Police had discovered quantities of stolen goods at the appellant’s business premises. He was convicted of receiving stolen goods, and confiscation order made. He now appealed from the inclusion in that order of sums of VAT which had already been accounted for to HMRC.
Held: (Hughes and Toulson JJSC dissenting) The defendant’s appeal succeeded. Including the VAT in such an order was disproportionate. Whilst the 2002 Act served properly as a deterrent, it was not intended itself to be punitive. VAT was not a tax on a par with Income Tax or Corporation Tax. It was, in effect the taxpayer collecting tax as agent for HMRC
As to construction of the 2008 Act: ‘In para 8 of Waya, POCA was described as ‘framed … in broad terms with a certain amount of . . ‘overkill”. Lord Walker and Lord Hughes went on to say that ‘[although the statute has often been described as ‘draconian’ that cannot be a warrant for abandoning the traditional rule that a penal statute should be construed with some strictness’, adding that, ‘subject to this and to [the Human Rights Act 1998], the task of the Crown Court judge is to give effect to Parliament’s intention as expressed in the language of the statute. The statutory language must be given a fair and purposive construction in order to give effect to its legislative policy”.
Lord Neuberger, President, Lord Mance, Lord Reed, Lord Hughes, Lord Toulson
 UKSC 73,  WLR(D) 539,  AC 105,  2 WLR 37,  Lloyd’s Rep FC 41,  1 Cr App R (S) 60,  Crim LR 356,  4 All ER 521, UKSC 2013/0249
Bailii, Bailii Summary, WLRD, SC, SC Summary
Proceeds of Crime Act 2002
England and Wales
Cited – Basso and Another v Regina CACD 19-May-2010
The defendants had been convicted of offences of failing to comply with planning enforcement notices (and fined andpound;10.00), and subsequently made subject to criminal confiscation orders. The orders had been made in respect of the gross income . .
Cited – Ahmad, Regina v SC 18-Jun-2014
The court considered the proper approach for the court to adopt, and the proper orders for the court to make, in confiscation proceedings where a number of criminals (some of whom may not be before the court) had between them acquired property or . .
At CACD – Harvey, Regina v CACD 3-Jul-2013
The defendant had been convicted of handling and receiving stolen goods. He now appealed from a confiscation order made under the 2002 Act. The defendant having admitted to benefiting from a criminal lifestyle, the court had to decide to what . .
Cited – Elida Gibbs Ltd v Commissioners Of Customs And Excise ECJ 24-Oct-1996
(a) a manufacturer issues a money-off coupon, which is redeemable at the amount stated on the coupon by or at the expense of the manufacturer in favour of the retailer, (b) the coupon, which is . .
Cited – May, Regina v HL 14-May-2008
The defendant had been convicted of involvement in a substantial VAT fraud, and made subject to a confiscation order. He was made subject to a confiscation order in respect of the amounts lost to the fraud where he was involved, but argued that the . .
Cited – Waya, Regina v SC 14-Nov-2012
The defendant appealed against confiscation orders made under the 2002 Act. He had bought a flat with a substantial deposit from his own resources, and the balance from a lender. That lender was repaid after he took a replacement loan. He was later . .
Cited – Salvesen v Riddell and Another; The Lord Advocate intervening (Scotland) SC 24-Apr-2013
The appellant owned farmland tenanted by a limited partnership. One partner gave notice and the remaining partners indicated a claim for a new tenancy. He was prevented from recovering possession by section 72 of the 2003 Act. Though his claim had . .
Cited – Commission v Netherlands ECJ 8-Nov-2001
ECJ Failure of a Member State to fulfil its obligations – Articles 17(2)(a) and 18(1)(a) of the Sixth VAT Directive – National legislation allowing an employer to deduct, as input tax, a certain percentage of an . .
Cited – Regina v Smith (David Cadnam) HL 13-Dec-2001
Smith had bought a motor vessel, The Vertine, with andpound;55,000 provided by his co-defendant, John Marriott. In the words of the judge when imposing sentence, the respondent allowed himself to be used as Marriott’s ship owner and captain. The . .
Cited – Edwards v Regina CACD 30-Nov-2004
The defendant appealed from a confiscation order. He was stopped attempting to import substantial quantities of tobacco. He said that since it had been taken at the port, he had not derived an benefit so as to allow an order.
Held: The appeal . .
Cited – Varma, Regina v SC 10-Oct-2012
The defendant had been convicted of offences under the 1979 Act, but then conditionally discharged. He had appealed against a confiscation order. The prosecutor now appealed against an order quashing the confiscation.
Held: The appeal was . .
Cited – National Aids Trust v National Health Service Commissioning Board (NHS England) Admn 2-Aug-2016
NHS to make drug available
The claimant charity said that drugs (PrEP) prophylactic for AIDS / HIV should be made available by the defendant and through the NHS. The respndent said that the responsibility for preventative medicine for sexual health lay with local authorities. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.
Criminal Sentencing, VAT, Human Rights
Updated: 08 January 2022; Ref: scu.556976