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CPS Proceeds of Crime

When the trial is over and the offender convicted, specialist lawyers in Crown Prosecution Service Proceeds of Crime (CPSPOC) - along with other criminal justice agencies - go after any ill-gotten gains.

CPSPOC has three main offices around the country and plays a key role in recovering millions of pounds each year.

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Crimes involving young people

Young people as victims and witnesses

Being a victim or a witness to a crime is not easy, but we work hard to bring offenders to justice. Throughout the justice process we will support young victims and witnesses and treat them with dignity.

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Youth crime

The Crown Prosecution Service acts in partnership with other agencies such as the police, the youth justice board, children's services, courts and youth offending teams. Each area of the CPS has a youth justice specialist who oversees the prosecution of youth crime in their area.

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Youth case clarifies POCA legislation

21/02/2007

A case involving a teenager notorious for his fraudulent activity on eBay has clarified the issue that existed within the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 - section 70.

Phillip ShortmanPhillip Shortman. Picture courtesy of South Wales Argus

Seventeen-year-old Phillip Shortman was sent to the Crown Court for sentence from the Youth Court under the Act.

Shortman lived a champagne lifestyle in New York, after using eBay to defraud customers of £81,000 during August 2003 and September 2004.

While awaiting sentence for 84 offences, he continued to defraud customers using the online auction site. His offences included selling non-existent tickets to the 2005 RBS Six Nations Grand Slam match between Wales and Ireland. In one particular case he sold tickets and memorabilia for the match totalling £8000, while claiming he was the nephew of Welsh rugby legend, Graham Price.

By the time Shortman was sentenced he had already spent the majority of the money he had illegally acquired. The CPS prosecution team took the decision to use section 70 of POCA 2002 to ensure that the defendant remained liable for the money he had stolen. His sentence reflected this, as well as a 12-month detention training order, he also had a Benefit Order placed on him indefinitely.

The Benefit Order was put in place to ensure that if in future Shortman came into money or amassed a substantial amount of capital, he would be liable to pay back what he had illegally gained through his fraudulent activities.

Grenville Barker, Principle Crown Prosecutor for Gwent and POCA champion said of the decision: "The CPS view, one supported by the Crown Court Judge, is that section 70 of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 does apply to youths in the Youth Court.

"This decision now prevents an anomaly existing where youths could effectively benefit financially from criminal activity, and adults could not - giving youths an invitation to commit financially rewarding crime before their 18th birthday!"

In November 2005, Shortman appeared at Newport Crown Court after being bailed with the unique condition of "not to engage in any activity on the internet" for further fraudulent eBay use. He was spared a custodial sentence due to his age, and received a 240-hour community punishment order.

In spite of this, the young fraudster continued to deceive people and in January this year he was convicted again after obtaining property by deception, where he stole more than £3000 in petrol and diesel using a stolen fuel card.

At the hearing in Wales, he pleaded guilty to breaching his community order and received an eight-month prison sentence, suspended for two years.

On 1 February 2007, Shortman also received an additional 12 month conditional discharge for carrying an offensive weapon.

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