The Crimes Legislation Amendment (Unexplained Wealth and Other Measures) Bill 2014 was introduced in the House of Reps this Wed 5.3.2014. It contains measures to implement recommendations made by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Law Enforcement (the PJC-LE) in its final report on its inquiry into Commonwealth unexplained wealth legislation and arrangements. The inquiry took evidence from the Australian Crime Commission, the ATO, the AFP and others.

The Bill proposes to amend the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 to, among other things:

  • ensure evidence relevant to unexplained wealth proceedings can be seized under a search warrant;
  • allow the time limit for serving notice of applications for certain unexplained wealth orders to be extended by a court in appropriate circumstances;
  • allow charges to be created over restrained property to secure payment of an unexplained wealth order as can occur with other types of proceeds of crime order;
  • remove a court’s discretion to make unexplained wealth restraining orders, preliminary unexplained wealth orders and unexplained wealth orders once relevant criteria are satisfied.

[LTN 43, 5/3/14]