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Clearing your name: the devil is in the detail

Statistically, most people charged with criminal offences are guilty as charged. In fact, the vast majority either plead ‘guilty’ of their own volition, or are found guilty at trial and are sentenced. Quite apart from the sentencing, there are rules about how long those convictions remain ‘live’ (meaning they must be disclosed to potential employers)….

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Dredging up the past: prosecutors seeking to vary confiscation orders years later

A confiscation order can be made after a defendant is convicted of certain criminal offences.  It requires the defendant to pay back the ‘benefit’ that they have obtained from their criminal behaviour.  Such an order is effectively capped at the level of a defendant’s available assets. Under Section 22 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (‘POCA’)…

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Streamlined sentencing code proposed

In July 2017, the Law Commission published a draft Sentencing Code for public consultation.  The consultation period ended on 26 January 2018 and the findings are currently awaited. The main criticisms, and in turn the driving factors for the new Code, are that the current laws lack ‘coherence and clarity’.  The Law Commission state that…

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Law relating to social media to be reviewed

The Prime Minister has indicated that the Law Commission will review legislation “to ensure that the criminal law, which was drafted long before the creation of social media platforms, is appropriate to meet the challenges posed by this new technology”. A new “social media code of practice”, providing guidelines for content and conduct and how companies report…

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Can suicide break the chain of causation?

The principles of “causation” have been examined  in a recent trial at Bristol Crown Court last month. In this case, the prosecution have sought to argue that the act of the defendant throwing sulphuric acid over the victim, which resulted in catastrophic but not fatal injuries, constituted murder. The injuries sustained by the victim included…

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Brett Wilson LLP and its lawyers recommended in Legal 500 directory

Brett Wilson LLP has been ranked in the 2017 edition of the Legal 500 as a leading firm in the fields of Reputation Management, White Collar Crime/Fraud and General Crime.  The latest edition was published on 11 October 2017 and marks the sixth consecutive year that Brett Wilson LLP has featured in the directory. Partner…

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Rough justice for ethnic minorities – diversity deficit, or budget deficit?

Labour MP David Lammy, has now completed his commission report into the treatment of black, asian and minority ethnic (‘BAME’) individuals in the Criminal Justice System. The report, published this week, makes 35 recommendations chiefly aimed at achieving better representation, as well as a better perception of representation, for BAME defendants, and indeed all parties…

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Decline in the number of prosecutions as reports of white-collar crime rise

Figures provided by the Ministry of Justice, pursuant to a freedom of information request, display a decline in the number of white-collar crimes prosecuted in England and Wales in 2016.  There was, however, in the same year, a spike in the number of white-collar crimes reported, sparking questions over whether police forces and the Serious…

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Police to replace ‘insufficient evidence’ notification

Suspects in criminal investigations will no longer be told that they will not be prosecuted on the basis of ‘insufficient evidence’ the Home Office has announced. A consultation with the Police, Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the Attorney General’s Office took place following concerns raised that the current wording raises doubt on an individual’s innocence….

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Brett Wilson LLP and partners recommended in Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners directories

The prestigious Legal 500 directory has again listed Brett Wilson LLP as a leading firm in the fields of reputation management, white collar crime/fraud and general crime. The 2016 edition of the directory was published on 14 September 2016.  This is the fifth consecutive year that Brett Wilson LLP has featured in the directory. Additionally, partners Iain Wilson and Nick…

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Articles are intended as an introduction to the topic and do not constitute legal advice.

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