With regards to monies received by mistake see Moynes v Cooper (1956), the defendant is under an obligation to return the money as soon as the defendant realises that he or she was overpaid.
In A-G Ref (No 1 of 1983) (1985), the defendant a policewoman was overpaid (£74), and she realized the mistake when she checked her bank account. Though she did not take the money, she did not make any attempts to return it either. The trial judge stopped the case from being heard and directed the jury to acquit and the attorney general referred the matter on a point of law.
It was decided that there was a legal obligation to return the money as soon as the defendant realized that there was a mistake and a failure to do so could lead to a conviction for theft.
Copyright © 2018 by Dyarne Jessica Ward