• William Kanaan

Blow to unexplained wealth orders

A further blow was dealt to unexplained wealth orders (UWO) in April when the High Court granted an appeal to discharge three UWOs concerning two prominent Kazakhstan citizens.


The UWOs related to three London homes owned by foundations and a company for the benefit of third parties. It was alleged that the properties were acquired as a means of laundering the proceeds of unlawful conduct by a national of Kazakhstan who was, amongst other things, an official in the Kazakhstan government (RA).


The National Crime Agency’s (NCA) case was that it suspected all three homes were bought with funds embezzled by RA. The court ruling was based on a finding that the NCA’s assumption that RA was the source of the money was unreliable and the unreasonableness of casting suspicion on certain facts.


The NCA announced it will appeal.


National Crime Agency v Baker and ors [2020] EWHC 822 (Admin)

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