Prosecution of product safety offences under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005

The following Corporate Crime practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Prosecution of product safety offences under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005
  • Time limit for bringing prosecutions under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005
  • Liability of persons other than the principal offender
  • Liability of company officers
  • Statutory defence of 'due diligence'
  • Penalties for offences under GPSR

Prosecution of product safety offences under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005

For information on the obligations imposed on producers and distributors under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005, SI 2005/1803 (GPSR 2005), see Practice Note: General Product Safety Regulations 2005.

For information on the enforcement of GPSR 2005, SI 2005/1803, see Practice Note: Enforcement of the General Product Safety Regulations 2005.

Time limit for bringing prosecutions under the General Product Safety Regulations 2005

GPSR 2005, SI 2005/1803 require that any prosecution for an offence must be brought within three years from the commission of the offence (ie breach of the general safety requirement, etc) or 12 months from the discovery of the offence by the prosecutor, whichever is sooner.

For information on the meaning of ‘from discovery of the offence’, and on how to calculate when the ‘clock’ starts ticking for the calculation of time limits, see Practice Note: Time limits for commencing criminal proceedings.

Liability of persons other than the principal offender

Where a person (the principal offender) has committed an offence under the Regulations and this was due to the act or default of another person, proceedings may be brought against the other person whether or nor proceedings are also brought against the principal offender. In practice, this means, by way of example, that a party who provided information or a service on which the producer or distributor

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