A person charged with a criminal offence, especially (but not only) drug related and dishonesty offences, risks having property associated with the offending initially restrained (so that it cannot be sold or otherwise affected) and subsequently forfeited to the State.
In almost every major drug prosecution, for example cultivation of a commercial quantity of cannabis or trafficking in a drug of dependence, the Proceeds of Crime Directorate of the Office of Public Prosecutions, will make application to the County or Supreme Court to have the property, in which the cannabis was grown or from which the drug was trafficked, restrained. Often, the offender’s spouse or partner, who has not offended at all, will have his or her interest in the property restrained as well and be liable to have the interest forfeited.
The consequences to the offender and his or her family are substantial and are often disproportionate to the offending. In some cases, the forfeiture is automatic upon conviction for an offence, so obtaining legal advice at the earliest stage is essential. Many criminal law firms do not practice confiscation law because of the nature of the commercial knowledge required in understanding the complicated Confiscations legislation, which governs this area.
Over the years, however, the team members at Galbally Rolfe have acquired extensive knowledge in this area and are thus able to assist those who have been charged criminally and whose property interests have been restrained without the need for the client to seek advice from a commercial law firm thus providing the client with a “one stop” solution to their legal issues.