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Criminal law

International and European law

19/ Dec

Legal news

Criminal law — International and European law

Law No.1535 of 9 December 2022: reform of the system of seizure and confiscation of instruments and products of crime

Law No. 1.535 of 9 December 2022 on the seizure (provisional measure consisting in placing property under the control of the judicial authority) and confiscation (sentence pronounced following a criminal conviction which entails the vesting in the State of the confiscated property) of the instruments and proceeds of crime, stems from bill No. 1067 deposited on the Bureau of the Parliament on 3 November 2022 and voted during the Public Session of 30 November 2022 (published in the JDM No. 8621 of 16 December 2022)

It should be noted that, in addition, Law No. 1.536 of 9 December 2022 amending Title XI of Book IV of the Code of Criminal Procedure on international judicial assistance was passed on the same day, incorporating specific provisions concerning the fate of property seized in execution of a request for foreign mutual assistance (Articles 595-14 to 596-18 of the Code of Criminal Procedure).

The purpose of the reform is to transpose into Monegasque law both :

Directive 2014/42/EU of 3 April 2014 on the freezing and confiscation of instrumentalities and the proceeds of crime in the European Union (Articles 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10) concerning the offences referred to in letters b) to e) of its Article 3 namely counterfeiting, fraud and counterfeiting of non-cash means of payment, money laundering, terrorism (pursuant to the Monetary Agreement of 29 November 2011 with the European Union, including its Annex B – The deadline for implementation by Monaco was set at 21 December 2022 by the 2020 Euro Joint Committee);

FATF International Recommendations: Recommendation 4 “Confiscation and Provisional Measures”, Recommendation 30 “Responsibilities of Prosecuting and Investigating Authorities”, Recommendation 38 “Mutual Legal Assistance: Freezing and Confiscation” and their interpretative notes (following the observations of the Council of Europe’s MONEYVAL Committee made in the framework of the 5th evaluation cycle of Monaco).


The main thrusts of the reform are as follows:

→ Strengthen the effectiveness of the confiscation penalty: widening the possibilities of seizing confiscable assets, facilitating the tracing of these assets, creating specialised assistants to take part in money laundering procedures;

→ Guarantee respect for the rights of persons affected by a seizure measure or confiscation order: effective means of appeal;

→ Improve the management of seized or confiscated assets: establishment of a “service de gestion des avoirs saisis ou confisqués” (seized or confiscated assets management service) placed under the authority of the Directeur des Services Judiciaires (Director of Judicial Services);

Payment of damages awarded to victims of crime: possibility of obtaining from the said service the payment of sums awarded by deduction from the funds or the liquidated value of confiscated property.

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