Customs Act 2015


Proceedings for condemnation by court

20. (1) Proceedings for condemnation by the court (in this section referred to as “condemnation proceedings”) are civil proceedings, and such proceedings shall be commenced in the name of the Commissioners.

(2) Where in any condemnation proceedings the court finds that the thing seized was, at the time of seizure, liable to forfeiture, the court shall condemn it as forfeited, and in any other case the court shall order its release.

(3) Condemnation proceedings may be instituted in the High Court or, if in the opinion of the Commissioners the value of the thing seized (that is to be the subject of such proceedings) does not exceed—

(a) €75,000, the Circuit Court, or

(b) €15,000, the District Court.

(4) In any condemnation proceedings, the claimant or any solicitor acting on behalf of such claimant, shall state on oath that the thing seized was, or was to the best of his or her knowledge and belief, the property of the claimant at the time of the seizure.

(5) The Commissioners may, in their discretion, stay or compound any condemnation proceedings.

(6) The Commissioners may restore anything seized which is the subject of condemnation proceedings.

(7) Where in any condemnation proceedings—

(a) judgment is given for the claimant and the court or judge certifies that there was probable cause for making such seizure or detention, no officer of the Commissioners or other person who made or assisted in making the seizure is liable to any civil or criminal proceedings on account of the seizure or detention of the thing seized, and

(b) anything is condemned as forfeited, the forfeiture shall apply from the date when the liability to forfeiture arose.