Hughes and Others v HM Customs and Excise: Admn 21 Dec 2001

The applicants had either been acquitted of drugs trafficking offences, or were third parties. In each case, property had been taken into receivership, and orders had been made for the receivers to take their costs from the assets taken. The proprietors appealed that part of the orders.
Held: The receiver is an officer of the court, not an agent of the parties. He may not use an unconvicted defendant’s assets to meet the costs of the receivership. Human Rights law would in any event have interfered. Depriving an unconvicted defendant or a third party of his share of lawfully obtained assets to pay the costs of receivership is a disproportionate measure and a breach of Article 1 of the First Protocol.


Mr Justice Hooper


[2001] EWHC Admin 1102




Drug Trafficking Act 1994, Criminal Justice Act 1988 1A 77(8)


CitedIn Re Andrews CA 25-Feb-1999
The defendant and his son had been charged with offences relating to their joint business, and restraint orders were made. The son was convicted, but the defendant was acquitted and awarded his costs out of central funds. The taxing officer held . .
CitedGardner v London Chatham and Dover Railway Co (No 1) 1867
When Parliament expressly confers powers and imposes duties and responsibilities of an important kind upon a particular body, it is, as he put it, improper for the court by the appointment of a manager . . . itself to assume those powers and duties. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Customs and Excise, Criminal Practice, Human Rights

Updated: 05 June 2022; Ref: scu.167376