used by the authority to publicise matters relating to waste; and

(ii)the seizure notice must be published for the period beginning with the first working day after the date of the seizure notice and ending 15 working days after that date.

Service of seizure notice

9.—(1) A copy of the seizure notice must be served on—

(a)the chief officer of police for the police area in which the property was seized;

(b)the person (if any) identified as the registered keeper under regulation 6(1)(a); and

(c)the person (if any) identified as entitled to possession under regulation 6(1)(b).

(2) The copy of the seizure notice must be served—

(a)in the case of notice served under paragraph (1)(a) or (b), within the period beginning with the date of the seizure notice and ending 5 working days after that date;

(b)in the case of notice served under paragraph (1)(c), within the period beginning with the date on which the person entitled to possession was identified and ending 5 working days after that date.

(3) In this regulation, “chief officer of police” has the meaning given in section 101(1) of the Police Act 1996(2) (interpretation).