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Proceeds of Crime: Past, Present, and Future in England & Wales (From Resource Material Series, No. 67, 173-188, 2005 -- See NCJ-214096)

NCJ Number
Sir David Calvert-Smith QC
Date Published
December 2005
16 pages
This paper presents an overview of the development of law in the countries of England and Wales, focusing on relieving criminals of their dishonest gains (i.e., money laundering).
Before the development of a national system of criminal courts in the 14th century in England and Wales the court system was described as within the control of the citizens. The following centuries saw a separation of civil from criminal law and procedure. In the 20th century, specifically the 1950s and 1960s, there were few ways in which the criminal courts of England and Wales were able to go beyond the process of trying and sentencing the offender for the individual criminal act he/she had committed. However, since the 1970s attempts have been made by successive governments to pass laws which enable the criminal courts to relive criminals of their dishonest gains. In the 1980s, sentencing courts were required to consider compensation in all victim cases. In addition, the Drug Trafficking Offenders Act was enacted in the 1980s revolutionizing the theory and practice of the criminal law and its relationship with the proceeds of crime. The 21st century took two important steps. First, it incorporated into English law the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) and second, a law was passed to enable the profits of all crime to be made the subject of criminal sanction.