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Impounded Vehicle Returned Following Successful Appeal

A Dutch haulier delivering into the UK had their truck and trailer seized (value €125,000) when the driver was found to be smuggling a large amount of cocaine and heroin. HMRC and Borders Agency agreed that the haulier was completely innocent of any wrong doing but nevertheless refused to restore the vehicle. Simon Clarke acted for the haulier in Restoration and Condemnation proceedings and recovered the vehicle and the client’s legal costs. The Home Secretary appealed against that decision; the appeal court dismissed the Home Secretary’s appeal and ordered that she pay Freightlink’s legal costs. The appeal court ruled that to retain the vehicle beyond the period required for a full investigation (in this case, 6 months) was disproportionate and in breach of Freightlink’s right to the enjoyment of their property under the European Convention on Human Rights.

Case Details

Case Name: Impounded Vehicle Returned Following Successful Appeal
Case Date: November 2014 and January 2015 (appeal)
Case Type (info): Vehicle Seizure & Recovery

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