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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70635
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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The police seized £30,000 worth of tyres from me, and

Customer Question

The police seized £30,000 worth of tyres from me, and interveiwed me under caution for handling stolen goods. They have since told me they are taken no further action and there will be no criminal charges, but have said they will not return me my tyres. They want me and the man who claimed the tyres were stolen from him to come to an agreement and split the tyres, which I think is ridiculous. Surely if they are not charging me for handling stolen goods the tyres should be returned to me? Where do I stand? What legal corse of action should/ can I take?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Are you prepared to risk being prosecuted?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Have they been able to identify these specific tyres as the ones that belong to him?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No they have not, tyres do not have individual serial numbers, the same serial number will relate to a batch of over 10,000 tyres of the same brand and size.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Ok. But is there a match?

Even if not identical.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I honestly don't know. They said the man has a list of over 300 tyres that he had stolen, they have around 150 of my tyres which are the same brand and size of some of the tyres on his list. Although they have also said they he does not have sufficient documents to prove they are his tyres. As it stands the police have now closed the case and it is a civil dispute.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Surely as the case is closed the tyres should be returned to me, and if the man wants to take it to court, he can.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, it is never quite that simple but if an item cannot be proven to be unlawful or stolen then it should be returned to the last known possessor.

The reality is that the police do not always do that.

You can always lay a complaint at the Magistrates pursuant to the Police Property Act or sue I suppose at the County Court. The question really is whether you are willing to risk antagonising the police in this way. They can be rather childish in their responses sometimes.

In principle though you are right.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Jo

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I know in principle I am right, but where do I stand legally?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Well, as I said above really, if an item cannot be proven to be unlawful or stolen then it should be returned to the last known possessor.