Quentin saves clients over £360,000 in Planning Enforcement Proceeds of Crime Act case

Quentin saves clients over £360,000 in Planning Enforcement Proceeds of Crime Act case


PI and SI were two brothers who jointly owned a rental property in Birmingham. They had been subject to a planning enforcement notice that they had not complied with. The were eventually prosecuted under s179 of the Town and Country Planning Act 2006. They chose a firm of solicitors who were know to them but not specialists in the area of planning enforcement and both pleaded guilty in the Magistrates Court to enforcement notice breach offences.  To their surprise their case was committed to the Crown Court under s70 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 for the consideration of a confiscation order.


When the prosecution served their s16 statement of facts in the confiscation proceedings the brothers were dismayed to find that the prosecution was seeking over £431,000 by way of a confiscation order.


At this stage the brothers decided to instruct Quentin Hunt, a specialist criminal defence barrister to conduct their confiscation hearing, this decision was made due to Quentin’s expertise in both POCA matters and in Planning Enforcement Law.


Quentin took over conduct of the case and drafted a detailed s17 response to the prosecution statement outlining a number of factual and legal errors in the prosecution approach. Quentin was instructed to approach the Council with an eye to getting a settlement in the case with the prosecution due to the litigation risk inherent in proceedings and the potentially devastating worst case scenario of a £431,000 order.


Quentin then undertook detailed negotiation with the prosecution over the sum to be paid, with offers and counteroffers taking place over several months. The result was highly beneficial to the clients as Quentin managed to secure an agreement form the prosecution that the sum of the confiscation order would be £67,000. This was a reduction of over £360,000 from the amount originally claimed by the prosecution. Quentin’s clients were obviously delighted with the result.


Quentin Hunt is a criminal defence Barrister over 22 years’ experience who specialises in proceeds of crime act cases and planning enforcement case under the Town and Country Planning Act 1996. Quentin accepts instructions both through solicitors and directly from members of the public. If you require assistance with either sort of case or are looking for assistance from a criminal defence lawyer you may contact Quentin for a free, no obligation conversation about your case.