Gale and Another -v- Serious Organised Crime Agency; SC 26 Oct 2011

References: [2011] UKSC 49, UKSC 2010/0190, [2011] 1 WLR 2760
Links: Bailii, Bailii Summary, SC Summary, SC
Coram: Lord Phillips, President, Lord Brown, Lord Mance, Lord Judge, Lord Clarke, Lord Dyson, Lord Reed
Civil recovery orders had been made against the applicant. He had been accused and acquitted of drug trafficking allegations in Europe, but the judge had been persuaded that he had no proper explanation for the accumulation of his wealth, and had rejected his evidence as unreliable.
Held: The defendant’s appeal failed. The making of an order under the 2002 Act is a civil claim, and article 6(1) applies, but not article 6(2) or (3). The facts of the dismissal of the charges abroad were not sufficiently closely connected with the allegations underlying the application here for the recovery order for the not guilty findings to prevent an order here.
Statutes: Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005, European Convention on Human Rights 6(1) 6(2) 6(3)
This case cites:

  • See Also – The Director of the Assets Recovery Agency -v- Gale and others Admn (Bailii, [2008] EWHC 1095 (Admin))
    Burden of costs in asset revovery case – third party without capacity. . .
  • At first instance – Serious Organised Crime Agency -v- Gale and Others QBD (Bailii, [2009] EWHC 1015 (QB), [2010] Lloyd’s Rep FC 39)
    Mr Gale had been prosecuted twice in foreign courts on allegations of drug trafficking. Each prosecution had failed. The Agency nevertheless sought an order under the 2002 Act alleging that his property was the fruit of criminal activity.
  • Appeal from – Gale and Others -v- Serious Organised Crime Agency CA (Bailii, [2010] EWCA Civ 759, [2010] Lloyd’s Rep FC 557, [2010] 1 WLR 2881)
    The appellants challenged an order made against them under the 2002 Act where Mr Gale had been prosecuted abroad, but not convicted on drug trafficking allegations. The Agency said that no satisfactory explanation had been given of the considerable . .
  • Cited – Engel And Others -v- The Netherlands (1) ECHR (5101/71, 5354/72, 5102/71, 5370/72, Bailii, Bailii, [1976] ECHR 3, 5100/71, (1976) 1 EHRR 647)
    The court was asked whether proceedings in a military court against soldiers for disciplinary offences involved criminal charges within the meaning of Article 6(1): ‘In this connection, it is first necessary to know whether the provision(s) defining . .
  • Cited – Briggs-Price, Regina -v- HL (Bailii, [2009] UKHL 19, Times, [2009] HRLR 21, [2009] 2 WLR 1101, [2009] Lloyd’s Rep FC 442, [2009] 1 AC 1026, [2009] 4 All ER 594)
    The applicant appealed against a confiscation order made on the basis of evidence obtained for and given in a trial that he had profited from the importation of cannabis. He had not faced trial on an associated charge, but had been convicted of . .
  • Cited – In re D; Doherty, Re (Northern Ireland); Life Sentence Review Commissioners -v- D HL (Bailii, [2008] UKHL 33, Times 24-Jun-08, HL, [2008] NI 292, [2009] Fam Law 192, [2008] 4 All ER 992, [2008] 1 WLR 1499)
    The Sentence Review Commissioners had decided not to order the release of the prisoner, who was serving a life sentence. He had been released on licence from a life sentence and then committed further serious sexual offences against under-age girls . .
  • Cited – Secretary of State for the Home Department -v- Rehman HL (House of Lords, Times 15-Oct-01, Bailii, Gazette 01-Nov-01, [2001] UKHL 47, [2003] 1 AC 153, 11 BHRC 413, [2002] ACD 6, [2001] 3 WLR 877, [2002] Imm AR 98, [2002] INLR 92, [2002] 1 All ER 122)
    The applicant, a Pakistani national had entered the UK to act as a Muslim priest. The Home Secretary was satisfied that he was associated with a Muslim terrorist organisation, and refused indefinite leave to remain. The Home Secretary provided both . .
  • Cited – Leutscher -v- The Netherlands ECHR (17314/90, Bailii, [1996] ECHR 15, ECHR, (1996) 24 EHRR 181, Bailii, (1997) 24 EHRR 180)
    Lack of jurisdiction (complaint inadmissible); No violation of Art. 6-2 – The Commission distinguished cases in which there has been no acquittal on the merits of the accusation. . .
  • Cited – Walsh -v- Assets Recovery Agency CANI (Bailii, [2005] NICA 6, [2005] NI 383)
    . .
  • Cited – Sekanina -v- Austria ECHR (13126/87, (1993) 17 EHRR 221, Bailii, [1993] ECHR 37, ECHR, , Bailii)
