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I am very sorry to hear about this. A customs officer or the Police are allowed to seize cash of more than £1,000 from someone entering the UK or who is already in the UK if they have suspicions that the cash has come from a criminal act or the cash is going to be used illegally.
They can hold the cash for up to 48 hours unless a court order allows that it can be kept for longer.
Cash seizure involves criminal law and so the prosecution has to prove that the cash was illegal or going to be used illegally ‘beyond reasonable doubt’.
Alternatively, they can go for cash forfeiture. Forfeiture is a civil matter, which means that the court can only order the cash to be forfeited if it is proved that it was ‘more likely than not’ that the cash was illegal or going to be used illegally.
If you are investigated and a decision is made to seize your cash it is important to consider contacting your local solicitor to understand whether the seizure or forfeiture was legal and whether it can be challenged.
I hope this has helped. Feel free to come back with anything else. I will help to the extent I can.