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CPS v (1) Lindsay Jane Richards (2) Anthony Stephen Richards

Where family assets were tainted and subject to confiscation under the Drug Trafficking Act 1994 and an applicant seeking relief under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 had knowledge that the assets derived from drug trafficking, the assets should not, as a matter of justice and public policy, be distributed to satisfy any ancillary relief order.

7 July 2006

The appellant CPS appealed against an order for £39,250 made in favour of the first respondent wife (W). W was married to the second respondent (H), a convicted heroin dealer serving a 10-year sentence in Holland for drug trafficking offences. H’s assets were all in the UK and were subject to Dutch confiscation proceedings under the Drug Trafficking Act 1994. W had begun divorce proceedings and her ancillary relief proceedings under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 were being heard concurrently to H’s application for a restraint order in relation to H’s assets under the 1994 Act. It was clear that the family assets of H and W comprised tainted money and that W held such knowledge. The judge found that W owned a 13.3 per cent beneficial interest in the matrimonial home and made the lump sum order out of the net proceeds of sale. The remaining assets were subjected to a restraint order to satisfy the confiscation order of the Dutch court. The issue for determination was the corr...

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