If this was in the United Kingdom, he potentially breaches section 4 of the Act.
However, because this happened in West Africa, he doesn’t commit an offence in the United Kingdom. Sometimes, things may be illegally one country but quite legal in another. I don’t know whether it is an offence in Ghana.
Similarly, it may or may not be a criminal offence in the United States and there is no criminal offence in being able to view a website from another country.
By all means refer this to the police if you wish but it seems unlikely that a prosecution would be forthcoming although he might get a warning, if he is back in the UK and there is any suggestion that he is going to carry on effectively promoting his church and healing (albeit from someone else) is in the United Kingdom.
Can I clarify anything else for you?
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I am confident in my reply. Although there is no time limit for a criminal offence, I would be very surprised if Trading Standards did anything about this firstly because it’s 10 years ago and secondly because it’s not in the United Kingdom and hence, isn’t an offence.
By all means report it to the police and to Trading Standards. What he is doing is certainly not within the spirit of the Act which is to stop fraudsters cashing in on desperate people and giving them false hope.
If you want me to pass it on to someone else, for a second opinion, I’m happy to do so.
There doesn’t need to be money. The offence is advertising. Churches regularly advertise services without wanting money.
I have fwd the thread to a criminal barrister colleague
I have read the exchange above and can confirm that the answer above is correct.
I'm very sorry.
I was responding to your post above.
My colleague is right.
I am sorry.
Yes, that is right.
That there is no offence in the UK.
My colleague is a criminal barrister. She is apologising because we both imagine that this is probably not the answer you wanted, that a criminal prosecution was most unlikely.
We don’t know who you are or where you are and hence, you will get completely unbiased advice. The question was written in the third party so we had no reason to believe that you were anyone other than a third party asking about this.
Incidentally, based upon the facts you have given, it is most unlikely that a prosecution would be forthcoming even if this happened today in the UK. What you have to do is think about the spirit of the act and what it is designed to prevent.