    The applicant was detained on remand for about a year on suspicion of murdering his wife. He was acquitted by a jury. He applied for compensation for costs incurred in his defence and pecuniary damage sustained during his detention under the . .
  • Cited – Rushiti -v- Austria ECHR ((2000) 33 EHRR 1331, 28389/95, Bailii, Bailii, [2000] ECHR 106, [2000] 33 EHRR 56)
    The right of every person under the Convention to be presumed innocent, includes the general rule that no suspicion regarding an accused’s innocence may be voiced after his acquittal: ‘In any case, the Court is not convinced by the Government’s . .
  • Cited – Moullet -v- France ECHR (27521/04, Bailii, [2007] ECHR 5557)
    After an acquittal of criminal charges, it may still be legitimate to bring disciplinary proceedings or care proceedings under which a lesser standard of proof may be applied to the question of whether the defendant committed the conduct that had . .
  • Cited – Ringvold -v- Norway ECHR (34964/97, Bailii, [2003] ECHR 77, Bailii)
    The applicant had been tried for alleged sexual abuse of a minor, G, who in turn claimed civil compensation. He was acquitted and the claim for compensation dismissed. G appealed to the Supreme Court against the failure to award compensation. The . .
  • Cited – HK -v- Finland ECHR (36065/97, Bailii, [2006] ECHR 801)
    . .
  • Cited – Puhk -v- Estonia ECHR (55103/00, Bailii, Bailii, [2004] ECHR 69)
    Hudoc Judgment (Merits and just satisfaction) Violation of Art. 7-1 with regard to first law ; Violation of Art. 7-1 with regard to second law ; Pecuniary damage – claim rejected ; Non-pecuniary damage – . .
  • Cited – Y -v- Norway ECHR (56568/00, Bailii, [2003] ECHR 80, (2005) 41 EHRR 7, Bailii)
    The applicant was acquitted by the Norwegian High Court of serious criminal charges, but the same court then went on to make an order for him to pay compensation to the victim’s relatives on the ground that it was clearly probable that he had . .
  • Cited – Ringvold -v- Norway ECHR (34964/97, Bailii, [2003] ECHR 77, Bailii)
    The applicant had been tried for alleged sexual abuse of a minor, G, who in turn claimed civil compensation. He was acquitted and the claim for compensation dismissed. G appealed to the Supreme Court against the failure to award compensation. The . .
  • Cited – Geerings -v- The Netherlands ECHR (30810/03, Bailii, [2007] ECHR 191, (2007) 46 EHRR 1222)
    Where a defendant is acquitted of offences of which he was charged, it was not legitimate then to infer that he had benefitted from those offences for confiscation proceedings. . .
  • Cited – Raimondo -v- Italy ECHR (Bailii, [1994] ECHR 3, 12954/87, (1994) 18 EHRR 237, ECHR, , Bailii)
    The applicant was arrested and placed under house arrest on charges relating to his association with the Mafia. As an interim measure some of his property was seized. The proceedings ended in his acquittal. He claimed that the seizure of his . .
  • Cited – Butler -v- United Kingdom ECHR (Application No 41661/98, Unreported, 27 June 2002)
    A substantial confiscation order was made with respect to money seized from the applicant on the ground that customs officers believed the money was directly or indirectly the proceeds of drugs trafficking and/or was intended for use in drug . .
  • Cited – Hammern -v- Norway ECHR (30287/96, Bailii, [2003] ECHR 75, Bailii, Bailii, [2011] ECHR 2150)
    The claimant was acquitted by a jury at trial and he then sought compensation for the period of his detention on remand. The test applied was whether ‘it is shown to be probable that he did not perform the act that formed the basis for the charge’. . .
  • Cited – Lundkvist -v- Sweden ECHR (48518/99, Unreported, 13 November 2003)
    The applicant was charged with setting his house on fire after a row with his wife. He was acquitted on the grounds that, while there was a strong inferential case against him, it did not establish his guilt beyond reasonable doubt. He then brought . .
  • Cited – Webb -v- The United Kingdom ECHR (56054/00, Unreported, 10 February 2004)
    The Court rejected the applicant’s contention that the proceedings involved a ‘criminal charge’ and resulted in the imposition of a penalty or punishment. The forfeiture was preventative and not a penal sanction. Accordingly it was permissible that, . .
  • Cited – Geerings -v- The Netherlands ECHR (30810/03, Bailii, [2007] ECHR 191, (2007) 46 EHRR 1222)
    Where a defendant is acquitted of offences of which he was charged, it was not legitimate then to infer that he had benefitted from those offences for confiscation proceedings. . .

Leave a Reply