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27B. Proceedings civil, not criminal 27B.

(2) Except in relation to an offence under this Act:

the rules of construction applicable only in relation to the criminal law do not apply in the interpretation of this Act; and
the rules of evidence applicable in civil proceedings apply, and those applicable only in criminal proceedings do not apply, to proceedings under this Act


Possession of unexplained wealth

71F. Any person who –

maintains a standard of living above that which is commensurate with his or her present or past lawful emoluments, or
is in control of pecuniary resources or property disproportionate to his or her present or past lawful emoluments,

shall, unless he or she provides a satisfactory explanation to the court as to how he or she was able to maintain such a standard of living or how such pecuniary resources or property came under his or her control, be required to pay to the Forfeited Assets Fund the amount specified in the unexplained wealth declaration under section 71K.

Application for an unexplained wealth declaration

71G. (1) The Director of Public Prosecutions may make an application in court for an unexplained wealth declaration against a person.

(2) An application under subsection (1) may be made in conjunction with an application under section 34 of the Act for a restraining order or at any other time.

(3) If the court makes an unexplained wealth declaration under subsection (1), the Director of Public Prosecutions may also make an application in court that the unexplained wealth is forfeitable.

Division 1 – Unexplained Wealth

Unexplained Wealth

71H. (1) For the purposes of this Decree, a person has unexplained wealth if the value of the person’s total wealth as described in subsection (2) is greater than the value of the person’s lawfully acquired wealth as described in subsection (3).

(2) The value of the person’s total wealth is the total value of all the items of property and all the services, advantages and benefits that together constitute the person’s wealth.

(3) The value of the person’s lawfully acquired wealth is that person’s total wealth that was lawfully acquired.

Assessing the value of unexplained wealth

71I. When assessing the respondent’s wealth, the court shall consider the following—

the value of any property, service, advantage or benefit is to be taken as its greater value—
(i) at the time that it was acquired; and
(ii) on the day that the application for the unexplained wealth declaration was made;

the value of any property, service, advantage or benefit that was a constituent of the respondent’s wealth but has been given away, used, consumed or discarded, or that is for any other reason no longer available, is taken to be an outgoing at the greater of its value—
(i) at the time that it was acquired; and
(ii) immediately before it was given away, or was used, consumed or discarded, or is unavailable; and

when hearing an application under section 71G, it shall not take account of any property—
(i) that has been forfeited under this Decree or any other written law; or
(ii) service, advantage or benefit that was taken into account for the purpose of making an earlier unexplained wealth declaration against the respondent.

Division 2 – The constituents of a person’s wealth

The constituents of a person’s wealth

71J. The following property, services, advantages and benefits constitute a person’s wealth—

all property that the person owns, whether the property was acquired before or after the commencement of this Decree;
(b) all property that the person effectively controls, whether the person acquired effective control of the property before or after the commencement of this Decree;
all property that the person has given away at any time, whether before or after the commencement of this Decree;
all other property acquired by the person at any time, whether before or after the commencement of this Decree, including consumer goods and consumer durables that have been consumed or discarded (but not including necessary food, clothing and other items reasonably necessary for ordinary daily requirements of life);
all services, advantages and benefits that the person has acquired at any time, whether before or after the commencement of this Decree;
all property, services, advantages and benefits acquired, at the request or direction of the person, by another person at any time, whether before or after the commencement of this Decree, including consumer goods and consumer durables that have been consumed or discarded (but not including necessary food, clothing and other items reasonably necessary for ordinary daily requirements of life); and
anything of monetary value acquired by the person or another person, in Fiji or elsewhere, from the commercial exploitation of any product or any broadcast, telecast or other publication, where the commercial value of the product, broadcast, telecast or other publication depends on or is derived from the person's involvement in the commission of a serious offence, whether or not the thing was lawfully acquired and whether or not the person has been charged with or convicted of the offence.

Unexplained wealth declaration

71K. (1) The court that is hearing an application under section 71G shall declare that the respondent has unexplained wealth if it is more likely than not that the respondent’s total wealth is greater than his or her lawfully acquired wealth.

(2) Any property, service, advantage or benefit that is a constituent of the respondent’s total wealth is presumed not to have been lawfully acquired unless the respondent establishes the contrary.

(3) Without limiting the matters to which a court may have regard for the purpose of deciding whether the respondent has unexplained wealth, the court may have regard to the amount of the respondent’s lawful income and outgoings at any time or at all times.

(4) When a court makes an unexplained wealth declaration, the court shall—

assess the respondent’s total unexplained wealth in accordance with section 71I and 71J;
specify the assessed value of the unexplained wealth in the declaration; and
order the respondent to pay to the Forfeited Assets Fund the amount specified in the declaration as the value of his or her unexplained wealth.

(5) When making an unexplained wealth declaration, the court may make any necessary or convenient ancillary orders and declarations, including awarding costs as the court sees fit.


Type: Civil Illicit Enrichment Laws

Last update on LEARN: Thursday, 3 March 2022, 13:00