Orton v Truro Crown Court and Another: Admn 21 Jan 2009

An application had been made under section 298 of the 2002 Act for the forfeiture of cash. The application had been dismissed by the magistrates’ court, but they also refused order the defendant’s costs. The police appealed to the Crown Court against the magistrates’ refusal to make a forfeiture order. Their appeal was dismissed, but the Crown Court also refused to make any order for costs. The Crown Court judge explained the refusal to order the police to pay Mr Orton’s costs as follows: ‘My recollection is that we refused the respondent’s costs because he had done little or nothing to rebut the appellant’s case in confiscation proceedings, which were essentially a civil/balance of probability proceedings tried in the criminal courts.’
Held: The explanation was insufficient. It quashed the order of the Crown Court, and remitted the matter to that Court for it to determine whether Mr. Orton was entitled to his costs in accordance with the judgment of the Divisional Court.
Simon J said: ‘There was no finding of conduct which might otherwise disentitle the claimant to his costs. Although we have not heard arguments on the point, it seems to me that, on an appeal to the Crown Court by the police, the powers of that court include power to review the decision of the Magistrates’ Court on the question of costs in accordance with the wide powers set out in section 229. Having succeeded in both courts, I would have expected the claimant to have been awarded his costs in each case unless cogent reasons were advanced why he should not.’
Simon J
[2009] EWHC 168 (Admin)
Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 298
England and Wales
Cited by:
Not authoritativePerinpanathan, Regina (on The Application of) v City of Westminster Magistrates Court and Another CA 4-Feb-2010
The appellant’s daughter had been stopped entering the country with andpound;150,000 in cash. The police sought an order for its forfeiture, suspecting a link with terrorism. The magistrates found no evidence of such, and declined to make the order, . .

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Updated: 03 May 2021; Ref: scu.282621